We're a couple days away from our next race at Pittsburgh International race complex, and I'm not as nervous as I usually am. After our engine fiasco at Watkins Glen earlier this year, we decided to do something a little different. We're not bringing a spare engine.
We opted to fix the car up for a cheap as we could before this race, and just not care what happens. There's a German beer garden in Pittsburgh called Hofbrauhaus that sells delicious beers in liter mugs. So if we blow an engine, we'll just go there early.
Removing the stress of a potential engine swap has brought back a lot of the fun that has been slipping away from our races. Next year we're going to get a couple engines professionally built, but until then, fuck it. We're going to enjoy ourselves. PIRC has a great facility for camping at. The track is awesome, and it has been re-paved since we were last there. And the actual city is one of my favorite places to bar hop.
We've made it through races on one engine before, but it really doesn't feel like it. Only 2 out of the 7 races we've entered didn't require swapping an engine or a transmission. So the possibility of major repairs is always looming over us at a race. Even from the beginning, we knew that mid-race repairs were likely. When we first were boxing up tools and spare parts, we labeled a box "Oh Fuck!" and filled it with zip ties, self tapping screws, duct tape, and other emergency repair accessories. Over time, that box became more of a hardware box. Since most of our "Oh Fuck!" moments were things that zip ties couldn't fix, we reorganized our bins and I made a new "Oh Fuck!" box for the team.
These emergency supplies consist of four 18oz flasks filled with a different liquor for each driver. Do they help an engine swap go any quicker? No. Do they make an engine swap more tolerable? Yes.
But for this race, we won't be needing emergency liquor to deal with an engine swap. I filled them anyway, because in case of emergency, we're just gonna party even harder.