Originally Posted by footie
Listen, facts and figures are only things to brag about to mates over a few beers, if anyone is really interested in being quickest then best start with some serious professional driving lessons on the track because it's the driver that makes to biggest difference to lap times and we aren't talking about a tenth here or there
The driver makes a huge difference. Watch a "Spec" racing series where the cars are absolutely identical. In the Skip Barber Series they test the cars with a pro driver and radar guns to see make sure they are as identical in performance as humanly possible. At the end of the race some of the drivers are laps behind. I have seen M3 drivers get their clocks cleaned by Miatas with better drivers.
Just because a particular car got around the Nurbergring fast with a world class driver at the wheel does not mean that the average driver can duplicate that perfrormance. Some cars that don't look all that impressive on paper are much easier to drive at the limit. Other cars that look impressive on paper can be a handful to drive and downright treacherous in the hands of an inexperienced driver (prime example - early Porsche 911s).
To think that because Hans Schtuck can get a car particular car around the Nurbergring fast you can do it too is like thinking that if get a Fender Stratocaster you are going to be able to play like Eric Clapton.
After many years of instruction with some of the best coaches in the business I learned two important things.
1. I am a much better driver than I was.
2. I am nowhere near as good a driver as I thought I was.
One last thought - any one who pushes a car like an M3 to its limits on public roads has a few screws loose.