his week I got out on my first work trip, since probably August 2019. I started a new job last year, about a week after the world shut down for the pandemic, so work trips have been on hold for quite some time, that and the last employer stopped my travelling, so I hadn’t been on the road for work in quite some time. It was great to get out and meet some fellow employees and customers face to face.

Fortunately for me the trip was to Franklin, TN, which isn’t too far from Lynchburg, so I turned the work trip into a little fun too. Before heading down, I signed up for the Angel’s Share tour on Thursday morning. Wednesday after the work meetings were over I drove around Franklin TN a bit and did some whiskey hunting, checking out the local liquor stores to see what I could find. I ended up picking up a bottle of Wheeler’s Raid, which is a local whiskey out of Nolensville, TN I believe, on the recommendation of a coworker.

Two Years ago I was in Emporia Kansas for the Dirty Kanza, riding 100 miles on gravel for the first time. It wasn't easy, I was slow, and spent most of the second half helping a buddy get through the ride while he was having some serious cramping. Overall we had a great weekend of riding and I made it a point to try to get back. Last year things didn't go as planned, and I sure as heck wasn't trained and ready for a 200 mile bike ride if the event had occurred, but I was planning on 2021 being the year I rode 200 miles. Earlier this year I failed to start training/riding early, and ultimately spent about 2 months dealing with some heart issues that I wasn't planning on having to endure until much later in life.


So here we are, it’s 2021 already and you’ve hopefully started autocrossing again. We have had the car out to one two events so far.

The first event was back on April 11th, a few days before we started writing this post (and are just now getting around to finishing). Tom S is codriving with me at most events this year, not sure how many out of town events he will be at, or heck how many out of town events I will be at.

Event 1 So event one. The weekend before the event I decided it was time to take all the rest of the vinyl off (sponsor/series decals) and with that came a load of residue and blemishes in the paint from the removal. 2 days before the event I went down to Detail Garage in Valley Park to pick up some supplies. I grabbed a Torq random orbital buffer, along with a number of other supplies so that I could try my hand at paint correction. I spent Saturday before event one paint correcting the car (all but the back of the rear end). I must say, I was totally pleased with the results. You can see a before and after of the top of the trunk on our Instagram.


A post shared by SpecFRS (@specfrs)

After getting the polishing done and throwing some wax on the car, I swapped the wheels/tires out for the set of brand new Falken RT660s and packed the car up to be ready to head out early in the morning.

The event went well, though the car took some cone damage to the front end. I had removed the racer’s tape that had been holding some of it together, and failed to re-apply it after all the paint correction, I made sure to correct that a few days later. I ended up taking 1st in the class, and 2nd on PAX for the event. Tom was 3rd in PAX and we welcomed a newcomer to the St. Louis region, Juan, also in SSC, into the 7th place PAX spot. Juan is down near Springfield, MO and will be joining us for to liven up the competition this year.

It wasn’t as productive an event as I would have liked, I always prefer to walk away with a PAX win, but Greer in his GT3 put almost 3/4 of a second in PAX time on me for the day.

Here’s some side by side video of my fastest run (left) and Tom’s fastest run (right).

Event 2 Prep for Event 2 only consisted of swapping tires again and the previously mentioned tape work.

Overall the event was sloppy, I had a hard time keeping clean and coned my fastest run (first corner before the start lights). Tom ended up taking the win in SSC for the event. I’ll try to get around to videos for that, not sure when I will!

Autocross Settings from 2021 Event 1 & 2 (same as 2020):

Front Swaybar: Soft setting
Rear Swaybar: Stiff Setting
Front Konis: 0.5 turn from soft
Rear Konis: 1.5 turns from soft
Front Tire Pressure: 30 psi
Rear Tire Pressure: 29 psi

The 2021 Season is off to a great start here in St. Louis, with 150+ drivers at the first event. As we shoot additional events we'll add the slideshows to this page. Visit my photography blog to see some of the shots.



Chris Hammond

Chris Hammond is a father, husband, leader, developer, photographer and car guy. Chris has long specialized in ASP.NET and DotNetNuke (DNN) development, so you will find a variety of posts relating to those topics. For more information check out the about me page.

If you are looking for DotNetNuke consulting please visit my business website at https://www.christoc.com/

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