As there was no Bristol Mini Racing, and nothin doing at my usual haunts, I managed to get a 4wd entry up at Caldicot. I’ve been meaning to take a trip up there for many months, and with the Cardiff Cobra season just around the corner, the chance to give the B74.2 a whirl on carpet was ideal.
First, a bunch of setup changes were in order. I glued up a set of Proline Hexons to see what they were like. Then, as I had a spare diff outdrive, I repaired the one I damaged at Swindon. A quick look at some setup sheets from the Team Associated website gave some handy pointers.
Getting the car low, Roll centers high to avoid grip roll and generally having the car set to be aggressive and punchy was obvious. I was quite surprised that the diffs were set relatively light with 10k but I went with it. Bumped the front shock oil up to 350cst and stiffer springs. Kept the slipper in and popped some orange springs on the front and Blue on the back.
Getting there proved a little fraught. First some Friday night Dodgems on the M5 cost me 20 minutes. Then some silliness in the roadworks at the Almondsbury interchange meant Google sent me over the SSC, which would have been fine, except a road closure that Google hadn’t detected sent me on a gastric ulcer inducing detour up a farm track masquerading as a B road.
On arrival, the locals took one look at my shiny new Catus Fusion fronts, and prophesised mountains of grip roll and time on roof. Luckily, Chris Cook was on hand to lend me a couple of Reinforced Steel Joists impersonating Anti-Roll bars (2mm front, 1.8 rear). Practice showed they worked well, roll only a problem if I tried to take the sweeper at the end of the straight at warp factor dickhead. A tiny tap on the brake before turning in sorted that right out.
I won’t do a full break down of every run, because the main objective was to to just get some carpet time on the B74.2. Suffice it so say, that I was basically up to speed in the first heat, and in heats two and three was getting quicker every round without any real need to make any changes. By Round 4 and the Finals, I was just plain tired. I had been up since 7am, and it was literally past my bedtime. The main thing was I was surprised how much speed was on the table if your drove it like a 2wd, IE rolling round the corners, loading up the steering progressively, and generally linking the corners to get into a flow as opposed the the thrashing it into the corners approach that seemed to be what the car liked outdoors at Swindon.