Roadracing in Arizona & New Mexico

Firebird Main 5-6-07

Highlights (and lowlights) from the next event.

Prior to the next Race on 5/6/07 we did quite a bit of maintenance and upgrades on the kart.

New triple-pass radiator, new carbon fibre silencer and new carb. As well as a new pistion, ring and cleaning up the cylinder walls. No real damage from the previous event. Thank goodness

Got it all put together and put the kart on the ground to give it a push start to see how it drove. Would not start! Pushed that thing down into our cul-de-sac and just about died from the exertion. The motor was trying to start but no joy beyond about two feet and then chug to a stop.

Back up on to the stand (after some rest and a big glass of ice water). Called around for some advice. Changed main and pilot jet and checked the plug. No spark. Changed the plug. IT LIVES!

Loaded it up for the next day’s race at Firebird Main.

The kart was running well and Tyler was seventh quickest from the start of practice (fastest 125 classed kart – a Vampire motored speed deamon- running 66.884 and Tyler running a 69.618 with an ICC kart in front of him at a 69.070 and another ten shifters in his wake).

After the first practice session we checked the kart over and decided not to make any changes (we wanted to change the rear gear but the gear we wanted was on the axle of the old 80 kart sitting at home in the garage).

Checked the plug and while it was a bit wetter then the other 125 karts it was in line with how we ran the 80 and I decided to run it rich rather then burn it down.

Qualifying also went well and it looked like we would be in for a good showing in the race as Tyler was gridded fifth.

Things certainly are looking good for the second half of the season and running this new chassis and motor combo up in the 125 class and setting the ground work for a good next season.

This race is the first time that the karts have run the full Firebird Main track config (with the DE line – not the normal SCCA race line into the “Canyon of Death”) with the Looper at the end of the dragstrip so watching the karts roll off grid and head out two-by-two to make their slow pace lap took quite a bit longer then normal with the karts slowly making their way round the track.

As they came round the Tower Turn onto the Dragstrip to take the green everything was looking good.

At the drop of the Green flag I saw Tyler immediately throw his left arm into the air to signal the karts behind him. I wanted to close my eyes so as to not see the carnage of +30 karts behind him drive into him and create a pile of rubbish and bruised bodies.

Fortunately the driver in th kart directly behind him (and the guy we bought the new carb from – thanks Marty!) managed to squeeze by between Tyler and the wall on the right while the next kart went left between Tyler and the other line of karts. This gave the rest of the field time to adjust and avoid any wheel-to-wheel or bumper-to-bumper contact.

Tyler could not even make it back round to the paddock and had to wait out the rest of the race standing trackside.

After the race and Tyler getting flat towed back to our space I pulled the plug and stuck in a new one. It fired right up and ran without issue.


Next time out if faced with a plug that looks a little bit rich we will go ahead and lean it out. Also, might just have to invest in a larger than average supply of NGK-BE10EG plugs and change them between every session whether it looks like we need to or not!

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