Rolls Report: Feb 20 & 21 – First Day of Spring Rolls

This past weekend marked the first rolls of the spring semester (the earliest start in a few years!). Thanks to last week’s ice storm, the City of Pittsburgh had excessively salted the roads. The extra seasoning coupled with dampness caused a late start on Saturday. After some vigorous sweeping the teams started off the semester quite smoothly with a comfortable weekend of rolls.

The much anticipated speed trap was set up just past the monument where it can be completely out of the way of traffic. Data is, of course, not particularly useful since first day hiccups are still being worked out and most buggies started out bagged. Importantly, the system got the live tests it needed so that its operators can begin to dial in the accuracy.

The most exciting non-buggy related event of the weekend occurred when an Uber driver blew through the bridge barricade. Although the police officer on duty attempted to stop him, the driver just raced past to the inner barricade outside of Phipps. Never before have we seen such a determined Uber driver nor such an embarrassed passenger.
On Saturday, a firetruck also pulled up to the outer barricade, but without an emergency on the other side, they were calmly directed the long way around.

In Attendance 

Org Saturday Sunday
CIA  Impulse, Orca, Icarus, Equinox Impulse, Orca, Icarus, Equinox
Fringe  Balius, Bissa, Beacon Balius, Bissa, Beacon
PhiDelt  Perun  Perun
PiKA  Banshee, Raptor Banshee, Raptor
SDC  Malice, Havoc, Bane, Avarice Malice, Havoc, Bane Avarice
Spirit  Inviscid, Zuke, Fuko, Seraph, King Pin Inviscid, Zuke, Fuko, Seraph, King Pin

Observations (Saturday Gallery | Sunday Gallery)

    • CIA – CIA was out in force and looking pretty good. They were organized and enthusiastic, which is expected coming off the finish they had last year. Equinox appears to be leading the pack for the team and, although it’s early, she looks like an A-team contender. 
    • Fringe – Fringe rolled out three buggies with a decent number of people to get them around the course. While the team is still a picture of smooth efficiency, they aren’t moving quite as fast as we would predict. Hopefully they will just be late bloomers in terms of speed. Word on the street is they recruited a huge underclassmen addition this year. This will definitely add some depth to their pusher pool, but with so many underclassmen, the veterans will have a lot of training to accomplish in the two short months left before Carnival.
    • PhiDelt -The slow and steady efforts of PhiDelt from last last semester is paying off. The team showed up with the Rubicon themed Perun and beat most veteran teams out to the course this semester. With a great effort by their pushers this weekend, it will be interesting to see how they stack up as the semester progresses.
    • PiKA – Pika was severely undermanned this weekend to the point of skipping back hills. The mechanics seem to be doing a lot of work, with Banshee sporting some new fairings looking very Ultimate Speed-esque. However, she was making some very loud and upsetting noises throughout Saturday morning, sounding almost like a race car. The team abandoned the fairings about half way through rolls, but it was difficult to tell if that helped or hurt their speed.
    • SDC – SDC looked like they usually do: highly ambitious. The team is already attempting pass tests and had a very near miss in the chute on one roll. Despite early-in-the-semester hiccups, getting those small things out of the way can be an excellent strategy because, as we all know, springtime weather in Pittsburgh is a fickle mistress.
    • Spirit -Spirit had a strong showing of pushers and mechanics, but had a couple inconsequential spins through the chute (likely due to damp roads), which slowed rolls for a bit. Each time, the following buggies made beautiful stops just before the monument. They may be going slow now, but stops like that are very encouraging that safety is being put at the forefront and progress is being made on improving techniques and handling.

Rolls Report Contributors:
Anthony P.
Ben M.