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Old 09-27-2009, 10:52 AM
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Tekknikal Tekknikal is offline
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Default The Ites Gold & Green

Friday, September 25 2009

It was a very warm night. While the air was less dense than it had been during the last race day, conditions weren't exactly comfortable. The equivalent air pressure was just shy of 2,000 feet above sea level. The temperature was above 84F with Humidity pushing past 75%. So the air, which was mostly still, felt almost sticky. It was a very clear night though, and the lack of wind meant that the Sahara Dust wouldn't be blowing in on everyone. And that meant the racing was going down against a crystal clear night sky with a large yellow moon far off to the western horizon. Walking across the track grounds, smoke was slowly drifting away from the staging area after being released from racing tires....

When Rafie first started his Civic and began rolling into the staging lanes, I was wondering what was about to go down. There was an Mitsubishi Evolution VIII at the line staging. And it wasn't any Evo either. It was one of the kind that you don't take lightly...The kind that runs deep 12s. How deep? Marianas Trench deep. On street tires. Without a struggle.

I wasn't sure what I was about to see. Were they just lining up to test together? I turned to Adrian (of the One Eye'd Bandits) who had been next to me to ask what was going on. But he wasn't there... he had already mobilized into action. The Civic taxied across the tarmac and was holding short on the active staging area. Was he really serious? Adrian & crew started spilling out track bite from a gallon jug once bottled by Blue Mountain Water...

It all started back in the summer in some Honda threads here StreetSeen. Rafie (then owning a Blue Civic SI) and Mikey (owning a Gray AWD Turbo Talon) started throwing jabs at each other in a number of threads. In the first thread, Mikey had complained about not getting races from Hondas who had been challenging him. Rafie commented that Mikey shouldn't be so confident. Mikey would later, in a different thread, answer by saying he has no reason not to be. One thing lead to another until they had a race on their hands. It would go down when Rafie's then-unannounced project finished.

It should be said at this point that many have seen Mikey's turbocharged Talon do it's thing on the streets. The car has top end and lots of it. We weren't sure Rafie knew what he was getting himself into by calling him out. Mikey, normally pretty chill and relaxed, wasn't taking what he was seeing and hearing lightly. Rafie, a man of his words, wasn't backing down. Neither side was afraid. Both insisted the other was wrong, both were prepared to back up their talk with money. The race was on.

Fast forward some weeks later and Rafie & Crew finished work on a B series hatch, wrapping things up with a back yard "ites gold and green" paint job. Complete with the jets to spray enough Nitrous to make a dentist jealous. He was ready to do battle at the track....

...Which brings us to last Friday night.

Officially, it wasn't a CDRA track night. Those familiar with how things are done on the big island will know that means about as much as the the number of stripes on a zebra. CDRA sanctioning is a benefit but not a requirement. If someone is willing to unlock the gate, the track will be open, and the track will have people. And if the night is like Friday, there will be a lot of them.

It was after 9pm with both cars at the track when race prep work began. The Talon started getting ready first but in its first runs it started to run very rough. Mikey & crew stayed on it, doing run after run while sorting it all out.

Meanwhile Rafie & Crew started to prepare the Civic. They fitted the race slicks and proceeded to launch...

The B powered hatch screamed through the launching area in what appeared to be a normal launch, but really wasn't: Sparks started flying from under the car, apparently from the headers.

As it turned out, the slicks weren't staying mounted on the wheels. Jokes were thrown around about paying a crackhead to mount slicks. They thought that the tires hadn't been inflated enough to seal the beads when they were mounted. They borrowed a compressor but used nearly all its air to mount only one side. The second side would have to wait.

As this was happening, it looked that Mikey & Co had gotten things sorted out with the Talon. Mostly. The car was moving better and sounded better but from the sideline didn't look as impressive as it had before. After each run, the car looked like it was cutting off.

Over an hour passed. Rafie had managed to get himself ready to run, locating the compressor he needed. As all eyes turned to Mikey for a pass, but the car once again looked to not be running well. It stopped at the end of the track, where it would stay for a long enough time to know that something hadn't gone right.

The car would be brought back down the track where it would continue out of the gates. The talk from across the staging area was that while his crew was attempting to fix the first problem and pulling wires, they may have inadvertently pulled the wrong wire. No one seemed sure what had gone wrong exactly, but the end result was that once again, the race everyone had showed for, would not happen.

Rafie laughed at the situation. It was after midnight. Up until then it was as if the night had been a waste. Many had already left, having ran out of patience to see the first race go down. Rafie, on the other hand, was ready to race. He was full of energy as if it was high noon. As it would turn out, a race would happen and it would come from a rather unlikely car. A Gray amd Black Striped SRT4 would step up to the plate. And with that, a strange night got stranger.

The night was strange because most seemed to have no idea what to expect. Those who had been on StreetSeen ride outs and saw Mikey's car in action knew it was very quick, at least on top end. A lot of people didn't know what to expect from him racing Rafie though. Was the Civic really as quick as Rafie's confidence was suggesting? No one knew. But now that same Civic was taking on a SRT4, and not any-- the fastest at the track. The talk around the island is that the beast from Kennedy is an 11 second car, putting it very high on the list of fastest street cars.

The race was arranged in short order. Then it was mentioned that the SRT would race on its street tires. That made sense....sort of. It did not, however, change the fact that the SRT has the top end of a Delta rocket. Was Rafie really aware of that?

He was advised of the dangers just before the race. As he was being spoken to he sort of looked back with wide glossy eyes, as if he only knew Japanese and someone was speaking to him in Chinese. He seemed to understand some of the words being said, but wasn't getting the point -or even the jist- of what he was being told. He sort of smiled and said it would be ok, and bounced away.

Money was matched and it wasn't long before someone stood before the two cars, hands up in the air ready to release them from the line. The hands fell, and this is what happened:

Rafie, it turned out, was justified in his confidence. To the surprise of many, he won the race. The driver of the SRT not only left late, but also had serious trouble shifting. Even still, the SRT piled on the MPH at the far end of the track, looking to run Rafie down... but it was too late. Rafie was already gone. Racing is about more than just the machines, it's also about the drivers. This race served as a text book example of that fact. The race also marked the end of Friday night's track activities.

Saturday, September 26 2009

The lights glowed on the track as CDRA sanctioning brought with it a fully charged bracket race program.

There were a number of entrants for the program, and many street cars. For owners and drivers in the street class, this was a positive twist to a story that all too often revolved around race cars. Recently though, the story's been of one red car- RedBull's 3rd generation RX7, which was present and accounted for on race night. Word from the RedBull camp that night was that he'd only done minor tweaking and retuning to the car since the last time it was at the track- no build or anything major as had been rumored. However, that's not to say the car was any less potent than it had been before. It was working even better, and he was running on a solid 11 second dial in for the night.

And the car was moving just like you'd imagine an 11 second RX would.

Earlier on in the night he arranged a match race with Bates Corvette.

It was a race everyone was curious to see, wanting to know how RedBull and his RX would fare against Bates and his Vette. The outcome?

The Bull got to the finish first, as it stole back some distance from the Vette on the second eighth. Had this been a couple weeks back, many would have been surprised. That night however, it was received with a lukewarm response. Rotary fans were happy with what they saw. Those who had been less than thrilled with RedBull's progress were indifferent.

RedBull seemed to not react, entering into the bracket race program and continuing his night all the same. He would make it all the way to the final race in the bracket program. The last race, for the top prize, had him going up against Skeet Jarvis who was driving a supercharged mustang. It was a race everyone was watching. Most might have expected RedBull to make a mistake that would cost himself the race. That didn't happen.

Instead, Jarvis treated everyone to a sample of some amazing driving, hitting his dial in exactly and crossing the finish line first while RedBull broke out.

That deserves some explanation: As most racers know, in bracket racing the lights are delayed by the difference in dial ins. If one car is a 15 second car and another is a 10 second car, the 15 second car will get the green light exactly 5 seconds early. If you run faster than your claimed time, you lose. It's your responsibility to know what to dial in and how fast and consistent you can really drive.

Most drivers will round their dial in to the nearest tenth of a second and go a little slower than they need to- based on how they feel they can drive. Jarvis? Not a chance. He dialed in 10.69 seconds. It's not clear if he thought about dialing in an even 10.70 and debated it at length before deciding on 10.69... or if a voice over his shoulder just said so...or if he had a vision the night before... Whatever the case, he did it right because he ran his exact dial in. Off the line, the race was even to within a tenth. At the end the margin was roughly two feet, or at that speed- a little less than twenty thousandths of a second.

Vince Ebbeson, CDRA president, would comment in the timing tower that if that were a race was left to people's eyes, the arguments would have never ended.

But it wasn't left to anyone's eyes. The timing system can stretch out beyond one ten thousandths of a second if necessary. It was a close race but Jarvis was on his game. Given his consistency through the night and against RedBull, one cannot argue that his victory was coincidence or luck. There's some real skill and talent there.

Not too long later the bracket racing program had ended, Rafie returned to his car. It looked like he was going to line up with VI-Evo's white Evolution VIII. It didn't look to be a serious race at first glance, but at the same time it was going to be heads up(!) Rafie would be going up against one of the fastest street cars on St Croix...

Rafie's willingness to take chances should have come as no surprise given the events of the night before, but it was nonetheless. This time, his competition wouldn't likely be making the same mistakes. But Rafie was prepared and taking the chance as always. He rolled through the staging area, dropping off one of two large bottles being held in the car. The other was secured tightly behind the passenger seat. Rafie got ready.

Both cars lined up, and this is what happened:

When the lights went green his ites gold and green civic left the line, keeping full pace with the Evo. Moments later he hit the dope bottle...hard... squeezing off the hand held trigger to deliver the full dosage of crack cocaine to the B series motor. To everyone's surprise he managed to stay right with the Evo. In fact, from the vantage point of most observers, the race looked extremely close. In reality, the Evo got there first. But the Civic, and its driver, earned massive respect. It was a surprisingly strong performance.

With that, another weekend of racing wrapped up. Weeks of hype and talk remained however. Multiple stories are now unfolding. What's next in the RedBull saga? Will he be racing again in the near future? What ever happened to the talk of his race with Ralfie? Are they ready? Or is that even in consideration anymore?

And what's next from Rafie & Company? Will there be a rematch between the SRT and Civic? The talk is that there will be, but the details are yet to be confirmed. Will the race with the Talon go down? What other races might he have in mind? Supposedly, more than a few people were caught off gaurd by what they saw when the Ites Gold and Green went up against the Evo. Will that ruin his chances for getting any good races in the near future?

Given his openness to seemingly run anything, it could be that we haven't even seen Chapter 1 of the story.

Maybe then, this was only a prologue...
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Old 10-01-2009, 03:13 AM
Tekknikal's Avatar
Tekknikal Tekknikal is offline
I put on for my city...
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Default Re: The Ites Gold & Green

******Click Here for pictures from the weekend******

Some videos:


Civic/ Redbull






Once again, pics are in the galleries right here. Remember to click twice for a higher resolution version of any picture you see.
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Old 10-01-2009, 03:44 AM
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v.i.gsr v.i.gsr is offline
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Default Re: The Ites Gold & Green

Great write up as usual tek.. Big ups to everyone that participated in the event...
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Old 10-01-2009, 04:46 AM
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Default Re: The Ites Gold & Green

On the write up cuz again
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Old 10-01-2009, 04:47 AM
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De O De O is offline
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Default Re: The Ites Gold & Green

Now that race with rafie and the evo it look like to me he hit the limiter in first and kinda hang up going into third or is it just me
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Old 10-01-2009, 06:56 AM
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Default Re: The Ites Gold & Green

Good write up man...make me feel im at home...
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Old 10-01-2009, 07:00 AM
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Default Re: The Ites Gold & Green

nice tekk
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Old 10-01-2009, 07:39 AM
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RedBull RedBull is offline
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Default Re: The Ites Gold & Green

Great write up as usual tekk. One correction though, jarvis's dial in was 10.69
"While its never possible to have too much power. It becomes increasingly frustrating having not enough grip."
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Old 10-01-2009, 07:50 AM
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VIZuki VIZuki is offline
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Default Re: The Ites Gold & Green

flawless editor you are my boy with the Ites, Gold,and Green. All cars looked good red as usual being consistant but haveing fun like disgussed, turbomikey soon come to tear that shit up, Rafie nice runnings down the track impressive.....and your still lol, that neon just sexy and doing big things. Last and to the top racer of all even though no one saw him do anything CRUZAN7M for being patient at the light but not sleeping at the light for the vids and pics instead of going straight jacket crazy...
all for the love and enjoyment

Last edited by VIZuki; 10-01-2009 at 07:56 AM.
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Old 10-01-2009, 08:50 AM
StX_RdRunr StX_RdRunr is offline
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Default Re: The Ites Gold & Green

Sounds like a good time. I was off island having a good time at my 25th college reunion.

I find this one comment interesting:

"There were a number of entrants for the program, and many street cars. For owners and drivers in the street class, this was a positive twist to a story that all too often revolved around race cars."

The CDRA has never only been about race cars. The street cars have not been participating, for whatever reason. Very frequently there would be a lot of cars show up for the test and tune portion and then not participate in the race program. I am very glad that they are now.

The ONLY difference between the classes at the track is the times you are running. 13.00 and slower, street (also called Sportsman). 10.00 to 13.50, Pro. Not race cars only, just cars that run 10.00 to 13.5. For example, Redbull's car, my car, are both street cars. Super Pro is 10.50 and faster to I think 7.00. I believe these breakdowns correspond to NHRA guidelines but I could be wrong. The reason there is the overlap is that if you are running a series and plan on upgrading your car during the series you can stay in the same class.

When I started at the track my car was running in the 16's. After the engine rebuild, 14's. Kept running, usually going out 1st round, eventually got into the high 13's. Finally got runner up one night, then eventually won one night. A used pair of slicks and open exhaust, low 13's. Kept tuning, 12's. That is when they threw me out of the street class.

Now of course it is in the towrope class for the near future.

I am glad you explained the bracket racing format. It is harder than you think, especially if the conditions are changing. I have also found it different being the slower car versus the faster car (having been both). Most importantly, it is seat time.

One minor point, at test and tune all runs are heads up, they only do the dial in for the actual race program.

Did they have enough cars for separate classes or was it all one class?

Nice write up as usual.
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