Here is a full recap on the 1st 1/4 of the season for Vibrant’s Chris Jeanneret. 1st, before you read, grab some popcorn! Now, as you may know the beginning of this season has not exactly been working in Chris’ favor, or has it? This guy is as tough as nails when it comes to his efforts, and his team is right there behind him, anticipating a new set of challenges with each round. You could not be in the pits with a nicer, more determined guy.
Round 1: Long Beach.
Due to some last minute problems, and without the time to tune Chris was forced to miss out on Round 1. This can happen to any program, but especially one with such a small crew. Still, the fans got a great chance to interact with Chris, and got the chance to see the car up close and personal. Here is the initial shoot of the car at Long Beach, thanks to What Monsters Do. Back to SpeedFactory for more tuning and a small batch of pieces left to modify.
Round 2: ATL.
Road Atlanta- 3,000 miles away from the last appearance of Chris and team, the fans are in massive crowds and the clouds are heavy. FD ATL is one of the one places we can all look at as the Mecca of FD on US soil. You will get arguments as vast as the internet goes wide on where the fans love FD the most, but ATL stands tall every year for all of the teams who come to slide in at 100mph or more. The track is awesome, and you even have those crazy backwards entries….
Chris and Team got the car running and somewhat dialed in, the weekend looked to be great for us because it would be the 1st time fans got to see the Vibrant S2000 in competition, and what a better stage to do it on? A packed house on a fast track. Ultimately, Chris broke an input shaft during a warm up ending his run here. By the time we were able to source another unit, qualifying was over. So, we had to sit in the pits during another round of Formula Drift. Instead of sitting there in defeat, Jeanneret was out making sure fans got the best from him and his sponsors; answering all questions and interacting with as many fans as possible.
“Fall but never stay down”
Now back to Round 3; Miami.
This place was HOT, and not just dry heat. It felt like we took a shower 5 minutes after walking from our hotel entrance in the early morning. Back to track business, as we went into the weekend with a different turbocharger, we made sure we had working nitrous controls, and put the Garrett GTX4088r to use with the K24, and a healthy shot of nitrous to make sure that this car properly produced the 800hp efficiently. Going in, the car seemed to still have gremlins and a few cobwebs still in the mix which kept us from later rounds of practice. We broke the car down, replacing all sensors and checking wiring and logs. We worked well into the evening until track security gave us the boot like we were kids in a parking lot on a weekend night.
We came back to the car 1st thing in the morning, with a freshly-filled bottle of nitrous ready for more practice rounds prior to qualifying. We still had issues, but Chris was making progress and getting more comfortable with the car, which showed us he was working through any issues that may be in the combo. The seat time, although Chris was not able to qualify for the top 32, was highly valuable for the program and we are confident that we will see these woes start to disappear in future rounds of competition.
Chris left FDMIA with this to say-
“We learned a lot this weekend with the Vibrant Performance s2k. The car is so close to being where we want it to be and the track was perfect for our car demanding huge power and grip. We felt very comfortable with the track right from the get go. Although we didn’t qualify this weekend, we met some amazing fans and valuable seat time and data was gained. I can’t wait to drive this car again I’m fiending already!”
Thing is, sometimes it is forgotten that in a newly built race program problems can always arise. Engine problems, electrical woes, and suspension nightmares have held out some of the biggest and highest dollar teams from Nascar to F1. Things happen, especially in racing. As we experienced with Cody Loveland at Pikes Peak, brakes and mechanical failures can hold out the best teams at any time.