BARC Canadian Touring Trophy Races August 1 & 2 by Al Norrie

IMG_0853Wow, what a weekend!

I want to thank everyone for making the BARC Canadian Touring Trophy Races Aug 1 & 2 so rewarding.   From my perspective the weekend was flawlessly organized and all of my interactions were excellent.   At the risk of unintentionally leaving someone out I am extending my heartfelt thank you to all the BARC organization, the CTMP marshals and all the volunteers for an amazing experience.

CTMP Aug 1 2015 002 turn 9 entry

As this was my first GT1 race I really want to highlight the incredible emotions I experienced.        Obviously I had butterflies combined with anxiety in the morning and while sitting on the mock grid.   The on-track sessions generated a strange combination of anticipation, fear, exhilaration and competitive aggression. Lastly the checkered flag brought relief and elation -I had not crashed but in fact earned a podium position.   However, I think one of the most unexpected feelings is the overwhelming support and  expressed camaraderie  by all of the racers, team personnel and my circle of friends.   I am truly honoured to be part of this amazing racing fraternity.

CTMP Aug 1 2015 080 paddockLastly, I am indebted to BC Race Cars for enabling this entire experience.   Blaise and his team made me feel like a rock start/pro driver.   BC Race Cars are beyond a first class operation. They ensured my safety and enjoyment by looking after every imaginable detail. My personal crew chief, John and the team, tirelessly attended to my coveted GREEN Camaro – tires, set-up, fuel, cleaning, and safely buckling me into the cockpit.   Penny’s hospitality graciously went beyond ensuring we all enjoyed outstanding lunches and plenty of refreshments throughout the weekend.

1The pinnacle was the personal coaching and knowledge that Blaise tirelessly shared with me – inspirational!

To all – THANK YOU!

 

New Jersey Report

gallery_large5Round 5 of the SCCA Trans-Am series travelled to New Jersey for the Weekend of Thunder. BCR had two entries in the TA2 class, Mike McGahern in the #48 Camaro and newcomer Jordan Bernloehr in the house #07 green machine.

Neither BCR or our drivers have ever raced at this track, so Thursday’s testing was crucial to make the required adjustments and allow our drivers to learn. Many set-up changes and gear changes later, we felt we had a pretty good package. Plus, Jordan has never driven a full size race car and had to contend with learning to shift and brake in these relatively heavy machines.

gallery_largeIn extremely hot and humid conditions, both drivers did well, Jordan to qualify 10th and Mike 14th in this 22 car ultra competitive field. Third to tenth was separated by less than 0.9 seconds!

 

The race was shaping up nicely, our strategy was to be there at the end, as we expected tire wear to be an issue. Unfortunately, Mike retired with a mechanical failure on lap 5.

Jordan was keeping with the lead pack, picking off cars one at a time, running quickly and consistently. Unfortunately, a passing attempt resulted in an off at turn 1, which filled the radiator opening with grass and the engine started to run hotter and hotter. We had a super difficult decision to make, leave him out there and risk blowing the engine or bring him in to clean the grille but loose a lap in doing so? We opted for the latter, and as expected, we went a lap down.

Jordan never gave up though, fought his way back and finished 12th, the top car a lap down. A very good showing from a very talented young man!

 

 

 

New Driver Announcement

BC Race Cars Inc is pleased to announce Jordan Bernloehr as the driver of our #07 BCR Chevy Camaro for the Trans-Am TA2 race at New Jersey Motorsports Park, June 21 , 2015.

IMG_9258Jordan has extensive experience and has enjoyed great success at many levels of karting, including numerous championships in NRKA, MKA, and Briggs and Stratton. He has also competed, and won, in Chump Car while setting the fastest lap of the race.

We are excited to bring new, young talent to the Trans-Am series and feel honoured that Jordan chose our team to help him in his first professional sedan race. It also speaks highly of the series itself, as up and coming drivers are looking at Trans-Am as a viable stepping stone” says team principal Blaise Csida.

I am really excited about getting behind the wheel in the Trans Am Series, I have dreamed of that since I was very young as we followed and attended many Trans-am races with family friend and long-time Trans-am competitor Leighton Reese and Banner Engineering racing team” comments Jordan. “ Can hardly wait to get seated in the 07 BC Racing Camaro, hopefully car owner Blaise Csida can teach me the tricks of the trade in a short order, as I would like to have the 07 Camaro look pretty big in the leader’s mirror in the very near future.”

We look forward to working with Jordan and are striving diligently to secure sponsorship for the balance of the season for this talented young man.

Trans-Am Lime Rock Report

LR3Beautiful weather and scenery marked round 4 of the SCCA Trans-Am event at Lime Rock Park, CT. BC Race Cars had only one car running in the highly competitive TA2 class, our house car the #07 Camaro driven by Steve Kent Jr.

Neither us nor our driver has ever raced at this track. With the very limited track time available this weekend, we were under the gun to get the set-up right and help our driver learn the track as quickly as possible.

As such, many gear changes and set-up changes were made, LR8compromising both our practice and qualifying sessions. We were disappointed with our 13th place qualifying and decided to make a last, major set-up change prior to final practise. Steve reported that the car was better than ever, which gave us some much needed hope for the race.

LR6As usual, Steve made up a number of spots on the start, and continued to slowly but surely work his way up the field. We were never quite up the pace of the leaders, they were just able to inch away, lap by lap. Regardless, our car ran flawlessly, the tires stayed consistent throughout the race,  and Steve was able to drive to a  much  deserved 9th place finish.    While not the result we were hoping for, we felt satisfied with       our  accomplishment.

 

Next up is New Jersey, where BCR is happy to have two cars running. More to follow……….

 

Road Atlanta, Trans-Am

BC Race Cars Inc. was excited to have 3 cars running at the famous and challenging Road Atlanta circuit. We acquired a new trailer that can accommodate 4 cars and were anxious to try out our new set-up.

a4In TA2, Steve Kent Jr. was again piloting the BCR #07 Camaro, with team mate Mike McGahern returning to the series in his #48 race car. Having two cars really seemed to help as the drivers were able to compare telemetry and we were able to sort the set-ups quicker.

In Ta, Allan Lewis was carrying the BCR flag, having rebuilt the car over the winter and installing a new electric power steering system, that we had only tested briefly at Mosport.

a2Allan struggled a bit in practise and qualifying but we were hopeful for a the race as his car tends to be very consistent over the 100 mile race. Unfortunately, he collided with a TA3 car while trying to make a pass, ripping his nose wide open, and subsequently loosing his hood at 185 mph! He pitted numerous times to secure underhood items that were ready to fly off, but still managed his fastest lap of the weekend and came in a respectable 12th, although a few laps down.

In TA2, 38 cars took to the track, an amazing number for a single class in any event. In this ultra-competitive series, we were satisfied with Steve’s 9th place qualifying effort and Mike place 19th gave us a different race strategy. Unfortunately, Steve’s transmission hang up in 2nd gear, forcing a pit stop that would eventually put him a lap down and in 20th position at the checker flag. Too bad, as he was driving with the lead group, we obviously had the speed, just not the luck on our side.

a3Mike McGahern drove perhaps the best race of his career, avoiding some horrendous wrecks in front of him. He was fast and he was steady, and had plenty of car left at the end when it counted. He finished 11th, not a small feat in a series with so many pro drivers!

Congrats to him and the crew for a job well done!

Homestead Report, Trans-Am

The second stop of the SCCA Trans-Am series was Homestead, FL. Unlike last year, the track configuration used included turns 3 and 4 of the Nascar oval, making for a very challenging and high speed corner.

H3BCR only had one car in the race, Andrew Romocki in his Rocanda Enterprises TA Mustang. Having never been there, Andrew picked up the track very quickly, setting some great lap times. He also did his research, talking to all the other drivers and getting whatever bits of information he could.

H2The result was a 10th out of 18 in initial qualifying, but we got pushed down to 11th during second chance qualifying. On final practise, Andrew was 8th and was ecstatic with the handling of the car, so we decided to leave it for the race, a mistake in hind-sight. The track conditions changed as it was significantly hotter and thus more slippery during the race.

Andrew got pushed out at the start, and spun off track on lap two, trying to recover from the poor start and difficult conditions. Even as such, he finished 12th, a testament to perseverance and reliability.

We also recruited a new mechanic at Homestead…………

Sebring Report, Trans-Am

First race of 2015 was held at Sebring International. With 3 cars running under the BCR banner and a third built by BCR, we had high hopes going into the weekend, but mother nature had other plans.

Sebring3It was raining on and off thru most of the practise and part of the qualifying sessions. As such, we missed out on crucial testing, and were behind as the other top teams had plenty of testing at this track. Regardless, our #07 TA2 Camaro, driven by Steve Kent Jr. qualified 6th out of 34, and Andrew Romocki, piloting his Rocanda Enterprises TA Mustang was 17th out of 20.

Sebring5Harry Steenbakkers made it to 14th in his BCR built TA2 car, but they were chasing set-up all weekend and Harry was struggling with a loose car.

At the race start, Steve put on one of his trade-mark moves and passed a few cars, only to eat the wall as the throttle stuck wide open on lap one. A very disappointing, not to mention expensive, ending to an otherwise great qualifying and start.

Harry struggled as well, finally tearing off the front splitter when he was forced off track by another competitor. The damage was too great to continue.

Sebring4Andrew’s race was far better in comparison, he had a clean start and was making his way up, all the way to the 9th position. His best lap was substantially quicker than he has ever gone, and he was fighting hard for a position close to the end when he spun. He finished 11th.

Regardless of the outcome, we walked away with having learnt a lot, and very glad for Andrew who drove a great race.

 

 

 

Homestead- TA2 Rental

MO7The #07 BCR Camaro is available for the Homestead Trans-Am 2 race, April 9-12, 2015. Car may also be entered in SVRA race on same weekend. Highly competitive car with full track support, arrive and drive package.
Interested parties please contact Blaise : 647-283-1306

Sebring Test Report, Jan. 27-28, 2015

Incredible weather and great track conditions marked the January Dave Murray test days at Sebring International Raceway.

BC RaceCars Inc. was fortunate to have the combination of Andrew Romocki’s TA Mustang and professional driver Mike Skeen along with unlimited track time to test and tune. We were able to evaluate about 30 different adjustments, ranging (but not limited to) camber, wing, toe, shocks, anti-squat, pressures, etc. and ended up with a super fast Sebring set-up.

We have worked with Mike Skeen before, yet his talents simply keep amazing us! The feedback that he is able to provide and his ability to get the job done in a few laps really speeds up testing, not to mention his incredible pace! Thanks Mike.

Also a big thanks to Andrew, for providing the platform and having the foresight to hire the best of the best. The proof is in the pudding, Mike went 1 second faster than the Trans-Am qualifying pole lap time of 2014, with traffic and on well-used tires. His theoretical best was some 3.5 seconds faster!! See link below for some in-car video, we were evaluating a compression change on the shocks, ultimately making the car too loose:

 

After a few more adjustments:

We are super excited about the Sebring TA race in a few weeks time, BC RaceCars will have 3 of its cars running, Andrew with his TA Mustang and Steve Kent Jr. and Harry Steenbakkers in their BCR built TA2 Camaros.

 

Steve Kent Jr. Driving for BCR in 2015

Steve Kent. TA2BC Racecars Inc. is pleased to announce that Steve Kent Jr. will be piloting the #07 BCR Camaro TA2 in Trans-Am for a limited 6 race schedule in 2015.

Steve and BCR first got together for the 2014 finale at Daytona. After the first day of practice, it was evident that the combination was a good one; Steve was fast out of the box, and was able to effectively communicate what he needed out of the car.

“ We were utterly impressed with his talents” says team principal Blaise Csida, “ not only was he fast, he knew what he needed, used his head, and raced smartly, all the attributes of a good professional driver. And the chemistry was just right. ”

The 2015 Trans-Am season is shaping up to be the best yet, and BCR is excited to be part of the series with such a talent behind the wheel. Our first race is Sebring on March 1st.

BC Racecars Inc. is a full time professional race organization, specializing in all forms of road racing. Services include full TA/TA2 car builds, track support, rental rides, engineering, fabrication; anything to do with road racing. Contact us for your Motorsport needs.

 

race car preparation, fabrication, engineering, driver training and coaching.