SMD driver Chris Clark wins RD1 of the LRP Cup.
Round 1 of the popular LRP Cup was the firs chance for me to run the new X12 10.5 stock motor along with the new LRP VTEC CPX control tire. This tire has been designed with carpet racing more in mind than tarmac. Initial impression of the tire before running it is the rim leaves a little to be desired from an aesthetic point of view, there are a semi translucent grey plastic. On the plus side the rim seems to go higher up the sidewall giving the effect of a lower profile tire, I assume the thinking behind this is an attempt to reduce potential grip role.
In the first round of practice the tires proved very consistent even with the low grip track. As the grip came up through the day there was not even a hint of the car traction rolling which gave the confidence to attack the track.
Having never been to the Marston club before I was place in the bottom 10.5 qualifying heat. This caused a few issues when it came to putting in a really consistent run, due to the difference of out and out pace. Never the less I set about Q1 managing 5th overall. Q2 was a little more productive due to the consideration of the other cars in my heat allowing me through when appropriate. Lining up 2nd behind Simon Willets but still 9 seconds behind, but with a fastest lap 0.1 seconds faster gave me confidence FTD was possible. Alas this was not possible the last round of qualifying showed some good performances from Zak Smith and David Ward put me down to 5th at the end of qualifying.
The first final started fairly smoothly, I jumped up to 4th behind David Ward and for the first couple of minutes was putting up a a good fight to hold position. I managed to pass him in the tight chicane and set about 3rd who luckily was in the barrier when I passed. I think I caught Simon by surprised due the the speed at which I caught him, I managed to pass him a little easier than David but once passed he applied the pressure and we held station until the end of the race.
The second final was a lot messier with a lot of inconsistent driving so by the end I had no idea where I’d finished. Once I checked the results it turned out I finished 2nd behind Zak Smith therefore with a 1st and 2nd I won the meeting overall.
The X12 stock spec really proved itself over its predecessor the X11 series motors. It seemed to have more power both at the bottom and top of the rev range with a very nice progressive power band. I was very impressed and feel it will be the stock motor to have for the 2010 Stock National Championship.
A great result for Chris and the SMD Team wish him all the very best luck for the series...