Pre-Race testing at Oulton Park04 Apr 2012
Overnight before the start of our third scheduled pre-season test, it snowed. Luckily the circuit received only a light dusting (though just 30 miles to the east, the motorway system was in chaos) and the test got under way at 9.05am as promised. However, with the air temperature at three degrees and the track temperature at freezing, I was in no rush to take the slick shod Golf out on the glistening Tarmac.
By the time of the next session, the air temp had risen to the giddy height of five and I buckled up. The next twenty minutes revealed firstly that with a rusty set of driving skills I am in real need of a long run on the track in order to come to terms with the car again and secondly that the frustrating “now you see it, now you don’t” power characteristics that blighted the Donington test were still with us.
The rest of the day was spent looking for faults in the engine that could explain why the car runs so well on the rolling road but not on the track; without success. Mid-afternoon the search was called off and a decision made to remove the engine from the car in order to fit a new turbocharger unit.
Without a guarantee that this last ditch measure will solve the issue, we enter the first race weekend on a wing and a prayer. After what has been the least successful pre-season preparation that I have endured, I will travel to the track early on Monday morning with little idea about the car’s capabilities ... or mine.