This past weekend we traveled to Birmingham, Alabama for round eight of the Grand American Road Racing Association series. As usual, my co-driver was Manuel Matos, and we were still sharing a Porsche GT3 Cup car in the Rolex series, however, we drove the #61 SAMAX Porsche for the first time.
The event was held at Barber Motorsports Park. It was my first visit there and the facility is absolutely amazing. I was able to check out the motorcycle museum on Saturday night (there was a Texas Hold 'Em Poker Tournament for charity) - a must see attraction if you ever get to Birmingham.
PRACTICE AND QUALIFYING
The Thursday test day began in the morning and we got off to a rough start with some electrical gremlins. We had to push start the car and then I was only able to get in a few laps before it died on track. That afternoon the gremlins had all been worked out, but I got punted into the turn one gravel trap by an optimistic Daytona Prototype.
Official practice started on Friday morning. The car seemed a little nervous at first and we made some positive changes that settled down the rear end, but part way through the session while Manuel was driving, the Porsche began to understeer. I got back in at the end of the session and confirmed that the car had definitely picked up a big push. After the session we discovered that the rear anti-roll bar had broken, which was the obvious cause of the understeer. Unfortunately, all of these issues put us a little behind in finding our setup.