Christopher Brown Racing
Portland 2003

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   Event:   SCCA Oregon, 43rd annual Rose Cup Race
      Car:    #83 green & black, Spec Racer Ford
   Team:    Flat Out Racing           
Results:    National Race Started 1st, Finished 1st  
                  Regional Race Started 2nd, Finished 1st  

Pictures by:  Jane Humphreys & Dan Hall

Wednesday 6:45am - Testing Day
I took an early morning flight to Portland, arriving at 9am.  One hour later I was at the race track, dressed and ready to go.  I spent the first session getting used to the car.  It had been an entire year since I drove a Spec Racer Ford or even been on the Portland track.  I managed to flat spot my rears, then a few laps later my fronts.  I struggled with the brake balance for a couple of sessions, achieving a best lap time of 1:29.35 in cloudy, cool conditions.  After lunch we put on a newer but still used set of tires.  The braking was much better without those flat spots.  The track got more and more slippery as the sun came out that afternoon.  My crew chief, Mike O'Callaghan made some anti-roll bar changes and kept the handing of the car balanced but with a slight oversteer.  My best lap in the sunny conditions was a 1:29.40

Car Pictures
 Podium Pictures

Friday 9:00am - Practice session
Rain, rain... and more rain.  Disconnected the anti-roll bars and put on rain tires.  Some people didn't even go out since it was going to be dry the rest of the weekend.  Running just one session in the wet doesn't help too much because you drive a different line through the corners than on a dry track.  It was fun though to spend the session sliding around!  With such a slippery track, it makes the car feel like it's got 800 horsepower - able to spin the tires at any time!

Friday 5:30pm - National Qualifying
This session went very well with little traffic at first.  A cloudy, cool evening meant the lap times would be fast, and fast they were.  I turned a 1:28.86 but then the very next lap I ran into some traffic.  While attempting to pass another car in turn 1, we hit side-to-side.  It bent my steering arm and broke a rod end.... resulting in my departure from the track.  I only managed to get 10 laps in all session.

Saturday 9:00am - Regional "Festival Trophy Dash" Qualifying
Another cloudy, cool session led to another fast qualifying period.  In fact the track record was broken, only it wasn't by me.  I had traffic the whole session and only managed to get 3 clean laps out of 16.  My best time was slightly better at 1:28.82,  this was good enough for 2nd on the grid.

Saturday 2:50pm - National Race
Starting on pole position for the first time in my life, I led the field to a slow and steady start.  The first corner had me and the 2nd place guy side by side.  And again through turn 2, but I got forced out on the exit and took up a spot directly behind him.  As we went into turn 4, someone hit me from behind.  I managed to keep control of the car without losing any positions.  In turn 7 the leader slid slideways, which gave me a good run on him through the back straight.  I passed him before turn 10 and ran away with the victory leading flag to flag.  It was my first win.

Saturday 6:00pm - Regional "Festival Trohpy Dash" Race
Again on the front row, this time I was starting from position #2, and followed the leader through the first part of the track.  After he bobbled in turn 6 I got a good run on the back straight and made my pass.  Then a couple laps later he passed me back going into turn 1.  I decided to follow him closely, and chose not to fight for position, in hopes that we could work together in the draft to put some distance between us and the rest of the pack.  After 4 laps I went for a pass on the back straight again.  He then followed me for 2 laps, spinning in the chicane breaking a his suspension.  This left me with a good lead.  However, it didn't last long as the yellow flag came out to remove his broken car.  This closed up the gap I had on the rest of the field.  The restart went very smooth and there wasn't much of a battle.  I was able to drive away for another victory!

1999-2011 Christopher Brown Racing