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Christopher Brown Racing
Formula Mazda Test Day

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Date: January 14, 2000,    Location: Buttonwillow, CA  -in the middle of nowhere

Sure I've wanted to get behind the wheel of a Formula Mazda for a while, but this particular day wasn't much for enjoyment.  Converting my driving habit to left foot braking and shifting without the clutch made this test nothing but work.  My mind set was completely on driving.

Attending the day was my public relations director, Kimberly Ransdell and Mark Rodrigues from Valley Motorsports.  Yep, Kimberly took the photographs.....

(click on the pictures for a larger version)
The day began, soaked track, hovering rain clouds and a few drops.  As Mark Rodrigues put it, "You've got all the gods going against you, a new car, new track, new team and rain."  Yeah and then throw in my cold and cough.  Quite the day!
One good thing about a wet track, it slowed my car down enough so I had more time to concentrate on shifting without the clutch.  I didn't find the left foot braking to be difficult at all, but for a spin how do you put the clutch in to prevent the engine from dying?  Don't use the brakes....?

With my first session complete, I came in and Mark disconnected the roll bars.  After asking why he didn't do that before my first session he replied, "I wanted to make sure you could handle it" referring to higher speeds obtained with more grip.


So with the track drying I started puddle searching to keep the rain tires from over-heating,... guess some puddles are just too far away (see photos).  A quick stop for an early lunch and Mark switched the car over to a dry track setup.

I got two hours of dry track in, then the rain came back.  Driving with slick tires on a wet race track was quite the experience, a quick spin and I came in for the rain tires.  While Kimberly drove me back to Los Angeles airport, I conked out for a nice nap.  Dreaming of doing it all over again.....


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