Lime Rock Vintage Fall Festival, Sept 1-4, 2000

an HSR event, By Mike Piera


For the second year I was entered in the Lime Rock Vintage Fall Festival, this year run by the HSR based in Florida. This vintage group has many newer 70s and 80s cars including IMSA GT and GTP cars, while last year the VSCCA ran the event and there were very few cars from even the 70s. The HSR drivers brought many tractor trailers with several cars per team, including teams like Brumos Porsche with Hurley Haywood, Brian Redman returned with a Lola sports racer and ran in my group again, and the most famous driver Paul Newman in his Datsun 300ZX turbo.

I was running a normal duck tail for this race to be correct 1973 vintage. Should have painted it Green (did for the 2002 race!)

The event was run pretty well, most groups got all their track time, not too many delays (except when 2 Lime Rock trucks got stuck trying to unstick a car in the lefthander!). I was not happy having to pay $65 (?) to join HSR for one race, as I am an SVRA member. I rented an transponder as they use dBcom instead of the AMB which I use for SCCA/PCA/etc. Of course I forgot to return it, hope they will take it back... The crowd was pretty good, should have been better than last year as the weather was fine.

I had quite a crew... Damon (with a killer E-type track/street car) and Jens (with a fine 911) from New Hampshire, and Jack with his Ducati. Not many people paid attention to my race car with the vehicles in our pits!

Friday was practice, and I was trying a used pair of 245/45/16 Kumhos on the rear, as my normal Hoosier radials are not legal in my class in HSR. Last year I had a set of four 225/50/15 Kumhos which worked well but were a little hairy as there was not quite enough tire in the rear. But last year it rained at the race so I only needed the Kumhos for practice and qualifying. The car was handling TERRIBLY in the 1st session with severe oversteer and I could barely get in the 1:04s, about 3 seconds slower than my best laps. I found the rear pressures were rising too high so I lowered them back to the low 30s, and took out some rear swaybar and shock stiffness. The 2nd session was better, but I had corner exit oversteer. This was probably caused by the tires having large blocks on the inside and deep tread, and my 911 having a lot of rear camber which made the car ride on the squimy inner edges as I accelerated out of the corners. Also the tires were not fresh and may have been hard. I was only able to go about a second faster, high 1:03s, while the leaders in my class (Jim Newton and Jim Scott from CT in their PCA GT4 class race cars) were about 1:01. The Jims have much more power with their RSR type engines, and much more rubber with their wide RSR bodywork, and also wide fresh Hoosier bias ply rubber, so there was no way I would be able to keep up with them unless it rained like last year.

The next session was Saturday's qualifying, so I determined that I should put my 225/50/15s from last year on the back, as they worked OK and got me into the 1:02s before. The car felt much better, and a 1:02:6 put me in mid pack just behind two Lous 23 (B and C) sports racers, with a powerful Jaguar XKE just behind.

Next session was a qualifying race, to determine positions for the feature race on Monday. I had never ran in a qualifying race before, it was interesting for the spectators. It also worked out well for me as I was able to stay ahead of 2 or 3 faster cars due to my experience on the track. My best time was a 1:02.5, but I stayed ahead of the Jaguar and a Porsche 906 which ran 1:01 flats. The fast 911s in my group were running about a minute flat.

I went fishing Sunday but asked Damon and Jens to bring the 911 to the concours, and was totally surprised when I returned on Monday and found I had won "best raced"! Also got a 2nd place glass trophy, not quite sure what that was for. Thanks guys!!!!

Here are some articles on the concours from the Lime Rock web site:

In the race, my little RS could not keep up with all the RSRs in my class but I had fun anway, and will surely attend next year. (unfortunately a blown engine the following year kept me away, a year when my car would have been VERY competitive as it was seperated from the RSRs).

Here I am trying to stay ahead of a powerful 240-Z, coming out of Big Bend.

Still trying, a bit too hard! it did pay off though as I finished ahead of him.

Here is an articles on the race from the Lime Rock web site:


Regards, mike piera '72 911S '73 911RS Clone

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