Nevada Open Road Challenge
1990 928 S4

May 13-15, 2016

Open Road Rally
Ely, Nevada

Bill and I were in Ely for the Nevada Open Road Challenge ORR last weekend. I was pretty bummed that we missed the Big Bend ORR last month, so I was glad we could get the car ready for this event. Tim and Todd took care of my supercharger. It turned out to be the input shaft bearing. I had some heavy duty steel bearings put in 5 years ago. This time they put in a different type of bearing, so I hope it lasts longer.

The Old Bearing:

The supercharger arrive on Friday (5/8), so Bill and I installed the supercharger on Saturday. We also pulled the passenger side headlight to allow more air to get to the intercooler heat exchanger. I had a problem with the water boiling out at the last SSCC ORR, so I wanted to try and address this. I had already added an addition intake and exit vent in the fender, but found the headlight, when down, was blocking the air path.

Removed headlight and cover framing:

Cover installed:

When I get some more time, I'll try and mount some HID projection lights like Porken did a few years ago, in the mean time I replaced the aux bright lights (next to the fog lights), with HIDs and replaced the fog light relay with a 53 type so the fogs and bright can be on at the same time. I don't have to worry about the ac condensor since I don't have one, or a headlight motor...

We arrived in Ely on Thursday evening, and went for a test/tune drive on Friday morning. We only did one run and Bill said it was good to go (better then any other time we've done this). When we got back to town, we registered for the event and started prepping for the Tech inspection (getting all the not needed stuff out of the car, putting on the decals, mounting all the cameras, and getting all the driver's gear together). When we finished, it was too late to make it to Tech (they close at noon), so we went first thing Saturday. The organization had banned methanol/water injection last year. I had changed the jetting to just run water, but a couple of weeks before the race, they also said they would not allow water injection. This contribitued to my overheating issues last year. This year they were going to allow water injection, if they could confirm that I was not adding methanol. So we brought 5 gallons of unopened distilled water with us to Tech. They watched me pour it into the tank, then "sealed" it with tamper proof tape. After Tech and the car show we went back to the motel and installed the air dam, removed the mirrors and windshield wiper, and taped up the hood and lights.

As you can see, the Cayenne made it trip again, without incident.

While at the Welcome dinner, it seemed noone else was running in the 170 or 180 classes. All the usual competitors were running in 160 or less due to some kind of car issue or had bumped up to Unlimited. This meant I just had to just finish (and not DQ) to win the class. Not to say I don't want the challenge, but this gave me the opportunity to try out a few things on the course and not worry so much about my average.

Sunday was race day. We arrived earlier then in the past, since the race officials had been getting all the other classes out faster. When we got there at 8:45 AM, there were only a few cars left.

The Lambo was one of the 160 class cars.

Here's Bill with the 928 and the tow vehicle:

We topped off the fuel, checked the tire pressure and lug nuts (was it 95 ft-lbs or 90?) Also arrmed the fire suppression systems (almost forgot). I was using a new head and neck restraint system, so that was something different for Bill to deal with. Also I got a couple of new video cameras. I had been running 3 cameras before, but there was always some issue with one or more of them. I figured running 4 I had a better chance of getting some good footage. As it turned out, only 2 got any video, and one of those ran out of battery before the finish of the race... I'll try and post the video later, after I've had a chance to finish "assembling" it. I did get some good data on the LM-1, so I'll try and overlay that also.

This is from both cameras at the start line. I might crop the instrument view a little, so the numbers are more legible.

The race plan was to run 170 class, but add some speed where it felt comfortable and see if the car could handle it and if the engine could dissipate the heat. Once I started the race, it noticed right away that I couldn't focus on the GPS units. I have new progressive lens glasses, and the transition seems to be right where I need to see the GPSs. This meant I had to tilt my head far forward (like a near sighted librarian) to see them. This made it difficult to see the road and the instruments at the same time. Not the optimum way to drive fast... The second thing I noticed was when going faster then my usual 185 mph cruising speed, the 10-13 mph crosswind was moving the car around a lot more then I was use to. This also added to the challenge (who needs more competition when you've got to deal with nature). I was able to gain some time (speed) anyway, just had to be more cautious about the road conditions. This is where I was glad I decided that I didn't run in 180 class. If I had, I would have pushed it a lot harder to get closer to the target speed.

Here is a screen shot from the speed trap (~45 miles in) with both overlays:

This was the 5th race I was able to get over 200 mph. After the speed trap, I had to slow down to let the engine temps cool down. It didn't get the radiator water temps into the red, but they did get into the white bar area. Also the oil temp was at 260 degrees, the trans temp got to 220 and the intercooler water was at 200 degree.

After the Narrows (70 miles in), my average was over 171 mph. This would be where I would slow down to get my average, but I wanted to run it at pre-speed trap speeds (185-190 mph). As I rounded the last turn and headed into the final 5 mile straight I decided to run the speed up higher.

Here is a screen shot from crossing the finish line:

Just the instrument camera, as the forward camera had a dead battery.

So I had a good run, finished first (and last) in my class and got an official 172.4058 mph average with an offical 201.4 mph at the speed trap and a "unoffically confirmed by the finish line radar" 200+ at the finish. This is the fastest average of any 928 in Open Road Racing, at least that I can find. Results from before 1997 are hard to find on the internet.

The car at the finish pits cooling down.


The Speed Trap

I got up to 209 early in the straightaway, but the temps were worrying me, so I backed off until the markers. I was able to get up to 207 on the GPS again, but they only picked me up at 201.4 mph.

The Finish

928 Results
Class	Driver		Avg Speed	Place	Trap Speed

170	George		172.4085	1st	201.4 mph

Thanks to Bill for all the help getting the car together and for helping at the race. Also to Tim and Todd for getting the supercharger fixed and returned in time for the event.

Photo Gallery Complete Results

Next Race

Back to My 928 Home Page

Contact me at:

Copyright 2016, George A Suennen