This weekend I raced at Sonoma Raceway (formerly Infineon and Sears Point) for the first time. I did a track day there about five years ago, but racing there with SFR SCCA was a whole ‘nother experience. The 2.5 mile, 14 turn track has big elevation changes, several blind corners, walls where you don’t want them, and very few places to catch your breath. I came home both grinning and exhausted. We had weather from wet and chilly, to hot and windy, and with four weekends in a row of pro racing at Sonoma preceding our event, it made for variable traction levels every session.
Friday’s two Test sessions gave me a chance to learn the track again. Saturday’s Practice, Qualifying, and Race saw me slowly getting quicker as I dialed in shock settings, sway bars, and tire pressures. A great race-long bout with the 2014 CF Champ showed me the difficulty of passing at this track, as you really need to set some moves up a couple corners in advance. I spent Saturday night studying the day’s video and reviewing my set-up changes. Sunday’s Qualifying left me on Pole for CF, and after some good dicing (and some competitor attrition), I took home a Class win. Thanks go to my crew Art Jurado, and to all my fellow FF and CF racers who shared their tips and data with me all weekend.
Photos by A. Jurado
A ten minute video from this weekend.