June 9, 2012

Testing At Renegade Miata's Second Event

Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
Ever had a really bad day? I mean in where it rained, then poured, and then the sun came out for a moment... only to show you the tsunami heading your way? What am I saying… There WAS a few positive points to today, it just took me a bit to see them I suppose. The car was left with some alignment issues on Friday in that the steering wheel and toe was off on the car. Then, as I was leaving my house to go to the event, my battery was dead. I then later found out when I made it to the event that the battery was completely cooked, as the sides had expanded outward a fair amount. Lastly, after getting the battery problem situated, John and I received more bad news. Our set of R comps would probably last only until the National Tour next weekend, but after that would be pushing it.

Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
With all the troubles aside, we pushed on to try and figure out the car. We tried the car with no rear swaybar at first, with the front bar at medium stiffness, while playing with shock settings a little bit in the front. John and I both agreed that the car was essentially undriveable like that, as it pushed everywhere. In the afternoon, we threw the 19mm Progress Technology rear swaybar on, and that's when the car started feeling better. Overall it had made the car more solid and planted, but the random oversteer problems were still hurting us on sweepers.
Photo by Ed Savage - NoWin Photography
All in all, it was a great testing session that we learned a lot from, and we know where to go with the alignment from here (other than just fixing it). The course was definitely one of the BEST course designs I've seen yet, to the point of being good enough for a National Tour I'd say. A lot of different elements with a balance of fast sections and technical sections. I managed to get down to a 1'12.0, while John pulled out a 1'11.0 on his last run. Ben had taken the car out for two fun runs and landed a 1'10.2! The results are located on the Renegade Miata website, here.

I want to personally thank a few great people for their help to get me up and running.
  • Bob Lang, thanks a million for the spare battery. You're a life safer!
  • Brian from NEPOC, thanks for letting me borrow the OEM battery tie-down so I could use Bob's battery, and the help overall throughout the day. I hope you had a good first autocross on Sunday!
  • PJ Corrales for trying to help me out with the front steering issue/toe adjustment
  • Ben Wagstaff for being Ben and helping me out, and offering to take care of the car after the event
  • Bryan Mancuso for taking the time to keep jump starting my car at Dunkin Donuts down the street so I could make it to the event
  • John Rappa for being a great co-driver and keeping me sane!

Thanks again everyone! Below are all of our fastest runs, along with a side by side comparison of Ben and John. The rest of the videos taken from that day are located on the YouTube Channel. Stay tuned, as I get prepared for the upcoming tour... Fingers crossed I can iron out the rest of my problems in time!

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