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Old 01-27-2013, 08:55 PM   #1
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My Ride: 1999 328i
How do I become more competitive in SCCA STX class?

Hey all,
I've got questions about my 1999 328 sedan in regards to the SCCA class STX. My understanding is because I have 8 inch wide wheels and a long tube air intake, that's where I'm classed. I went once last year and was up against a few FRS/BRZ'S. I got smoked pretty good too, I was last in the class trailing first by almost three seconds after knocking seven or eight seconds off my time.
I enjoyed myself and had no delusions of winning, for me it was about getting out there and seeing what my car did at the limit and how to recover if need be. This year I want to run the whole season just to do it but I'd like to be at least competitive. My suspension is being replaced here in about a month and I will be doing konis/eibach and Hotchkiss sways and strut mount bushings. Other than that I don't have a lot of options to play with in regards to the rules other than lsd, which I might consider next year if this upcoming one doesn't treat me any better.
As for me, I know that as a driver, I have to become smoother and learn and I'm sure I will. I have no desire to try to turn this into a career because I'm way to old for that. My car is just a rolling project that I like to drive, I've no desire to change Cars for the purpose of being competitive, I just want to be as good as I can be with what I've got, if I don't win because the car can't, that's OK with me.
Honestly, I just want to see what the opinions are of my situation, so feel free to speak up, we are all fanatics, right?

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Old 01-27-2013, 09:53 PM   #2
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Seat time! Honestly its the best way. I suppose you could purchase a few books from amazon which I imagine will have good insights towards driving style and setup considerations.
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Old 02-01-2013, 06:44 PM   #3
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If you have some time on your hands, you can take a look at my build thread here for thoughts on where you could go prep-wise:


But I agree with badfast, seat time will help more than any parts.

I'm not sure a '99 328 will ever be a great car for STX, but the thread above may give you some idea of what's needed to get there.
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Old 03-10-2013, 02:39 AM   #4
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It's been a while but when I was running this class in my e30 stx was for cars with an LSDand sts was for open diffs. Parhaps this has changed. Anyway,an LSD would help and it stinks that having one is a pricey chore on E46's but an. e46 is never going to be really competitive with those cars in autocross. Those are light and chuckable and ideally suited to autocross.
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Old 03-10-2013, 04:57 PM   #5
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Not sure what this would do to your classification but you could up your spring rates especially the rear and remove the rear sway bar. That would help keep the inside tire planted when turning.

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Old 03-14-2013, 12:34 PM   #6
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You don't want to be competitive. It'll cost too much.

Thinking outside the box... codrive with a buddy. You guys will get the most honest and fun heads-up competition. Even better if he's more skilled than you. It'll up your game quicker than anything else you can do.
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Old 03-14-2013, 09:43 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by satakal View Post
You don't want to be competitive. It'll cost too much.

Thinking outside the box... codrive with a buddy. You guys will get the most honest and fun heads-up competition. Even better if he's more skilled than you. It'll up your game quicker than anything else you can do.
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Old 03-17-2013, 08:11 PM   #8
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If you want to be competitive in STX, buy a different car. If you want to be competitive in your BMW, shoot for DSP and a lot of money. Or go our there and enjoy yourself with the car you own in whatever class.

I know that is not the advice you are looking for, but it is the only real advice for your situation.

'04 BMW 330i ZHP
'11 BMW 535i
'13 Land Rover LR4

Last edited by mko9; 03-23-2013 at 03:07 PM.
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Old 03-19-2013, 11:42 AM   #9
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Everything these guys said is spot on. The biggest improvement you can make to your car is driver talent. I do very well at national SCCA events, and I know that even after I won H-Stock last year in St. Louis by over 5 seconds, there are still guys out there that would hop in and shave a second off my time on their first try.

As was also stated above, an E46 will never be competitive nationally in STX. So, if you have talented drivers locally in Toyobarus or RX8's, kiss any chance of winning goodbye, even if you drive the piss out of your car. If it's like most regions, prepping it a lot and driving the piss out of it will still be your other average drivers in the same class.

If you have a tire index class in your region or they run the national RT classes, ditch the CAI and run DS tire. By far your best shot at being competitive (although still not great haha).

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Old 05-14-2013, 03:51 PM   #10
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^what he said
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