Went to Speed District's Buttonwillow 13CW day yesterday. Thanks for the good times Josh!!
Track/course: Buttonwillow 13CW
Best Lap Time: 1:59.20
Brakes: AP Racing - Mintex F3R front, Ferodo DS2500 rear
Tires: Hankook TD - soft compound - 18" - 265/295
Suspension: JRZ RS Pro in rear. Front JRZ is still off the car. Still using stock front damper, H&R lowering springs and my old GC street plates.
Other mods: VF620, MS Test Pipes, (no aero parts)
This was my first time on Hankook TD. These are simply AMAZING tires. The grip is just incredible. The impression I'm getting is that they are fastest right when brand new. Danny (minicorsa) seemed to have the same experience with his at Big Willow. He ran his fastest laps on the TD's at Big Willow on his first laps. I was joking in the pits after the first session that I had so much grip that I could have been lending it out to others. It really was shocking. So awesome. On those first laps, I was thinking "this is how my car should drive ALL the time!!"
I ran three laps in a row at 1:59.xx (1:59.6, 1:59.2, 1:59.7) in my first session. I got caught in traffic every lap in my second session. Then I ran several 2:00.xx later, but didn't get back into 1:59 as the day went on. I had the thought later after I left the track, that I initially got the psi of the tires settled in the AM and I was good there, but it got QUITE a bit warmer as the day went on, and I didn't let more air out for that. I was only able to run 4 sessions at 20 minutes each and then had to leave due to other commitments.
Three of my four tires are holding up ok. But my driver front tire is showing quite significant wear on the outside edge. I will definitely get a second day from them. but I'm considering switching the abused edge to the inside of the rim and running the tires "backwards" because there's still good life on the other tires. Guys who run NT01's tell me that they can get 4 solid track days from a set of NT01's. I'll get two from the TD's; I'm not sure if the fronts will last for a third day. So, these tires could be an expensive habit if you were to run them all the time.
My hope is that my JRZ fronts will be back soon so I can feel the front JRZ with the TD's at Buttonwillow. I want to get those on and then either do the Test & Tune day at BW 13CW on Feb.1 or do the Shift S3ctor BW 13CW Feb.2 day.
And for all you haters-----yes, Euro MDM was on! I've spent the last year tracking with Euro MDM on. My first track day was a year ago. I didn't know anything about it. I'm generally conservative and need time to grow into things. My decision was to have the "nannies" in the background in case I really beefed things. Since I committed to that course, I decided to see it through. I've had some goals in mind driving that way. I'm getting close to completing that journey. Once I'm satisfied I've run my course with MDM, I will probably backoff and start practicing with DSC off. Again, I will need time to grow into things. But I see no reason to abandon the course of MDM in the middle of it. I'm having a great time. I'm getting faster every time I go out there. Why abandon it until I'm satisfied I've seen it through? I've come a long way in 1 year, but I'm in no hurry. So you guys can rib me and poke fun all you want. I'm good with it. The irony for me is that everyone has said all along that traction control makes you slow. I've heard it a million times. But now everyone is offended and up-in-arms since my times have fallen to these levels. All of a sudden, now I'm cheating. hahahahaha
I've already done a number of skid pad days at Big Willow's Balcony skid pad. I can drift the car around well enough, so I'm already comfortable with the car sideways and counter steering. But that's at comparatively low speeds. Watching some of you guys in a mild drift at 90+ MPH on Riverside at Buttonwillow is quite another thing. I can see the looks on guys' faces when they talk about getting loose there. It's not a moment of comfort or ease. That will take some time for me to accept. Who knows if I will ever accept it. I do this for fun. I have a wife and kids. I'm not 22 years old and angry at the world. Having the "nannies" around is a pretty awesome option for a guy like me----go have fun, but still have a computer monitoring things quietly in the background. I feel no shame there at all.