|05-09-2004, 01:12 PM||#1|
Join Date: Aug 2003
This Was One Fun AutoX
Some may recall that the first SCCA event of the season, our setup on the STi was somewhat off that forced us to run an unhealthy 51 psi rear pressures with Toyo RA1 tires. The car was on track setup and we could not get the rear to rotate enough, it was a little too neutral for autox and we were fighting the car rather than guiding it. The DCCD was also on full rear open (if this the best way to describe it).
We made few relatively minor changes with the chassis and alignment and voila! The car was just near perfect; so much so that our co-driver, Mike Cole, kept saying "keep it like this, don't change anything, this is it"
The reason I say it was "near perfect" is because we were able to run with 42 psi in the rears, whereas I would prefer if we can run them around 38 or so, but 42 is certainly in the acceptable range. We also kept the DCCD in full rear open.
The car was oversteering with throttle control and had nearly no understeer and could easily recover from a driver-induced one with gentel throttle input. The car was truly a joy to drive, I just could not get enough of it.
As always Mike set out with a very good run from the very first one with a 50.9, but took a cone. Brian Burdette with his Camaro Z28 responded with a 50.7 but also took out a cone; Mike responded back with a clean run of 50.1; while Tyler Stewart was schooling all of us by running a 49.7 in his third run. Mike pushed a little harder as he is still trying to figure out the limits of the STi and ran a 50.4 but with a cone again, ending up with 50.128 as his best. But Brian on brand new Hoosiers came back hard and hit the 49.9 and Tyler went even further and ended up with 49.405 as his best.
I manage to reduce my times each run and was amazed with the level of control we finally had on the STi without upseting the cones. I ran 54.3 (+1), 52.4, 51.1, and ended up with 50.754; and got to 4th place and improvement from my 8th place from the first event
The ESP was fielded with 13 cars this time. And Filip Wojcikowski with his Evo VIII got 7th place with a best of 51.6 and Richard Kremer got 12 place with a best of 55.8 with his stock STi. Winged car representation is still low in the DC region within ESP as many are struggling with car setup or moving directly to SM class.
The better part of the news however is that Mike was able to feel comfortable with the chassis and its balance and was able to reduce the gap to Tyler Stewart's Camaro (which has several years of development behind it and won the 2002 National ESP) by 0.5 second compared to the first event. Hence, we are on the right direction and if we can improve the chassis a little more (may be some Hoosiers on 8.5" wide rims - we are accepting donations ), I think we have a chance to beat Tyler somewhere around mid-season
In the SM class, Jack Brennen with his Evo VIII was also in a fierce battle with John Doby with his E36 M3. At the end, however, Jack was able to extract some of the benefits of his coilovers that we custom tuned for him. At the end, Jack got first place over John by 0.14 seconds running a best of 49.133. Way to go Jack. SM is very competitive as always with total of 25 cars this time around.
In AS, Burak Tuglu - as always - got 1st place with a 51.069 over John Todd's Evo VIII, who ran a 51.697. George Stanton placed 6th with 53.5 in his STi and Richard Fekete (STi) settled with 8th place running 56.7, Heather Brunstetter (Evo VIII) 9th with 56.3 (+1), Michael O'Neill (Novice group with an STi) 10th place with 61.089.
There is no question that the number of STis and Evos are increasing in several classes, which is great news accelerating the learning process for setup issues. We are obviously quite behind against the BMWs (BSP cars were running low to mid 48.xxx) and the established American Irons, especially the Camaros. But we are making progress for sure.
Next test is the Nationals during May 29-30 and ProSolo June 5-6. Hopefully, we will get to meet some of famous names in our home town
This was one fun event from many angles, thanks to the SCCA crew and all the sponsors
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Last edited by FSelekler; 05-09-2004 at 01:23 PM.
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