The Lotus Cars Community banner

1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
803 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I was invited to join the TEAM (track events, alotta Miatas) at Thunderhill. I have run Thunderhill in my Seven but it was some time ago. I spent time re-learing the track and getting to know the Elise. It was tremendous fun.

I have run a couple of autocrosses and found the car well balanced with the LSS package. Thunderhill has many blind corners and several crests which can unsettle the car dramatically. There are also a couple of off camber turns. It is a technical track and great fun in an Elise. Never once did I feel the Elise was unsettled. I always felt in control and my limits were reached long before the Elise's. I even hit 127 mph on the front straight!

I have more pictures, a description of a lap at the track, and some observations on my website at:

http://www.sandsmuseum.com/cars/elise/diary/oct04/elisediaryfour.html

This car is absolutely amazing! I have not had this much fun in a long time...

Michael
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
587 Posts
sandsmuseum said:
I even hit 127 mph on the front straight!

Wow, that is impressive, nice driving. I really didn't think the Elise would have enough muster to reach that kind of speed on the straight. You must be carrying a lot of speed out of T15. Can you stay flat out from the exit of 14? I always end up needing to lift a little bit or I run wide in my M3.

Can't wait to get my Elise to Thunderhill :).

Do you know what kind of times you were turning, if you don't mind my asking? Inquiring minds want to know what this car can do...

Best,
John
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
803 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
answers to questions

I do not know my times. I deliberately try to stay away from "racing". In this case, I was trying to remember the track, not having driven it for four years, and trying to learn a new car.

My first laps were agonizingly slow. Later laps were great except for turns three, eight, and fifteen. I could not(!) carry much speed through 15 before the straight, and I was always braking early for one. So the 127 was purely the Elise acceleration!

And no way could I stay flat out after exiting 14! I never did get comfortable with 15 because it seemed like the exit was narrower than the entrance and I was always running out of room.

For those of you that do not know Thunderhill, the combination of 14 and 15 is a turn of 180 degrees. However most of those degrees are in 14 as it turns more than 90 and you need to seek a really late apex. And 15 is much less than 90 degrees and so you can apex "sooner".

Michael
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,308 Posts
That looks and sounds like a challenging track! Thanks for the info. As an Elise driver who has tracked my car already I know it's going to take some time to adjust to this car. That's one of the great things about it though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
40 Posts
It was a fun day. I was there with my Celica. I oddly enjoy turn 2 alot, it is very basic, but you can realy gauge your speed/consistancy through it easily.

For those worrying about oil temps on the 2zz-ge I did not see very high temperatures. The highest I saw was around 230* F at mid day. I was on track for an entire hour a the end of the day (4PM-5PM) and the oil temp never strayed above 210-215* F.
I have a Mocal oil cooler with sandwich plate adapter on my Celica. I was using Redline 10w-40 Motor oil. I will be getting a Used Oil Analysis done on the oil.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,938 Posts
127 on the front straight -- my god. I just did my first day at Thunderhill this afternoon (with the SCCA ... the only other track I've been on is Sears)... I never did get 14/15 perfect, but even my best exits out of 15 had me at about 95mph at the braking zone for 1 (they set up a chicane right before 1). But 127!?!

Anyhow, fantastic track. I like it more than Sears, and I agree -- can't wait to take the Elise there. The elevation changes make Sears feel like a flat track, the terrain gave me better landmark spotting, and the ample runoff room was heartening. I also appreciate the sheer number of corners.

BTW: I concur on turn 2. It's super-simple, but once you take your set in it, you can really explore your car's balance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
587 Posts
JonM3Coupe said:
127 on the front straight -- my god. I just did my first day at Thunderhill this afternoon (with the SCCA ... the only other track I've been on is Sears)... I never did get 14/15 perfect, but even my best exits out of 15 had me at about 95mph at the braking zone for 1 (they set up a chicane right before 1). But 127!?!

Anyhow, fantastic track. I like it more than Sears, and I agree -- can't wait to take the Elise there. The elevation changes make Sears feel like a flat track, the terrain gave me better landmark spotting, and the ample runoff room was heartening. I also appreciate the sheer number of corners.

BTW: I concur on turn 2. It's super-simple, but once you take your set in it, you can really explore your car's balance.
The chicane makes a huge difference. I think I hit about 125 mph (indicated) on the front straight in my M3.

T-hill is really fun but Sears I like Sears more. It just keeps you more "busy"... T-hill has lots of sweepers and a few long-ish straights that make things seem slower paced.

Glad you enjoyed your first trip to Thill!

- John
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,938 Posts
suv_bait said:
The chicane makes a huge difference. I think I hit about 125 mph (indicated) on the front straight in my M3.

T-hill is really fun but Sears I like Sears more. It just keeps you more "busy"... T-hill has lots of sweepers and a few long-ish straights that make things seem slower paced.

Glad you enjoyed your first trip to Thill!

- John
Well, it's been 18 months since I ran Sears -- if only I could run the tracks back-to-back to make a more informed review.:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
72 Posts
Nice writeup and amazing speed. I don't think I've gone over 100 on the front straight, even in my turbo'ed 240sx. That's just smoking fast.

Are you going to be running with TEAM on January 1st at Sears? I might be up there and would love to check out the Elise. Maybe get a ride along? :D

-Hong
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
803 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
continued exploits

TEAM runs the front straight without a chicane. Also since you can run turn one at 90mph, I found I can leave braking until much later than I expected. You only need to scrub off 40mph. This is an area where I need to practice as I rarely use my brakes extensively. Even a throttle lift at 120 will allow you to slow significantly.

I participated in the TrackMasters event at Sears in November and found the Elise again well behaved. There was some carnage in the advanced group and so I spent more time trying to stay out of everyone's way.

I found the original tire pressure settings of 1 or 2 psi over stock cold were about right. Later in the day, when pressing it significantly, the front was rolling over too far and could stand with an extra pound or two. I suspect it was happening under compression going up to turn two. I might have just been going a bit faster as well, he says smiling...

No, I will not be at the Jan 1 event with TEAM as it has been cancelled. However I will run the future events with them at Thunderhill as I find they are Elise friendly. Anyone is welcome to a ride...

Now, I just wish I could get an event at Laguna Seca...


Michael
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
607 Posts
Re: continued exploits

sandsmuseum said:
Now, I just wish I could get an event at Laguna Seca...
Michael
I'll be at Laguna Seca 1/21/05 at a Speed Ventures event. Hope to see you there!

www.Speedventures.net
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
72 Posts
Re: continued exploits

sandsmuseum said:
No, I will not be at the Jan 1 event with TEAM as it has been cancelled. However I will run the future events with them at Thunderhill as I find they are Elise friendly. Anyone is welcome to a ride...

Now, I just wish I could get an event at Laguna Seca...
Cool. Hope to see you there then. I like running with TEAM since they like MR2 Spyders too. They are very roadster friendly!

My friend is doing a track day this Friday at LSR. I think it's Green Flag or something. Looks like rain though...

-Hong
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,684 Posts
hong man! how are ya?
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top