Vintage Racing Group always provides lots of track time in a well tuned competitive Vintage Racing environment. Their July 27th – 29th event on the New Jersey Motorsports Thunderbolt circuit motivated a hard driving group of VRS racers to sign on….ah if we’d only known how accurate the track moniker would become!!
It was Wednesday evening when we loaded, 3 Triumphs, 2 Porsches, a Beach-Abarth and a Royale-Lotus sports racer into a Vintage Racing Services Semi for the run south. Thursday evening found us trackside and set up to be ready for Fridays’ racing…... But trouble was brewing!
Then the rains came! THUNDERBOLT ALLEY WAS THE RIGHT ADDRESS The lightening was beyond impressive!! The 60+ MPH gusts recorded at the airport next door had us hanging onto the tent and trailer. Tents tore, cars got wet but we all survived. To make matters worse it was a 2X experience; first at 10AM then again at 4. Below; an empty false grid awaits mother nature’s blow. By the time the day was done our tent was tired and all the cars were well washed!
NO FUEL AVAILABLE - ALL UNDERWATER + LIGHTENING ON THUNDERBOLT ALLEY!!
The 10 o’clock deluge abated: by mid-day the aptly named Thunderbolt circuit was starting to look reasonably user friendly. We did have to wonder if the names of the two circuits at NMS “Thunderbolt and Lightening” have a meteorological basis in fact? Note how clean Richard’s Beach #777 is as it dries in the post deluge sunshine. TIME TO HIT THE TRACK!
And take to the track the VRS Racers did. Above left, Jim Lenehan helps his Porsche 914-6 tiptoe thru a puddle then he’s hard on it @ the carousel, Above Ed Mettleman guides his 914 nicely into a dry & tight turn 4.
Above then below. Dave and the #88 Spitfire hounded this Lotus 23 finally winning both Saturday and Sunday’s group 3 small bore races and setting fastest time. WELL DONE DAVE!!
S P I T F I R E Racing was under the VRS tent and out in force. Above; Bain moves up on Richard’s Beach while chasing Tom Brown (right) and eventual race and weekend best time honoree Dave Gussack who are both out front and making those Triumphs Spit fire.
VRS techs Tim and Glen had Richard running well all weekend. Above, Beach-Abarth 850cc sports racer at speed. Left and above right, Richard & Royale-Lotus 1600cc sports racing car. Not a wheel wrong all weekend for Richard, but we did have a cranky battery problem on the Royale; soon fixed!
RESULTS: A good time for all, everyone still shiny side up and multiple podiums for both Jim and Dave. Dave’s note on his photo of a group 4 race result sheet has it just right. 1 minute, 38 seconds in a 1300cc Triumph Spitfire is Moving!! I’m looking for that vintage turbo now but ????? There’s always next time!
All in all … VRS Racers & crew braved the storms and had a BLAST!