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Discussion in 'Texas' started by rob lay, Nov 21, 2004.
[Correction: See post #25 for correct story)
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Geez Rob, that's tragic! We have Mini track days up @ TWS, and those go well with instructors/corner workers/safe. I am disappointed Panoz runs 'em loosely.
I started my 17yo in the Mini, he did well, but an older guy in a new C6 is a problem waiting to happen if a neophyte. He must have been screaming to move the wall that far. Not good. Even CF brakes can't overcome physics.
I'm stunned and saddened. This will have ripples for track days.
PS Your weekend OK? Better than the RX7 clinic U had last time?
With the kind of power my cars put down, i was gonna do a 'couples' getaway at bondurant for my girlfriend and i before i let her cruise in my cars. she really wants to do a track day herself, but i am not gonna take her out there just because i want to impress her without a good track briefing.
I haven't heard about it in local news, Rob. I checked NBCi.com & the Ft. Worth Star Telegram. It's a shame when things like this happen so close to the holidays.
Pretty sobering, especially, as Will mentioned, right before the holidays.
Was it a wet day at the track Friday? Just curious, not that it makes much difference.
Holy smokes. TMS is notoriously dangerous anyway (much more so that TWS, in my opinion). Not having corner workers or instructors for newbies for a drive-what-you-brung open track day is moronic. And yes, Panoz will be & should be in deep kimchee for this.
Yes, TMS is the most dangerous track I race at by far. Combine high speeds, heavy braking, and cement walls for a trouble recipe. Especially for street cars like the C6 that can't handle braking hard for 20+ minutes.
Looked last night and this morning, nothing in the news yet.
I'll give my sister in law a call and see if she has heard anything. (She works for the Star Telegram and covers that area, IIRC, or... one of her reporters does)
At this point there is no word from TMS or PANOZ about this... Working on finding out what happened
Had a really good weekend. Still the same carb problems in qualifying Saturday, but worked that out and moved up from 5th to 2nd by the end. Had the enduro qualifying Saturday night and I put us on SRX7 pole and 22nd of 55 cars overall (SRX7 is 3rd to slowest class too). I out qualified more than a dozen SRF's in the rain, that should be running about 6-8 seconds a lap faster than me.
The 6 hour enduro yesterday went well for us. I did the first stint driving 90 minutes. Lost 3 places in SRX7 with a bad start, but moved back up in the lead by the end. Next driver did 2 hours and kept us out of trouble, but was a couple seconds off the pace a lap. Next driver got in as the rain really picked up, he did 90 minutes and then came in for me to get back in for the final hour. We put rains on as it was pouring pretty good now, I just kept out of trouble. We finished 2nd in class behind a car that just hit the pit stops and double yellows perfect. We went 6 hours in the tough conditions without a single off or spin, that gave us 16th overall out of the 55 just because so many others had incidents. I know in my two and a half hours of racing I had no less than a dozen incidents close by, but managed to keep my nose clean.
2nd sucks, but this was my first enduro to finish without mechanical problems, so I'm happy. My car got 600 miles on it this weekend! Enduro racing is the best by far.
May they rest in peace.
Training and experience can prevent stuff like this. I would have thought the Corvette brakes can handle the stress . I wonder if the pads were used up prior to the accident or were they just overshooting the braking zone constantly? Very sad for everyone.
A lot of things don't make the news..............very sad to hear this.....
The way Panoz and American Le Mans do the turn 1 chicane makes it very tight. You come out of the road course on the back side middle between oval turn 3 and 4. You go full bore all the way around oval turn 3 and 4. You fly down the front straight and then nail the brakes for the tight chicane. The C6 was probably hitting 150 mph and having to brake to 30-50 mph. It tears up our race brakes and rotors, much less street brakes.
An experienced track person will know to start braking earlier and smoother when the brakes start going. Also, a rookie tends to "overbrake". The speeds before braking would be the same, but the rookie will jump on the brakes and actually try to reach a speed much less than what they need for the chicane. So the rookie trys to go from 150 to 40 in 300 ft., while the "quick" racer might go from 150 to only 70 in 300 ft, thus less use of the brakes, but also quicker lap times.
Just spoke with one of the expert lawyers in the field of track incidents. Says in Texas that the general release will usually hold and there probably won't be grounds for suit.
Well, now the rumors on the internet are the couple is just in ICU. Those claims by personal "friends".
My source claimed they died after talking with the ambulance crew later Friday, but I could see how the mistake would be made if they were care flighted out, then the "friends" might know something more than someone just at the track.
Rob's description of how this chicane is driven is very accurate, so I am confused as to how they hit the inside wall. They should have executed a left from the oval to enter the first gate followed by a right through the second gate and back onto the oval. I remember the hardest part of this sequence being the second turn as the driver's side door can come very close to the barrier on the left as you scoot through the last gate. I've seen people hit that second barrier and spin, but speeds are pretty low by the time they come to rest on the inside wall. Did the driver come into the first left hand turn too hot and never even attempt to make the second turn? At this point they would be pointed nose first right at the wall. A lift or application of brakes at this stage could be a disaster.
I don't see how you could blame the issue on cooked brakes when the only two people in the car are not around to explain what happened. As it was said before, cooked brakes are really issues of driver error. There are warning signs that the driver should have noticed. I can understand a small off-track experience if this happened, but the description makes it sound like there was almost no attempt to brake before the chicane.
We all need to remember how dangerous this sport can be, especially without proper instruction. I feel for the friends and family of those involved.
Hopefully the other reports on the internet that they had surgery Saturday and are just in ICU is true.
I can't quite figure out what happened either, some ideas to hit the inside wall are...
1) Turned left into chicane too hot, had reduced pedal, and then went straight into wall instead of making the right hand.
2) Cooked the brakes going down the straight and lost it overcorrecting to turn down after going past the turn-in.
I always go for slow in - fast out, so I get my speed down before the left and try to accelerate from there through the right and back to the oval.
SCCA doesn't run that chicane, they just put some tires that you have to thread and by our rules we have to stay around the apron NASCAR T1 and 2. Here's a video from two years ago at TMS in the Rx7...
Either way, it is a sad & scarely story for me.
Hope they're in ICU, and will recover fully.
Is this first time accidents like this happened at TMS? How fast you are going to get into an accidents like this?
A friend that Rob and Greg know sent me this link. Appears to be just injuries.
Ummm, isn't that Rob's post from here at the top of that thread?
Interesting how things spread
yep, and they took that from another corvette forum or roadfly, not FC directly.
I thought I was having deja vu, but I hadn't read Rob's post since this morning, so I shook it off.
Happens in the mainstream media all the time, people just repeat what they heard others say and don't bother to give credit, especially in a situation where nobody really has any good info.
OK guys hold on a second - this is the internet at its worst. NO DEATHS. I was there. A couple and their son were running a new Vette and a Boxter. The Dad ran the Vette all morning, quite smooth and pretty fast. Right after lunch he took his wife out in the passenger seat. He was behind a track prepared/Hoosier equipped Vette and was clearly trying to catch him. He entered the chicane before turn 1 very hot and lifted while still holding some slip. The combination of lifting and pointing downhill started the back turning in a anti-clockwise direction. Then I think he froze, both feet on the floor as there were no brake squeals and the ABS was turned off as later verified by the instructors. Car continued to rotate sliding towards the center of the track hitting the wall on the passenger side of the car, bounced into the air and with its turning momentum landed facing in the correct direction on its wheels. The ambulance burned rubber getting to the scene in 15 seconds and they found both occupants unresponsive. They cut them out and called for Care Flight who sent 2 choppers. Before they were loaded on the choppers thay were awake and alert. The driver was asking about his wife's condition and the condition of the car and suggesting she might not want to drive with him again.
Before we left the track at 5 we heard from the ambulance crew that both were OK and were being kept in the hospital over night. So unless there was a sudden relapse or we were being given a BS story by the crew ( note not the Panoz boys but the guys who worked the case) I believe they occupants will live to drive another Vette.
Everyone behaved extremely professionally. The Panoz team prevented any of their guests from rushing to the scene which was readily accessible at the end of the pit wall. And while I agree that they could offer more in car instruction - these are track days not D/E events and are used by people to test their race set ups. So you pay your money and use one of the very best facilities around. There were only 14 or so cars and 3 dropped out with mechanical problems quite early so the track was not crowded.