One year during the 25 Hours Of Thunderhill for us California boys it was cold as hell and keeping my gloves and racing shoes dry was a must. It was only 30 degrees but the wind was terrible, blowing sideways and never letting up as the rain began to turn into sleet and snow. Of course we can’t have any type of heaters but we can have lights and anyone who has used halogen lamps know they get pretty hot.
Daybreak came bright and sunny today at the 25 Hours of Thunderhill following a very cold night. At least it wasn’t raining, which means that the folks at Head-On Photos were able to grab some incredible photos of overnight and early morning action.
Another huge gallery after the break.
The 25 Hours of Thunderhill has been an interesting event over the years in that the occasional full on pro team show up with a beast of a machine that some expect to sweep the race. This doesn’t always happen though, as the big guns are usually there to test a new package and make sure they’ve got the bugs worked out before their next season. That would seem to be the case with the BMC Tool Racing team.
After the break, we have a 6 hour video report from BMC Tool Racing in which they describe some of the problems they’ve had, including tire usage and trying to make a loud car quiet. Currently, they are sitting way back in 54th overall. I would hate to be a production based car that is ahead of them on the road! Watch your mirrors boys & girls!
As I mentioned, the BIGGSB Racing Subaru have had some challenges at the 25 Hours of Thunderhill. Twitter user @kplaird has shared a bunch of photos of the rather forlorn looking WRX sporting numerous wounds. The fuel cell is bent, and the hood is sporting some creative new coloring thanks to a leaky turbo oil line leak. I’m not sure what the deal is with the garbage bag over the fuel filler.
Anyone who has ever spectated, worked, crewed or raced at a round the clock endurance race will tell you that the energy throughout the weekend is unlike anything you will ever experience anywhere else. For those who have crewed or raced, it might just be the toughest thing you will ever do and you will certainly tell the story for the rest of your life.
Donny Edwards has turned the experience up a notch by running the race solo. They call it Ironman. As I’m writing this, Donny is just a few minutes away from 22 hours, making him officially the new NASA Ironman!
Not that it has all been smooth sailing, as the team has had their challenges through the night. First a leaky fuel jug made for a long pit stop, then later on there was a 5 minute penalty resulting from that leak. As often happens, pit reports are becoming interesting as the hours wind on. Donny stopped for a 1/2 hour massage, while Will Faules kept his balls warm with hot chocolate.
Not all teams have had it so easy. Early on, there was a 4 lap full course caution while a Mazda that crashed & burned was cleaned up, the BIGGSB Racing Subaru has burnt the paint off the hood thanks to an oil leak and while I haven’t heard details yet, there are many on the trailer.
Between Will and the NASA live chat, I’ll try to keep our readers in the loop for the final 3 hours of the race. For now, you’ll have to check out the giant gallery of images from the first hours of the race yesterday courtesy of official NASA photographers Head-On Photos.
The longest race in the world.
The 25 Hours of Thunderhill is the longest race in the world by 1 full hour. sure, the guys and girls go for 24 at Le Mans and Daytona, but there is only one 25 hour race. Endurance racing history is full of tales of heroic drives and teamwork, but the really hard core guys, the ones all the others remember are the
nut jobs truly tough individuals who have completed a race around the clock driving solo.
How does one sit that long without peeing?
At the end of this weekend, Donny Edwards hopes to be able to answer that question. Donny is planning to run the 2009 25 Hours all by his lonesome in the very competitive E2 class in his Brimstone Dynasty Spec E30 BMW. Just to clarify this, the race starts at 11 am this Saturday and runs all night, finishing up at noon on Sunday. Most teams will cycle between 5 or 6 drivers to keep everyone fresh. Just in case, there is a back up plan and thats where The Garage comes in.