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Auto x class

Need some advice from the cone carvers. I really like to try out autocross and have been reading the SCCA rule book. It looks like a lot of guys are running ESP.

My question is, are Watts links like Cortex or Whiteline allowed? Doesn't look like it to me. What class would that push the boss into?

Reading the rules is making my eyes bleed.
 

unrealford

Mustang owner since 84
521
0
Go to a event early, they will help you into classes. I had no idea where I was, when I went to tent, they gave me all info I needed and it was a great time. I didn't do well. I couldn't stay in the route. I added rear Steeda Springs because of the brake dive.
 
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3,704
Here's a vid, there are some others (better examples) on youtube if you look around..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VoENgfVwFk4
 
1,281
3
Tulsa, OK
I ran ESP when I tried it. In all reality, you can probably get away with ESP for your first time even if the watts link isn't technically allowed. Since it will presumably be your first time they probably won't be too strict with you. Now if you win your class they might ask a few more questions ;)

As unrealford said if you get there early you can chat with the organizers about what class you should be in. They'll take care of you.

Good luck out there!
 
The Base Boss 302 is listed as AS or A-stock; the LS in not stock legal. A watts links is not allowed in stock class. You can also run the Boss in STX or ESP. In STX a watts link is allowed, but only if it doesn't require replacement of the stock diff cover. So a Fray2 watts link is allowed while a whiteline or cortex is not allowed, however in 2014 the diff cover rule goes away allowing all watts links. Also in 2014 all v8 mustangs move to STU.
 
I've run Autox for about 12 events over the last 2 years, 10 were in a Jetta GLI the last 2 in the Boss. (Sadly I am faster around the track in the Jetta than the boss.. but that will change as will my driving). Totally different experience. I don't think the Boss will be competitive in A Stock... er A street now, the Caymans, S2000 CRs and C5Z06s will light the Boss up. So, I am thinking ESP, anyone have some good mods that I should consider?
I will probably "suffer" through 2014, (grinning the whole time, mind you) in A-street while I dabble in NASA HPDE.

Any advice I can get for either case would be brilliant
 
I've done a lot of autoX in my Mustang and these are the modifications I suggest to be competitive:
1. Good tires! (street tire= BFG Rivals, Hankook RS3, Yokohama AD08, Dunlop ZII; DOT slicks Hoosier A6, Kumho V710 or even Hankook Z214 C51, maybe C91).
2. Tires...
3. Lighter and/or wider wheels.
4. Dampers (struts/shocks; at least Koni Sport or Ground Control coil over conversions; better would be ASTs or KW Variants).
5. Sway bars/springs (Adjustable sway bars or at least front adjustable. None adjustable rear, Id do a solid 20-23mm, no thicker than 23; springs 300-550lb/in front and 195-300lb/in rear depending on how serious you are).
6. Sway bars/springs.
 

unrealford

Mustang owner since 84
521
0
MountainGT said:
I've done a lot of autoX in my Mustang and these are the modifications I suggest to be competitive:
1. Good tires! (street tire= BFG Rivals, Hankook RS3, Yokohama AD08, Dunlop ZII; DOT slicks Hoosier A6, Kumho V710 or even Hankook Z214 C51, maybe C91).
2. Tires...
3. Lighter and/or wider wheels.
4. Dampers (struts/shocks; at least Koni Sport or Ground Control coil over conversions; better would be ASTs or KW Variants).
5. Sway bars/springs (Adjustable sway bars or at least front adjustable. None adjustable rear, Id do a solid 20-23mm, no thicker than 23; springs 300-550lb/in front and 195-300lb/in rear depending on how serious you are).
6. Sway bars/springs.
nice, sounds like your definitely experienced, how does your car do against the AWD and other competition.
 
I have talked with a few guys who run mustangs and it sounded like the cheapest bang-for-your-buck add-on was camber plates and good tires. That is something most of us will do anyways. And don't worry that your GTI was faster. FWD are hard to beat in AutoX if the layout is tight and you can't even get out of 2nd.
 
unrealford said:
nice, sounds like your definitely experienced, how does your car do against the AWD and other competition.
The S197 Mustangs can keep up in a stock class using true street tires (basically over 200 tread wear tires). As soon as the AWD cars like the Evo's and STI's get decent sticky tires (200 and nder tread wear), that's where things seem to change. True street tires seem to even things out rather well. The SCCA Street Touring classes don't offer really ny competitive edge for any Mustang; you can win regionally, but there is pretty much no chance Nationally. Once you can add wide, sticky slicks on to the Mustangs, things change quite a bit...However, on a National-level of competition, I'd say the AWD cars still have the edge, period.

I will say this: The 05-10 4.6L Mustangs are easier to drive in autocross than the 11-14 5.0L cars. It comes down to weight and power and the ability to control both (weight and power) through tight corners. The 05-10 cars are lighter and have less power (less torque and a less broad torque curve). So, it's easier to control the car through turns as the car is lighter and there is less power to manage. The EVO's and STI's are similar in power and weight to the 05-10 cars, but with AWD. So, the advantage there is that there are virtually ZERO worries with throttle application out of corners and through slaloms. Although I don't and haven't owned an 05-10 car or an EVO or STI, I have driven and ridden in all of them in autocross.

Overall, these are the two major things I have found to hinder S197 Mustangs (more specifically the 11-14 cars) in autocross:
1. Controlling the mass of the vehicle through tight corners. This is where good, sticky, wide tires come in and a decent amount of camber. This is also where good brakes (not necessarily AWESOME out of this world brakes) come in to play. A lot of people write off brakes in autocross. Those people are typically those with low power or lower weight. Mustangs are realatively heavy and can gain a good deal of speed in striaght sections... YOU NEED TO SLOW DOWN AT SOME POINT, which is also something in the big picture of controling the weight - braking points and reducing enough speed to go through a corner. The 14" front Brembos are really what's needed on the 11-14 cars. The 05-10 cars can get away with the stock 12" brakes with decent pads and good fluid.
2. Controlling corner exit and slalom power application. This is also where good, sticky, wide tires come in. In addition, adjustments to sway bar stiffness (Strano is right, from what I'm finding, the 24mm bar is too stiff - too much bias of load on to the outside tire in a cornern) and even a good rear differential comes in (Torsen T-2, T-2R or TrueTrac).
Both of what is mentioned above is not very apparant as an issue on the road course. The turns are at faster speeds, yes, but the turns are also more gradual/at larger radii - it's way easier to scrub off speed in those types of corners and control the car. The Boss cars have the worng setup for autocross: staggered tires and overly stiff rear sway bars. It works on the street and it works on the track, but the tires are too skinny up front, the staggered setup produces understeer-ish grip at steady state and the rear bar is too stiff for tight corners to take advantage power application corner exit, even with the wider tires. I've beaten several Boss cars in autocross stock for stock in my GT (255 Pilot Super Sport f/r tires on 8.5" wide wheels and stock 24mm rear bar vs. stock Boss (none-LS) with Pirelli 255 f/285 r tires and stock 25mm bar) with a good margin. I'm not trying to push anyone away from autocross; I want you to keep an open mind about your car, realize what you're dealing with. It's just the Boss cars, the way they are set up, have advantages that simultaneously help and hert the car in autocross, so it takes a little more to drive the car than a GT. Either get stickier tires (you can do in a stock/street class) or go to a square setup (you can do in stock/street, but can in street touring more efficiently - proper/equal wheel widths f/r) and get an adjustable rear bar (you can do in a stock/street class; I recommend something like Stranos bar as the rates go from about a 22.5mm solid bar to a 24.5mm solid bar). You can play with tire pressures and rear sway bar settings to suit your driving style at that point.
 
WinterSucks said:
I have talked with a few guys who run mustangs and it sounded like the cheapest bang-for-your-buck add-on was camber plates and good tires. That is something most of us will do anyways. And don't worry that your GTI was faster. FWD are hard to beat in AutoX if the layout is tight and you can't even get out of 2nd.
Camber plates will through you into at least Street Touring in SCCA autocross (NASA autcross I am not suer on the rules, but NASA is not as big in autocross as the SCCA is). You can tyically get 1.4 to 1.8 degrees of negative camber on OEM strut mounts and no camber bolts through all of the stack-up tolerances. With camber bolts, which are legal for S197's in stock/street, you can easily get into 1.8 to 2.25 negative degrees, sometimes more. But the stickier tires you run, the more you want to stay away from camber bolts and slotting the sturts if you can help it.
 
Mountain50 said:
Camber plates will through you into at least Street Touring in SCCA autocross (NASA autcross I am not suer on the rules, but NASA is not as big in autocross as the SCCA is). You can tyically get 1.4 to 1.8 degrees of negative camber on OEM strut mounts and no camber bolts through all of the stack-up tolerances. With camber bolts, which are legal for S197's in stock/street, you can easily get into 1.8 to 2.25 negative degrees, sometimes more. But the stickier tires you run, the more you want to stay away from camber bolts and slotting the sturts if you can help it.

Good to know. The guys I spoke with were running in ESP (in a Connecticut club, not SCCA). One of them was running a '94 or '95 with take-offs, plates, engine work, and God knows what else. His suspension didn't seem to be that tight, though. I am wondering if that might actually help on a tight course? With the way that car zipped around, I would definitely agree with Mountain50's post. The last AutoX I ran the gates were very narrow and I kept tail-whipping the outside cones ::)
 

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