Danny gives the low down on his new shale car.
Well, it seemed a very short winter. We started building the car the Sunday after the Gala meeting, the next thing you know I need to get my tar car ready to race at King’s Lynn and my new car was still nowhere near ready.
It took a lot longer than I thought, the main reason was we wanted it to stand out and by the reaction on Saturday I think we did that!
The car is a lot different than my last car, the engine’s a long way back, which means my feet are on the floor and I feel really comfy.
There is a lot of different ideas gone into the front and back axles and that’s from Chris Fort and Karl of BW Engineering. We have put a fabricated front axle in with a three link type suspension. The back axle is similar to my last car, but we’re running brake arms which a lot of cars do in New Zealand.
The engine was brand new off Ron Kroonder a month ago. It’s been in my Cecil tar car and performed really well so we put it in the new one.
The headers were a team effort. We bought a kit and me, Stuart, and Chris made them, they’re probs my favourite part on the car.
Now, the bonnet scoop… my mechanic Stuart said “What we gonna do?”, and I said “That’s your job!”, and left him to it. And wow, I was impressed with what he did. It did take him about three weeks, mind!
The car was finally ready for paint after a few very late nights. We dropped it off at AKA, that’s Steve Reedman’s place, he said “I have the paint scheme in my head already”, and I just left him to it. I didn’t even ask what he was thinking but I knew it would look good.
I was racing in Holland when Brian Evans came to do signs. I left him a list and said “Go crazy, I want it to stand out”. I got home from Holland at two in morning and ran into the garage to see it. I Was amazed at how good a job he had done. In my opinion he is by far still the best sign writer.
We didn’t have long to put it together and get it lacquered, but somehow we got it done and got it to Coventry.
With no practice in the car I was a little nervous for my heat. I set off thinking I’ll drop to the back and get some laps in, but that all changed when I went into the first bend and the car just felt amazing. I couldn’t have been happier.
I had a few issue with the brakes after the yellows, but was still happy. Then came the final and after a really good race, a lot of it with FWJJ, I came home fourth and the fastest lap!
We decided we wanted to start altering the car now I’d had my practice, so for the national we did that, and it felt really good till I got a flat. But the car is showing a lot of promise straight out the box.
I want to say a massive Thank You to the team that helped build it, and to all my sponsors, I wouldn’t be able to it with all them, and a big thank you to Mum and Dad.
Also a thank you and a sorry to my girlfriend Jessica who hasn’t seen me much since we started building the car.