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Feb. 14th, 2005

Had a great weekend, one of the first in a while that meant anything. Unemployment makes every day a weekend, and that's over.

On Sunday I was entering a slightly off-camber corner in the Lightning and I made a rather large mistake. Too much throttle and insufficient grip caused a severe oversteer condition at about 50 mph. This is not uncommon in it of itself and usually I just keep in the throttle and let the back end straighten itself out gradually. The L has a very linear throttle and is easy to modulate. Unfortunately there was a curb at the outside of the corner and my left rear wheel nailed it midway through the arc, upsetting the already upset suspension. This caused the back end to bounce back in the other direction, violently pitching the truck towards the curb. I quickly feathered the gas and got on it once more, whipping the wheel around to keep the wheels straight but not over-correcting. I regained control and settled the suspension and all was fine. There are two aspects which I feel bad for.

1. I had passengers at that time. I don't like endangering passengers unless it's at the track and they have helmets and a cage around them etc.

2. There were other cars on the road. Yes when I'm at the track there are other cars out there but they tend to react predictably and intelligently. In this case noone did anything stupid but I could have caused someone to panic and send them flying off the road.

The left rear rim is scratched at the edge where it struck the curb, but otherwise nothing else is harmed. I'll sand that area down when I powdercoat the rims jet black this spring and noone will be the wiser.

In a sense I'm pleased with how the situation panned out, because the skills I've learned on the racetrack really helped. If I didn't correct properly the truck would have then struck the curb with the front left wheel, sending the back end out counterclockwise where it would have struck the car in the other lane, continued rotating such that both wheels hit the curb where it would have flipped onto it's side into the oncoming traffic lane. It's hard to say what would happen beyond that. The truck would probably be totalled at the very least.

To understand the scale of the situation: It lasted approx. 3 seconds.

Should I slow down and be more careful? At that particular corner, yes.

- Keman

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
phyxis
Feb. 14th, 2005 08:56 pm (UTC)
Ah, and to think you didn't even have to go to 'Seca to learn recovery-before-wall skills. :-)
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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Galen
wolffit
Galen Wolffit

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