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Discussion in 'Road Racing Forum' started by The_Dead_Cow, Aug 8, 2017.
Looks like I'll be seeing you at the track. I'll make sure to stop by and say hi.
Ok, I got the car aligned to Ford's track spec's (mostly, rear toe is set to zero).The lowering springs add a little bit of bump harshness to the ride but hopefully the lower cg & increased spring rate will be noticeable on track. Speak of the devil, I signed up for the NASA track day at Arizona motorsports park on Oct 28.
Ok, so I had a blast at Arizona Motorsports Park (AMP) with the NASA crew on Oct 28. This was my second day at AMP so I felt a little more comfortable out on track. Since this track is noise restricted to something like 96db, here's some obligatory pics of my muffler plugs which work flawlessly btw.
This was my first track day that I used "track" mode. Until now I've been running in "sport" mode. Initially I was apprehensive of using track mode because I was afraid to loop it on an upshift or something because I don't have a lot of experience with high Hp cars (i.e. no traction control). But, you'll never learn if you don't try; so I took off my skirt and decided to try it. It just so happens to be like 10x more fun than sport mode, sure I almost looped it 3x during the session but who's counting.
One of the things I enjoyed most about track mode was the relaxed stability control (SC) compared to sport mode. The relaxed setting seemed to allow you hang the ass end out a little more before intervention. I was playing around with this new found freedom on corner entry with varying results. I noticed that if I was a little slow at getting back to throttle after my braking zone just at the point of turn in, the car would rotate VERY well. And poof! it felt like a kart.
I've decided to start recording the gauge detail after each session until I can get a Solo DL. I'm just doing this to monitor the temp of the fluids. The ambient temps ranged from about 80-90F. All the temps from each 20 min session (4 total) were within 10deg of another, so only one pic is needed.
Another on the list of firsts was my use of the on board lap timer. Nothing great really, just a stopwatch that is activated by the "ok" button on the wheel. According to my shabby timing, I'm running approx 1:56 min/sec hero lap. I have no idea if this is good/bad for this track, ultimately it doesn't matter because I'm in DE but progress is fun too.
I also popped my cherry in the off road department as well. It was the last session, of course, and I decide to actually try to brake at the "not enough real-estate to brake in time" cones. In any event, I knew right when I touched the brakes that couldn't slow enough to make the turn. So I kept it straight and drove it straight off, followed the track and got back on when it was clear. Waaaaayyyy less eventful/bumpy compared to karts, lots of dust tho. Now I'm not as paranoid to throw it in the dirt. When I get around to inspecting the car I'll find out if any damage occurred.
Finally, it was nice meeting you @captdistraction & guy with the black GT whose name I can't remember right now, and thanks for the drinks @ArizonaBOSS hopefully I'll see you guys at the next one.
Glad you had a good time. I recommend Track Mode and Don't turn the Advance Track off. In other words select track mode and go.
Yes I agree, that's exactly what I did. At my experience/skill level it doesn't seem like there's an advantage to turning SC off.
Thanks for the info, I've been hesitant on switching from sport to track mode, but thinking I might ease into it at my next event.
If you're feeling the nannies kick in a lot, switching to track mode will be a refreshing experience. Try it at a track you've been to before with a lot to runoff area (for me this was AMP). Hopefully this will lower the possible penalty for going off.
Are you running with ProAuto or NASA?
I’ve been running with ProAuto with this car but have done NASA events in the past. I’ve logged a few days at WHP East this year so maybe I’ll try it there first.
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Agreed, WHP east is a good choice.
I'm planning on running INDE when ProAuto goes there next year, hopefully I'll see you there if not before.
Ok so I did my final track day of the year on November 18 at Wild Horse Pass Main Track with the NASA group. This is the track that includes the NHRA drag strip. Annnnnd as usual, it was a hoot.
At the beginning of the day I had inquired about being moved from DE2 to DE3. I wanted to be moved up so I could run with a group that's more my speed even though my experience level doesn't actually warrant it (believe it or not, I've never pointed anyone by). So I spoke with a couple of instructors and they agreed to give me a check ride (thanks Tim).
For starters, this track had me a little paranoid because of all the walls that lined the track. THEN, everyone I talked to basically said "yeah watch out, this track kinda steals people's lunch". At this point I decided to take it really easy and let it come to me. That being said, having an instructor for the first session really helped talk me off the ledge so to speak. After the first 2 laps the feeling went away ...for the most part.
Thanks to the powers of bullshit, for the next session I acquired yet another instructor to ride with me and tell me where I suck (thanks Rich). We had talked about my past karting experience, so the instruction was given from that perspective/style (i.e. torque steering etc). This really helped me expand my understanding/ability of car control and the inherit similarities between cars and karts.
For the last two sessions I was just trying to have fun and not hit walls, mission accomplished! In the end the track was a ton of fun, and while it's not my favorite, I still can't wait to go back. Running with the DE3 group also made the day a lot more fun (kinda makes me wanna race).
The temps made it up to approx 80-85F by the end of the day. Here's my temps from the last 2 sessions. Nothing crazy.
Well that's it for my track days this year, on to the car maintenance!
Being a kart racer and watching people transition to cars for years, it seems like everyone overdrives a car. You can hop out of a kart and get into a pretty stout race car (like an atlantic) and get by pretty good but transitioning to a stock type vehicle is daunting. Most of the guys I know that went into late model or modifieds immediately put them into the fence. It's almost as if you have to slow down your reactions because the car reacts so much slower than a kart.
You survived WHP Main to run another day If you are available, prioritize making the trip to Chuckwalla with NASA in February. The track is fast with lots of runoff...and the away-event parties are always a blast (from what I'm able to remember).