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  • Advice for a noob. SoW CW

    Went to a recent private trackday at Streets of Willow.

    Got 1:40.2x as my best time.

    YouTube - ‪Session 3 no shift to 4th.wmv‬‏

    Sorry for the crappy video quality and sound. no fancy camera.

    Just wondering how much more time will / should I be able to drop? Any advice would be helpful. Just want to improve my driving skills as much as possible.
    I drove one of my friend's s2k and I was behind his best time by 5 seconds. I drove another friend's wrx and I was behind his best time by 5 seconds. so i think i need a lot of improvement.

    Car info:
    1994 Mazda Miata (base model)
    Harddog roll bar
    15x7.5 Rota Slipstream with 205/50/15 Bridgestone RE-11
    Hawk HP+
    Everything else is pretty much stock (koyo radiator, voodoo shiftknob, and shorty antenna)

    Just a couple of questions that's on the top of my head:
    1) How much time is a stock torsen + abs worth at Streets of Willow? My friend with a M-edition was able to get a 1:38.xx with similar mods.
    2) After the back straight, should I have shifted to 4th at the entrance of the chicane section or leave it in 3rd like I did with the video? I did both and I felt that leaving it in 3rd was faster.

    Here are some pics of what an awesome job stock suspension does at the track.



    thanks in advance guys!

  • #2
    you left about....... you guessed it, about 5 seconds on the table. but the passenger cost you a second there.

    just by watching the video once (can't hear the sound of engine due to wind noise). I would say obvious one is exiting T4 (90 degree right hander) too wide. thus slowing down everything from T5 to entry of the bowl. which is basically a straight for you (WOT all the way). then you slowed too much for the Chicane (that would answer your other question, shift up to 4th and carry more speed through it). both of these mistakes are high speed stuffs, so they cost you a lot of time.

    other than that, your line is pretty good, 90% there.

    Miata Torsen helps at SOW, probably 1/2 to 1 second. ABS don't help any (unless it was raining)

    hope this helps. this is just a brief assessment from watching a video with no audio. others will probably give you a much detail break down.
    Last edited by bellwilliam; 06-05-2011, 12:19 AM.
    S1 Supermiata - 220whp
    13 Tesla, ma: no engine !!
    17 GT350R
    03 Miata Club Sport
    96 NSX
    06 EVO MR
    15 Mini Cooper S
    Beck 550 Spyder

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    • #3
      thanks for the quick response! I figured it would be a decent chunk of time im leaving on the table. And i do recommend just watching the video without sound. too annoying with sound on. need to find a better way to fix my wind noise issue.

      So I should shift up to 4th for the chicane area and try to carry more speed?
      I was playing around with the lines from T4 to see which would be better (wide left or keep it closer to the right). but since you said that it would be better to keep it to the right then i'll do that next time.

      THanks for the advices

      Comment


      • #4
        Hope you're not joking about the stock suspension. It's pretty impressive in ways. Tons of body roll yet the camber and toe aren't out of control.

        Comment


        • #5
          In terms of line, I echo bellwilliam's advice. The 90-degree right on the top (0:37 in your film), you need to hug the inside, which requires you to slow down. It is a slow corner. This will set you up well to go WOT all the way to the bowl (at 0:57) since you are on stock power levels. Suspension you currently have should be compliant enough to take the whole section at WOT.

          Also, and some may disagree with me, at last right corner before the left into the bowl (at 0:46), track out all the way to the left and stay left and tight until the entry of the bowl. It's not worth the extra time to dart to the right to take the left with the ideal line, i.e. it's a longer distance and you can't accelerate fast enough to gain time for that short of a straight. Also, the most grip is on the left anyway since the camber of the road is greatest on the left of the entry into the bowl, which is where you want to be anyway before the bowl.

          Aside from that, you are as bellwilliam says, almost there and lines are good everywhere else. After that, it's simply carrying more speed through every single corner. For the chicane, you are losing speed there, but I wouldn't fuss about it as that's mostly down to how good and confident you are under braking and leave it WOT until after the chicane. I think you are good in your car to do about 1:34-35 in your car as is.
          Last edited by VagaXt; 06-05-2011, 02:36 AM.
          Driving to the limit is my goal.
          Winning with Team 949 Racing is merely the result.
          2013 NASA TTD National Champion
          NASA 25 Hours of Thunderhill Winner: 2011 E2 Class & 2012 E1 Class.
          Multiple wins in NASA PT and WERC series, with many more to come.


          Cheer for us during races throughout the year and like us on Facebook and Twitter!

          "Drive well and have fun." Drive W2W in the SuperMiata Race Series. Also, see me in action on YouTube.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by robburgoon View Post
            Hope you're not joking about the stock suspension. It's pretty impressive in ways. Tons of body roll yet the camber and toe aren't out of control.
            no i'm not joking. im actually on stock suspension. but thanks for the compliment!
            sorry forgot to put up my alignment specs.
            front: -1 camber, max positive caster @ 4.3, and 1/32 toe in
            rear: -1.5 camber, 1/32 toe in
            Last edited by kapao818; 06-05-2011, 07:34 AM.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by VagaXt View Post
              In terms of line, I echo bellwilliam's advice. The 90-degree right on the top (0:37 in your film), you need to hug the inside, which requires you to slow down. It is a slow corner. This will set you up well to go WOT all the way to the bowl (at 0:57) since you are on stock power levels. Suspension you currently have should be compliant enough to take the whole section at WOT.

              Also, and some may disagree with me, at last right corner before the left into the bowl (at 0:46), track out all the way to the left and stay left and tight until the entry of the bowl. It's not worth the extra time to dart to the right to take the left with the ideal line, i.e. it's a longer distance and you can't accelerate fast enough to gain time for that short of a straight. Also, the most grip is on the left anyway since the camber of the road is greatest on the left of the entry into the bowl, which is where you want to be anyway before the bowl.

              Aside from that, you are as bellwilliam says, almost there and lines are good everywhere else. After that, it's simply carrying more speed through every single corner. For the chicane, you are losing speed there, but I wouldn't fuss about it as that's mostly down to how good and confident you are under braking and leave it WOT until after the chicane. I think you are good in your car to do about 1:34-35 in your car as is.
              thanks a lot vagaxt. i keep watching your vids but once i get onto the track, it goes out the window.

              i'll try out your suggestion for the last right hander before the bowl to stay more left.

              Comment


              • #8
                SOW is a great track to learn on, I did 8 track days there before I even got on another track. As stated above you have the line down pretty good. Your seem to go a little nuts in the same places I use too. In T4, the right hander I turn in a little later than you, I stay to the left, late apex T5 to keep the car straight, and use the line Vagaxt uses going into the bowl. I think the best piece of advice I got in my first couple track days was in slow, out fast. You asked in your first post about shifting into 4th on the straight out of the bowl, and I always get to 4th, after the use to be chicane a quick tap of the brakes and a back down to 3rd for the little left hand turn before the hard left. I have a stock powered miata as well, same brakes, but I do have suspension, and my best lap is 1.34...So you got some time to pick up, but I think you will pick it up fast, you didi really well with all kinds of body roll! Good luck man!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by VagaXt View Post
                  Also, and some may disagree with me, at last right corner before the left into the bowl (at 0:46)
                  don't make sense. there is no "last right corner before the left into the bowl"
                  I think you meant into the "last right corner before the left into the Skidpad" ? that would be the correct line into Skidpad. most drivers still does it wrong there.
                  S1 Supermiata - 220whp
                  13 Tesla, ma: no engine !!
                  17 GT350R
                  03 Miata Club Sport
                  96 NSX
                  06 EVO MR
                  15 Mini Cooper S
                  Beck 550 Spyder

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by MX5Racer123 View Post
                    I think the best piece of advice I got in my first couple track days was in slow, out fast.
                    now you've done quite a few track days, my recommendation is that "in slow, out fast" applies to slow corner leading to a straight (T5 to the Bowl is a straight for a stock powered Miata, so you want to sacrifice T4 for the straight after). But you want "in fast, out slow" in say Chicane, and entry to Skidpad. in corners like Sunset and Sunrise, you want "fast in, fast out, keep up minimum speed".

                    in my experience, "in slow, out fast" is the reason many intermediate drivers are stuck where they are.
                    S1 Supermiata - 220whp
                    13 Tesla, ma: no engine !!
                    17 GT350R
                    03 Miata Club Sport
                    96 NSX
                    06 EVO MR
                    15 Mini Cooper S
                    Beck 550 Spyder

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      To the OP, I didn't watch your video but the other guys will give better advice on line anyway. All I have to say is just keep getting track time, you'll learn quickly enough. I remember my first track day at and I was getting lost at SoW. Once you get more comfortable, you'll get faster.
                      99 Mazda Miata SuperMiata #515 - AKA Sparky SOLD
                      '91 Mariner Blue Miata project AKA Napoleon

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                      • #12
                        I am quite a heavy passenger so I probably cost him closer to 2 seconds

                        I need to get home and post my video since I need a LOT more help than this guy.
                        01 Miata LS - VF Supercharged/6MT with 4.3 Torsen/15x9 6UL/XIDA-S/Sways/Bushings/GTC200 - Buttonwillow 13CW - 2:04.56
                        09 WRX - 518whp on Rotated GTX3076R/17x9 DPT/RCE Tarmac 2/Sways/Bushings

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                        • #13
                          Is that car pushing or is driver going in too hot?
                          Elise
                          MR2 Spyder
                          Mazda RX7 FD
                          Porsche 911E

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by bellwilliam View Post
                            don't make sense. there is no "last right corner before the left into the bowl"
                            I think you meant into the "last right corner before the left into the Skidpad" ? that would be the correct line into Skidpad. most drivers still does it wrong there.
                            Look at the footage at 0:45-46. It's that right hander. That's what I meant.
                            Driving to the limit is my goal.
                            Winning with Team 949 Racing is merely the result.
                            2013 NASA TTD National Champion
                            NASA 25 Hours of Thunderhill Winner: 2011 E2 Class & 2012 E1 Class.
                            Multiple wins in NASA PT and WERC series, with many more to come.


                            Cheer for us during races throughout the year and like us on Facebook and Twitter!

                            "Drive well and have fun." Drive W2W in the SuperMiata Race Series. Also, see me in action on YouTube.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by bellwilliam View Post
                              that would be the correct line into Skidpad. most drivers still does it wrong there.
                              I always felt everyone is doing the slow line into the skidpad, which is the one in the OP's video. I dont have data to back this up. But from my experience following ppl, my tighter line into the skidpad and by almost putting 2 off at the second apex curb (marked Red in diagram) is the faster way around. The line I take travel less distance compare to the other. My speed might be slightly slower before braking for T2, but i dont feel its more then the time gain from the off-camber left to coming of of the skidpad.

                              Yellow line is the one i feel is faster. Red line is Williams line?
                              Click image for larger version

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                              Both Lines together
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                              I like to see sector time comparison between the Red Lines below.
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