Picture of Karma Taking it on a track

Preliminary work

I had arranged to drive up to Donnington, to take it around the course there for 3 laps, during a kit car show. However, the car ran hot even between Portsmouth and Chichester (about 24 miles), so driving up there who knows what would happen.

One of the people (Pete Roberts) at VolksTech had left to set up his own workshop, also in Portsmouth, called Funkenblitz. He suggested that we ought to section off the cooling from the cylinder heads using steel sheet, and also install cooling fans which took air from the air intakes on the sides. I did the last part, and did some of the preparation for him to cut the steel to size and fit it, using wood for the cabinets which held the fans, and a couple of Ford Escort blowers to suck the air in.

I took Richard Jelbert up with me to the show, and half way up, we stopped off, and I checked the tinware, and it was warm, but not hot to touch. This seemed a success.

We got up there without any problems, which was pretty good!

On the track

After looking around the various stands, and joining the Italian Sports Car Replica Club, it was time to take it on the track.

There was the normal introduction to track safety, and then we were away.

The first lap passed without incident, with only the slight rear end slide, and the occasional tyre squeal. The start of the second lap was a different story. Coming through Redgate, I found that the car was understeering quite badly, and promptly fell off into the gravel trap. I didn't know at the time that the best solution was to keep going, so I stopped, and discovered that the car was staying there.

After an embarrasingly long time, I was pulled out of the gravel trap (they had to stop people going around). I had to drive around the rest of the track quite slowly, off the racing line. Quite frequently at first, stones would become dislodged, and bounce around the wheel arches. Pulling into the pits, Richard and I checked the car over for signs of damage, and apart from looking dirty, with some paint scraped off, there weren't any problems, so we carried on.

The third lap had no problems, although I was taking it a bit more carefully this time!

We went home shortly after that, during which nothing much happened, except I found that the fans were consuming too much current, so I turned them off.

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