Originally Posted by dogbone
Yeah, that wasn't a fun moment. It takes time to be ready for these kinds of moments----or even have the proper driving skills so that you don't get into them in the first place. (And I'm sure you already know this, but MDM would have prevented this completely. It shines in moments like these. Unfortunately, we don't realize it because it subtly corrects it and you move on without knowing what it did---grabs the brake on a specific wheel and holds back power a bit----which is course why people say MDM develops bad habits.)
Honestly, Big Willow is a tough place to learn DSC-off because, as you've seen, going off is brutal there. There's pretty much no spot that's good to go off---it's just rocky (big rocks) and nasty everywhere. A place like Buttonwillow is far more forgiving to your car in most places if you go off. The other problem is that Big Willow is mostly high speed. So, when these things happen the drama is heightened. At Buttonwillow, you can go for it in Off-Ramp and try to oversteer and catch it, and you're going uphill, off-camber at only 35mph. It's not that big of a deal to spin it around at that speed, or going off at Sweeper isn't that dramatic----just dusty, versus at 80+mph coming out of Turn 1, Turn 2, or Turn 9 at Willow, or oversteering Turn 3 and hitting the wall, or messing up Turn 8 and really flying…..ooh I saw an E36 go flying off Turn 8…..At Big Willlow, it's just best to stay on the pavement…… (Chuckwalla is also a good place to learn because the track is really wide--40' everywhere--and it's mostly just flat sandy desert if you go off.)
If you want to learn DSC-off, try backing off the pace. You were pretty much full speed in Turn 2. I never go full pace when I drive DSC-off. I'm just not comfortable enough yet. Also, go to a few auto-cross events. Auto-cross can be good for learning as well. The concepts are the same, but at much lower speeds on a really tight course. Also, Willow Springs has a skid pad called the Balcony Skid Pad. You can rent that on your own for pretty cheap and go up there and slide around. I've done it several times. It's quite worth it. You can setup cones and challenges. I've learned a lot up there.
The best thing you can do from that experience is try to learn from it: Listen to the exhaust as you exit Turn 2 and look at the video in the top right corner. Look at the nose of your car start to point to the right as you hear the engine increase rpms. You accelerated without unwinding the steering wheel while coming out of the turn and now the additional power while holding the steering wheel closed as the track is straightening out is resulting in an oversteer situation. (Also, right at that moment--exiting Turn 2, you were cresting a hill which can also make the whole car a bit lighter, which requires even more caution.) At this point, you needed to do a small quick countersteer, and stay on the gas to keep the rear weighted and gripping so it stays behind you. Instead, you did a massive counter steer, let off the gas, the rear unweighted, lost grip, the front tires were turned massively left, the front of the car went left and the unweighted rear came around the right…….But you could have avoided the whole thing if you had let the steering wheel relax back to neutral sooner as you were exiting Turn 2 and let the car track out. You would have completely avoided the oversteer situation altogether.
These things just take time. As you know from my previous postings, I'm still in my infancy of DSC-off as well. I'm trying to learn as much as I can to avoid too many of these incidents. But I've had them too----mostly at Buttonwillow. They're not fun moments; that's for sure.
Nothing wrong with Nannies-off, just treat your first session as a warm up lap or run with a lower run group. It's all about really learning the difference between DSC-off and DSC-on. Also if running with DSC-on, watch for the light on your dash gauge as your are probably driving beyond your limit if it's coming on too much (It's a cheap/free instructor. Never a bad idea). The biggest error most E92 owners make is we try to drive our car like it weighs 3000lbs (it doesn't). Earlier this year at skip barber, I went flat out through T6's dip in a spec Miata without DSC which I would dare do for a while in our car. Imaging yourself driving in the rain, even though it's dry is a great start. Remember, the weight transfer everyone is talking about is worse as the car gets heavier.