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Discussion Starter #1
I am considering a Elise or Exige to race with the WRL. The WRL format is typically two days of 8 hours races.

More than a few people have questioned the viability of a Lotus for this type of racing which I do not understand, they seem to think the cars are "fragile". Am I missing something? Why would the Lotus be ok for "sprint" type racing but not for an 8 hour endurance race?
 

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I think that if the car is prepped well you will be ok BUT you will need the bigger gas tank at least on an SC model, I can only get about 1 hour out of a full tank, that seems like to little for an 8 hour.

Things that will maybe break in my experience in an 8 hour race:
-Wheel bearings, but may be better if not running slicks.
-Brake pads if you are on stock brakes, with the manual balance bar I easily get 8++ hours out of a set.

I've driven mine with an SC for 10/10ths for an hour before and it doesn't overheat or anything like that? I've never just broke a control arm or any of the other relatively fragile parts, even with track off's.

That all said, I would want to have quite a few track days on the car before I went to a WRL race to try to find any nagging issues. Of which I personally have had many.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I think that if the car is prepped well you will be ok BUT you will need the bigger gas tank at least on an SC model, I can only get about 1 hour out of a full tank, that seems like to little for an 8 hour.



Things that will maybe break in my experience in an 8 hour race:

-Wheel bearings, but may be better if not running slicks.

-Brake pads if you are on stock brakes, with the manual balance bar I easily get 8++ hours out of a set.



I've driven mine with an SC for 10/10ths for an hour before and it doesn't overheat or anything like that? I've never just broke a control arm or any of the other relatively fragile parts, even with track off's.



That all said, I would want to have quite a few track days on the car before I went to a WRL race to try to find any nagging issues. Of which I personally have had many.


Thanks, you have to run a 180 compound or harder tire, so the issue with slicks will not be there. Good advice on the tank,it was already a thought.
 

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What are the car eligibility requirement for WRL? I am running with Lucky Dog Racing in the Pacific Northwest. They have a 15 year old rule for car eligibility.

There is nothing about the Elise that will not allow it to run an 8+ hour endurance race. Like previously mentioned the gas tank may be too small, but there are aftermarket versions that increase the capacity.

I would not run an Elise based on the cost or potential cost to run. Light contact between cars will result in a lot of fiberglass work. An off track excursion could result in bent suspension mounts. If front chassis mounts are bent, it could scrap the chassis.

Just my opinion, these endurance series were meant for a more budget friendly approach. Unfortunately I see too much speed crepe and uncontrolled costs. I don't think the Elise is the type of car envisioned by the series creators, but if the rules allow it, so be it. If you do pursue this, start a build thread and keep us up to date with races.
 

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What are the car eligibility requirement for WRL? I am running with Lucky Dog Racing in the Pacific Northwest. They have a 15 year old rule for car eligibility.

There is nothing about the Elise that will not allow it to run an 8+ hour endurance race. Like previously mentioned the gas tank may be too small, but there are aftermarket versions that increase the capacity.

I would not run an Elise based on the cost or potential cost to run. Light contact between cars will result in a lot of fiberglass work. An off track excursion could result in bent suspension mounts. If front chassis mounts are bent, it could scrap the chassis.

Just my opinion, these endurance series were meant for a more budget friendly approach. Unfortunately I see too much speed crepe and uncontrolled costs. I don't think the Elise is the type of car envisioned by the series creators, but if the rules allow it, so be it. If you do pursue this, start a build thread and keep us up to date with races.
WRL is mean't to be between the "$500" and the pro series, so the elise would not be dramatically above the average car cost there, in fact there were NP01 cars at the last COTA event, though they were involved in a heavy crash.
 

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Well, if they are letting purpose built race cars run, then never mind, the Elise will fit right in and is more than capable of running endurance events. In fact, it probably needs very little modifications to run. Just expect high costs if contact occurs. Because the car is light, and components are built light, I would expect an Elise to be sidelined easier than some heavier, more robust cars. Something to consider when endurance racing.
 

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A number of Elise / Exige have done 12 hour races in in the Europe. A google search should bring up plenty of Info .
Or try the UK based "Seloc" Site for info. https://forums.seloc.org/
With Regards to Fuel Tanks , Harmon do a 55 litre unit Lotus Elise/Exige/2-Eleven
Pro alloy also offer a 60L with Anti Surge Pro Alloy Motorsport - Specialist alloy components - Elise, Exige, 211, Europa, VX220, V6 Exige Endurance 60ltr Fuel Tank
The ATL cell was 70L but unsure if this is still available. http://myelise.fr/entretien/entretenir_son_elise_files/reservoire.pdf
You will need a good system to ensure you use every litre of Fuel ... plus an accurate gauge. Keep in mind SC cars are not very happy when the fuel disappears. I also use a Fuel surge tank https://www.boefab.com/products/surge-tank

Not sure what performance level the car will be but should not need any more prep than any other race car .
Some think the Lotus is fragile due to the Alloy chassis and to a point this is correct , but in my experience if the accident is bad enough to cause a chassis to bend , then whether it is Alloy or Steel makes little difference. You will be out either way.
Heavier cars seem to get more damage because they are heavier and hit harder ...so try to avoid them !!
Its not even that expensive to purchase a new or secondhand chassis these days.

Possibly BOE or BlackWatch Racing would be a good place to start for info ... these guys are solid Lotus racers.

Dont forget some form of reliable oil starvation control will be required.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Guys thank you for the insight. I am now in the market for a Elise or Exige race car. If you know of one for sale, let me know. I out a WTB post in the Marketplace.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
On the off chance you don't already know: wirewheel.com

Thanks, they have one car of interest the 2005 Elise, the Lotus Sports and those GT Exiges are way to much for WRL/AER. The Elise is about right from a power to weight (NA engine) for these series. I know of a couple of other West Coast cars that competed in Lotus Cup for sale as well (5 to be exact). Given the Lotus Cup series seems to be on the decline I thought there might be a few more for sale that have not been advertised as of yet.
 
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When Lotus built their GT3 Exige, they specked out a Sadev transmission.

2 WD Transverse | SADEV

Though I'm not sure which one.

Lotus also used to offer a 70-liter and a 100-liter ATL tank. Those have to be ordered trough Lotus though...and they have an internal sump with 3 lift pump inside, so there is no need for those external surge tanks. Those external surge tanks are just a band-aid that takes up valuable space in your engine bay. Since you will be installing a larger fuel cell, do it right with the internal surge/sump tank.

As for oiling, dry sump is the only way to go...that is good for an extra 5 to 10 HP too!
 

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Just looking at others who have done it, any sort of "balance of performance" rules will kill you unless all of the cars of also lightweight. In series like PWC where the competition was Camaros and Mustangs, the Exige would be so castrated on the straights it was insane, but, because they'd made up ground on the tight sections, they still did relatively well. They had to work crazy hard for it though and were screwed on anything but a street circuit.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Just looking at others who have done it, any sort of "balance of performance" rules will kill you unless all of the cars of also lightweight. In series like PWC where the competition was Camaros and Mustangs, the Exige would be so castrated on the straights it was insane, but, because they'd made up ground on the tight sections, they still did relatively well. They had to work crazy hard for it though and were screwed on anything but a street circuit.


Thanks, I do appreciate al, the thoughts. The WRL has 5 classes, the top two are basically as follows

GPO, pwr to weight greater than 10.4
GP1, pwr to weight no greater than 10.5

The Elise is right on the boarder, they Calc using OEM weight and PWR. A stock Elise with a hardtop is [email protected] 190 which is exactly 10.5. You can then lighten the car almost as much as you want.

After you race you can petition to change class based on overall performance.

We could go almost any route, but why drive a boring car. I would rather race a Lotus and fight for 3rd than something else and try to win.

The real challenge will be to take a NA Elise to the top of the podium against those cars.
 

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Thanks, I do appreciate al, the thoughts. The WRL has 5 classes, the top two are basically as follows

GPO, pwr to weight greater than 10.4
GP1, pwr to weight no greater than 10.5

The Elise is right on the boarder, they Calc using OEM weight and PWR. A stock Elise with a hardtop is [email protected] 190 which is exactly 10.5. You can then lighten the car almost as much as you want.

After you race you can petition to change class based on overall performance.

We could go almost any route, but why drive a boring car. I would rather race a Lotus and fight for 3rd than something else and try to win.

The real challenge will be to take a NA Elise to the top of the podium against those cars.
The shortfall of power/weight is it does not account for aero. At a given power/weight, the aero effects are felt much greater in the light car than a heavier car - the drag on a mustang is not double that of the Elise despite having double the power and double the weight, for instance, so the top speed of the mustang is dozens of mph higher for the same power/weight. This ends up with the Lotus being given more power to catch up on fast tracks, but then it is overpowered on tight ones and the back-and-forth never ceases. If you are content with whatever hand you're dealt, then this all doesn't matter. The pro teams though have historically flown the white flag after just a few seasons of this
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I am happy to announce that I have purchased a race ready Elise to run with the WRL. Now I just need to get the car here.

Given that my plan is to endurance race the car, this one was the most "endurance" ready I could find. No cage modification will be needed and they have raced it in the last couple of FARA 500 races in Sebring and lapped their class. It was great meeting Hayes and the boys, they love Lotus more than anyone I know, and what a wealth of information.

Hopefully I will have it on the track soon to get acclimated then run my first WRL race with it in September at Brainerd.

Thank you all for your help and advice.

Rick
 

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Good purchase .. That should be a quick withweight at sub 1500lbs and 265 RWP.
Keep us posted on how you get on .
 
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