Well … it was a crazy week/weekend for the NOS Energy Drink hill climb team, powered by AMS Performance. The first race of the season always presents unique challenges, and 2010 was to be no exception.

Dave headed out to CORE early Friday morning for a shakedown before we headed off for our first hillclimb of the season. A few good laps proved that the improvements made in the off season were well worth it, but suddenly the clutch pedal stopped working and the car was loaded back on the trailer via the “ratchet strap of shame” method.

He towed it over to Tobz Performance where they tore into the car minutes after arrival. Knowing the clutch hydraulics weren’t holding fluid, Tobz & crew had to remove the transmission to determine the root cause of the problem. Once the culprit was discovered we contacted AMS Performance for guidance. They quickly (and I do mean quick … these guys are awesome) gathered the necessary parts to repair the car and over-nighted them from Chicago to Tobz’s shop. Saturday (which under normal circumstances would be a practice day down in Canon City) the parts were installed, car put back together and we were off to CORE for another, hopefully uneventful, shakedown. We made a few handling adjustments out at CORE, but otherwise she was ready for competition. We mounted some fresh tires and headed home.

Sunday morning (Race Day) we got up at about 5am to head down to Canon City. Our best time last year was a 3:19. On our first run, with no practice, we ran a 3:23, securing 2nd place. Our goal for 2nd and final run was to try to beat last year’s time. We blasted up the hill to a 3:16.22, 3/100ths short of the Rally AWD record! Bummer to be so close to that record and not grab it, but that 3:16 was enough to take first place in the Rally AWD class, making the weekend’s drama well worth it. We’d be remiss not to mention that Nate and Brandye Conley were also driving the wheels off their STi and took second place a mere 7/10ths back.

Many, many thanks to Rich & Eric at AMS Performance for the after hours assistance. We wouldn’t have gotten back on the road if it weren’t for them. Special thanks to Tobz Performance for fitting us in their busy schedule. Next race is CORE out in Deer Trail June 5th and 6th. We won overall last time we were at CORE and we’re looking forward to defending. And be sure to mark your calendar now for the Pikes Peak International Hillclimb on June 27th.

We’d also like to give a shout out to our 2010 sponsors:

  • NOS Energy Drink
  • AMS Performance
  • Built-By-Bones & SCR Performance
  • CBRD Speedfactory
  • Forced Performance Turbochargers
  • ShepTrans
  • TiAL Sport

Thanks for reading, and stay tuned for videos!

Allison & Dave Kern

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