Carbon Monoxide Safety Alert

This weekend we raced in the inaugural WRL endurance race at MSR Houston. We had a great time; winning 2 trophies didn't hurt.  However, we almost had a very bad situation on Saturday.

On Saturday morning, I drove the first stint, scheduled for 2 hours. At about 1:30, I asked the crew to bring me in 15 minutes early as I was not feeling well. Very thirsty (no drink in the car) and sick to my stomach. And I had to back off the pace as I was making a lot of mistakes.

After the pit stop, I had to sit down and lean back against a wall. I felt like really bad. Nauseous, completely fatigued, thirsty, etc. At the time we chalked it up to not eating a good breakfast and not drinking enough before I got in the car. After a couple bottles of water, and 5-10 minutes of sitting, I was feeling 1000x better.

But when our second driver got out, he was feeling a little sick also. He and I compared notes, and we both had noticed a lot of exhaust smell in the car. Ditto for 3rd and 4th driver, although nobody got as sick as I did.

We race a 240sx with a hatchback. All the rear windows have been replaced with Lexan.  After the race, we found several drain holes in the rear hatch area that had previously been taped up were now open. The tape had come off. Since we found no evidence of an exhaust leak, we think the exhaust was coming in those holes in the rear of the car. 

We re-taped them, and also added vents on both front doors to blow in some fresh air. We had no issues during the second day of racing. No exhaust smell, nobody sick, etc.

So be safe out there, and compare notes with your teammates when anything seems out of whack. It might not be just you.