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      06-11-2011, 11:01 PM   #1
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Vid: Running Big Willow. Criticism welcome!

Hey guys,

I ran my car this past Friday at Willow Springs Raceway, specifically Big Willow.

Got plenty of track time before the tires were just far too sticky and the brakes were giving me trouble slowing down from the high speed sections of roughly 140+.

Car is 2011 ZCP BMW M3 6-speed.
19x10 wheels all around. 265-35 front, 275-35 rear running 32 PSI Hot up front and 30 PSI hot in the rear.

Ran in the intermediate group, but was advised to move up to advanced by my instructor.

And please, any criticism welcome!

Pardon the wind noise, windows had to be down due to track rules and the position of the custom camera mount led to a lot of noise.

-Malek

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      06-11-2011, 11:04 PM   #2
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o shoot Malek! thats awesome buddy good run
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      06-12-2011, 10:49 PM   #3
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hey man...this is james...nice vid

what were your times?
its hard to get a sense of when your braking and relative speed...

it looks like most of your lines are pretty good

i posted my track video in the region cali - track chat thread
http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...=539575&page=9

post 179

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      06-13-2011, 04:16 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xchosun1x View Post
hey man...this is james...nice vid

what were your times?
its hard to get a sense of when your braking and relative speed...

it looks like most of your lines are pretty good

i posted my track video in the region cali - track chat thread
http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthr...=539575&page=9

post 179
I didn't have a transponder, but timing on the stop watch from flag point to flag point on a hot lap was right around 1:45.

Not sure if that is a good lap time or not. But the car is only on H&R springs, 19x10 wheels all around with 265-35 front 275-35 rear Michelin PS2.

My brakes weren't doing too well toward the end of the day.

Great meeting you James, Zenko time!

-Malek
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      06-13-2011, 04:36 PM   #5
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you should use more of the track, run wide exiting the turns. Also you turn in way too early on all the turns. but looks smooth which is good
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      06-13-2011, 04:56 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malekreza11 View Post
I didn't have a transponder, but timing on the stop watch from flag point to flag point on a hot lap was right around 1:45.

Not sure if that is a good lap time or not. But the car is only on H&R springs, 19x10 wheels all around with 265-35 front 275-35 rear Michelin PS2.

My brakes weren't doing too well toward the end of the day.

Great meeting you James, Zenko time!

-Malek
1:45 is a pretty good time for your first time out on that track especially considering the heat and conditions of the track that day.

Hard to tell on the video but it does look like you have more room to take some of the turns at higher speed and using more of the track.

All around your lines look good.

see you out there soon...or at zenko!
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      06-13-2011, 05:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DD GT3 RD View Post
you should use more of the track, run wide exiting the turns. Also you turn in way too early on all the turns. but looks smooth which is good
Thanks for the tips. I will do that next time. Hopefully we can do buttonwillow next time man!

My brakes were toast and I couldn't carry much speed into turns.
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      06-13-2011, 05:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malekreza11 View Post
Thanks for the tips. I will do that next time. Hopefully we can do buttonwillow next time man!

My brakes were toast and I couldn't carry much speed into turns.
a few of us are planning to go to button in july either 9 or 10.

check extreme speed tracking site for info
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      06-13-2011, 05:47 PM   #9
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Roycemk posted this video in another thread. Check out how much of the track he uses...going wide on the exits and later turn in.

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      06-14-2011, 09:27 AM   #10
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I would agree with the track usage comments but one other thing to really watch out for is hand position on the wheel. I noticed that you weren't consistently keeping your hands in the same place, and generally they were in the wrong position.

Try to keep your hands at 3 and 9 at all times (except shifting). This will help a ton with hand/eye coordination and overall feel, which in the end will have you more comfortable using more of the track.
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      06-14-2011, 10:16 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malekreza11 View Post
Thanks for the tips. I will do that next time. Hopefully we can do buttonwillow next time man!

My brakes were toast and I couldn't carry much speed into turns.
If your brakes were toast @ WSIR it is indicative of two possibilities. Either something was/is wrong with your brake system, or you're unnecessarily hard on those brakes thus leading to slow cornering speeds and slow lap time.

There is only one single moderately hard braking zone there. Everywhere else is light to moderately light braking, or lift and turn.

In my not so humble opinion, you need a lot of instruction. Not just instruction, a lot of GOOD instruction, not just people who tell you you need to move up to advanced group or tell you your line looks good. You need instructors to tell you what you are doing wrong, not what you are doing right because in this sport, knowing what you are doing right isn't worth as much as what you are doing wrong.
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      06-14-2011, 10:59 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The HACK View Post
If your brakes were toast @ WSIR it is indicative of two possibilities. Either something was/is wrong with your brake system, or you're unnecessarily hard on those brakes thus leading to slow cornering speeds and slow lap time.

There is only one single moderately hard braking zone there. Everywhere else is light to moderately light braking, or lift and turn.

In my not so humble opinion, you need a lot of instruction. Not just instruction, a lot of GOOD instruction, not just people who tell you you need to move up to advanced group or tell you your line looks good. You need instructors to tell you what you are doing wrong, not what you are doing right because in this sport, knowing what you are doing right isn't worth as much as what you are doing wrong.
Jordan was my instructor. I felt that he was a pretty good instructor and did tell me a lot of my wrongs in the first session.

Big Willow is pretty hard on brakes. My brakes were violently shaking toward the end of the day through the wheel and it was just becoming unsafe so I pulled the car out 2 hours early.

Tires were also very very greasy, as it was 93* out that day with new asphalt. I was starting to slide into almost every turn and at that point I just called it a day.

I do agree more instruction will be helpful. This was my first time at Big Willow in a basically stock 6-speed M3.

One thing I want to ask you though, how is it possible that most turns in this course are lift and turn. If I would have done that, I would have flown right off the track. That's what I felt would happen at turns 1, 3 and 4. Then again, I could be terribly wrong.
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      06-14-2011, 12:08 PM   #13
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^^ The Hack was right. Big willow is a place to save brakes. Only turn 3 requires harder braking. Have more seat time and you will learn.
Also, your tire pressures are too low, you should keep your PS2's at 40 psi hot.
1:45 is very good for first track day in Big Willow.
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      06-14-2011, 12:54 PM   #14
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You might be riding your brakes a bit if they got that hot. I don't know the track, so it is tough for me to know. The tire pressures sound very low too - did someone with slicks advise you on pressures? I found the PS2's were very sloppy once they got hot, this would be especially so with such low pressures. How long were the run sessions?

Like it was said above, your hands are very busy on the wheel. They are 9-3 on the straights, and all over the place in the corners and sometimes in a poor position that would affect the speed you can correct if need be.

Your instructor is probably a nice guy and everything, but he needed to be tougher with you with your hands, braking and tire pressures. He should be able to tell that the car is moving unusually or not handling well much more than you.
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      06-14-2011, 01:13 PM   #15
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I was out there on the same day and advised 34 front and 32 rear (hot) for tire pressure. This is what I was getting the most grip with on the new asphalt. I was running PS2s as well.


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      06-14-2011, 01:23 PM   #16
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Thanks for the tips guys. It's really helpful.

I started the PS2's off at 40 PSI hot and gradually brought them down to those pressures. At 36 PSI hot, the car was sliding on the mildest of curves which was strange, but this became very prominent when the weather became very warm. When We were running in the morning and weather was in the 70's, this issue was non-existent and the car was running well at 38-40 PSI hot.

I remember on one of the runs, I had set the car to 35 PSI semi-hot, went for a session, came back, and the driver side tires were all of a sudden at 45-46 PSI hot and the passenger side was in the 37-38 range.

I'll work on the breaking techniques.

Sessions were 20 minute sessions. Weather was 93* and dry. Tarmac was pretty much brand new. I heard many people saying it was very greasy, and I thought it was too. It was a good time regardless.

The video posted above is with MDM on. I thought I took one more video after that run that didn't record more than 25 seconds with MDM off. Something felt better about MDM being OFF.
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      06-14-2011, 01:45 PM   #17
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If you think Willow is hard on brakes, wait until you see California Speedway and Buttonwillow.

Turn 1 CAN be done with a light brush on the brakes. Turn 2 can be done with a lift and turn if you take a double apex line. Turn 3 requires moderate braking. Turn 4 is lift and turn. Turn 5 is the ONLY place where moderately hard braking occurs since you're going down hill and need to brake in a very compressed zone. Turn 8 can either be a light brush on the brakes or just a lift and turn. Turn 9 is moderate braking.

The reason why you feel you need to brake harder to make each turn, is because you simply do not have your vision up far enough to see the actual speed you can carry through the turns. Take a look at your helmet all through turn 2 sweeper. Your head did not move more than a few degrees to the right. If you look at race videos of in-car at WSIR, you'll see most racers will have their head cocked all the way to the right, almost looking out the window. Same with turn 9. If you're looking far enough, you'll be looking all the way out your window in the braking zone into 9 and looking for pit entrance (or where pit entrance should be since you won't physically be able to see it).

Don't feel bad. I'm just an ultra critical @sshole hiding behind a screen and keyboards. Of course I can sit here and reinforce all your bad habits and tell you you're doing a great job. And to be honest there are a lot of good things in the video. For example, you've got enough of a sense of what the car is doing to not something when the car does not want to do it. Your hand input is far smoother than even some of the more advanced students I see. There are a lot of things to build on.

But this is not a safe sport, and if you don't get all your problems fixed and fixed soon, you'll eventually get to a point where you're fast enough to overcome the chassis's ability to save you and your own skill level. When it gets to that point, it will be far more difficult to recover because you will not have the right tools and skills available to you.
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      06-14-2011, 02:10 PM   #18
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Also having MDM on is tough on the brakes. This may be causing some of your braking issues beyond the points already made.
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      06-15-2011, 03:11 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The HACK View Post
If you think Willow is hard on brakes, wait until you see California Speedway and Buttonwillow.

Turn 1 CAN be done with a light brush on the brakes. Turn 2 can be done with a lift and turn if you take a double apex line. Turn 3 requires moderate braking. Turn 4 is lift and turn. Turn 5 is the ONLY place where moderately hard braking occurs since you're going down hill and need to brake in a very compressed zone. Turn 8 can either be a light brush on the brakes or just a lift and turn. Turn 9 is moderate braking.
.
Turn 1 light on the brakes? Your going 130-135 into it...so what speed are you taking it at?
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      06-15-2011, 04:07 AM   #20
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Lol to me standing there at the end. I'm pissed the official didn't let me get a ride along with you. After you left people started getting rides again. I hope I can make it out to the next one with my car so I don't need to get rides haha. Let me know when I can come down and hear the exhaust, either text or pm
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      06-15-2011, 09:30 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DD GT3 RD View Post
Turn 1 light on the brakes? Your going 130-135 into it...so what speed are you taking it at?
Try it. You'll be surprised at how wide open turn 1 is.
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      06-15-2011, 12:15 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The HACK View Post
If you think Willow is hard on brakes, wait until you see California Speedway and Buttonwillow.

Turn 1 CAN be done with a light brush on the brakes. Turn 2 can be done with a lift and turn if you take a double apex line. Turn 3 requires moderate braking. Turn 4 is lift and turn. Turn 5 is the ONLY place where moderately hard braking occurs since you're going down hill and need to brake in a very compressed zone. Turn 8 can either be a light brush on the brakes or just a lift and turn. Turn 9 is moderate braking.

The reason why you feel you need to brake harder to make each turn, is because you simply do not have your vision up far enough to see the actual speed you can carry through the turns. Take a look at your helmet all through turn 2 sweeper. Your head did not move more than a few degrees to the right. If you look at race videos of in-car at WSIR, you'll see most racers will have their head cocked all the way to the right, almost looking out the window. Same with turn 9. If you're looking far enough, you'll be looking all the way out your window in the braking zone into 9 and looking for pit entrance (or where pit entrance should be since you won't physically be able to see it).

Don't feel bad. I'm just an ultra critical @sshole hiding behind a screen and keyboards. Of course I can sit here and reinforce all your bad habits and tell you you're doing a great job. And to be honest there are a lot of good things in the video. For example, you've got enough of a sense of what the car is doing to not something when the car does not want to do it. Your hand input is far smoother than even some of the more advanced students I see. There are a lot of things to build on.

But this is not a safe sport, and if you don't get all your problems fixed and fixed soon, you'll eventually get to a point where you're fast enough to overcome the chassis's ability to save you and your own skill level. When it gets to that point, it will be far more difficult to recover because you will not have the right tools and skills available to you.
This is great criticism, very helpful without being offensive.

However, I still would like to know how you can take turn 1 at 130-135 MPH in an M3 that has stock-like suspension with regular PS2 tires. I honestly just don't see this happening. If it's possible, show us a video of an M3 doing it.

There was a modified 997 GT2 out there with a pretty decent driver, and he couldn't negotiate that turn at that speed.

Good help thus far guys!

-Malek
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