In the last instalment, I’d just fitted a non-Cossie power steering rack which had massively improved the car’s steering lock with zero downsides. Plus, I’d also got a bit carried away in a burnout competition at Driftland to the extent that I needed to source a new door strip and get both rear quarters painted! Cosmetics weren’t the only victim of Driftland though, as on my travels after that day the power steering pump made a bid for freedom and vibrated itself so loose that a pipe cracked. Messy and inconvenient, but with it disconnected I still made it home.
The weird thing, though, was I noticed the dreadful self centering which had always plagued this car (and led me to upgrade so many parts!) was actually miles better with the PAS pump disconnected! It was hard to get a proper assessment of the situation at this point but all became clear when back at MJ Racing. Although it had always functioned, the PAS pump was actually overly stiff and slowing the steering hugely, hence the dreadful self centering effect. A used replacement pump was quickly fitted and the results were amazing! No more binding of the steering over half a turn of lock when self-centering, and therefore no reason to be spinning out on anything but the mildest angled drifts like I had become accustomed too! To find out that the steering issues were simply down to such a simple flaw after 6 years of battling the car was both frustrating and a massive relief!
With this in the bag I promptly went drift mental! Soon after a day at Crail with fellow Saph skidder Rexi was booked. I gave her some tuition during her first time taking to the track with Zetec turbo power to play with. Plus of course I had to rip through a few sets of tyres myself in the Cossie. Actually, having some decent steering mixed with ALS and 460bhp at a track I’m used to thrashing a shonky old BMW around was quite a revelation!
Next up was drifting on another level. Yes, the Fastest Fords session at Ford Fair! Keep away from the other cars, and everyone loves seeing a Saph getting flicked and kicked into the complex with a nice trail of smoke being laid down. I was probably enjoying it a bit too much though. Anti-lag has always got the temps a bit too high on my car with the turbo still being water cooled, and I went against everything I knew as the gauge climbed I just stayed out on track putting on a show, limiter bashing on lock all the way round the complex several times! No prized for what happened next, yep, the head gasket popped! That’ll be one Cossie sent home on a flatbed and me and Trace completing the ‘drive of shame’ back to Scotland in a rental Kia Careens. Dismal!
MJ Racing – www.facebook.com/MJracing.bhp