24 Hours of Lemons

I thought I'd share some pics and info on our team's 24 Hours of Lemons race outings. The most recent — the Halloween Hooptiefest — ran the weekend of October 20-21 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Our team, dubbed "Team Lemoncello", fielded a 1985 Alfa Spider, built to Lemons specs over the past several years. The team comprises myself and guys named Jason, Brad, Noah, and Andrew (last names suppressed to avoid embarrassment). This was our second outing of the season, with our first being a very rainy weekend at Thompson on August 11-12. 

We finished both races, but were well off the mark of the leaders both times. At Thompson, a gearbox failure kept us off the track for a number of hours, requiring a gearbox change at the track. We completed just 201 laps and placed 93rd. For comparison, the winning team completed 400 laps over the two soggy days!

During the waterlogged Thompson race, the spray from all the traffic made it really difficult to see. I would enter the straight behind someone, then lose sight of them along the straight (but knowing they were nearby), finally to "see" them by their tail lights in the braking zone down the other end! Along the straight, the water ran across the track right at the turning spot for the small kink in the "straight". Lots of squirreliness and spins there and everywhere — our brand new Toyos and careful right feet kept us out of trouble. Phew!

Armed with a fresh gearbox, a box of cannoli and a bottle of Limoncello (the latter two were our bribes to the Lemons Marshals), we embarked to a much cooler but dry (fortunately) NHMS track for the Hooptiefest. We grappled with some fueling reliability issues throughout the weekend, but overall the car ran great! The pumped up engine, Emerald engine management system and the Performatek Watts link rear suspension did the trick, enabling us to charge through the pack when we were out there, only to drop back each time the gremlins came back, bending and scrambling our electrons. We finished 55th out of 112 and completed 375 laps (that's 620 miles!). Our Alfa compatriots, Team Pro-Crash-Duh-Nation, fielding the venerable Milano "Angelina", finished one spot ahead of us, having completed 380 laps. The winners stayed out for 521 laps!

In keeping with their tradition, Team Pro-Crash-Duh-Nation hosted a paddock-wide pasta & meatball dinner with all the fixin's and wine on Saturday night that was enjoyed by hundreds. Great experience!Tiny Quadrifoglio


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24 Hours of Lemons