Curborough Sprint Day June 2016
A sprint day at Curborough was the Peugeot 306’s first outing being driven in any sort of anger since having a rebuilt rear axle with thicker torsion bars fitted on new mounts, a strut brace and brand new Yokohama AD08R tyres fitted, plus it was only the second time it had been on a closed course, with the first being 4 runs of Prescott Hillclimb a year before. Suffice to say this sprint day was effectively a shakedown of the car!
Unfortunately, having removed the Uniroyal Rainsport 3s, there was torrential rain during the trip to the circuit, with more light rain shortly after arrival. This meant that for quite a lot of the morning the car was sliding around all over the place and not going very quickly at all on the cold Yokohama AD08Rs on soaking wet tarmac, with various types of tarmac with varying levels of grip thrown into the mix as well.
Fortunately, towards the middle of the day the track dried up, and the rather confusing layout was becoming clearer. The times were becoming quicker pretty much every lap in the car.
The car felt quite simply excellent. The Yokohama AD06Rs are a good tyre for sprints as they grip well even without much heat in them in the dry, and they felt very linear and predictable. The new rear beam, fitted with new mounts felt great, with the back end oversteering controllably pretty much when this was required rather than catching the driver by surprise.
All of this enjoyment came at a price however, as the oil temperatures were getting extremely high even after just one run. Also, as the day moved into the afternoon, the car started getting louder and rougher sounding. This was because the outlet pipe on the catalyst had split again where it had been welded. This was a bit of a setback, especially as the sun had come out and the tarmac was beginning to warm up, and more importantly the times were still getting much quicker every lap. It was decided to call it a day and go home as the exhaust to splitting completely before the drive back would have been undesirable, and because it was getting a bit frustrating waiting for the oil to cool for a long time between runs.
Since doing this sprint day a little while ago a 12″ SPAL pull fan has been ordered to go on the back of the radiator, just awaiting a fitting kit now. This will allow the fitment of a twin oil cooler setup. A replacement catalyst is also being modified to include a flexi in order to prevent cracking in the future.
Overall, it was a fantastic day given that it was essentially a shakedown for the car after having a new rear beam fitted with new mounts, a new set of tyres, and it being the first time it had been driven in anger at all other than 4 runs at Pugfest last year.