March 29th, 2009, Redline Time Attack: In his Modified Class debut, Ryan Gates and the Gates311.com/AMS Performance/Nitto Tires Evo X win the Modified AWD Class and the Overall Modified Class Championship at the Season Opener for Redline Time Attack! at Buttonwillow Raceway!

Thanks to all the sponsors of the car, I appreciate all of your support and commitment:

  • AMS Performance – I appreciate your continued support, you’ve done wonders for the car…thanks again for all the awesome parts and car setup!
  • Nitto Tires – Thanks for providing some of the best tires available to our team, they are key to the success of the car.
  • JRZ Suspension – These shocks are awesome, and Bryan from JRZ helped make them perform flawlessly. Great service and great setup, thanks!
  • K&N Filters – Thanks for providing great filters (Air and Oil) to the car, they help keep the car running fresh!
  • Seibon Carbon – The carbon hood, trunk, and doors that Seibon provided were HUGE in helping the car lose weight, thanks!
  • Girodisc – The two-piece rotors on all 4 corners held up perfectly all weekend, staying cool was not an issue. Thanks!
  • Forced Performance – The FP Red on the car performed flawlessly once again. Providing all the power I could ask for, thanks!
  • Carbonetic – The Triple carbon clutch is gonna be awesome, thanks!
  • Etnies – Thanks for the sick shoes and the awesome apparel. It’s nice to always have fresh footwear and clothing for myself and the crew!
  • Double Down Motorsports – Thanks for your support, it’s much appreciated and your fast service can’t be beat!
  • Darkside Engineering – The Ti lugs have held up awesome, and they look sick…thanks guys!

__________________

Story of the weekend:

The season opener for Redline Time Attack! was this past weekend at Buttonwillow….and I think I speak for most of the teams when I say it was quite eventful! It was fun to see everyone out at the track, congrats to all that competed.

My weekend was pretty rough, filled with plenty of issues and a lack of sunscreen haha. After I made the 29hr drive to CA from AMS in Chicago I was kinda beat, but I had to get the car ready for testing on Thursday morning. Once out at Buttonwillow, I met up with Bryan from JRZ Suspension to do some initial testing and setup on my new JRZ Race Triples. The first session out I was shocked to see how well they rode on the base setup that Justin @ AMS had dialed into the car. I came in and Bryan made some minor adjustments and I headed out for more laps. After just a few laps the car went into limp mode and I had to pull in and reset the ECU. Anyone with an Evo X that makes crazy power and tracks their car knows about the issues that can happen on track… Anyways, we kept dialing the car in throughout the day while trying to figure out a solution for the ECU issue. Chris @ AMS was awesome and tried to diagnose the problem even though he was at the airport haha, thanks man!

Friday was a Speed Ventures track day, just an HPDE that I used to dial the car in some more. Bryan and I worked together and got things working awesome. I still fought the ECU issue all day, so unfortunately I didn’t get much track time. Beyond that, my front bumper is beat up really bad and wouldn’t stay on the car at all. After 34 different zipties, we still couldn’t get it to stay up perfectly…ohhhh well.

Saturday was Redline practice, most of the cars had shown up by now and it was cool to see everyone again. For most of the day, my car ran AWESOME! No issues with the ECU and Limp mode and I had given up on the bumper. I was running some pretty quick times and I was really excited for Sunday because I knew everyone would be a bit surprised (didn’t run a transponder haha). The last session of the day sucked…limp mode and loose/stripped bolts on the manifold to the turbo. I did what I could with the turbo before heading back to the hotel for the night, but they were pretty far gone and couldn’t get very tight.

Sunday morning’s practice sessions sucked for me once again, limp mode right away in both sessions, and the bolts on the turbo kept backing out. The car wouldn’t hold as much boost (25ish psi vs. 35psi normal) and took forever to spool up because of the leaks. The ECU was really sensitive for some reason and I figured it would be best to just turn the boost down to 20psi and pray for no limp mode in the T/A sessions. First T/A session, the car hit limp mode on the warm up lap thank god. I was able to clear it and get two hot laps in, one of them being good enough put me in the lead for Mod AWD and overall Mod Class. The last T/A session was trouble free for the most part, but the car was down on power and the track had really gone away from the other cars dragging a ton of dust on the track, oh and the 500mph winds. Evasive got their car running and was on a mission to run a fast lap, but the wind took out their spoiler and Tim spun out. I was bummed to see that because they are such great guys and I love the competition…ohhh well. Anyway, I went a little faster and with that I secured Mod AWD and the Overall for Modified Class

There are plenty of other issues with the car, but I’m over it and I know that the car will only get better once we get everything setup right and working perfect again. I’m looking forward to getting some Aero on the car, getting the Rollbar finished and finally painting the interior to finish the car. That should be soon so look for an update soon. And to anyone that saw the car at the track, sorry it was so hacked up, usually it’s perfect and all…ohhh well.

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