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First Track Weekend Review

ArizonaBOSS

Because racecar.
Moderator
8,540
2,370
Arizona, USA
This past weekend was my first time taking the BOSS on track.

I drove down to INDE Motorsports Ranch in Willcox, AZ (about an hour to the east of Tucson) with a coworker of mine and his race car. This is roughly a 3.5 hour drive for us from the Phoenix area.

Here is the track layout and website (we run the Main Circuit clockwise, 21 turns, 2.75 miles):
http://www.indemotorsports.com/site/

main.png


This review will be a little different from a "box-stock" review since I am running a few aftermarket parts and prep items:

* Nitto 275/40/18 on all 4 corners
* Camber plates
* Brake cooling ducts
* LS Trans Cooler
* Hawk DTC 60 pads in front, stock rear pads
* Roush Mufflers, K&N
* Strano adjustable rear swaybar
* Generic "bar" grille for cooling

Anyhow; We arrived late Thursday night and got to work via lantern getting our cars unloaded and prepped for the weekend ahead of us. During adjustment, I noticed one of my rear damper adjusters is VERY difficult to turn--I had to use vise grips around a small screwdriver to get enough torque to turn the adjuster! Hopefully nothing is broken there.

I started out Friday morning with the stock swaybar on the rear. As Cloud9 and I surmised earlier this year, the car was uncomfortably loose w/ the stock rear bar and a square tire setup. I had brought along the Strano rear bar for this reason, and swapped it on after the first session.

Note, this swaybar kit came with absolutely no instructions and required a bit of guesswork as to what bushings, collars, and washers went where. Sam--please include instructions for your future customers! On the plus side, once the bar was installed, the car was a blast to drive. Setting the bar in the "middle" setting got the car settled down quite a bit, maybe even a little on the "tight" side. More on this later.

Brakes: During the first session, I ran with my brake ducts taped off. The brakes in the competition car could tolerate a beating w/ no cooling. This wasn't the case in the BOSS. I ended up overwhelming the DTC60s on the long straight (combination of no cooling, stock rear pads, and trying to brake too deep) and had to use the run off area. After that, I opened up the cooling ducts and the brakes worked flawlessly; anyone considering tracking should definitely get the ducts installed. Brake dive was present, but nothing serious--this was all dependent on the braking style. Once I got my pedal application and pedal releases smooth, the dive diminished.

I started out day two running Trackmaster for GPS lap timing. My first session's laps were in the 2:12 range. Once I learned to start trusting the car more with throttle, the seconds started to drop. The car has so much rear grip that I could roll into full throttle with the wheel cranked and not spin the tires at all! The car would just plant and take off where it was pointed! I think this is the real magic of the car--it can maintain midcorner speed well, but the ability to power out of a turn without overwhelming the tires is what really makes it fast. Also this made the car very easy to trail-brake into tight corners without fear of the back end coming out.

By the end of day two, I was down to a 2:08.1, which is 0.9 seconds slower than the best time I put down in my coworker's 427R Track Pak competition car the previous year; that car is over 500lbs lighter as well! I'd say that is a pretty respectable showing for the BOSS. Compared to the Track Pak competition car, the BOSS is not buttoned-down as well, likely due to the softer spring rates (but we are talking about a street car here). That took some getting used to as far as driver confidence, but once I learned to trust the car, it was smooth sailing.

Edit: Upon further review of my Trackmaster data logs and laps, there was a "one" lap that recorded a 4:15:0, meaning it did not detect the split between the laps. Going back to this, the second lap of this combination looks to be a 2:06.3, meaning the BOSS was actually 0.9 seconds FASTER than my benchmark time in the competition car, and a new personal best for myself on this track.

I'm very happy with the engine in the car, as others have noted, there is a ton of torque on tap. I ran the entire course in third gear, save for an upshift to fourth on the main straight. For this reason, I don't have much to add about the transmission or clutch, but they both performed without incident.

Ambient temperatures were hot all weekend. Highs in the 95-98*F range, around 4400' altitude. I drained 36oz out of the radiator via the lower petcock before day 1, and added three bottles of Water Wetter to the overflow tank. I also replaced the factory grille with a generic "Bar" grille from American Muscle. I did not have a single overheating issue the entire weekend, and I never saw the temperature gauge move off of the "middle" range. I did not hook up my OBD sensor to see CHT or ECTs. This track involves a lot of fluctuation between 3000-7500 RPM in third gear, so there may have been enough off-throttle or part-throttle sections to not overtax the cooling system, but I was pushing as hard as I could. I will have more info at the end of this month during the next event at a different track w/ more gear changes. I also plan on trying out the "stiffer" setting for the rear bar at the next event to see if I can get the car to rotate a little bit more.

Here is a picture of the car w/ the bar grille installed. You can see the #88 Track Pak competition car in the background.

DSC_3296.jpg

DSC_3283.jpg

DSC_3284.jpg

vUIM8.jpg

Here is a video of a couple laps on track. I will post another video later this week from a different session that includes a rearview camera as well. Some of you may recognize this track from youtube user S197Ford's Boss Prototype testing videos.

[youtube]PkkCz023VHs&hd=1[/youtube]

Let me know if you have any questions!
 
Nice review. Your comments about the understeer and oversteer with a square setup are consistent with a few other members experience. While I have little experience tracking a full sized heavy weight I'm very familiar with handling characteristics from my karting days. I was surprised how neutral the car felt at MMP last week and also that the car didn't feel as heavy and ponderous as I expected. Braking deep into corners with a 3,600 pound car is another matter and as my confidence builds I'll be able to drop my lap times.

Do you ever run PIR?
 

ArizonaBOSS

Because racecar.
Moderator
8,540
2,370
Arizona, USA
Deja vu topic, right? :)

Karting looks like a whole other world of adrenaline...I like sportscars but I can see how that would be really exciting.

I'm assuming you mean Phoenix International. I've run it multiple times when I was starting out in my DE days back in '06/07 with NASA, in the roval configuration. Cool track.

Nobody will be driving it anytime soon, however. They tore up the infield road course to make more room for NASCAR vendors and parking. R.I.P. !
 
27
0
Nice reading and happy you enjoyed your car!
Really looking forward installing the cooling ducts on my car as well.

Interesting to read about your rear sway bar experince. I´ve had trouble getting proper traction exiting some turns but I also think that the car is perfectly neutral and easy to balance in long turns.
 
ArizonaGT said:
Deja vu topic, right? :)

Karting looks like a whole other world of adrenaline...I like sportscars but I can see how that would be really exciting.

I'm assuming you mean Phoenix International. I've run it multiple times when I was starting out in my DE days back in '06/07 with NASA, in the roval configuration. Cool track.

Nobody will be driving it anytime soon, however. They tore up the infield road course to make more room for NASCAR vendors and parking. R.I.P. !
That's the track I was thinking of. Bummer they tore it up.

Karting is a lot of fun and certainly fills the need for speed. One of the differences is the close racing and banging wheels. Nothing like sliding into a corner at 50 MPH two inches away from the kart next to you. ;D

Hre's a video of a guy running at the club I belonged to. Joey Hand was a member there.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HBaQiZ-Buc8
 
1,255
2
GA
ArizonaGT said:
Deja vu topic, right? :)

Karting looks like a whole other world of adrenaline...I like sportscars but I can see how that would be really exciting.

I'm assuming you mean Phoenix International. I've run it multiple times when I was starting out in my DE days back in '06/07 with NASA, in the roval configuration. Cool track.

Nobody will be driving it anytime soon, however. They tore up the infield road course to make more room for NASCAR vendors and parking. R.I.P. !

Don't despair- the Phoenix International infield road course has been immortalized at iRacing.com ;) You can take some nostalgic laps around the course anytime you want. :)
 

ArizonaBOSS

Because racecar.
Moderator
8,540
2,370
Arizona, USA
#299 said:
Interesting to read about your rear sway bar experince. I´ve had trouble getting proper traction exiting some turns but I also think that the car is perfectly neutral and easy to balance in long turns.

If you are running the stock tire setup or similarly staggered setup, you should have no issue with the stock bars. I am running a 275/40/18 on all 4 corners, effectively giving the car more front grip than it had before (which alternatively means less rear grip). Needs a smaller bar to compensate.
 

ArizonaBOSS

Because racecar.
Moderator
8,540
2,370
Arizona, USA
PJWANNABE said:
Don't despair- the Phoenix International infield road course has been immortalized at iRacing.com ;) You can take some nostalgic laps around the course anytime you want. :)

I have long considered joining the iRacing ranks...time constraints have prevented that. Maybe in the future. I do have a wheel and pedal setup already :)
 

OLOABoss

AKA OLOABoss
ArizonaGT said:
#299 said:
Interesting to read about your rear sway bar experince. I´ve had trouble getting proper traction exiting some turns but I also think that the car is perfectly neutral and easy to balance in long turns.

If you are running the stock tire setup or similarly staggered setup, you should have no issue with the stock bars. I am running a 275/40/18 on all 4 corners, effectively giving the car more front grip than it had before (which alternatively means less rear grip). Needs a smaller bar to compensate.

I think I would have gone with a stiffer front bar for a square setup insead of a softer rear. With a heavy car and soft springs the last thing I would want is less overall roll stiffness. IMHO YMMV :)

Peter
 
1,255
2
GA
ArizonaGT said:
PJWANNABE said:
Don't despair- the Phoenix International infield road course has been immortalized at iRacing.com ;) You can take some nostalgic laps around the course anytime you want. :)

I have long considered joining the iRacing ranks...time constraints have prevented that. Maybe in the future. I do have a wheel and pedal setup already :)

You'll be amazed at the realism. They just improved the tire model so it is so much better now. I drove Road Atlanta on iRacing and then drove it for real and it is dead on, every bump and dip. iRacing satisfies my road race craving between track weekends since I can only afford to do them a few times a year.
 
My car was delivered with a defective shock adjuster. The nut assembly was damaged in the mfg. process, dealer replaced it quickly.
 

ArizonaBOSS

Because racecar.
Moderator
8,540
2,370
Arizona, USA
Update: Upon further review of my Trackmaster data logs and laps, there was a "one" lap that recorded a 4:15:0, meaning it did not detect the split between the laps. Going back to this, the second lap of this combination looks to be a 2:06.3, meaning the BOSS was actually 0.9 seconds FASTER than my benchmark time in the competition car, and a new personal best for myself on this track.

Further Edit: Video playback says 2:07.2. Still pretty good, and dead-nuts on the benchmark.
 
ArizonaGT said:
Update: Upon further review of my Trackmaster data logs and laps, there was a "one" lap that recorded a 4:15:0, meaning it did not detect the split between the laps. Going back to this, the second lap of this combination looks to be a 2:06.3, meaning the BOSS was actually 0.9 seconds FASTER than my benchmark time in the competition car, and a new personal best for myself on this track.
Now that sounds more believable. ;)
 

ArizonaBOSS

Because racecar.
Moderator
8,540
2,370
Arizona, USA
PJWANNABE said:
You'll be amazed at the realism. They just improved the tire model so it is so much better now. I drove Road Atlanta on iRacing and then drove it for real and it is dead on, every bump and dip. iRacing satisfies my road race craving between track weekends since I can only afford to do them a few times a year.

I'll bet. They had a promo during one of the Rolex races, showing how the drivers used it for training on the road to the events. The price structure for add-ons is crazy, though.
 
1,255
2
GA
ArizonaGT said:
PJWANNABE said:
You'll be amazed at the realism. They just improved the tire model so it is so much better now. I drove Road Atlanta on iRacing and then drove it for real and it is dead on, every bump and dip. iRacing satisfies my road race craving between track weekends since I can only afford to do them a few times a year.

I'll bet. They had a promo during one of the Rolex races, showing how the drivers used it for training on the road to the events. The price structure for add-ons is crazy, though.

You get a lot with the base subscription, but the extra content can get expensive. You have to catch the promotions to save money. I bought racing bucks when they gave a bonus, and then bought in bulk when they took 20% off. I got a lot of extra content for almost half the price that way.
 

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