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Motorsports & Track Forum
From Auto-X to Trackday to Racing and Professional Motorsports this is the place to discuss making BMWs fast

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Old 06-14-2004, 09:59 AM   #1
teamdfl
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Join Date: Dec 1969
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Post Lime Rock Park wrap-up...

The weather last Monday and Tuesday was perfect: mostly sunny, 70s to 80s, and a light breeze. The racing was great but a buddy had carb troubles with his 2002. I helped out as best I could and we got his car back together in time to qualify. He bubbled one of his Goodyear slicks and had to go back to a pair of older slicks on one side of the car.

The driving school was fantastic. I learned a lot and picked up my speed considerably over the two days. My instructor gave me a couple key things to work on which helped my line significantly in a couple corners. After his second session in my car (I was signed off already but we have to take out an instructor at least once for a sanity check), he suggested I apply to the instructor training school next month. I was honest with him and told him that the more I learn about driving, the more I realize I don't know enough about driving but would consider the school anyway. Hmmm.... the last thing I want to be responsible for is an R compound shod E46 M3 with a crack smoking 17 year old behind the wheel. Perhaps they give the newbies tamer cars for their first assignments.

I had one "moment" during the two day school. Near the end of the second day, I found myself immediately behind an E30 M3 for about 4 or 5 laps. The R compound shod M3 has a HP advantage which means that unless I get a point-by and the driver lifts off the gas, my E30 325i is not going to motor past on the front straight. During the first couple laps, I gave passing signals to some significantly faster traffic (E46 M3s, prepared E36 M3s, gutted and race prepped Golf on R compounds) because I knew these cars were faster than myself and the M3 in front of me. The E30 M3 also gave point-bys to the same cars so we ended up nose to tail going into the turns at the end of the passing zones. After another lap, I was a little frustrated so I dropped back so I could get a running start at the M3 out of the downhill onto the front straight. M3 HP and the lack of a passing signal meant I had to stay behind the car for one more lap. I finally dropped back far enough on the front half of the course to allow a running start through west bend AND the downhill resulting in a 10mph head start over the M3 at track out while I was only 2 car lengths behind. I moved towards the inside of the front straight to indicate my intentions and I finally got the point-by. Of course, the E30 M3 driver did not lift until he hit the 6 braking marker at which point I was at most a one car length ahead. Between my excitement and my desire to not have the M3 turn into me, I managed to brake several car lengths too late for the inside line. I was trail braking from the outside line all day but that much speed and a shorter braking zone combined for impending disaster. Instead of trying to save the turn, I dumped off and went straight into the paved runoff at the end of the straight. After a quick u-turn, I found a standing yellow at flag station 2 warning people of my off track excursion and an empty straight except for the two cars that were bombing down the downhill onto the front straight. I headed right back out in hot pursuit of my white whale and caught back up to the car going into big bend the next time around. I dropped back on the uphill to get the same running start through the downhill. The E30 M3 gave me the same point-by and again, the driver did not lift which put me in the same exact situation as two laps ago. This time, I kept the red mist at bay, got on the brakes at the proper point for the inside line, and trail-braked deep across the first early apex towards the outside of big bend. This time, the pass stuck and I was off.

I made a classic mistake: excitement and frustration lead to brain fade. At least my mistake came at a point with tons of runoff.



Ed
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Last edited by teamdfl; 06-14-2004 at 10:05 AM.
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Old 06-15-2004, 08:53 PM   #2
mc
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Sounds like a very good time, Ed. I made the same mistake at the exact same point in one of the Skip Barber open-wheel cars. I attended a one day, and when you're on the track you drive single file in groups of 5 or 6 and move up one spot every lap until you're at the front, at which point you have to move all the way to the back. Anyhow, my turn came to slide all the way back and I was stuck behind somebody who simply wasn't capable of keeping pace with the pack.

Well, she finally got the blue flag at the back straight and I got the wave-by so off I went. At this point, half way down the back straight, the rest of the pack was somewhere around the downhill, pouring onto the front straight. I thought to myself, "Oh this is great, I can really wind it out down the front straight since I don't have the pace car in front of me." Well, wind it out I did and in over my head I got as I barrelled into Turn 1 waaaaaaaaaaaaay too hot. Hard on the brakes and I see the front right lock up as I begin to turn in. I must say, it's rather dis-heartening to actually SEE a wheel lock up at such speeds. Well, knowing full well I had over-cooked this corner I stayed hard on the brake, but lightened up just enough to release the lock and get back on the threshold. Around the tail came and off I went spinning in the sand. Dust flying into my mouth, I get it jammed back into 1st just as I see the same slow moving sap that I passed just a 1/2 lap ago pass by. So belittling.
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Old 06-16-2004, 09:40 PM   #3
alken
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I need to go to driver school. Bad.
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Old 06-22-2004, 01:00 AM   #4
dboffa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alken
I need to go to driver school. Bad.
Ditto.
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Old 06-23-2004, 05:04 PM   #5
Elwood
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alken
I need to go to driver school. Bad.
so do I.

Someone want to lend me their car?
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Old 07-07-2004, 05:04 PM   #6
srlai02
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teamdfl
Instead of trying to save the turn, I dumped off and went straight into the paved runoff at the end of the straight. After a quick u-turn, I found a standing yellow at flag station 2 warning people of my off track excursion and an empty straight except for the two cars that were bombing down the downhill onto the front straight.
That's exactly what happened to me when I was back east over a year ago! I spun out at the exact same place because I tried braking and turning at the same time. hahahhaha, Maybe that's why they made that run off huh I was using a Civic then. Thought I had the breaking power! But nope!

Cheers!
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