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Discussion Starter #1
Well, I tracked my Elise at Road Atlanta this weekend. I was signed up for Sunday but went down on Saturday to watch and hang out. Of course, I brought my helmet with me so I might passenger with a few people but instead I ended up driving 2 - 30 minute sessions on Saturday as well. The weather reports were looking wet so I wasn't too excited about learning my car in the rain. The car brought a lot of attention as no one had really seen one yet. When they were teching my car there were about 30-40 people checking it out. One instructor wanted me to pop the hood.

My first time out was in the wet. daytonaelise was with me as he had come up for the weekend. It had been drizzling for a while so there was a good amount of water on course. I know road atlanta very well as I've got about 8 track days (Audi TT) but obviously the Elise is a very different car. I eased through the turns, not taking any chances my first lap out. I came into turn 5 (uphill, left hand turn) and suddenly the back end just whipped around! There was no warning at all! I was probably at 1/2 throttle, 4000 rpms, and hadn't made any sudden steering changes as I was not pushing the corner at all. I put the clutch and brake to the floor and kept the car on the pavement. I ended up doing about a 220 degree spin. I quickly got back into the proper direction (no traffic) and drove my session with a little more caution. The back end did get a little slippy a few times but nothing like what happened in turn 5. At the end of the session the tires were barely even warm. I talked to a couple intructors about my spin and they thought I might have been taking it too easy and probably should have tracked out a little more. I've never had a car snap the way it did and I almost wonder if there was some oil down on the inside line of this turn. I'm not trying to pass the buck but this just baffled me!

Second Session, the racing line is dry now throughout the entire course, except turn 5! Great!!! My pace was picking up now but the one corner I'm leary about (and thinking about too much) is still very wet. Well, no spins and I got a bit more confident throughout the rest of the course. My tires definitely got warmed up more and the handling felt very neutral. Getting used to the lack of weight was a lot of fun. I was hitting between 130mph and 135mph in the back straight and was braking at around 150ft into turn 10a. I knew I could go in deeper but I was saving that for Sunday. After the session I noticed the tire wear looking as if I could reduce tire pressures. I started with 28 rear/26 front.

Sunday! No rain all day although there was cloud cover. There were some bad ass cars attending today. A Ferrari Challenge Stradale showed up, as well as a yellow 997 and a white GT3.

I started the day driving somewhat conservative but tried to progressively push harder throughout the day. I ended up taking about 4 psi out of the tires as the wear markers were never touched. About half way through the day I was starting to hear the tires more in the corners so I feel like I was optimizing some of the cars potential. I was very fast through 10a and b! I got my braking down to about the 80 ft marker and the car just tore up the S's. The two corners I still feel I could improve on are turn 1 and turn 12 (the last turn) These are both high speed corners with high g loads and I've seen many cars leave totalled from these turns. I didn't want to tell the story about how I ate *($& at my first track day in my new Lotus so I know I was leaving more room for error on these corners. I've been to the Dragon's Tail 4 times with the car so low speed corners are the norm and it's going to take some time and practice to feel more comfortable with the car at high speeds.

I took a lot of video this weekend, thanks to ChaseCam so I will be going through the DV tapes in the next few days (gotta work) so perhaps Randy can post some for everyone to check out.

The car peformed perfectly!!! I never had any brake fade and the most astonishing fact is that my engine temp never went over 192 degrees!!! I used to have to take cool down laps in my Audi but the Elise just laughed at what I gave it and begged for more!I do agree with the people who have been talking about the height of the brake pedal vs the accelerator as heel toeing is a bit awkward but I never got the sensation of having air in the lines. Tire wear was minimal (and even) and I drove the car 1 1/2 hours home with no unusual noise from the brakes and tires.

All in all, it was the best track day I've ever had. I took a lot of people for rides and the Elise made a lot of people smile this weekend. Thanks to Lamin-x for the door sill protection and Randy for the ChaseCam goodies. With the amount of people getting in and out of my car, the marks on the film rubbed off and I know it would have tore up my sills without it. (almost everyone was wearing heavy shoes!) There was a lot of interest in Randy's suction cup camera mount and bullet cam as well. I had several people come up to me on Sunday asking me to remind them the name of the company that makes that cool suction cup mount I was using. Randy sure has a good last name as everyone remembered the name! I had some technical difficulties with my camera so most of the video is taken in car rather then from the bullet cam.
 

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Dan, were you on your SSR's with the A048's?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Seems like you did pretty good on the back straight, did you feel like you had good power delivery there?
2nd gear was perfect for turn 7 which opens up to the back straight. As I started to get used to the gearing/car/track I found I could go into the turn at about 6400 rpms in 2nd and then ease into the throttle for a shift to 3rd at the outer curbing. If I really gave it everything in 2nd, 3rd, and 4th, I could almost hit 140 in 5th gear before I had to give the brakes a workout for turn 10.

Dan, were you on your SSR's with the A048's?
Yes I was. They were sticky as hell once they were warmed up, which didn't take long either. In less than one lap at 6/10ths I felt they were up to temp. I never took a temperature but your finger nail would sink into them after a session. Remember, I'm running these with LTS suspension. I never had any handling issues the entire day. The car felt super neutral. I know there are a few sections I can improve on (plenty of grip, I just need more guts) but I can only report back with positive info regarding this change to 195 tires with 6.5" wheels on the front. I know some people have warned against changing this but on both the street and now the track I can't find anything wrong.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I am sending a video clip to Randy right now. Randy, please post the link here. There were a lot of Vettes at the track (big surprise) and most of them were walking me pretty hard in the straights. This video shows how the Elise performs in the corners and in braking vs the Corvette. I do not know how much experience this driver had or what the car had done to it (loud as hell) but it seemed like a cool comparison. I stopped capturing because we got stuck behind traffic.
 

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more video please...:)...btw, that damn rearview mirror kinda blocking view...was that the lowest the camera could go on window??...anyway the suction mount could fall/giveway if camera abit larger than yours???
 

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Yum!
That was tasty.
excellent video resolution.
No NVH mucking with the camera.
The car sounded wonderful.
You looked nice and smooth.
Thanks for the vid.
m
 

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Discussion Starter #18
QUOTE]btw, that damn rearview mirror kinda blocking view...[/QUOTE]

I agree and would prefer to show video from the bullet cam but all the recording with it is bad. My camera's external input wouldn't work. With some adjustments I could probably get the camera a couple inches lower. The rear view mirror is a bit large for the Elise and I wouldn't mind changing it out. Didn't someone post on this subject?
 

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Dan, one of the instructors Eric Nissen sent me an e-mail with all the details asking if I knew you. He said you were getting a lot of attention. Oh he did mention your spin!
That Vette looks like he is braking at about the 250 point going into turn 10A, that seems very early.
 
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