The Racing Festival in Spa was the 5th and penultimate round of the Belcar Endurance Championship 2018.
The car was rebuild after the fire on Thursday during the 24 hours of Zolder. Furthermore, some updates were made to the car, which did not immediately have the expected impact. After some last-minute changes, the behavior of the car had improved somewhat. The car also proved to be faster compared to our previous race in Spa.
During qualifying, Jamie put us on 20th place. He also took the start of the race on Sunday. However, after 20 minutes, fate struck again. A blown turbo went partly through the exhaust, but worse, also partly through the engine, which caused some serious damage. Our racewas over immediately, but the question remains whether the power source can still be restored.
To be continued …
The third Belcar race of the season was held at 01/07/2018.
After our point finish in Spa, we were all keen to do it again in Zolder. We arrived in Zolder with a slightly faster engine, which made the gap with the front runners a bit smaller.
Since Raf was on vacation, Jamie and I took on the driving duties.
Everything went pretty well in qualifying on Saturday. At the end of the session I was able to put a 1’44″6 on the table which brought us to P23. The car was a bit faster compared to Spa, but we still had no chance against the much faster Normas.
Jamie took the start on Sunday. His times continued to fluctuate around 1’45-46 until after 20 minutes he was forced to come in with a broken clutch. Unfortunately, the team did not have a spare one, so our race was over immediately.
Unfortunately no points during the Superprix and immediately our second breakdown of the season. Developing a car yourself with limited budgets (and time) remains a challenging task …
In mid-August it is already time for the Zolder 24 hours, where we will try to do better than last year, where we lost about 7 hours due to mechanical problems.
The Spa Euro race was the second round of the Belcar Endurance Championship 2018.
Jamie could not attend this time due to other commitments. Raf and I participated in this competition as a duo.
In the qualifying on Saturday the car was relatively reliable, but we were simply too slow compared to the rest of the prototypes. Our top speed was about 50km/h (!) lower than the fastest Norma, so the difference in lap times went as high as 24 seconds.
Since there was no time left to get the car mapped again, we decided to drive the race in this configuration to try to collect points for the championship.
I took the start for my account and luckily that went very smooth. Because of some pushing and pulling I could keep up with the GT4 cars in the first few laps. Once everyone got up to speed, I had to let them go. After 40 minutes, a turbo tube popped of, which forced me to enter the pit. Raf took over from me and after the repairs he was able to continue until we had to deal with an oil leak. Once this had been fixed, he could finish his stint without problems.
I got in the car for the last 40 minutes. I tried to keep the car in one piece so we would get some points. In the end, we finished P6 in our class, which was enough for our first points!
After a year and a half of bad luck and mechanical failures, we finally managed to gather points. It turned out that our diesel engine only produced 180hp that weekend, which easily cost us 7-8 seconds per lap.
The next appointment is at the end of June in Zolder. Where the weekend is dominated by the Blancpain Sprint Series.
The weekend of 7 and 8 April was all about the Belcar Endurance Championship in Zolder, the official start of the new season.
The program for the entire weekend was great, highlighted by the Blancpain Sprint Series (European GT3 championship) and the European GT4 Series.
Just like last year, I am part of the Oracle Cars team, reinforced this year by Turbo Synthesis Ltd. The car had received a complete make-over during the winter (both internally and externally), which led us to the Zolder in good spirits.
However, it was a weekend to quickly forget with a broken gearbox on Friday, a broken turbo on Saturday and an engine problem on Sunday.
Next appointment is on 30/06 and 01/07 in Spa for the second race of the season where we will have a brand-new engine that has already passed a full test day. More than 100 rounds have been completed on the Donnington (UK) circuit, allowing the team to collect valuable data. The first reactions were very positive, the new engine has a lot more power, so we in Spa we should be a lot more competitive.