I have to take it easy on my stock Yokos in the rain, but it's not that bad. It's just that you have to drive it like you would a van or station wagon. I don't think your LSS tires will handle much differently in the rain, especially since they're relatively new and have tread.
If it was wet roads and a light rain, you might be OK. With thunderstorms, who knows, but I certainly wouldn't experiment with such a long drive - you could be stuck a long way from home! Save the learning process for some time when you can just drive around the block.
Yes, they're new tires, and yes, there's plenty of tread - just not very many *grooves*!
the problem is Im stuck doing it. We have our first service tomorrow in Ohio, or my husband cant autocross the car on Sunday. He was going to take it down to Altanta but something came up so I promised I'd take it to Ohio myself. Now Im sitting here worried about the rain.... Im supposed to leave in 5 hours.
Im worried about hydroplaning since these tires dont have regular tread.
I should add one thing - I have no idea what I'm talking about. Meaning, I've never driven a car with those tires. I'm just basing this on what I've heard second-hand, and what I learned driving with worn high performance tires on my MR2 in inclement weather.
Well, if you have to do it, I'm sure it can be done. As you know, standing water will be your biggest concern. If you're facing thunderstorms, perhaps you could leave early, such that you can stop and wait for any bad storm to pass rather than be driving in it? Try following a large truck, stay in their tirelines as they clear water from the road. Go around corners as if the roads were covered in ice (SLOW!).
I have the Yoko A032's and have driven them in very heavy rain on the highway... at 50mph. I had no problems at that speed but I think would be pretty nervous above 65. This is on a 3rd Gen RX-7 but they are 255's all around. The car is heavier of course but the tires a quite a bit wider (I think that would make it easier to hydroplane??). Just take it easy and you will be fine.
OFL, Be safe! your life or even the Elise is not worth an autocross. Re-schedule! The other thing I also find is that driving the Elise in the dark with the top up is a lot more nerve wrecking because you have so much less visibility. When the top is down you can see soo much more around you that it gives you a lot more confidence but you obviously can't do that in Ivan's pooring rain!
Just to add to what others have said, I've driven the A032Rs in the rain on my Z-car. Its not a lot of fun, and I take it very slow. The main thing I'll add is: put your flashers on. The last thing you need is some bozo plowing into the back of your because they think if the have a 4wd SUV its safe to go 90 in a thunderstorm.