I would like to start off this post with a HUGE thank you to Don and Dustin Avondett for having an engine diaper on their car at last Saturdays All Parts Auto Salvage Bracket Series Race! There is not a worse feeling in the world as a track crew than to see that huge cloud of death when an engine comes apart at the finish line. As a crew, you just pray, please God don't let it oil the tires, please keep it off the guard rails, and please let the driver get it stopped. As a general rule, usually we are very fortunate and the drivers keep enough control to stop safely. Everyone at that time can sigh and say, "WHEW, WE DODGED THAT ONE!!
THEN, we can start looking for the water and the oil, which is usually sprayed everywhere at least 600-700 feet or more down track and begin to figure out the best way to clean it up. NO ONE likes the down time of AT LEAST an hour and the race track doesn't like the cost of clean up which is pretty expensive as well. Anyone who has been or still is in business for themselves in our economy today, understands that extra cost has to be eliminated from the picture. In today's marketplace, if you don't run lean and mean, you are probably out of business. This is all beyond the safety factor here.....None of this is as important as one of you guys......Ask Don and Dustin!
Most of you are already very aware that all shootout cars have diapers or catch pans on them. This is mandatory for all heads up classes at ORP. It is currently "highly recommended" for bracket cars to have an engine diaper for oil containment. This has been in our rule set since 1/18/12. Since last Saturday I have been looking at web sites for other tracks and many are starting to implement mandatory oil containment for bracket cars in 2015. As you work on your car this season and into the off season later this year....think about it!
NOW, the rest of the story! Dustin is fine, their car is fine, but their engine, well, not so much! I knew it was badly blown up and had holes in the pan, when I saw the huge smoke cloud as well as when we started to find large pieces of block, connecting rod, and rod caps on the track! After hearing the call that the car was stopped and off the track, the crew immediately started to look where the clean up would start and end, only to find THERE WAS NO OIL OR WATER ON THE TRACK! The 2nd radio call was "ITS IN A BAG"....We rode the track for parts and racing resumed in 15 minutes or less. Again, thank you to Don and Dustin!! Again....Think about it!! AL