This past weekend we had our last regular day of rolls before Truck Weekend. That means Carnival is just a little more than a week away! Have you registered for things? More importantly are you a member of the BAA? If you want to receive the Raceday Preview, donate $10 to the BAA and become a member!
9 teams and 22 buggies were able to roll only on Saturday because Pittsburgh missed the memo about it being April, and snow again thwarted Sunday rolls. We are happy to report that there were no spins or unexpected stops on Saturday, which bodes well for safety on Raceday. There was one unexpected event when two fire trucks entered the course to investigate an alarm in/near Scaife Hall. They only hung around for 15 minutes before it was decided that there wasn’t actually a fire. All-in-all it was a fairly quiet day of rolls. Our alumni were out and taking timing data again this weekend. Tomorrow we will be able to post those speeds.
Some of the biggest news, that many have already heard, is that a new team has joined the buggy ranks. After having yet another alcohol incident at their house, the All Greek Community Standards Board (AGCSB) ruled that PiKA may not participate in buggy this year. As far as we understand the ruling, the punishment was restricted to buggy and the frat is allowed to join in other campus activities. After appealing to that board with Sweepstakes and some others, it was decided that Fishing Club, which includes several PiKA brothers, may participate in Raceday. The majority of the new team is not allowed to be PiKA brothers and the drivers must qualify as if they had not previously rolled this year, including capes and pass tests. From what we understand, rolls from the weekend of March 26 are going to count towards their qualification.
|CIA||Tempest, Icarus, Equinox, Impulse|
|Fringe||Bolt, Beacon, Bissa|
|SDC||Malice, Havoc, Avarice, Bane|
|Spirit||Inviscid, Fuko, Seraph, Zuke|
Observations (Saturday Gallery |
- AEPi – Kamikaze was out and rolling this Saturday trying to get in those last few rolls to qualify the team’s second driver for Raceday. This was very much a rebuilding year for AEPi, and while they were unable to get a new buggy rolling this spring, they made good strides and have built up some foundational knowledge. Kamikaze is certainly not among the fastest buggies on the course, but we did see smooth and consistent chute turns.
- Apex – Mostly rolling Phoenix this weekend, Apex is making a final push to get all 3 of their drivers qualified for Raceday. We saw a brief appearance of Ember for what appeared to be pass test purposes only. Phoenix wasn’t breaking any speed records, but was executing solid clean lines through the chute. Here’s to hoping they find some more speed during truck weekend.
- CIA – CIA was clearly working on their Hill 3 pickups this week. Both Icarus and Equinox were regularly getting rollouts to the fire plug, but don’t seem to have reliable strategy for transitioning to pusher power. Impulse wasn’t getting quite as impressive rollouts, but the Hill 3 pushers had an easier time taking over. Tempest, the newest member of the CIA fleet, is starting to pick up some speed and was making to the emergency phone box midway up Hill 3. The team remains among the top 5 in Freeroll speeds, but is one of the few that retains that speed through the chute. With just one weekend left, CIA will likely be focusing on perfecting their Hill 2 send offs and Hill 3 pickups.
- Fringe – Fringe continues to have one of the best overall performances for rolls. The team again was among the top 5 in terms of Freeroll speeds, scrubbed little speed through the chute, consistently has great lines, and the Hill 3 pushers are managing smooth pickups. Bissa was getting great rollouts up to the fire plug, Bolt was making it to the emergency phone, and Beacon was coming in third amongst the team for rollouts. The only thing that wasn’t particularly smooth for Fringe on Saturday was that during one roll the tape holding Bolt’s fairing came loose and it dragged on the pavement throughout the roll. It was promptly secured. At this stage in the game, Fringe is looking extremely competitive and just needs to keep doing what their doing, but faster.
- PhiDelt -Perun had a relatively uneventful day of rolls, completing clean chute lines and working on picking up some more speed. She did lose a rear hatch on one roll, but that issue was quickly resolved. The PhiDelt pushers might be a little optimistic about Perun’s rollouts, as they kept trying to pick her up midway on Hill 3, and ended up running down hill to meet her. The team has come along very well this year and their hard work is taking tangible shape.
- PiKA Fishing Club – Fishing Club was out and rolling with Raptor (borrowed from PiKA) this Saturday. At the moment both drivers and both Raptor and RD16 need pass tests to qualify for Raceday. The team change hasn’t slowed down Raptor, and she continues to dominate in the Freeroll. While she loses some speed through the chute, she is still one of the fastest buggies hitting Hill 3, and is getting rollouts to the bike rack in front of Porter. Equally as impressive was the woman who was iron-manning some beastly Hill 1 & 2 combos. Given the restrictions on how many PiKA brothers can be on any given push team, it seems that the only thing holding back Fishing Club will be their back hill performance. Next week should be very telling. Despite how much promise the team is showing with only 2 weekends of rolls under their belts, we wonder if the team will be able to come to the day 2 of Raceday. Opening day of PA trout season is Saturday April 16th.
- SDC – SDC also had a stellar day of rolls. As per usual, they were one of the top 5 fastest teams rolling and were scrubbing little speed through the chute. All 4 buggies were getting great rollouts ranging between the emergency phone and the fire plug on Hill 3. Most of the SDC drivers continue to take a tight line into the chute, but go quite wide once within the hay bales. This had previously been thought to be an old habit to avoid a now-paved pothole, but may have more to do with shedding enough speed to maintain control of the buggy during the turn. Regardless, SDC is a force to be reckoned with on the course and will be amongst the top contenders come Raceday.
- SigEp –
KraitKraken and Pandora were both out and rolling this weekend. Pandora is as loud as ever with one alum in the chute likening her to a B17 bomber. While SigEp hasn’t been looking so fast, we know from previous years that something magical arrives (wheels) for them on truck weekend and we can expect to see an explosive speed boost from them.
- Spirit – Spirit has really bloomed this spring and had some of the fastest Freeroll times and best Hill 3 rollouts of the day. It seems that the drivers are still trying to nail down their final chute lines as there was a fair amount of within and between buggy variability. Whatever they are doing, it kept them spin-free this weekend. Inviscid was getting some truly great rollouts (at leats to the fire plug) only to be met with lack luster pickups. The Hill 3 pushers were diligent though and by the end of rolls the pickup/transition was going much smoother. Assuming their pushers are anywhere near the caliber of years past, Spirit is going to be a top contender this Raceday.
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