Today was pretty relaxed – we got to ‘sleep in’ (I actually still woke up at 2:30 am but was able to go back to sleep till about 6-ish). After an actual breakfast and loading things like rain tires into the trailer we headed up the Mountain.
Today is the final test day and we’re on the upper section again, at 13,000 feet. Turned out to be a powerful reminder of how fast the conditions on the Mountain can change. It started with clear starry sky and spectacular sunrise.
Yesterday we gathered some data which indicates we need to tweak the ECU map a bit. The cabin we’re staying at is rustic so we can’t do much mechanical work here, but electronics/software is fair game. After waiting out the hottest part of the day, and the subsequent hailstorm, we opened up the trailer and got the tweaks done. Didn’t take long and we were all set for today’s testing.
Based on the data gathered from testing (mostly AFR and boost levels) I tweaked the ECU map and programmed one of our two ECUs with it. We have two in case something goes wrong with programming, and also to be able to switch between two programs just by plugging in one or the other. Today is qualifying, on the lower section.
This is our fourth year and still there are countless unknowns. The Mountain is famous for throwing challenges at competitors. On top of that, the D2TT is a brand new car and the D1PPS has some engine tuning changes that need to be verified and/or adjusted. So going up the Mountain at 4 am still entailed some anxiety.
Yes, we’re back at Pikes Peak this year. The effort has already been quite eventful and full of stress and drama, I just haven’t documented it yet.
The reason for the late start on the blog is that until recently (like two days ago) we weren’t fully certain we were going to be here. There are two of our cars running this year, which I’ll go into shortly, but one is a full customer effort with a brand-new twin turbo D2 and didn’t require our presence. The other, Rodney’s D1PPS from last year, was a last minute decision and I’ll go into that too. Then it was ‘GO’ and everything was last-minute rush and no time for posts.