British V8 2007 Autocross and Weigh-In Resultsas published in British V8 Newsletter, Volume XV Issue 2, September 2007
compiled by: Curtis Jacobson
|DRIVER||FROM||CAR||ENGINE||AUTO-X TIMES (personal best in bold)||WEIGHT||(FL, FR, RL, RR)|
|Carl Floyd||TN||79 MGB||Buick 215||35.29||34.67||34.70||34.00||2267||(588, 617, 532, 530)|
|Graeme Harvey||ONT||80 MGB||Rover 3.5||37.05||36.57||35.64||35.57||2424||(599, 659, 595, 570)|
|Cade Schafer||MI||71 MGB||Ford 302||39.80 *||36.98||37.14||36.30||36.75||2483||(645, 686, 563, 589)|
|Bill Yobi||OH||79 MGB||Olds 215||38.77||37.37+1||36.78||(not weighed)|
|Max Fulton||NC||?? MGB||MG 1800cc||37.28||36.92||36.93||(not weighed)|
|Scott Costanzo||OH||68 MGB||GM 3.4 V6||42.22||40.36||38.91||39.80||39.15||2113||(542, 539, 513, 519)|
|Steve Carrick||MI||74 MGB||Ford 302||2209||(593, 610, 507, 500)|
|Don Coleman||MI||79 MGB||Rover 4.9||2228||(559, 580, 541, 547)|
|Don Nicholls||ONT||77 MGB||GM 3.4 V6||44.14||42.18||42.06||42.62||39.53||2246||(571, 593, 552, 530)|
|Graham Creswick||ONT||76 MGB||Ford 302||2267||(588, 617, 532, 530)|
|Peter Smith||ONT||76 MGB||Rover 3.5||44.23||42.82||41.93||2318||(582, 576, 565, 595)|
|Dennis Williams||OH||79 MGB||Rover 3.5||40.11 *||39.05 *||40.68 *||39.85 *||2348||(577, 583, 586, 601)|
|Mikel Moor||IN||78 MGB||Buick 300||39.01||38.25||38.28||39.94||2394||(574, 593, 619, 607)|
|Martyn Harvey||ONT||80 MGB||Rover 3.5||47.04 *||43.83||40.77||38.15||2424||(599, 659, 595, 570)|
|Kevin Pesant||ONT||79 MGB||Rover 3.5||2426||(633, 602, 566, 625)|
|Joe Schafer||MI||71 MGB||Ford 302||38.73 *||40.05||38.37||38.08||2483||(645, 686, 563, 589)|
|Jim Fisher||OH||77 MGB||Buick 215||2543||(626, 608, 639, 671)|
|Les Matthews||ONT||76 MGB||Rover 3.5||2585||(with driver)|
|Steve Ward||TX||80 MGB||GM LT1||44.06||37.94||39.77||38.27||38.85||2600||(672, 730, 623, 575)|
|Pete Mantell||IL||69 MGB||Ford 302||38.01||37.81||(not weighed)|
|Jim Blackwood||KY||71 MGB||Olds 215||58.84||38.84||37.83 *||38.01 *||40.19||(not weighed)|
|Kelly Stevenson||TN||78 MGB||Ford 302||67.83||38.25||(not weighed)|
|Paul Schils||WI||73 MGB-GT||Buick 215||2308||(555, 578, 584, 591)|
|Larry Shimp||NJ||68 MGB-GT||Ford 302||40.07 *||58.48 *||39.30||2440||(610, 624, 607, 599)|
|Steve DeGroat||GA||70 MGB-GT||GM 3.1 V6||2444||(589, 619, 608, 628)|
|Matt Kline||OH||68 GT6||Ford 302||44.63||48.86||42.55||44.08||43.69||2490||(662, 739, 589, 499)|
|Dan Blackwood||KY||6? TR4A||TR 2138cc||46.45||43.52||45.66||42.53||40.83||(not weighed)|
|Dale Knapke||OH||72 TR6||Ford 2.3 I4||40.53 *||41.44||38.06||38.24||38.16||2393||(576, 579, 608, 630)|
|Ted Lathrop||MI||76 TR6||Chevy 350||2475||(626, 607, 606, 638)|
|Les Shockey||VA||69 TR6||Ford 408||2549||(603, 651, 654, 640)|
|Ken Hiebert||ONT||72 TR6||GM LT1||60.99||41.58||39.56||39.29||39.13||2769||(666, 657, 702, 743)|
|Katie Ermakovich||ONT||72 TR6||GM LT1||53.65||48.86||42.55||44.08||43.69||2769||(666, 657, 702, 743)|
|Dave Massey||MO||80 TR8||Rover 3.5||2565||(711, 765, 543, 546)|
|Richard Moor||IN||69 Avenger||Buick 3.8 V6||2331||(368, 449, 770, 746)|
Asterisks in the Auto-X results indicate off-course excursions, so those times don't count. Only one 1-second "cone" penalty was assessed all day. Some drivers took as many as seven runs, but I decided to only report the first five results UNLESS later scores were faster than earlier scores, in which case I discarded the less competitive results.
Different autocross lay-outs favor different vehicles and drivers. This course prominantly featured a fairly tight figure "8" plus a few more turns to get into and out of it... but no long stretches, no shalom, and no particularly narrow sections. Many drivers reported that they didn't use their brakes at all on-course, and most drivers did the course in just one or two gear shifts.
The conventional wisdom is that driver skill and tires are the two keys to autocross success. No doubt that's true. But in addition to being an excellent driver and also having sticky, shaved (but three year old) Toyo tires, I think our champion Carl Floyd is clever about physics too. Although other drivers have objectively more powerful or lighter cars, Carl has carefully avoided adding weight to components that act as flywheels. He runs a lighter and smaller diameter clutch and pressure plate than most other V8 owners. He also runs 14" wheels and tires where other guys have gone larger in diameter and width. Carl is an advocate of short-stroke engines because they rev more freely than comparably sized/spec'd longer-stroke engines. (With a stroke of just 2.80", the short stroke of the Buick/Old/Rover 215 was cutting-edge for its day.)
Carl Floyd graciously invited some of his rivals to try out his car on the course - just for fun. Out of respect for his need to drive home, probably none of them drove it at "ten tenths". The results were as follows: Bill Yobi 34.82s, Graeme Harvey 35.48s, and Max Fulton 36.56s. I'm not certain, but I suspect the 35.75 time shown above for Cade Schafer's last run might actually have reflected Cade driving Carl's car.
A very skilled and accomplished driver himself, Steve Carrick was heroically self-sacrificing to sit
out there in the scorching heat - minding the timing equipment - all day long. What a great guy!
Auto-X Champion Carl Floyd preparing a demonstration for me (in the car) and Bill Yobi (outside).
On this run, he didn't once touch the brake or the clutch pedal. Later he shaved 0.7 seconds,
possibly by ejecting ballast (i.e. ME) and/or by driving the course in second gear instead of first.
Carl Floyd made scoring Fastest-Time-of-Day ("FTD") look deceptively easy in his 1979 MGB.
Our second quickest driver - Rookie-of-the-Year Graeme Harvey - preparing to shock and awe.
With his pop's Ford powered 1971 MGB, Cade Schafer was our third fastest driver.
With his Oldsmobile 215 powered 1979 MGBB, Bill Yobi was our fourth quickest finisher.
Scott Costanzo's 3.4L V6 powered 1968 MGB was the lightest car we weighed - just 2113 pounds! (wet)
Don Nicholls' 3.4L V6 powered 1977 MGB is another very lightweight car at just 2246 pounds. (wet)
Crowd favorite Katie Ermakovich piloted Ken Hiebert's LT1-TR6 through the course.
Mikel Moor's Buick 300 powered torque-monster was due for new tires... so he really tore up the old ones!
Pete Mantell was cursed by electronic ignition demons, but still managed to deliver some very quick times.
From what I heard, Jim Blackwood's supercharged 1971 MGB provided the most thrilling joy rides.
Dan Blackwood's handsome TR4A looks to be an excellent candidate for an engine swap - and wider tires!
Larry Shimp utilized the course and timing equipment to test and refine suspension settings.
Dale Knapke's turbo-SVO TR6 was quite quick. If the course had featured a longer straight-away...
The Weighing of Participant's CarsMany thanks are due to Pete Mantell for providing accurate scales for the convenience of meet participants!
When reading the "Weight" columns of the table above, please note that the vehicle weights reported here AREN'T ADJUSTED for fuel, etc. They simply show the weights of cars as driven onto the scales. Don't try to read too much into these numbers. ALL of the cars would have been lighter if fuel had been removed from them. Many of the cars were carrying luggage, tool kits, spare parts, or coolers/beverages. Most of the cars were weighed both with and without drivers in them. The with-driver weights are available to anyone who wants to phone me. I omitted these weights from the table because I thought it more interesting to display autocross and weight stats side-by-side.
With those disclaimers out of the way, it's still reasonable to observe that:
1) some of the cars were very impressively lightweight! (Congratulations to Scott, Steve, and Don!)
2) it's wrong to generalize that a Ford V8 powered MGB must necessarily be a heavier or less well-balanced than...
3) two of the four lightest cars weighed were V6 powered MGBs.
4) there's wide variation in static weight balance between cars (front-to-rear and right-to-left too).
Looking over the specs of these cars, which are mostly available elsewhere on this website, this author has observed that many people who uprate their engine feel either tempted or obliged to proportionally uprate other components too. It can take real discipline to keep these cars light, if that's recognized as a priority.
Pete Mantell's Intercomp Racing Products E-Z Weigh Scales
Pete Mantell weighs Kevin Pesant's handsome white 79 MGB V8.
Pulling onto the scales here, Peter Smith's macho black MGB-V8... with Huffaker flares!
Don Nicholls' shiny blue MGB V6 being weighed. Fellow V6-er Scott Costanzo looks on.
Disclaimer: This page was researched and written by Curtis Jacobson. Views expressed are those of the author, and are provided without warrantee or guarantee. Apply at your own risk.
Photos by Brian Kraus (action shots), Curtis Jacobson (still shots), and Ken Hiebert (photos of Graeme and Katie) for The British V8 Newsletter. All rights reserved.