Last week, while working on Brian Ach’s ’73 2002tii—the car that died on the way to the Vintage—I stumbled into Rust Central. I found rust in the car’s fuel pump, gas tank, and fuel lines. I cleaned it all out and installed a new fuel pump, yet the problem persisted. I chased it into that chamber of nightmares that is the fuel-injection system itself, following the troubleshooting procedure detailed in BMW’s 2002tii fuel-injection manual.
This past weekend’s race at Watkins Glen was quite an adventure. Throughout most of the weekend, it was dry and sunny through practice and qualifying, but when race day came around, so did the rain. I’ve had quite a bit of experience racing in the rain, and I’ve learned to love it, because to me it reinforces some of the basics of driving that should always be applied, no matter what conditions you’re in.
When we ended last week, Brian Ach’s recalcitrant, stumbling, stuttering ’73 2002tii that betrayed him and his wife Michelle in northern Virginia on the way to the Vintage had been towed to my house in Massachusetts.
It’s only 9:00 a.m. on the first day, and it’s already approaching 100º out on the tarmac of the new BMW Performance Center West at the Thermal Club near Palm Springs, California. The heat doesn’t bother me, though, because I am sitting in a freshly broken-in BMW F80 M3, and the air-conditioning is blowing nice and cold.
As we ended last week’s column, I was on the way to the Vintage when I stopped to help Brian Ach and his wife, Michelle, in Winchester, Virginia. The day before, Brian’s 1973 2002tii had begun running rough, like a cylinder wasn’t firing, and he wasn’t sure if he could make it the remaining 300 miles to Winston-Salem.