Back to back race weekends in Texas and Florida marked the season’s end for the SCCA Trans-Am series and BCR’s final races for 2018. It was a most enjoyable trip all around, having travelled thru 16 states and driven over 7,000 kms, a testament to Penny’s (our team manager and organizer) planning talents.
COTA provided the closest finish in Trans-Am history, the win decided by 0.06 seconds. Unfortunately, we finished 2nd, but we were very satisfied with a great weekend and an amazing drive by Misha Goikhberg who was never separated by more than 0.6 seconds from Gar Robinson thru the entire race. Two great drivers, two great cars, trading spots back and forth. This podium marked the 3rd consecutive podium finish for BC Race Cars’s #25 TA2 Camaro, with 3 different drivers! We think a first achievement in TA2 competition history.
Daytona was also exciting, where all the teams were pushed to the limit to change the cars over from COTA to Daytona set-up and make the 1800 km trip in time for load-in. We were fast out of the box, but soon realized that our tired engine (ran all season in the car) was no match at this horsepower track . As usual, Misha did an outstanding job, but lost the draft in quali and we ended up 6th. Misha worked his way up to 4th when we were punted from behind, falling back to outside the top 10. With less than 10 laps to go, Misha was on a mission, and drove all the way back to a 5th place finish!
We thank all our great drivers this year; Tony Ave, Misha Goikhberg, and Harry Steenbakkers for showing what our car can do! Also many thanks to our crew, Mike Nelson, John Bissette, Jeff Porter who worked tirelessly to prepare and maintain the race car (which did not have a single DNF), our Team Manager and our engineers.
BC Race Cars is proud to complete another ground-up build, a hybrid Trans-Am/Super-production race car, the 14th TA-based chassis we have manufactured.
Dubbed the “ Super Car” by owner Steve Burns, this car represents the most complex and sophisticated race car we have ever built at BC Race Cars. The challenge was to build a car that is far quicker than a regular Trans-Am car, but can be converted to a legal TA machine quickly and easily.
We realized early in the design stage that this could only be achieved thru aerodynamic additions; we would leave the chassis, driveline and most of the bodywork as per Trans-Am rules for easy conversion. AMB Aero of Japan was contracted to evaluate the current aero and design the upgrades required. With their expertise and a 100 hours of CFD work, they presented the final drawings, which included a unique nose, upgraded wing, and full undertrays.
In its TA form, this is already a wicked machine; we spent time at a K & C rig to evaluate the chassis, and made changes based on our findings. All the modern, top level parts can be found; Lozano D3 engine, Emco 5-speed sequential gearbox, Motec dash and telemetry with all the sensors and rear view camera to name a few.
Unbolt the nose and rear wing, install the Super nose and wing and add two under trays is all it takes for the conversion; it generates approximately 4 times the down force of a regular Trans-Am car! In fact, it generates enough that we had to add bump stops in the suspension to prevent the car from being slammed into the ground!
We are grateful to Steve for allowing us to design, engineer and build this beauty; it has been a most complex and rewarding challenge! We anxiously await this car’s development while we ponder its potential.
Pro driver Tony Ave gave BCR its highest finishing position yet, placing second in the SCCA Pro Trans-AM series at Virginia International Raceway, and a second consecutive podium in two races!
We unloaded well, meaning the car was quick out of the box. Testing on Thursday was a mixed bag as all classes of Trans-Am ran together and it was very difficult to obtain any meaningful data. Regardless, we got a chance for Tony to make some minor adjustments, and for him to get used to a TA2 car again, after not having driven one since March of this year.
We had a great qualifying session, Tony blasting off an almost perfect lap early on. We had the pole for most of the session, but right at the end, Scott Lagasse Jr. would better us by 0.06 seconds, dropping us to second.
The race was equally exciting, the front three taking off, and Tony making his way to the top and leading for about 5 laps. He reported that the car was a tad too loose, so he let the 2 cars pass, following them and saving his tires. A late race caution allowed us to cool the tires off, and with a few laps to go, the top 3 again blasted off, turning some of the fastest laps of the race. After much dicing, Tony was able to bring our TA2 Camaro home in second place, a fantastic result for BC Race Cars and a truly great drive from Tony Ave!
The result is especially satisfying for our team, as our car, while immaculately prepared and engineered, is essentially a rental car; anybody can rent it and go racing, either in Trans-Am or in local club racing events. Please contact Blaise with inquiries.
Success marked round 8 of the SCCA Pro Trans-Am championship at Watkins Glen International, with 2 cars finishing in the top ten and Harry Steenbakkers driving to a podium finish in our house car, the #25 TA2 Camaro.
Mike McGahern, driving the #48 Ottawa Solar Power TA2 Camaro, had a troubling start to the weekend, chasing vibration issues in the driveline. The crew ripped the car apart, and was able to repair it in time for qualifying but we lost a test session. Mike qualified 16th, but raced well, avoiding some crazy spins ahead of him and drove home in a well-deserved 10th!
Harry was a little rusty as he had not driven a professional race car in exactly a year, but got up to speed quickly. We were able to make some good adjustments and worked on race set-up more than qualifying speed. He still managed an 8th starting position and drove an incredibly mature race. We hang back, not forcing passes, just steadily moving up and saving the tires. After the second yellow flag, with 6 laps to go, Harry made a pass into 3rd and had an awesome race with Shane Lewis, the top 3 checking out, and Harry setting 2nd fastest lap of the race. He would finish 3rd, only 1.5 seconds separating the top 3!
Watch a few laps with Harry fighting Shane at the end:
BC Race Cars had Misha Goikhburg driving our #25 TA2 Camaro at beautiful Road America for round 7 of the SCCA Pro Trans-Am championship. Also under our tent was the #43 of Roberto Sabato.
As usual, we unloaded at 98%, running in the top five in the four test and practice sessions. We were very happy with our progress but qualifying was a little disappointing, landing us in 9th place. Even though Misha put in a great effort with his best lap of the weekend, the top ten were only separated by 0.7 seconds around this super long track!
Misha advanced a few positions on the start, but a yellow interrupted his progress. On the next restart, he again made up a few spots, but had a wild spin during an attempt for 4th. We weren’t sure what caused the spin, so we checked the car out thoroughly in the pits before returning to the race a few laps down. That is racing!
What a weekend at Mid-Ohio as BCR competed with our #25 TA2 Camaro driven by Misha Goikhberg, while also under our tent was the #43 of Roberto Sabato in his TA2 Mustang. The weather held off, no rain, and as usual it was a first class event at a premier race track.
Our weekend started extremely well, with great test day lap times where we were able to evaluate a number of set-up changes. Official practise was even better, placing us P5 and P3. We were super excited for qualifying as we felt our car was definitely a top 3 contender! Unfortunately, the clouds rolled in, and expecting rain, we went with an in-between set-up. We only managed 11th…..
We were excited for the race, knowing our car is fast but also anxious as Mid-Ohio is a very difficult track to pass on, especially with the TA2 cars as they are so equal in performance. Misha did a great job at the start, picking off cars, about 1 a lap. Sadly, as he was passing a car, he made contact at the tire, causing an immediate flat. By the time he limped all the way around into the pits, and the crew changed the tire, we were 4 laps down. We finished the race and even passed the car that eventually finished 5th, so the pace was there.
Misha will drive for us again at Road America in a couple of weeks. We appreciate the great job he did this weekend at a very difficult track. Watch a few laps from the start of the race:
A great test day at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park, organized by Roberto Sabato, proved to be a wonderful day of testing for BC Race Cars’ 2018 TA2 car, based on a Howe chassis.
Canadian driver Misha Goikhberg (who won the Watkins Glen 6 hours a few weeks ago overall in a prototype) was piloting our #25 Trans-Am TA2 car, eventually achieving a lap time of 1:20.690 in a mock-qualifying run! We believe this is the fastest a legal TA2 car has ever achieved at Mosport race track. A big thank you to Misha for an incredible drive, not just for that lap but the entire day of testing; consistent, fast, and excellent feedback which made the engineering easier.
But no success comes without hard work: the crew of Eric Miller and Mike Nelson did an amazing job in the sweltering heat of 32° C, with numerous changes of shocks, springs, anti-roll bars, even an entire steering rack! Thank you guys for your hard work and dedication.
To put this lap time into perspective, a new GT3 Cup Car, costing more than 3x of this TA2 car and running on much wider tires is only a few tenths faster. For those who would be interested in trying this incredible car, or having one built for them, please contact Blaise for details.
Despite some earlier forecasts, Round 2 of the SCCA Trans-Am series ran all weekend under nearly ideal weather conditions at Road Atlanta, GA. BC Race Cars entered two TA2 cars, the #25 house Camaro driven by Misha Goikhberg and the #48 Camaro of Mike McGahern.
Mike struggled a bit, both with set-up and coming to terms with the daunting turn 12 at this super-fast race track. He managed a respectable 20th in qualifying and was looking forward to a good race. He passed some cars early on and worked his way up to 17th, having some great battles that lasted many laps. A slight touch of a curb on lap 19 launched the car and destroyed the nose as it landed off-track, ending an otherwise solid day for Mike.
Misha, a newcomer to sedan racing, adapted quickly to driving a heavy car, a vastly different technique than the prototypes he is used to piloting. Helping along was his driver coach, Bob Perona (who incidentally also coaches James Hinchcliffe) who proved of to be invaluable in both coaching Misha and helping to make set-up changes to the car. By the time qualifying came around, we had a great car and Misha pulled a wonderful lap, qualifying 3rd, only 0.042 seconds behind second place.
The race proved to be most exciting, the top 5-6 cars fighting a fierce battle close together. Misha dropped back twice to 5th, but managed to make it back and was running in 3rd for a good portion of the race. He complained on the radio that his tires were giving out, but so was everybody’s as Misha set fastest lap of the race! On the last lap, he was in 4th and the 5th place car made a last moment desperate move in the turn 10 braking zone, punting Misha off the track and into the gravel. Trans-Am penalized the driver, but of course could not give back our 4th place.
Overall a great and exciting weekend. Misha is an amazing driver to have accomplished what he did the first time in the car and hope he will be back to pilot our #25 Camaro.
Race lap with Misha Goikhberg in BC RACE CARS #25 TA2 race car at Road Atlanta , March 31, 2018
BC RACE CARS is proud to announce that fellow Canadian Misha Goikhberg will make his debut with the Trans Am series presented by Pirelli at the Road Atlanta, March 29-31, 2018. Misha will join the TA2 field in BC RACE CAR’s new TA2 #25 Chevrolet Camaro.
Misha Goikhberg, a well-known Canadian race car driver currently competing in the IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship with JDC-Miller MotorSports LMP2 car, joins Trans Am with an abundance of racing experience in open wheel and sportscar competition. With a successfully overall finish of 7th place last weekend at the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, Misha Goikhberg added, “I am very excited to try TA2, and I have high hopes for the future of this championship. The car isn’t anything that I’ve driven before, so I will keep my expectations in check and try to learn as much as possible in the first weekend”.
Fellow Canadian Roberto Sabato, a common friend to Misha and BC RACE CARS and a Trans-Am competitor, arranged the opportunity to join forces. “We feel so fortunate to have had Ave at Sebring and now Goikhberg joining us to show-case and further develop our cars. We look forward to working with another professional driver and introduce him to one of the best classes of sedan racing in North America”, states Blaise Csida, team principal at BCR.
BC Race Cars Inc. showed up to the inaugural Trans-Am event at Sebring International with high hopes; a brand new TA2 car, a completely rebuilt TA car and the old, reliable TA2 # 48 Camaro.
Tony Ave was the driver for the new TA2 build, and as expected, his driving and input were invaluable. The car was super quick out of the box, Tony posting top 3 times in practise on Thursday. But he did point out some brake issues and being slightly down on power. The brake issues were mostly resolved for qualifying, and Tony posted a top 5 lap time, one that he was not satisfied with. A subsequent spin flat spotted the tires, which meant new tires for the race and starting from the back of the 32 car field.
Katech resolved our engine power issues by race day and Tony put on a show: he made it up to the top 10 within 9 laps, posting incredible lap times even in traffic. Unfortunately, a left rear tire exploded, probably due to a cut while being forced off the track while passing a competitor, ending our otherwise exciting debut.
Mike MacGahern in the #48 TA2 Camaro was making steady progress thru the weekend. We resolved some handling issues, and the crew had to jump into action to repair some damage on the car. We picked up 3.5 seconds in lap time by qualifying, a solid mid-pack effort. A broken transmission input shaft ended our race early, a frustrating end to an otherwise good run after not competing for over a year!
Blaise Csida in our #15 TA car also enjoyed a good weekend, solidly in the top 10 thru 3 practise sessions. We made good progress with the suspension adjustments thru the weekend, but qualified poorly in 11th due to yellow flags on the hot laps. We were looking forward to the race as we knew our pace was far better than we were able to show. A radiator burst on race day, while warming up the engine, and with 30 minutes to the race, we could not repair the car in time to compete.
Watch a few laps of pro driver Tony tearing thru the field…….
race car preparation, fabrication, engineering, driver training and coaching.