Last day of the competition, on which a 22-km endurance race was to take place.
Cars took their places in queue according to yesterday autocross results — the first were the slowest. So we got in the middle, what gave us time to inspect the car and prepare to enter the track. The team had high hopes for the upcoming race, hoping to be in the first half of the results table again. When it was our turn, several team memebers drove the car to the track, where tanking tooke place, and rest of the team went to the terraces, where a good view was opening up. A few cars were on the track at the same time, and overtaking was allowed only in special areas, so the race was not for the position, but for the time.
It was the turn of our car to go to the track. The first lap was performed at a decent pace, but on the last meters of the lap our car didn’t fit into a sharp turn and went off the path, after which the judges had to bring it back on track. Our car passed almost full lap and once again failed to pass the last turn, nuzzle into the cones. This time the judges didn’t bring it back on the track, and rolled car away. Further, for most of the team being on the terrace followed a few unpleasant minutes of waiting that culminated in the news that we have been withdrawn from the race. So the final race ended for us after two laps. Later there were many arguments about whether it is possible to pass this turn, if the pilot chose a wider trajectory, or we did not have much steering angle and whether it was possible to try to pass this turn while drifting. But a detailed analysis of errors was wainting us at camp.
It appeared this turn was the problem not only for us. Originally it was made so steep that none of the first cars could pass it. Whereafter the judges had decided to restart the race and widen the turn. After the widening there were only a few teams having difficulties and we were one of them.
Discarding sad thoughts, our team once again assessed our debut performance on the Italian 2013 stage. Naturally, we planed to raise the bar set by Russian teams in previous years, which was to pass the technical inspection. By reaching the final race and autocross we have surpassed this level and thus exceeded the plan.
From the very begining we chose a very difficult project for the first year. First among Russian teams we started equipping the engine compressor. Which, despite some increase in vehicle weight and complexity of the intake manifold, gave us a capacity increase allowing to achieve significant results in autocross. Also our team took up the implementation of technical solutions, for which many teams go for several years — use of carbon fiber suspension arms made by unique technology, so our car equipped with a compressor weighed less than many cars not equipped with it. Until the last days before leaving the team could not be sure in managing all our plans. But now, back home, we have passed stage and in front of us — the car with a huge, yet unrealized potential.
Well, the remaining part of the last day took place in packing, because it was necessary to clear the box and prepare the car for transportation. At the evening on the track closing ceremony, where all teams received a certificate of participation in the stage, took place. All the podium was occupied by German-speaking teams.
At the camp of each team, regardless of their results, was their local celebration, which then gradually turned into one big international party, accompanied by mutual congratulations and exchanging team t-shirts.
The next morning we raised our camp and got away for road back home.