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Jun 11, 2014 - 06:22 AM
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Tough Break Under Braking For Vance At Kansas
Posted by: newsla on Jun 11, 2014 - 06:20 AM
Sports Cars
Tough Break Under Braking For Vance At Kansas

After producing his season-best qualifying effort of 12th, James Vance's night ended early June 7 at Kansas Speedway during Round 5 of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge series in his No. 74 Bionic Environments/ExpoSystems USA Honda Civic Si.


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Vance was entering the hairpin Turn 4 in the infield when his brake pedal froze. The Antilock Brake System (ABS) entered "ice mode," in which the system only applies 25 percent of available braking. The ABS correctly read the car's traction situation, but the selected mode wasn't suitable for racing.

Entering just his third race in the Honda Civic Si fielded by Compass360 Racing, Vance is still learning how the car reacts in different situations.

"That was not a representation of how I race," Vance said. "When the brakes went into ice mode, I thought the brakes were failing, which is why I reacted as if they were. I never had experienced that feature in a race setting. So I made the decision to go around the Berg Cayman and try to fit between a gap between them and Autometrics. The gap closed; I did what I could do to try to not hit anyone.

"From there I hit the curb, which was thick. The damage caused the motor to spill oil and blow up after the contact. So that ended our day. It was unfortunate and unintentional. It was unfair what happened to those I involved in the incident. It was the circumstances I was dealt, and I tried to handle them accordingly. What can I say? I'm truly sorry.

"I am incredibly grateful to be a part of this team. Everyone at C360 has been so helpful, the way they support me and have worked with me. They have let me into their family, and I appreciate the strong bonds we have quickly formed. I think that's what makes this team so special."

The No. 74 Honda Civic Si is part of the Street Tuner (ST) class. This class takes vehicles designed for street use and pushes them through the intense conditions of racing. Manufacturers, like Honda, use the data collected from drivers like Vance to then increase their passenger cars' performance and durability.

ST teams are allowed to make minimal modifications to the vehicles, per IMSA rules. Drivers are faced with the challenges of learning to handle vehicles made from production-based parts and features.

Prior to the incident, Vance had maneuvered his No. 74 Honda Civic Si from his 12th place starting position to sixth. Then he settled into the seventh position as he prepared to fight toward the front.

Vance will take this new knowledge and apply it at his next race venue, Watkins Glen International. His weekend begins at 2:20 p.m. (ET) Thursday, June 26 with the first practice session of the weekend. The green flag drops on Round 6 of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge at 11:35 a.m. Saturday, June 28.

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