Larison Rock 2009: Day 1 Report

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Long story short, it has been my day. I tied my fastest time up the hill today — although Paul is right behind me with his best time ever at the ‘rock and is only 6 tenths behind me with a matching 2:13! But best of all, I just won the 50-50 raffle drawing for $310! The other $310 goes to the Oakridge Volunteer Fire Department, who did a amazing job today, on the 4th of July, but especially considering the kick ass job they did responding to a Ford Focus that met a Douglas fir at speed. The driver walked away and even attended the pizza dinner afterwards!

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In other news, Ed’s time still stands even though we we’re wearing slicks on the car now. But we have one day left and we both feel confident now that we’ve felt the incredible difference between street and race tires.

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And of course no Rabbit Track Day car post would be complete without a huge shout out to Paul Breen who built the most solid and reliable vehicle we could’ve wished for with the budget we started out with 6 years ago. Thank you Paul!

Here is my 2009 Larison Rock Hillclimb gallery so far:

Check out Paul’s post on his blog as well.

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Paul and I Return to PIR After a 2 Year Hiatus

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After our second session, the ear-to-ear grin that was covering my face reminded me how much fun track days are. I can’t believe I found excuses for the last 2 years not to go for one reason or another. But I know now that I have to make this happen more often!

In addition to it’s recent tune up, and race gas flowing through her veins, our MK1 Rabbit/Golf track car also saw her first ever action on real racing slicks. This lightly used set of Hoosier slicks were generously provided by the Sports Car Shop, and gave us a whole new level of satisfaction in the Rabbit. It was totally subtle at first. I didn’t notice a sure difference until I was out in the second session by myself after being approved for solo runs. The track was warming up nicely as the sun moved more overhead. Suddenly I was having trouble reaching for gears because I was reaching to downshift from 3rd to 2nd, but kept finding the car in 4th. It immediately dawned on me that I was a full gear higher through corners 4 to 7! And then it was on as we both experienced the never ending grip and predictability that slick tires provide at temperature.

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I’ve bragged before about chasing down S4’s in the hands of less skilled drivers, but now, the Rabbit can hang with just about anything with less than 250hp in the tight corners of PIR. That’s no lie as we both enjoyed a day of dicing it up with a Lotus Exige S, 95 BMW e36 M3 (OMFG, there were two there, same year, color and wheels as my old one!), Mazda RX-7 FD3S, and other very respectable company.

I certainly want to thank Sport Car Shop again as the addition of the slicks made a huge difference and made our day. And of course no Track Rabbit post would be complete without a big thank you to Paul for building a budget conscious, bullet-proof-start-every-time-drive-to-and-from-the-track, car that still amazes year after year. Where will the Rabbit lead us next?

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Check out the complete gallery slideshow below. Some sweet cars for this event including an e39 M5, multiple Evo’s and STi’s (hi Mike!), a beautiful white s2000, and even a brand new R35 Nissan Skyline GT-R!

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