The Dead Cow's GT350 Experience

Discussion in 'Road Racing Forum' started by The_Dead_Cow, Aug 8, 2017.

  1. The_Dead_Cow

    The_Dead_Cow Mike

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    Ok, so I had a great time at Chuckwalla Valley raceway with NASA on 2-17-18. For this event I drove out on Friday night and stayed in one of the cabins at the track. The cabin was pretty nice and the price was fair.
    IMG_2170.JPG IMG_2181.JPG

    This was my first time at this track so it was a fun learning experience. I hadn't got the greatest sleep the night before so I was making minor mistakes all day long but nothing major. The track is like a roller coaster compared to the flat Arizona tracks that I'm used to and fast too.
    This was also my first time using the GoPro as well. Here's a couple laps from the weekend. Since I'm a n00b in this arena as well, the video is over exposed and the audio is crackly but it seemed to serve it's purpose.





    In the early sessions I was shifting into 4th gear at the end of most of the straights for a second or two and then back down to 3rd. In the later sessions I just kept it in 3rd all the way around and tried to learn the track more. After watching all the footage from the weekend it seems like next time I'll try to keep it in 4th gear most of the time to help keep my corner speeds up.
    The drive home was tiring but the trip overall was well worth it. I'll be going next year for sure if not sooner. Assuming my car passes it's post track day inspection, I'll be back out later this month at Wild Horse Pass East track with NASA again.

    Happy motoring all.
     
  2. tracktardicus

    tracktardicus TMO Intermediate

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    Chuckwalla looks like a hoot! Glad you had an opportunity to get out there. Two suggestions if I may: have you tried switching your hand position to 9 and 3? The steering wheel may prevent you doing that comfortably, but 9 and 3 is optimal for most drivers.
    Secondly, it looks like you may be squeezing the wheel fairly hard, as it looks like your hands and fingers are white in some of the turns, and the muscles in your arms look as if they are straining. Optimal grip is about a 3 on a scale of 10-light enough to reduce strain, but heavy enough to receive optimal feedback from the steering wheel control surface.
    It may be you might want to move your seat up a notch so your arms are more angled and your body closer to the steering wheel, hence less strain when you add steering inputs. In any case, I use every straight to check my mirrors, check my gauges, and relax my hands and take a deep breath. I suggest you do the same if you're not already.
    Happy and safe driving!
     
  3. The_Dead_Cow

    The_Dead_Cow Mike

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    Chuck was a blast, definitely going back sometime soon.

    Squeezing the wheel,LOL, first thing I noticed after watching the video too. Willing to try 9/3 although not wild about not being able to grip all the way around the wheel due to the spokes being at 9/3. Thanks for the tips
     
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  4. VoodooBoss

    VoodooBoss Rick Moderator

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    I do exactly what @tracktardicus suggested and yet still squeeze the wheel too hard. I'm a lot better about not doing it than I used to be though. My hands are almost always at 9 and 3 though.
     
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  5. 302BOB

    302BOB TMO Addict

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    Racing/Driving gloves will also bolster those lap times.........:cool:
     
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  6. The_Dead_Cow

    The_Dead_Cow Mike

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    I wonder if a new set of gloves is the answer here :D
     
  7. RES_22

    RES_22 Rob

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    Hold the wheel with finger pads... keep fingers spread. Can’t squeeze it with fingers spread AND lot more feel/feedback from pads vs glomming onto the thing like a chin-up bar.

    Think of the wheel as a donut-shaped soap bubble...

    Mmmmmm... donuts.
     
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  8. Grant 302

    Grant 302 OPM Spent: $665,833 Moderator

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    Chuckwalla screen shot.png
    I put my thumbs in the crook between the spoke and the wheel. Your fingers don't go all the way around, just the thumb and forefinger. More than enough to control the wheel, even one handed when shifting.

    :( I'm sad about missing Chuckwalla this weekend...
     
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  9. RES_22

    RES_22 Rob

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    Grant doesn’t crush his donuts...

    Mmmmmm donuts.
     
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  10. The_Dead_Cow

    The_Dead_Cow Mike

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    I've recently taken up pull ups so this is partly to blame LOL

    After the original post about squeezing I went out, sat in the car and got the grip you're explaining. Seems like it would be difficult to squeeze the crap out of the wheel holding it like that. I'll try it next weekend.

    Next time I'd like to do two days at Chuck.
     
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  11. The_Dead_Cow

    The_Dead_Cow Mike

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    Oh yeah, almost forgot, I'm signed up for WHP East track next Saturday the 24th with NASA. This will be the last event on my 1 year NASA membership before it expires, making it 6 events I've attended. There's a couple tracks ProAutoSports runs that NASA doesn't seem to have on their schedule, so I'm going to run with that group for several events (mainly INDE Motorsports Ranch).
     
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  12. The_Dead_Cow

    The_Dead_Cow Mike

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    Another successful track day at Wild Horse Pass East track in the books (3/24/18). The event was organized by NASA and I ran in the DE3 group. This was my second time at this track so I felt quite comfortable on track and for once felt like I actually drove the car at the limit towards the end of the day.

    I tried the changing my hand placement on the wheel as we talked earlier and liked it. It seems not being able to grip all my fingers around the wheel keeps me from squeezing, nice.


    I also have a friendly rivalry with another guy in the group who has a new 1LE Camaro. The instructor that was riding with me was helping him in the previous session. We took the hot pit and found the Camaro when we ended up behind a car with a draggy muffler. The instructor got me to find 2nd gear coming on to the straight which seems to help top speed at the end of the straight. Both of us "self promoted" ourselves to DE4 group after the day as well.

    Overall is was an excellent day. I left the track wanting a lap timer, stiffer sway bars, and thinking about time trial rules. Hopefully the car is ok and I'll be out on track soon.
     
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  13. The_Dead_Cow

    The_Dead_Cow Mike

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    Well after 6 track days and 5.000 miles, the outside of my front tires are getting pretty worn out in comparison to the middle and inside tread. I'm still running the OEM Michelin Pilot Super Sport 295/35/19 that came on the car. As others have recommended, I decided to add more camber all around. The pic below is my left front tire. The rears look pretty much the same as far as wear goes with a bit less wear near the outside edge.
    IMG_2385.JPG

    After watching what Vorschlag and 949 Racing have done with their mustangs, going -3deg in the front and -2 in the rear seems like the way to start. I don't have a tire pyrometer yet, so at this point I'm just guessing. I do have Vorschlag camber plates and Steeda adjustable camber links, so the MAX camber available with both of these parts is ~ -3deg front & ~ -2deg rear.

    I decided to stick with no toe front and rear because that's what I've been running. Willing to add rear toe if too loose on power during corner exit. Hopefully this setup helps tire wear and increases mid corner speed.
     
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  14. The_Dead_Cow

    The_Dead_Cow Mike

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    A new alignment means another track day. Since my NASA membership has run out I've decided to run some of the tracks in state that NASA doesn't run on their schedule, mainly INDE motorsports ranch. This is one of the many tacks that is what I call "country club tracks", which is exactly that.

    https://www.indemotorsports.com

    This track doesn't seem to show up on the NASA schedule though, so for this event I'll be running with ProAutoSports group. These guys are similar/same as SpeedVentures as I understand it. Sounds fun, I also see they have Laguna Seca on the schedule as well which is a 'bucket list' track for me. If everything runs smoothly, i'm game to go back at the end of summer.
     
  15. ArizonaBOSS

    ArizonaBOSS Because racecar. Moderator

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    You will have a great time, especially if you are staying at the track overnight. ProAuto parties hard!
     
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  16. The_Dead_Cow

    The_Dead_Cow Mike

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    !!!!!!!! Only going down for Saturday but will stock the cooler accordingly. I'm excited to run with this group, their event schedule is 'LIT' (am I using that term correctly?)
     
  17. ArizonaBOSS

    ArizonaBOSS Because racecar. Moderator

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    *"Lit AF"

    I am thinking to come down Saturday mid-day to hang out and party overnight. I'll come say hi assuming I make it!
     
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  18. The_Dead_Cow

    The_Dead_Cow Mike

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    Another successful track event weekend complete. This time I attended ProAuto Sports event at INDE Motorsports Ranch on Memorial Day weekend 6-25-18.

    The Track:
    The day I attended at INDE was run in configuration 1 clockwise (CW). This config featured a long straight followed by a fast run up the hill into a technical infield section. The entire track is on a hillside so several of the turns & braking zones have blind crests etc. Until now most of the tracks I’ve run have been relatively flat so this track was a welcome change and added to my learning experience. It also felt a bit narrow in comparison to almost every other track I’ve ran as well.

    The paddock was also very nice which featured a multi-level observation tower, bbq pits/picnic areas, private garages, decorative airplanes, authentic desert landscape, and lots of pit space. In addition to all this, the track location is only 20 minutes from the town of Wilcox which makes a trip into town quick and painless.

    Rocks: This track has rocks!! I got a small hole in the PPF just on the edge of the hood.

    https://www.indemotorsports.com
    [​IMG]

    Switching Club/Organization:
    In the short time I’ve been tracking my car, NASA hasn’t had INDE on the schedule so running with ProAuto is the only option. ProAuto’s group classifications are quite similar to NASA’s but a little less obvious (i.e. street car groups are colors, not 1,2,3..). After a quick email explaining my recent driving experience and asking which class to run, I was all set to sign up. ProAuto requires all new participants attend the orientation class and after that they basically let you choose the group to run in. A friend of mine (my DE1 instructor from NASA) suggested I run in the RED group (passing only on straights) for my first event to learn the track and become accustomed with the format.

    Overall I had a great time with this group. Everyone was friendly and the event schedule was on time all throughout the day. Another thing I liked about PA, all street car groups were done by 3pm (this was nice since I had a 3 hr drive home).

    http://www.new.proautosports.com

    Unfortunately for me, I accidentally put the GoPro in pic mode for the last session so I only was able to record a couple sessions. Here’s some of the 3rd session and another with a new friend in a Z06.



    Camber:
    Since i don't have a lap timer (yet) it's hard to quantify how much the added camber helped/hurt the lap times. I can say it felt noticeably faster through the center or the corner. Hopefully the tires wear better.

    What's Next:
    ProAuto is holding another event at INDE on Labor Day weekend to bookend the summer. That's my next track day since satan is gonna turn on the oven here. Have a fun summer!
     
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  19. The_Dead_Cow

    The_Dead_Cow Mike

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    Another successful track day complete. I attended ProAuto Sports event at Inde Motorsports Ranch on Labor Day weekend 9/1/18 and ran my car in orange group (open passing group).

    [​IMG]
    The event was run clockwise in the same configuration it was on Memorial Day weekend.

    [​IMG]

    Since last time, I've acquired a new Gopro microphone and Aim Solo DL 2.





    Since I've been to this track already, I thought that i'd readily remember the lines etc but apparently not. I should of found an instructor to help me but oh well, there's always next time. Feel free to comment.

    New personal best lap time: Inde, CW, config 1, 1:53.4
     
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  20. The_Dead_Cow

    The_Dead_Cow Mike

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