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Discussion Starter #1
I've taken my silver '94 BPU to the track twice, and while I admit that it's a good balance between handling, braking and acceleration, I learned more about driving the line when I drove my dad's bone stock 95 SE. With 360WHP out of my car it's easier to "cover up" mistakes you make by stomping on the gas. In the SE, with some 200WHP on tap, it really forces you to drive the right line thru the corners so you keep speed losses to a minimum.
This reminds me of what the AMA Superbike guys said in the little pamphlet I got when they raced at Mid Ohio. To practice, those guys go up on a mountain road and race back down with their engines off. It forces them to learn the line and get a really intimate knowledge of where the bike is in relation to losing traction, which also shows them where they are losing time.
I know riding a bike is a whole different world than driving a car, but the idea of driving the line to haul ass instead of letting your machine do the work is very much the same.
 

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how true how true

....I think you can also learn to drive properly in a Supra but you need better self control to stay within your driving abilities until you can drive harder and still stay smooth and fast.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Nick, I'm sorry but could you rephrase that? I didn't understand what you mean.

It does remind me of another thing I've learned though. The Supra is so nose heavy that you really have to be focused when braking into corners and coming out at WOT. The tail tried to come around regularly in my Turbo and it tried several times in the SE, both during heavy braking and heavy acceleration.
 

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i know.

haven't a couple of us been saying this for years?

as a general rule, there is a reason the better the race car driver, the faster the car and series they run in.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Since not all of us are professional racecar drivers like Brian and Matt, :ugh2: I thought some people might actually learn something from this. And because there isn't a thread on the RR section titled this way, I figured it couldn't hurt.
 

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TempesTT said:
Nick, I'm sorry but could you rephrase that? I didn't understand what you mean.

It does remind me of another thing I've learned though. The Supra is so nose heavy that you really have to be focused when braking into corners and coming out at WOT. The tail tried to come around regularly in my Turbo and it tried several times in the SE, both during heavy braking and heavy acceleration.
Not everybody has the option or luxury of learning to drive in another car. For example, in my case my Supra is the only car I intend to track for the forseable future, and I enjoy doing so as an amateur purely for fun, not as a pro or any aspirations of ever being a pro driver. I think most people on this forum are in the same situation.

I think you can learn to drive the Supra at it's limits by not overdriving the car or your abilities; work up to it slowly and when you can drive consistently fast and smooth, you can step it up a bit more. That's what I've been doing for the last 6 years and will continue to do until I'm almost as fast as Leh ;) Based on what I see happening around me on the track, I think I am pretty good at the exit speed part of the equation so I'm working on keeping my entry speed as high as possible. At the HPDE events I attend, in the Advanced group there are typically a very few drivers who seem better and faster than the rest, but most drivers seem to just putz around in the middle of the pack ...sort of like most things in life.

There is not much those of us who want to maintain our Supras as reasonable street cars can do with the basic weight and balance of the Supra, but alignment and corner weighting can make a huge difference between how two Supras behave on the track.
 

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Sorry. My intention wasn't to belittle. I know this has been covered here before and is pretty much common sense, but I didn't mean to dismiss a personal recognition of this. I had a student about a year ago who was driving a 800hp supra with r compounds and stock brakes on a very fast track. It was thier first time out, and they couldn't control thier car, were scared by it, and frankily, didn't have too much fun as far as I could tell.

The best thing to go to the track with for the first time is a stock car with stock tires and stock power levels. In slower cars with street tires and street suspension, things happen more gradually and you have more time to react. race suspensions and race tires and more power make things happen faster. You have less time to react.
 

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turbomx5 said:
The best thing to go to the track with for the first time is a stock car with stock tires and stock power levels. In slower cars with street tires and street suspension, things happen more gradually and you have more time to react. race suspensions and race tires and more power make things happen faster. You have less time to react.
Absolutely. Some stock tires squeal like a raped chicken as they approach their limits of adhesion, and this provides an audible warning for you before you've exceeded them.

Bruce
 

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I agree with ^ and ^^

My first few times out were stock suspension, normal street tires, stock brakes, "almost BPU" with just a bleeder tee mod at low boost and nothing else. I had a ton of fun and then tried to up the ante a piece at a time. First it was coilovers, then one day we did a different alignment and corner weighting and I remember how different/better that felt; then I went to R compounds; of course I think I was learning to drive better along the way too. Now I like fried raped chicken if it's not too greasy. Didn't ZZTop say something about blue chicken? ...was it TV dinners?
 

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It was a little different for me.

I drive much better in a faster car. Its hard to explain but when im comming out of the turnes slow enough that I have to think about drifting to the outside, my timing gets all screwed up. Obviously it changes from turn to turn, but I drive alot better when im thinking about keeping the post apex section of the turn from throwing the car off the road. I look at it this way, from the time you enter a turn to the apex YOU push the car to the inside of the turn, from the apex to the exit of a turn the TURN pushed YOU. When im in a car that cant accelerate enough after the apex to throw the car out hard and fast I start thinking about steering too much and give it too much feedback.

On the other hand, I think alot can be learned from driving a car with tons of body roll and a loose suspension. It really lets you learn the physics of weight shifts and ballance, which is much harder to get used to with a tighter suspension.
 

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I agree that driving a "momentum" car can teach one a lot about the right line and methods to maintain maximum momentum that yes, hp can cover up those mistakes. I think that is a valid point. Another valid point is a high hp., high lateral g handling car can be an intimidating experience for novice students in that the car is so much car the student spends half their time trying not to spin or screw up. Not to mention what the instructor might have to go through.

In the last three DEs I have instructed at Barber, a GT3 nailed the armco coming out of turn 4. Not letting the car "run where it wants too" and too much loud pedal. A 600 hp mustang (supercharged) novice student eats it where? Out of turn 4 and into the armco crunching it bad. Why? He decided to try lots more gas that time coming over the blind rise of turn four and when the car settled back down, hey, it took a new vector.

Heck everyone shoud start with a miata and work their way up to the Supras or the GT3s. ohnoes:

Barry
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Matt: no problem! :) I'm sure this concept has been discussed at some depth in several other places, but I didn't think it would be a bad thing to have it in its own thread.

Matt, Bruce and Nick: I know what you mean. I have coilovers, cornerweight, 275/245x18 yokohomas on the BPU car, but the SE was completely stock. Actually I think my dad's tire choice was the cheapest, so you can imagine what that did for the performance on the track. The 16" rims on the SE made a difference over the 18's on my car as well, giving a special spongy feeling that made you really focus.
I liked the feel of the SE's suspension in stock trim. Since the SEs are lighter across the board and better balanced front to rear than the Turbos, and I think the spring rates are the same on SEs and Turbos (correct me if I'm wrong), the suspension was very compliant and the car felt more agile. It was stiff enough and responsive enough that it didn't feel like I was driving a 60s Cadillac, but to reinforce what "twistedmethod" said, the body roll was enough that I could tell exactly what the car was doing. That wasn't nearly as obvious in my car, with Tein SS coilovers at over double the stock spring rate and damping.

Twistedmethod, you bring a good point. I actually have the same problem when I'm playing GT4. :) When I'm driving something fast, I'm concentrating really hard and I make fewer mistakes. But when I'm driving a slow car, I have too much time in between corners to screw up, and that's what I do.
It's my opinion, though, that you're a better driver if you can drive any car fast. A good driver can drive a fast car fast, but a great driver can drive a slow car fast. This is the same concept as skiing to me. A good skiier can ski moguls just fine, but stays away from the greens, tree trails and shitty snow. A great skiier skis everything in the same form, whether it's windblown, chopped up snow that feels more like cement, or it's light and fluffy powder thru the trees.
 

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twisted and tempestt-

I think you might be missing something. The faster car may make you more "focused" but what is really happening is that I suspect you are making similar mistakes in both cars. however, in the faster car, the mistakes happen much faster and are covered up by the horse power. when you are in a momentum car, the effects of the screw up are felt much longer.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I realize that...that was my original point for starting this thread.
 

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turbomx5 said:
twisted and tempestt-

I think you might be missing something. The faster car may make you more "focused" but what is really happening is that I suspect you are making similar mistakes in both cars. however, in the faster car, the mistakes happen much faster and are covered up by the horse power. when you are in a momentum car, the effects of the screw up are felt much longer.
Try competing in a Time Trial (back then Solo 1. Ok actually an outlaw Solo 2) at a speed track like Roebling Road back in 1981 in a Ford Fiesta S (yes there was an S model, different springs, sway bars etc). I competed against a Volkwagen Rabbitt in I think it was G stock and WAY before anyone thought of R compounds. Hell if you sneezed it slowed that car down. Any frickin mistake cost you dearly yet you had to keep the car on the edge of disaster to get your good lap times. I got in trouble because I would roll up the window except when I drove by race control. When you are whipping those little mice to hit just 90mph taking out some drag with a rolled up window just makes sense. Well until the event chair tells you he knows what I am doing and to stop it. Fiesta beat the Rabbitt thought. Woohoo. It was fun even that slow.
 

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a slower car also forces you to be aware of 'all' your surroundings, including what comes up behind you :)

my 'slow' car was stock 240sx w/ KA24DE & open diff. No doubt in my mind that car made me a better driver.

n
 

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speaking of other cars, Nils -

Robi wants me to buy an evo his customer is selling.

DMS50's
turbo back and a reflash
leather
low miles
he says I should us it as my daily driver. lol
 

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turbomx5 said:
speaking of other cars, Nils -

Robi wants me to buy an evo his customer is selling.

DMS50's
turbo back and a reflash
leather
low miles
he says I should us it as my daily driver. lol

do it.
 

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turbomx5 said:
twisted and tempestt-

I think you might be missing something. The faster car may make you more "focused" but what is really happening is that I suspect you are making similar mistakes in both cars. however, in the faster car, the mistakes happen much faster and are covered up by the horse power. when you are in a momentum car, the effects of the screw up are felt much longer.
Agree with this and the similar statements before. I've only driven my Supra on the track, but I turned the boost down (off) and left traction control on the first few times. There are way too many things to think about and things to screw up out there to do it with a "fast" car. Driving "slow" takes off some of the pressure and lets you learn the simpler things first. I have gradually been upgrading my car, but only after/while upgrading my driving. I admit it was fun the first time I put the R compounds on, but I realized the increased potential for disaster pretty quickly. Mine don't squeal now before the limit, and that would have been really bad news when I started out!
You are never wasting your time when you are learning.
 
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