September 28, 2013

Aero Testing @ Renegade

Can't help but feel like the car looks more aggressive with the aero
It was one of those days that I could have lived without the other half of it. Yep. John and I had planned out to use this event to test out the new aero from Joefis Racing and to see how everything turned out. In return, we got to do that, as well as deal with a failing fuel pump. I was pretty upset when this happened, as I really wanted to focus on feeling out and learning the overall new characteristics of the car, but John and I only got a limited number of runs. Enough ranting about the broken fuel pump though, onto the data points!

Transporting: For starters, because I already have no room in my car for anything due to everything I have to bring to autocross, it looks like I'll have to wear at least the front lip on the way to the event. I'm starting to find out that real Street Prepared cars really are on that fine line of what should and shouldn't be driven on the street. I am just afraid of damaging it going up a hill or something, but I think I should be okay. To test this time, I had the front splitter hanging out my passenger window with a towel on it, but it was pretty sketchy the way it was. Either way, if you're planning to get the front splitter, be prepared to come up with transportation ideas for it if you're not okay with driving to events with it on!
John back from his first run, big grin from cheek to cheek... He likes it I think
Feeling: I don't know if Rob had read my mind and setup a course just for me to test out the aero, but it really was an excellent course that would allow me to do so! My first few runs were absolutely awful as I was not expecting to feel what I did. I even managed to hit 7 cones on one of my runs! What's funny is that even though I was doing terrible, I was still putting down insanely fast times. The only way to describe what I'm feeling is that the car has understeer now, but it's not a sensation that is coming from the suspension or tires... Sort of like understeering but not feeling like it at the same time? You could however feel how much more grip the rear tires had due to the rear spoiler, as if the tires had claws and dug into the pavement (best way to describe it, honest!).

Driving: As I got used to it more, and I figured out that I had to brake and turn earlier for certain elements, which in turn allowed me to carry A LOT more speed than usual into various elements. I still can't place why I had to change my driving for those specific elements and not do the changes throughout the entire course just yet... Perhaps because of the speed approaching the element? I will say that it is nice to be able to stay full throttle into a slalom again like when I had my old differential! Another plus is that I can really get on the gas early...And I mean REALLY early. I think even on my fastest run, I still could've gotten on the gas in a few spots sooner, because the car felt that much more stable... But again, that is if I braked early enough so I don't push everywhere.
Lining up at the start, ready to go!
Other Notes: Two other observations I had was that for one, I never counter steered. Ever. I never felt like I had to either. The other thing was that I noticed the tires heat up faster than they usually do. It wasn't particularly a very hot day out (low 70's), with a lot of clouds, and I was spraying the tires more than I usually have to. These were the only observations I was able to make in only the 6 runs I was able to take.

In the afternoon when the fuel pump was cutting out, Lui came by quickly to replace the fuel pump with a spare Walbro 255 pump he had (that was brand new might I add), which allowed me to get in one run in the afternoon. Huge thanks to Lui for that, but unfortunately that pump failed as well after a few runs (which the Walbro's are now known for apparently). That single run I got to take however was the fastest time of the day (clean at least!), both in raw and in PAX! Not quite sure how I managed that, and there was still plenty of time I left on the table too after watching the video. My fastest run was a '65.752 clean, and John's fastest dirty time was a '65.743 +1 cone.
John coming back in from his fast run, but that was when fuel problems got worse!
Overall, I'm pretty pleased with the results of the aero. Now I just need to figure out what I'm going to change in terms of alignment settings to compliment the aero more and allow me to really push the car! Big thanks again to the guys at Joefis Racing for the amazing work! Also thanks to Ben for spending some time with me to help me out with trying to figure out how to explain what exactly it was I was feeling with the aero, and big thanks to Lui for saving the day so I could at least get one run in and put down a fast time.

Below is John and I's fastest runs. I'm hoping to have the car all set for tomorrow but something tells me the car won't be ready for the Moss. Stay tuned.

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