"Holden" my own... A race report / story in 14 parts.

Discussion in 'GT4 Race Reports' started by Smallhorses, Nov 8, 2008.

  1. Daniel

    Daniel Premium

    Messages:
    8,210
    Location:
    New Zealand
    good story smallhorses. I'm not surprised to see some Aussies in this thread (Paulie, Mad94d and Thiele :lol:)
     
  2. Bieniu

    Bieniu

    Messages:
    13
    an interesting and enjoyable story, well done :)
     
  3. Smallhorses

    Smallhorses Staff Emeritus

    Messages:
    7,260
    Chapter 9: Motorland: A Catalogue Of Disaster & A New Look Podium.

    I've spared you the details of my journey back to Japan this time, as I'm sure you're all familiar with that part of the story by now, and I've concentrated instead on what became the most event packed race to date, even though it was on by far the shortest circuit in in the season's calendar. It wasn't assisted by the freak lightning storm that passed overhead a few hours before the racing began, leaving the track somewhat damp and triggering a small forest fire in the distance that a few water carrying helicopters rushed to attend to, taking some photographs as they passed over the track showing the smoke in the background as I was catching Ernst's Subaru in one of them, and the storm clouds dissipating in the distance in the other.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    They make for a pretty good overview of the compact track layout as seen from above, a track probably better suited to the drifting discipline it was designed to showcase with it's tight right/left turn combos and long loopy last turn with seemingly 3 different apexes allowing the drifters to show off their impressive, tyre-smoking car control in multiple ways for the style judges.

    [​IMG]

    They were due to be on later though, assuming the damp track dried up enough for them, and in the meantime our race made up one of the support events for the day. In the race just before ours, for some historic K&K Clubman cars like Honda Zs & N360s, Subaru 360s and Suzuki Fronte Coupés, there was quite a big impact at turn J* between 2 competitors which brought out the red-flag and left a significant amount of oil on the track in the entry to the turn and off into the gravel trap which the marshals did their best to clean up with sand & sawdust.

    [​IMG]

    (*The turns on the reverse course we raced were lettered rather than numbered to avoid confusion with the course in the forward direction as racing takes place in both directions here, although not simultaneously, obviously!!! :p)

    [​IMG]

    On such a tiny track, more suited to go-karts than my huge Holden, with very little straight and tight linked turns, passing was going to be a nightmare, as I once again formed up at the back of the grid for the rolling start of 19 laps...

    [​IMG]

    As it happens, my race was the least eventful of the lot, wary of the oil in turn J and the damp conditions I was cautious through there every time, and bided my time for the important clean passes, taking Yves & Oscar on lap 1, at turns A and between turns H & J, respectively. I outbraked Dae-Hyun into turn A on lap 2 before following a wayward Ernst around for a couple of laps, finally slipping by just before turn K after he'd run wide at turn J on lap 4.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Pursuing Rashid's distant Lotus took a few more laps, and he fell victim to the oil in turn J on lap 8, handing me the lead in the process, and I heard the sickening crunch as he clouted the big polystyrene cube at the pit entrance before stopping to assess the damage and losing 2 places to the chasing Dae-Hyun & Oscar. Ernst by this time had dropped back into last place also following an unplanned pitstop at the end of his 6th lap after slipping wide in turn J and dipping his back tyres in the gravel trap which skewed him towards the pit entry where he also, like Rashid, bumped the big polystyrene block on his way in. His surprised mechanics weren't ready for him, and made an error which was to cost him any chance of recovering in this race. They inadvertently switched his 2 front wheels, meaning that the directional tyres are rotating the wrong way and instead of channelling the residual track dampness away from his contact patch, they do the opposite and caused him to hydroplane mildy in many places on the track.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Sadly Ernst had put the lack of grip down to knocking the Subaru out of alignment when he entered the pits and continued to drive like a man possessed, becoming frustrated when he caught back up to Yves during lap 7 and knocking the poor Peugeot off the track between turns G & H on lap 8 to take back 5th place as he hydroplaned on the damp patches there. It was racing for places though and Yves had every right to hold his line even though he was in a slower car, although he did admit later that he was surprised to find anyone behind him as he'd not noticed the Subaru in the pits, it having gone in as he was entering turn J on lap 6, and he was thus unsighted.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    I was more fortunate when I came upon the Peugeot to lap it and smoothly glided by before braking for turn A on lap 11. Yves was doing an admirable job in keeping his inherently understeery FF Peugeot on the track even in the damp and partially oily conditions, moreso than Dae-Hyun in the Honda who'd put 3 or 4 tyres off-track at turn J on numerous occasions, Rashid in the Lotus who'd had his unplanned pitstop after his visit to the grass outside turn J and Ernst whose Subaru with it's wrongly installed tyres had barely completed a lap without an off-track excursion of some description. Indeed his ventures saw him sideswipe the barrier outside turn J on lap 11 before he recovered, barely missing the pit entry protective block he'd hit previously before regaining the track. This allowed me to catch him during my 13th lap, and he dipped 4 tyres off track at turn J again allowing me to put him one lap behind too.

    [​IMG]

    Rashid, back in 4th place, caught Oscar during lap 14, but Oscar was able to position the Toyota on the small track so as to make passing difficult without actively blocking the faster car, and Rashid was forced to stay behind him, backing out of the throttle on numerous occasions to avoid contact, and not helped by being unsighted for the entry to turn J & the oily patch there, he ran wide onto the grass before the waiting gravel trap beyond it during laps 15 & 16. Ernst was getting worse & worse in the meantime, now a tremendously frustrated lap behind, he had 2 consecutive laps where he completed a full 180-degree spin in the turn J gravel trap, compounded by angrily spinning his tyres out of there which the 4WD Subaru was able to escape, but shot him across the track as the tyres bit the tarmac and he grazed the other side of his car against the barrier there before continuing! He finally gave in and pitted ending his 16th following another off-track excursion that sent him pitwards whether he really intended to or not!

    [​IMG]

    Two more incidents took place while this occurred, Rashid's Lotus, now swarming all around the back of the Toyota during lap 17 got 2 wheels on the grass before braking into turn E, and the increase in braking distance due to the slippery surface meant that he actually nudged the back of the Toyota before managing to slow down sufficiently, ruining what was looking to be a completely clean race for Oscar.

    [​IMG]

    Dae-Hyun, running his Honda in 2nd place had caught up to Yves during the Korean's 16th lap, and this time the Frenchman should've let the lapping car pass him. He held up the Honda throughout lap 17, and caused the chasing Honda to pitch through the turn J gravel trap as Dae-Hyun tried to line up the Peugeot for being outstripped down the miniscule straight. As Ernst was now pitted, this lapping battle passed him by, putting him a lap down to Dae-Hyun, and once again losing 5th place to Yves. To Ernst's disgust, as he was leaving the pits, he also saw the battle for 3rd place between Oscar's Toyota & Rashid's Lotus go by on their 18th lap, putting him a lap down to everyone except Yves, and this battle was followed closely by my Holden which lapped the hopeless Subaru a second time during my final lap.

    Still more action followed, Dae-Hyun having flashed his lights at the Peugeot in front of him finally believed Yves had recognised the car behind him as a front-runner and had actually began to move out of the way to let him pass. Unfortunately Yves was beginning to struggle a little with worn front tyres which were giving him a little more understeer than before, and as Dae-Hyun pushed his Honda into the gap that he thought'd been left at turn H, Yves wrested the wandering Pug back into line, and into the side of the Honda. Crunch, and an end to Dae-Hyun's contact-free race too, although the Honda was now able to pull free of the French blockade and go into it's 19th & final lap unhindered.

    [​IMG]

    As I followed the 3rd place battle into turn J on my final lap, Rashid tried a guts-or-glory move around the outside of turn J, a venture that given the conditions really only had one realistic outcome, another trip to the gravel trap, and it allowed me to slip through to put his Lotus a lap behind too, just seconds before I clinched another race win. He wrestled the Lotus back under control, but veered across the track sideways, right in front of Ernst's lapped Subaru.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    From the series of pictures here, one would've expected Ernst to have been wary and able to brake sooner, anticipating the hazard that the stray Lotus may present, but who knows what was going on in the mind of the demoralised German, a little revenge for Fuji maybe? Whatever the reason, as the Lotus straightened up, the Subie with brakes jammed on tapped it's back bumper, before belching another column of flame as he downshifted.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Dae-Hyun brought his Honda home a comfortable 2nd, and Oscar, now free of the Lotus' close attentions, rounded out a richly deserved 3rd place with yet another clean lap and a new look podium was completed. Rashid's Lotus finished 4th, a giddily delighted Yves finished 5th and a humiliated and irked Ernst brought his battered Subaru back around in last place.

    Back in parc-ferme there were some harsh words spoken amongst the drivers, as the paint scars & dents, on every vehicle except my Holden, were plain to see. Yves' frustration with Ernst didn't last too long, he was more excited about letting his Peugeot Citroen Employers about not finishing last for a change, just in case they'd not already seen the televised race! He'd got one eye on his mobile phone the whole time Dae-Hyun tried to lecture him about the priority that should be given to faster vehicles and the need to pay attention to the flags being waved at him. Ernst's ire was directed more at himself and his mechanics than anywhere else, and a simple exchange between Oscar & Rashid saw the Brazilian brush off the Arab's apology for the lap 17 nudge as "just a racing incident" before accepting Rashid's congratulations on his podium spot.

    As for myself, I couldn't resist a little muck-stirring this time, as the Monaro sat there pristine and unscratched with just a little race dirt ruining an otherwise showroom shine, and before I departed the circuit after rolling the car into it's trailer, knowing full well we were due to race at the awesome Twin Ring Motegi Road Course in a couple of weeks time, I asked whether we were just going to seek out a dirt-arena instead where they could all continue their demolition derby! :lol: They scowled disdainfully at me.

    I guess I should've kept my big mouth shut. :dopey: You'll see why next time...
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2010
  4. Austin343

    Austin343

    Messages:
    1,903
    Location:
    United States
    That was a great chapter, Smallhorses. :tup: You managed to turn a runaway victory into interesting and action-filled reading, and to offer "realistic" reasons for some occurrences, like the background smoke, the trips to the gravel trap, and the bumps between opponents, that would have quite mundane explanations within the world of GT4. Obviously, we're all interested to hear what kind of bumper bashing or other consequences will result in the next race from your ill-advised comment.
     
  5. GR

    GR Premium

    Messages:
    9,737
    I have no words to describe how happy I am to see a new chapter in this awesome story thread. You did a great job writing this chapter. I couldn't stop reading, because you get confused by looking at the great pictures and want to read what happened. Well done, Nick. :tup:
     
  6. DK

    DK Premium

    Messages:
    13,512
    Location:
    Ireland
    Nenad, have you ever considered writing a story, or has AMN got you too busy to do anything else?
     
  7. Paulie

    Paulie Premium

    Messages:
    9,458
    Location:
    Australia
    Just read the latest chapter, nice work.:tup:
     
  8. GR

    GR Premium

    Messages:
    9,737
    Yes, I have and no AMN hasn't.
     
  9. amartya

    amartya

    Messages:
    178
    I can't wait for the next update
     
  10. Smallhorses

    Smallhorses Staff Emeritus

    Messages:
    7,260
    I guess I've kept everyone hanging a little too long really. :guilty:
    I should work on grinding out the Motegi Race chapter.
    Look out for it soon...

    Bloody Imageshack can't seem to keep pics up, there's 2 broken ones in the last chapter already. :grumpy:
    I need to send them one of these:
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2010
  11. DK

    DK Premium

    Messages:
    13,512
    Location:
    Ireland
    Ever thought about using Photobucket, or does the same problem also occur with Photobucket?
     
  12. Sp Y2

    Sp Y2

    Messages:
    32
    LOL! ROF,LMAO!:lol: Classic!:D

    Only started reading this today. Had quite a long road trip, and since I'm not prepared to listen to my parent's conversation all the time, I printed out the first three chapters as something to keep me occupied during the trip. Long story short, I couldn't wait to get back home to read the rest! Just brilliant!:tup: Cannot wait for Montegi. Keep up the good, no, great work!

    Also, I'm quite curious to know what event you did on GT Mode to get all the pictures?
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2010