Dial In Day
Saturday 7th March 2020
The Dial in Day 2020 was a great success with a staggering 38 entries!
The bracket racing educational day saw entries from our regular RWYBers to budding new National Championship racers. Even those that have never been up the track before attended to gain knowledge and have a go at bracket racing first hand. The whole idea behind running the event is to show that no matter what you drive, you can be competitive, at an affordable price, and have a whole lot of fun doing it. There was a great mix of vehicles from Mustangs to Golfs - we even had a couple of electric cars take part! It took a matter of runs up the strip for most of our students to work out exactly what they were doing and the competition started to hot up from that point on…
The day began in the classroom where, in the first session, we looked at everything from how to stage to vehicle prep, how to drive on the track, reading timing tickets and everything in between. Once we’d been through this brief 1-hour session on ‘how to bracket race’, it was all out onto the track to see how the lights work. After this, it was back to the pits to collect your car for the first cycle of qualifying and eliminations to see how much the students had learnt and apply their new knowledge on track. Already, this is when we began to see some outstanding talent shining through. Incredibly after the first 3 qualifiers, the top 4 racers were all within .03 off their dial in. We’d like to think that this has something to do with the teachers and the training provided but realistically, I think it’s probably down to having some very good students this year. The biggest squeaker of the 3 qualifying session was Thomas Dakin in his Ford Mustang. Thomas dialled in a 15.35 and ran a 15.3489. Thomas was just .011 away from the perfect run – on the wrong side.
So, after a super tight round of qualifying, it was eliminations time and for many, the first experience of bracket racing in the form of eliminations. It was straight in at the deep end with a race separated by 0.035 at the finish line for Thomas Dakin and Lee Cordery with Lee triumphant in round 1. The final came down to Steph Pateman (Daughter of Multiple National Championship Winner Brian Pateman) in her Jeep Cherokee and Carl Magedera in his Tesla Model S. The outcome of this race was sealed on the Startline as Steph went red on the tree handing Carl the win before he’d even turned a wheel. Carl was one of 2 electric cars at the Dial in Day alongside RWYB Veteran Gwenn West in her Nissan Leaf. After this exciting first cycle of eliminations, it was all back into the classroom for a quick overview of how the first session went and a little more learning. This included a look into how breakouts work and the importance of reaction times. Overview completed; it was back to the startline for another 3 qualifiers.
The second session saw Perry Stephenson in his Ford Ranger take number 1 qualifier with a near perfect run. Perry dialled in 19.10 and ran a 19.1039. Just .0039 off of what could’ve been the perfect ET. Although no one else went .00 off in this session, being 0.10 away from your dial in would have had you in 10th this time around as entries began to hone in their skills. The next lot of eliminations saw even closer racing with 6 races being settled by less than 0.010 of a second at the finish line. The race of the session was between Lewi Williams in the Santa Pod Ford Mustang against the winner from the first session, Carl Magedera in his Tesla Model S. The result was settled with Carl taking the victory the difference at the finish line was 0.0065 of a second or 30cm at the finish line. After Carl’s flying start in the first session of racing, He continued the momentum to make it to the final again. This time he met the Mercedes E Class of Jessie Matthew. A poor reaction time in the final from Carl, handed Jesse the win. This left it all to play for in Round 3.
The final trip to the classroom enabled the students to ask any more questions. After this, everyone was eager to get down to the starting line and down to business. The students were faced with a 1 shot qualifier ahead of their last lot of eliminations. It was Dominic Crawford in his VW Lupo who took maximum qualifying points in running 17.01 on a 17.00 dial in closely followed by Perry Stephenson keeping up the good work in his Ford Ranger running a 19.04 on his 19.00 dial. Dominic will be one to watch this year in VW sportsman taking the challenge to his dad, John Crawford who is current VW Sportsman National Champion.
Into eliminations, no race was taken lightly. Christopher Winn in his Ford Mondeo was the victor of the closest pairing in this session beating Lee Cordery in his Vauxhall van to the finish line by 0.0037 of a second in round 1 - or 111mm. The consistency of Steph Pateman and Carl Magedera throughout the day meant that the first one to get knocked out first, would hand the victory over. Another red light from Steph in the 2nd round handed Carl the overall victory. Carl Magedera was the Dial In Day 2020 winner.
Congratulations to all of the students for some excellent racing throughout the day. A huge well done to both Steph Pateman and Carl for their outstanding consistent performances throughout the day which all counted towards the final result. As well as walking away with the big trophy, Carl also earned himself a free entry to the upcoming Festival of Power event over the Easter weekend.
Watchout sportsman racers, the Dial in Day students are fresh from graduation and are on the prowl for some silverware!
Notable Stats from the day:
Nigel Coulson pulled out the best reaction time of the day with a 0.0097 light.
The closest green light, right side of the dial in drag race, was won by Christopher Winn in the Mondeo who beat Lee Cordery in his Vauxhall Vivaro to the finish line by 0.0037. Or 111mm.
Steph Pateman was closest of the day running 15.6003 on a 15.60 dial in. Incredibly, she lost that race to Jessie Matthew in his Mercedes on a hole-shot!