This past weekend we were at Coventry Model Car Club for the third round of the 4WD 2021 Mid West Supercup series, UK - replacing the regional championship for this summer. I TQed and won the first round of the series at Oswestry back in May, but due to a holiday I was unable to attend round 2. With 3 rounds from 4 to count I cannot afford a bad result if I want to win the title!
The temperatures were very high and so was the grip level for the opening practice run. I made a few tweaks to the set up, including a softer rear roll bar and a longer wheelbase.
The car was much more settled in the opening qualifier and I was able to take TQ. During the next rounds we played with diff settings and I settled on an active front diff with a conventional gear diff in the rear. I took TQ in all 4 rounds of qualifying and despite the track getting slower in the heat as the sand and dust continued to rise, I set the fastest time of the day in round 4 back on the mezzo tire.
Qualifying top 3:
Tom Yardy - XRAY
Ben Pugh - Schumacher
Lewis Hopkins - XRAY
Unlike previous rounds in the series, the decision was taken to go with a single leg main, instead of the usual 3 leg format. By now the sun was lower and grip level was falling a little more. I got off to the perfect start and had a 2-3 second gap after the first few laps. However, I began to feel something strange with the car. The front diff began to feel too light and I began to suffer dramatic oversteer - we should have refilled it before the main. A scrappy lap allowing the pack to close up followed by a crash left me now in 4th place. After my error I decided to drive a lot smoother and get around the issue I was feeling - the 2nd and 3rd placed cars were together and I caught the back of their fight. I got lucky when they collided and I was through to 2nd, but 4 secs behind the leader with just 2 mins left. I decided to go for it and pushed hard and by the last lap I was right on his tail. I clearly had more traction and with 2 corners left I threw my car up the inside of the leader and power around the final sweeper to get by and take the win.
(click to enlarge)
1. Tom Yardy - XRAY XB4
2. Ben Pugh 3. Mat Dodd - XRAY XB4