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GTOholic
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Hey, folks, there are two SCCA Solo2 events this weekend that some of us may be able to reach. One is at FedEx Field in Northern VA and the other at Mercer County Airport in West Virginia. Both events are Sunday morning. I am seriously considering going to the Mercer County Airport event. Is anyone else interested? It would be nice to have more than one GTO there. A good "apples to apples" comparison.

You can find out more here.
 

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Go for it.
I'm going to my second either july 3 or 4th.

Are you going with your stock tires? The solo2 site suggests putting 40+ #'s of air in to prevent the tire from rolling off the rim. I know from expereince that it wont happen with 34 #'s. The GTO has some understeer so I was going to try 34#'s in the front and 40#'s rear. I'm hoping that will allow the front to grip more. If you try this let me know if it works.
thanks
 

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Florit,

By all means go! Report back promptly, I have just become aware of there events and I am very interested in how the run. If I was in the area I would join you.

Good luck and enjoy.
 

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Check out these other threads where this has been discussed:

http://216.55.165.32/forums/showthread.php?t=2327&highlight=SCCA

http://216.55.165.32/forums/showthread.php?t=2195&highlight=SCCA

The car is a blast to drive, but would benefit greatly with upgraded shocks, swaybars, a more robust differential and racing tires.

The SCCA just officially announced that the GTO is classed in F Stock. Should be quite competitive in the right hands at least until the new Mustang GT is available (i.e. legal) next year.

Jim Howard
Assistant Regional Executive
Chief Solo Safety Steward
Washington D.C. Region
Sports Car Club of America
 

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mlc said:
Go for it.
I'm going to my second either july 3 or 4th.

Are you going with your stock tires? The solo2 site suggests putting 40+ #'s of air in to prevent the tire from rolling off the rim. I know from expereince that it wont happen with 34 #'s. The GTO has some understeer so I was going to try 34#'s in the front and 40#'s rear. I'm hoping that will allow the front to grip more. If you try this let me know if it works.
thanks
Be prepared to pump up the fronts to at least 45. I've autocrossed twice in mine,and if you don't put a lot of air in the fronts, the tires just roll under. Also, might want to remove some weight(gas tank protector, skid plate, and everything in the trunk).Great fun though. As usual with car people, some SCCA people love to see the Goat and respect what it can do for a heavy car, while others are very verbal with what they think is wrong with the car.
Have fun!
 

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JimHoward said:
Check out these other threads where this has been discussed:

http://216.55.165.32/forums/showthread.php?t=2327&highlight=SCCA

http://216.55.165.32/forums/showthread.php?t=2195&highlight=SCCA

The car is a blast to drive, but would benefit greatly with upgraded shocks, swaybars, a more robust differential and racing tires.

The SCCA just officially announced that the GTO is classed in F Stock. Should be quite competitive in the right hands at least until the new Mustang GT is available (i.e. legal) next year.

Jim Howard
Assistant Regional Executive
Chief Solo Safety Steward
Washington D.C. Region
Sports Car Club of America

F class is the class the put me in - nfs: novice F stock. I'm hoping to go again july 3 or 4th.

Jim,
the last time I went I had 40# air in all tires. The car tends to understeer so I was wondering if lower pressure in the front, maybe 34#/40#, would help the rear kick out making the car easier to corner.
 

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mlc said:
F class is the class the put me in - nfs: novice F stock. I'm hoping to go again july 3 or 4th.

Jim,
the last time I went I had 40# air in all tires. The car tends to understeer so I was wondering if lower pressure in the front, maybe 34#/40#, would help the rear kick out making the car easier to corner.
All stock cars are designed to understeer for safety concerns, so, it is going to be difficult to tune that out of a car merely by changing air pressure in the tires.

The only real way to prevent (legally in F Stock) this is to put in adjustable shocks and to make the rear shocks stiffer. A rear swaybar would also help this, but that is not legal in F Stock.

In my experience in driving high horsepower, rear wheel drive, front engine cars, the best thing to do with a car that understeers is to slow the car down and not to let it understeer, it may feel slower, but the times on the clock will show quicker times.

Also, you should not have difficulty in kicking the rear end around in the GTO as it is now. The car has more than enough torque to break the rear tires loose on any autocross course, you just have to learn to judiciously apply throttle in the turns to get the rear end to rotate, without simultaneously inducing understeer and putting the car into a slide rather than rotating the car.

Lastly, with respect to tire pressures, I did not experiment with tire pressures with my GTO. However, the general rule of adding more pressure is generally very good advice. If you put too little pressure in the tire, as was pointed out earlier, the tire will rollover (off of the very useful tread) onto the (useless, low grip) sidewall and significantly adversely affect the contact patch.

Beyond that general rule, there is an optimum pressure for certain conditions for each tire that will vary with driver and course surface conditions. You will only find out that pressure through experimetation. After you find that optimum pressure, then going either direction will remove grip. In other words, you can remove grip by lowering pressure or by increasing pressue from that optimum point.

Although, presuming from the nature of your questions and assuming that you have not done much autocrossing before, my best advice is to concentrate on learning how to drive the car FIRST before you worry about how to tune the car.

Ask for an experienced driver to ride with you and to give you pointers and also ask experienced drivers if they don't mind taking you out for a ride. You will drop your times drastically by learning how to drive far faster than you will by worrying about tire pressures.

Jim
 

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thanks.
your on the mark about learning to drive better. I had 8 runs the first time. The first 4 were bad and no matter how hard I tried my time did not improve. I asked for, and recieved, and experienced driver to sit with me on the 5th run. On the next 3 runs I shaved .5 second each time! I was pumped after that.
 

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Rear sway bar is not legal in F-stock? How stock is stock then? I was thinking of putting headers on my goat. If that would prevent me from competing then I may not. I haven't had a lot of free time to read up yet, sorry about the lazy noobie type of question.
 

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sxty8goats said:
Rear sway bar is not legal in F-stock? How stock is stock then? I was thinking of putting headers on my goat. If that would prevent me from competing then I may not. I haven't had a lot of free time to read up yet, sorry about the lazy noobie type of question.
Well, just like any sanctioning organization there are car preparation rules. Cars in the stock classes are permitted to replace the shocks, front swaybar, air filter, seat belts, DOT legal tires, etc. I competed in the stock class for nine years and then jumped to the other side of the spectrum. I am in F modified class now and run a 125 hp, 1000 lb formula car.

I am not sure what class you would be in if you put headers in your car. You can borrow a rule book at your first event and look it up if you are truly curious.

By the way, don't get so hung up about what class you are in, it will not prevent you from competing as long as any modifications that you do are safe and pass the safety (aka tech) inspection.

Just go out and try it and don't worry about your class. In the 11 years that I have done this, I have yet to see a noobie come out and drive better than the folks who have been doing it awhile. This is a sport like many others, there are techniques to learn that are specific to autocross and you will not likely be competitive in any class that your car is legal in, stock, or modified or anywhere in between.

If you get addicted to the sport, like I am, then you can worry about what car preparations/modifications are legal for what class and what is not.

Have fun!

Jim
 

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JimHoward said:
Just go out and try it and don't worry about your class. In the 11 years that I have done this, I have yet to see a noobie come out and drive better than the folks who have been doing it awhile. This is a sport like many others, there are techniques to learn that are specific to autocross and you will not likely be competitive in any class that your car is legal in, stock, or modified or anywhere in between.

Have fun!

Jim
I have no delusions of showing up and taking home the gold. I was just concerned that I would disqualify myself or put myself in a class in which I would not be competent let alone competitive. I want to mod the car a bit although I'll be the first to admit that for my needs it is all the car I could want.
 

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sxty8goats said:
I have no delusions of showing up and taking home the gold. I was just concerned that I would disqualify myself or put myself in a class in which I would not be competent let alone competitive. I want to mod the car a bit although I'll be the first to admit that for my needs it is all the car I could want.
The way that runs are made where I run, it really doesn't matter what class you run as far as not being competant. Several different classes are run at the same time. Many cars that you would think would dominate are not that quick, and cars that seem underpowered are actually fast through the course. I have gone through the course quicker in a Mazda Protege than some drivers in their c5 corvettes, while other vettes wwere much faster. Don't expect the Goat to be that fast through the course, just have fun, and get the experienced drivers to ride with you and give you pointers. The only reason class is important is if you are really competitive and start taking peoples trophies and points.
 

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Keep in mind - autocross courses are really set up to take advantage of quick nimble cars. While the GTO is balls out fast compared to many little cars, it suffers in the 'nimble' category. Unfortunately there aren't really amateur races that take advantage of high speed cornering and long acceleration where the GTO would really shine. (Well, there are SCCA track classes - but they're much more involved than buy a helmet and show up to race).
Now - as far as understeer - remember as stated the cure is to hit the gas in a RWD car. As seen by the drifting performance, this car is very easy to kick the rear end out during cornering. Also remember that stupid commercial on speed with the kid and his dad at the dinner table "How many times to I have to tell you - you want to slow down and accelerate 'through' the apex."
Oh, and I've heard having somebody videotape your runs can be a help in improving.
Dan
 

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I'm sure that video taping can help, especialy it you get a good angle on the area you are having trouble with. The replay in Gran Tourismo2 realy improved my driving in that game. (No Joke)
 

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While I have seen many videos of autocross runs, one of the difficulties is finding a lens that has a large enough field of view. They might work while driving through a slalom or offset, however, when in a turn I often find myself looking out the side window and the videos that I have seen often do not show the course very well. Rather, you only see the hood of the car and straight in front of the car, and see the car moving from side to side.

There are small cameras now that you can mount to the side of the car, but I haven't viewed any videos from such cameras yet. They advertise with the camera mounted on a fender behind one of the front wheels. It is interesting to watch the dynamics of the tire, but its only interesting in the way that it was interesting when you mowed the lawn the first time, it gets old quick.

Videos are much more appropriate for road course driving where the turns are much less severe.

If you are looking for a good teaching tool, you might check out the Geez cube. It is an accelerometer and software package that allows you to analyze your runs. They were quite popular a few years ago.

Having said all of that, at the SCCA National Tour at FedEx Field and the ProSolo, out of some 350 nationally competitive drivers. I think that I only saw a handful of people video taping their runs and no-one had a Geez cube (that I know of).

Most people know what mistakes they are making when they are making it and try to avoid making the same mistake(s) during the next run.

Jim
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Calling All Cars

Hey, folks, this Solo2 autocross thing is awesome. I would like to invite all the GTO's within shouting distance to come to Radford University Dedmon Center, Radford, VA on August 15. Although I loved being the only GTO in Lynchburg (gangster1 didn't make it), it would be even more fun to race against other GTO's. Mark your calendars and let's make a day of it. Thanks.
 

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FLORIT said:
Hey, folks, this Solo2 autocross thing is awesome. I would like to invite all the GTO's within shouting distance to come to Radford University Dedmon Center, Radford, VA on August 15. Although I loved being the only GTO in Lynchburg (gangster1 didn't make it), it would be even more fun to race against other GTO's. Mark your calendars and let's make a day of it. Thanks.
Yeah, sorry florit, I had a sick child on my hands all weekend :barf: . We barely made it out of the house. I WILL get out racing very soon!!
 
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