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West.F1
2003.06.04, 06:43 AM
Shakedown Session- Columbus Rally, Saturday May 31st



Members of Tom Thumbs racing club met this past Saturday for some open practice in prep for the upcoming season that will include MiniZ Rally racing. As practice went underway for this newly created class the entire afternoon was pretty much relegated to testing out some partially constructed obstacles to see what effects they would have on the miniZ chassis.



THE RALLY CARS

Several racers from the first season showed for this first shakedown session. Representative rally cars included the Ford Focus (westf1), Suburu WRX (latency), custom Kodiak Peugot (hckyft), and street suburu ( visitor racer Kevin). Skrogger brought his Dakar Rally Overland though he plans on entering a sedan Rally when the season starts.

The rules for the class are still under development but for now collective agreement was made on using only the stock motor (without turbo/FET upgrades) for future races. It was felt to minimize potential damage to the Z chassis, the overall speed of the rally needed to be reduced. In this case, limit the powertrain to the stock motor.

Obviously there is no special chassis made for rallying so it was left to the individual to set up their cars as they see fit in order to do well.


http://mini-zracer.com/albums/album72/fc041ead_001.jpg
(a custom skid plate made by latency. worked well to clear elevation changes...)



THE TRACK

The rally courses for next season will utilize the same layouts as the sedan and F1s with a variety of obstacles added just for the rally therefore mimicking different terrain effects.

obstacle construction were still under R&D during practice so unfinished wood cut outs were layed down representing a river crossing, a series of low level plateaus, and a series of platform bases (for future stationary rock obstacles). These preliminary 'patterns' needed some testing prior to their completion to see if they would be adequate in their present designs. The final products would be based on additional findings from this practice session. Other options tried included nonstationary O-rings, ramps developed from the wood planks, wrinkling of the carpet and even using various items under the carpet to create 'bumps'.


http://mini-zracer.com/albums/album72/fc0420eb.jpg
(view of the track during practice. preliminary cut outs were used to test obstacle effects)



PRACTICE

Most of the afternoon consisted of free practice runs without any timed races. There were several self count races but no official results tallied. Testing of different ideas certainly shed some light on what could and wouldn't work for the rally. All in all, it was a fun and exciting afternoon trying new things and simply experimenting. Further discussions on the rally course and rules are sure to continue as the next season approaches.

Stay tuned for more info on the upcoming Columbus Rally slated to begin in conjunction with Season Two in just two more weeks..


http://mini-zracer.com/albums/album72/fc041fbd_001.jpg
(racers posed at the river crossing)




[for additional rally pics of this session - refer to album link below]

mini-z
2003.06.08, 11:06 AM
Cool update; now if I could just get you into the habit of posting it at MZRing! ;) :D

bobcat
2003.06.18, 12:05 AM
how many different surface types are in the rally course? it seems like you could do some really cool things with different surfaces to simulate tarmac, gravel, dirt, etc.

like maybe incorporating sections of linoleum or the concrete floor even a deeper pile carpet. i suppose the transitions would be a pain though.

i'm just wondering really, keep in mind i've never actually driven a mini-z.

West.F1
2003.06.18, 07:32 AM
there are four sets of obstacles that we tried last weekend- a river crossing w/ gravel and lichen on both sides, boulders (rocks), and two sets of hills (one larger, one smaller). worked well to challenge both the sedan and especially your driving skills

in the future we might try other things

West.F1
2003.07.15, 10:10 PM
sadly plans for a rally class in Season II has been scrapped pending further discussion on this issue.

There will be future talks for a rally class possibly for Season III which might even be replaced by an Overland class.

pending further information, Season II will be completed with the mod sedan and mod F1s classes