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GR-RRR!
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5,383 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I have a good friend who is renting this track for a day:

He has invited me along. I've always wanted to track the car. I've autocrossed it a number of times, but I feel the GTO would be much happier on a bigger course so here's my shot. About 4-5 of us will have the whole track to ourselves for the day! I'm not going to touch the side adjusters at this point, don't want to throw any unknowns into the mix before the track day. The tires are a few years old but still in great shape. It is running like a freakin' champ right now so this is all good timing. Brakes too are fairly new.

So, what would be a good prep? I'm thinking:

-slightly overfill the crankcase by maybe half a quart
-bring along an air bubble to up the pressures at the track
-always have good gas in the car, but I'll be sure to top off the tank when we get there (it is about 120 miles away)
-bring along some brake fluid and check the brake and clutch fluid at the track
-bring along some extra coolant (going to drain and refill the cooling system this weekend anyway)
-bring tools
-set the Konis to full stiff at the track
-set the sway bars to full stiff (already there I think)

Anything else? Plan to drive the car to and from the track.
 

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06 Cyclone GTO
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3,526 Posts
I would say a fresh oil change, clean/change air filter, check pads, make sure lug nuts are tight, inspect fluid levels, and check all hoses.
A wash with a wax and cleaning the interior wouldn't hurt either.
 

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GR-RRR!
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5,383 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I would say a fresh oil change, clean/change air filter, check pads, make sure lug nuts are tight, inspect fluid levels, and check all hoses.
A wash with a wax and cleaning the interior wouldn't hurt either.
Done, done and done. Spring cleaning consisted of all those things. Only coolant left to update and I'm doing that this weekend.
 

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Registered
2005 Pontiac GTO
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527 Posts
When I did HPDE events in my Camaro, tech wouldn't allow anything loose in the car. Things like floor mats, charger cables, garage door openers, anything that could become a projectile in a crash or hinder your operation of the car. Sounds like it's going to be a blast. I miss doing those events, we have a good track maybe 60 miles away.
 

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Yes my name is Holden
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483 Posts
Greetings Rich & all; WOW, One FUN day coming. Only one additional thought here, I would hold off on the extra oil. The reason I say that is aerating - foaming could cause more problem than a brief (a second or less) inlet loss? These pans are engineered pretty well. I have even heard that a 1/2 Qt low is the better idea! Glance at the oil pressure in the tightest turn (most G's), that will tell ya. Oh don't take your eyes off the road. You lucky, have Fun. Ole' Bob
Ps: The Good; I just heard Byron drag way is opening this week end for cars & crew.
Ps: The bad; Hot Rod Power Tour has been moved to August, new route & bi passes Madison Wi.
 

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GR-RRR!
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5,383 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
My only real concern about the car is that the tires are now 6 years old and I'm putting down noticeably more power than I used to. I'll have to take a few easy laps to work up into harder runs. Luckily the place is pretty wide open with nothing to really hit off track for quite a distance. I'm a fairly conservative driver so going off track shouldn't be an issue, but I'd dearly like to have better times than the Chevy SS that will be there too! Doubt I'll keep up with the Porsche or 658 rwhp '09 Z06 that will also be there.
 

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Pontiac Fanboy
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1,118 Posts
  • check your battery terminal covers and the tie-down as this can be a big tech inspection item for tracks
  • electrical tape in case the track wants the negative terminal covered
  • an extra quart of oil to be safe
  • a gallon of water if it's hot out (for you)
  • Konis at full stiff may be too much depending on the track, be prepared to tweak
If you have time, throw on some Porsche cooling ducts if you don't already have brake cooling. They're cheap!
 

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Registered
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308 Posts
Make sure to have a snell rated helmet (or check if one is required).

Take a jack stand/jacks/tools if you have to do anything.

Keep both hands on the wheel all the time except when you are actually shifting.

Man id love to come join, ha. Im in kansas city
 

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GR-RRR!
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5,383 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
If you have time, throw on some Porsche cooling ducts if you don't already have brake cooling. They're cheap!
I really like this idea. How and where do you attach these ducts on the GTO?
 

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Pontiac Fanboy
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1,118 Posts
I really like this idea. How and where do you attach these ducts on the GTO?
In addition to what is shown, a horizontal zip tie near the ball joint end of the duct keeps it from rotating on the radius rod.


Newer image with horizontal tie
502301
 

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GR-RRR!
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5,383 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Do you suppose they really move any air into the rotor? I have a Pedder's sway bar, first design, that bumps into the radius rods at times, but I suppose being plastic these wouldn't really do any harm.
 

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GR-RRR!
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5,383 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
I ordered the ducts but from an ebay seller that sells them both sides as a set.
 

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Pontiac Fanboy
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1,118 Posts
I only have anecdotal word of mouth from various people that they work, but I haven't had a chance to test them on track myself, yet. Thanks COVID.
I figure they're so cheap and removable, they're worth the experiment.
 

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GR-RRR!
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5,383 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
See what I mean about the Pedders sway bar? If it didn't do such a great job and wasn't such a PITA to remove and replace I'd replace it with one that fit better.

502309


502310
 

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GR-RRR!
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5,383 Posts
Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
Also, I just noticed, you installed the ducts on the opposite sides as they are intended for a Porsche. Was this just the only way to get them to fit on a GTO?
 

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2006GTO M6 dd-drag-roadcourse
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1,498 Posts
Front sway bar on full still will make the Gto plow/understeer in a track setting. Keep it in the middle setting with the rear bar on stiff. This will give you high speed stability while getting the nose to turn-in and ass to rotate. These are obviously heavy cars and understeer will be one of you biggest enemies. Also make sure your on a sport setting on the front caster adjustable radius rod bushings (if you have the adjustable kind). More caster = less understeer = better turn-in. It’s been a long time but i believe im at the +3/4 setting and had a great improvement over the stock setup. You can run it more aggressive for track application.
 

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GR-RRR!
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5,383 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Front sway bar on full still will make the Gto plow/understeer in a track setting. Keep it in the middle setting with the rear bar on stiff. This will give you high speed stability while getting the nose to turn-in and ass to rotate. These are obviously heavy cars and understeer will be one of you biggest enemies. Also make sure your on a sport setting on the front caster adjustable radius rod bushings (if you have the adjustable kind). More caster = less understeer = better turn-in. It’s been a long time but i believe im at the +3/4 setting and had a great improvement over the stock setup. You can run it more aggressive for track application.
My biggest concern on your sway bar comment is that I'd end up with oversteer, which is much more concerning than understeer. HOWEVER, I just took it for a spin and it tracks very well and does have really strong turn in aspects as it stands, however I pushed it too hard into a hard right intentionally and while it tracked and turned, it did scrub the fronts pretty hard. The sway bar has four settings, it is currently on full stiff. I wonder if one, maybe two spots toward the soft side might be better as you stated. I'll have lots of time at the track to check various settings, so I'll probably set the Koni's on full stiff and take an easy lap to see if the track is smooth without cracks or undulations, if so I can leave them in stiff mode. I'll start with the front bar in a softer mode than it is now. I remember when I installed the bigger sway bars I put the rear one on first because it was so easy. I went for a drive with the stock front and rear on full stiff and it turned in HARD, but I wasn't really pushing, didn't want any wild oversteer but some of that turn in aggressiveness without turning into oversteer at the touch of the wheel would be helpful.

I don't think I'll mess with the caster at this time, maybe next time. I want to try to kind of set a baseline of sorts with adjustments only made on the easy and quick to adjust things (sways and shocks).

Elsewhere someone suggested leaving the Koni settings toward the soft side. I'd think this would be appropriate if the track were bumpy and/or old. But this track isn't very old and is very well maintained. Anyway, like I said, I'll take an easy lap to see how it feels. Full stiff Koni settings on the street are nothing short of punishing but worked well at the autocross where the pavement was free from cracks and undulations. That track was on a military airplane runway, I'll bet that concrete is 2-3 feet thick.

If they get here in time, I'll install the brake cooling ducts too. Someone else also suggested aggressive racing brake pads. Again, I'm not going to be tracking this car weekly or anything so I'll leave that for another time. I do have Hawk HPS pads with almost new rotors.
 

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Pontiac Fanboy
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1,118 Posts
Never knew the OG Pedders bar was like that. Bummer, but it explains why some people were Pedders Protestants back in the day, risking excommunication...

Also, I just noticed, you installed the ducts on the opposite sides as they are intended for a Porsche. Was this just the only way to get them to fit on a GTO?
Yes, the larger end of the ducts doesn't jive well with the front cradle when installed as prescribed. Suspension articulation would screw them up, unless you started cutting up the ducts which are already low on surface area. That said, there are other generation Porsche ducts out there that may work, I just never looked into them (996, 997, 991, 99969696979198).

Front sway bar on full still will make the Gto plow/understeer in a track setting. Keep it in the middle setting with the rear bar on stiff. This will give you high speed stability while getting the nose to turn-in and ass to rotate. These are obviously heavy cars and understeer will be one of you biggest enemies.
Interesting point, I've never tried that. I've always gone full stiff front, 2/4 or 3/4 on the rear and tried to use the throttle to get the rear to move. Granted, this was based on street driving and playing it safe.

Elsewhere someone suggested leaving the Koni settings toward the soft side. I'd think this would be appropriate if the track were bumpy and/or old. But this track isn't very old and is very well maintained. Anyway, like I said, I'll take an easy lap to see how it feels. Full stiff Koni settings on the street are nothing short of punishing but worked well at the autocross where the pavement was free from cracks and undulations. That track was on a military airplane runway, I'll bet that concrete is 2-3 feet thick.
I'm jealous of your Nebraska-flat airstrip autocross course.
A hilly football stadium parking lot outside of D.C., with varying grades of asphalt, absolutely sucked in the GTO.
 

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Pontiac Fanboy
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1,118 Posts
If they get here in time, I'll install the brake cooling ducts too. Someone else also suggested aggressive racing brake pads. Again, I'm not going to be tracking this car weekly or anything so I'll leave that for another time. I do have Hawk HPS pads with almost new rotors.
I ran street pads in the OE calipers on the track once, I then realized I needed more brakes lol
Be mindful of any 120MPH slow downs after a straight if you've had the pedal down for more than a few seconds in the turns prior...
Any cooling is better than none.
 

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You wax...I'll race
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112 Posts
Wow. This is a really neat and impressive thread. I attend as many HDPE’s, open tracks, and auto-crosses I can, and I cannot add anything to the above suggestions. Everyone else covered anything I could think of.
 
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