Not happy to just relax, many ASC Teams spent the winter months testing and developing their cars. December 21st and 22nd saw a small ASC contingent at Buttonwillow Raceway which hosted an open test weekend. Leading in the excitement was the ...
Not happy to just relax, many ASC Teams spent the winter months testing and developing their cars. December 21st and 22nd saw a small ASC contingent at Buttonwillow Raceway which hosted an open test weekend. Leading in the excitement was the #44 Chevy Monte Carlo of RealRide.com Racing. While on the car's first reconnaissance lap of the weekend, a fuel float bowl adjustment screw vibrated loose spraying fuel onto the exhaust. The ensuing fire engulfed the entire front of the car and part of the cockpit. Driver David Huang emerged unharmed despite being trapped inside momentarily while trying to find the steering wheel release pin, a testament to his safety equipment and (somewhat?) rehearsed exits. Damage to the car was moderate, consisting mainly of burnt wiring, ignition parts and a few damaged brake lines. By early afternoon the following day, crew chief Tim Spencer managed to salvage the pieces and had the car running, albeit a little scorched. Ironically, this experience led to a partial sponsorship with motorsports safety equipment manufacturer Pyrotect/Bell Motorsports for the entire RealRide.com Racing Team which also campaigns several other cars in NASA including a second ASC car driven by Justin Sallows.
Also present at the Buttonwillow test day was American Iron Extreme (AIX) Camaro driver Mike Arnheiter who recently purchased a Buick ASC car from Ryan Flaherty and Robert Davis. Inspired by younger brother Dave Arnheiter's impressive third place in the 2002 ASC Championship, Mike plans to run a few ASC races in 2003 when not running for the championship in his Camaro. "I have to finish what I started, which is to win the AIX Championship. Then I might consider the full ASC season in 2004," commented the older Arnheiter.
Tom Tabor of safety equipment manufacturer GA Racing USA took a few laps in Robert Davis' ASC car. Tabor, an accomplished Porsche club racer, was performing a pre-purchase test drive of Davis' ASC Monte Carlo which he plans to campaign for 2003. By weekend's end, Tabor had made a firm verbal commitment on the purchase and to prove how serious he was, he bought a 28 foot hauler from Tom Dragoun of 7's Only Racing. Davis, meanwhile is already busy planning the construction of his next ASC car. Former ASC Director Bob Coan also brought out his car but was absent on the track with it. The previous year, Coan had enlisted the help of off-road racing star Rod Millen to co-drive in an SCCA Cal Club Enduro. A shunt early in the race forced them to retire making it bittersweet as the car was leading the race overall, proving the potency of the ASC formula.
The 2003 ASC season promises to be the most exciting yet. Many teams have already committed to running the entire West Coast series which has expanded to tracks in Nevada, Arizona and the California Speedway. All this in addition to last year's circuits in California and Las Vegas. Several teams from NASCAR's NorthWest Tour, and SouthWest Tour have also expressed interest in running select ASC races. Last year, NASA hosted a race combining ASC with ProTrucks which received rave reviews from both the spectators and drivers. For 2003, ProTrucks has committed to running most of their schedule with ASC which should ensure spectacular racing as both groups run nearly identical lap times. For more information on the web about the ASC series, visit: http://www.ascracing.com