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2015 Racing Year in Review

When I wrote my year-end report in 2013, I had plans (or maybe just intentions) to finally get back on the track more often in 2014. I wanted to win more SPU races and improve my overall pace so I could get out in front of the PRO3 cars. Basically, settle into the car and work on my technique.

Looking back at 2015

The reality, of course, was that I didn't race at all in 2014, or even take the car to the track. That sucked. As 2015 rolled around, I was again optimistic (jeez, for a natural cynic, I sure am a "it's gonna be a great day!"-kind of person when it comes to my racing prospects) about getting in some racing. Since I needed to fix the front splitter anyway, I decided to take the car to Lowe Group Racing in February for some mild improvements. Basically, they built (within the bounds of the Civic front bumper cover) the same style of splitter and mounting system that they use on all the BMW M3s (E46) that roll through their shop. I also had them build taller and more-angled risers for the rear wing in the hopes it would be in "cleaner" air. The front clip is a significant improvement over the old method and I have a lot less frustration in putting it back on after a trip in the trailer.

Unfortunately (oh, come on, you didn't see that coming?), the relatively minor expense of that work turned out to be a significant portion of the money I would eventually be able to spend on racing... so I didn't. In fact, I even sold my truck because I got tired of it mostly sitting around and not towing my trailer.

I would finally spring for the cash to run one race week-end in early August, but it really was a case of just doing it to preserve my car number and to reset the "clock" on the countdown to having to run an observation race. That said, it was fun and reminded me why I do this, even if I did 'splode my central exhaust pipe while running away with the SPU race. (I did also enter what were technically three different endurance races taking place in one day, at the "Portland enduro" week-end, but there wasn't a whole lotta racin' goin' on.)

Looking forward to 2016

The first item of note is that I've sold the Civic. While it was a perfectly decent little car, it just wasn't my cup of tea. If there were other Honda Challenge 2 (or even HC1) cars around here to race against, it probably would've been a different story, but I really would prefer to return to a rear-wheel drive car. Right now, I'm leaning pretty heavily toward the BMW 330-based Spec E46 class.

Realistically, 2016 is going to go one of three ways:

  1. I will do the same as 2014 (no racing at all).
  2. I will do the same as 2015 (one or possibly two races).
  3. I will buy or build a new car. Hopefully, I'll get it done in time to be able to race before the end of the year, but that might be something of a stretch.

Damn, but I can't wait until this annual "will he or won't he?" silliness ends. Money might not buy happiness, but it certainly helps when you want to go to the track!

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