GTV6 Page: Racing & Time Trials

Time Trial - Willow Springs


Willow Springs is a fantastic track.  This was my first time trial &  was organized by the AROC So. Cal club.  I ran in the hotly contended 'C' class, had a lot of fun and learned a lot.  We participated in four track sessions over the course of the two day weekend.  The first three were practice sessions (held on Saturday and Sunday morning), then we went out and ran several fast laps which were timed on Sunday afternoon.  It was the times from these runs that determined the finishing order in the time trial.  I came in 9th - at least I have left myself plenty of room for improvement  

The weather was fairly bad, especially Saturday which was very cold and we also had to deal with sporadic rain showers.  I managed to spin my car a full 360 degrees during one of the practice sessions.  Luckily, the other cars following me were able to avoid hitting my car.  I had been running 35psi tyre pressures (on street tyres - Yokohama A509's), and when I reduced the pressure to 30psi, the handling improved greatly. 

I learned that I need a set of good racing tyres, and at this point I am looking at getting another set of Alfa wheels and mounting a set of BFG Comp TA R1's.  This way I will be able to drive to the track on normal street tyres and not wear out the BFG's.  I have not decided whether to go with the 50 or 60 profile yet, but at this point, the 205 50R15 looks like the best bet.  They are available from Tyre Rack at a fairly decent price. I had one of the only cars driving on street rubber that weekend and I am sure that the cars with proper tyres have a substantial performance advatage. 

This picture shows the new Momo Montecarlo steering wheel. I loved the old wooden wheel (also by Momo), but it was a safety hazard as in an accident situation, the wood can fracture and turn into lethal barbs (sometimes severely injuring driver).  The new wheel is fantastic!  Highly recommended.  It even makes the car feel different.  

This is my friend Mark Hesthal's car.  It began as a $30 Alfetta, but has become a very capable Time Trial car now.  Full Shankle suspension and several engine mods - together with the BFG Comp TA R1 tyres & roll bar make it very quick.  Mark now races this car in class D and is doing very well. 

Here is my 'pit-kit.'  Basically, it is necessary to remove everything from the car that is not tied down.  
I also take along a light toolkit - though I have never found the need to repair anything.  One really remarkable thing about Alfas is that even at a racing weekend, where you have a congregation of old Alfa's, everything from old 105 GTV's to Milano's, it is very unusual to have an Alfa that is not able to drive home on Sunday evening.  These cars really are made for racing. 

The next event is in early May 1998 - a driving school at Streets of Willow Springs.  By that time, I should have my new Shankle 27.3mm torsion bars installed. the SZ Zagato front deDion bushing and the BFG tyres.  These can only help.