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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello LT. I don't post here too much but I am a proud owner of an elise.

I bought an elise for a few reasons. They look fantastic and when I got the chance to have a bit of a test drive round a small circuit for 3 laps I literally fell in love. I knew this would be the most impractical car I could set my eyes on but I'm only 21 and I don't NEED a car so I thought why not. I've had my 111r for 4 months now and since the weather is starting to begin to improve here in England I would love to give myself the opportunity to take it to some tracks. I try to drive carefully on the roads since I'm not an idiot.

Anyway I created this thread for a reason. Obviously we have all been track newbies at one point and to be honest I am a little nervous, I have searched the Internet somewhat and I think that some help from you guys you could make me feel more comfortable.

I'm going to get the car serviced in a couple weeks as I want it to be in good condition for the track, I am giving it to a dealer who is a friend of mine who has raced cars and been an instructor for many years. He suggests maybe some toyo888's to get a bit more out of the car.

I think I probably need some training at a beginners track day, the thought of some serious racers in my rear mirror all the time makes me kinda nervous. I also don't want to be a danger on the track to other drivers.

So LT, give me some piece of mind. What tips do you have for a newbie on the track. Is there anything I should know about my 04' 111r when taking it to the track?

Thanks

Dan:)
 

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Hi Dan. You are a very smart 21 yr old and yes, you should be proud to own an Elise, especially at your age. If you do a search, you'll find all the answers you need and more regarding tires and car setup. Don't worry about the faster guys. Most track days have different sessions for beginners so you might be the one hot on someone's tail :D. Don't worry and just go out and have some fun.
 

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I got my '04 111R at 21 as well :) Welcome to the club :D

I've not tracked mine yet but do intend to once I have a second car in case I break it :p

Personally I would not make ANY changes to your car setup wise. Just get it serviced and take it on track. After many sessions you'll probably start finding the limits of the car and then you will be able to decide how best to upgrade it...

I have heard that the standard 111R suspension is quite soft for track use and that if you fit semi-slick tyres to it you will overload the suspension quite easily. You really need to fit stiffer springs/dampers and ARB (like the Sport Pack suspension) if you are going to run sticky tyres.

I wouldn't use a dealer as they rarely ever do all the stuff they bill you for... for instance most dealers wont even bother to clean the air filter but still charge you for it. But since you know the guy maybe he will do the job properly.
 

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The best thing for me on my first day was to let my instructor drive my car. I'm a visual learner and to be able to see exactly what I should be doing and where I should do it was the greatest help to me ever.
 

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The best thing for me on my first day was to let my instructor drive my car. I'm a visual learner and to be able to see exactly what I should be doing and where I should do it was the greatest help to me ever.
Agreed...my first day on track, my instructor helped me a ton.
He will show you the racing line which is most important when you are beginning on the track.

r888's are great r compounds on the track with excellent grip, but the A048's are plenty grippy as well.
 

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...i wouldn't change anything from stock for the first season, with the one possible exception keeping separate sets of track/street wheels to better budget for tire consumption, depending upon how seriously you intend to pursue the hobby...
 

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I tracked my 05 stock Elise for the first time 1 month ago (this was also my first track day too) with the A048's (with 3,000 miles on) and they worked perfectly.

Some things I found useful:

Take a tire pressure gauge, make sure you run your tires at the pressure listed; you will need to let air OUT after you first session and probably your second as well. Remember to put air back in when you head home!

Tape up your side panels from front wheel arch to back on both sides (remembering to go under the car to the chassis)...this area takes a hammering. I also tapped part of the bonnet and lights are a must.

A stupid thing but remember to drink water...helps prevent you from getting tired. Redbull for your drive home at the end of the day...you will be knackered!

Go out without an instructor for your first session, then take one out in your second...the difference is amazing and will really help you build confidence!

Go easy in your last session of the day, you'll be tired.

Above all have fun! It's a great feeling and just go with what you are comfortable with...you have nothing to prove to anyone else.
 

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enjoy and listen and learn to advice given. if there are other lotus there - have a chat and if they are experienced go for a lap with them and watch what they do.

start the day slow and learn and develop and you'll find you'll finish the day quite quick.

do watch your mirrors as well though - the last track day i went to had some radicals tearing around at least 10secs quicker than anything else there!!
 

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we had an instructor who said nothing for 6 laps - then drove your car for 6 laps, then swapped again. - once again, the difference is amazing!!

and take lots of food!! tracks tend to be desolate places on the food front!!
 

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Post some photos if you can.

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Tape up your side panels from front wheel arch to back on both sides (remembering to go under the car to the chassis)...this area takes a hammering. I also tapped part of the bonnet and lights are a must.
Grrr, I'm so lazy but I don't want my car getting scratched. My brother put a special coat on my car a few months ago making it very difficult to scratch, can't remember what it's called now. I left my car with a small company to give it a quick valet, returned 40 mins later to see theyve scratched it against a white van when parking it, I was about to go crazy when I gave it a wipe with my finger and the white paint came off without leaving a mark, phew.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Well, I've just started reading some of the help threads listed in your post milehitom and I feel nervous. I am guilty of not knowing much about my car and wouldn't know where to start with some pre-track preperation. Maybe this is a good time to learn, maybe I shouldn't be doing this altogether?
 

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It's true there's a lot of info in those threads, but don't sweat it. Take it slow, both off and on the track the first couple of times. The more you're there, the more you'll learn. It's all about "seat time." Let 'em know you're new to the track experience. You'll be surprised how the more experienced folks will help you out (because it helps them out once you're out there).

And there is nothing like one-on-one instruction! Even if you can get a ride or two with experienced drivers (should your track day allow it), you'll benefit greatly. Build your confidence one step at a time. If you really have the desire, you'll have the follow-through. You'll learn as much about yourself as you will about the car!

Tom
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Sorry for posting this in the wrong section.

After doing a ton of reading of some old threads I don't seem too worried.

I am having my car serviced pretty soon and will get them to put some new brake fluid in.

Seems the other important stuff is to check tyre pressure, tape up the lights and in front of the rear wheels, get a helmet, lots of water and don't be ignorant to more experienced drivers/instructors.

Thanks everyone!
 

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and repeat after me: "it's not a race, it's not a race..."
right Feff?;)
 

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Scrote,

Where are you located?!? Put it in your sig. This will give guys in your area a chance to recommend particular clubs or schools for you. What tracks are close to you?

Absolutely take a beginner school. You'll spend some time in a classroom and also have someone in the car full time coaching you. You'll likely want an instructor with you for your first 2 or 3 track days. I've done 20-25 days now and I still put an instructor in the car for a session or two every now and then.
 

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Dan -

Stickier tires might make you a tiny bit faster in the short term.

If you want to get good, start out and stay on the less sticky tires for a while. You will learn a lot more, and then you will be that much faster a year later when you do finally upgrade to R compounds. You will be a better driver than those who started out with them.

xtn
 

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Hello LT. I don't post here too much but I am a proud owner of an elise.

I bought an elise for a few reasons. They look fantastic and when I got the chance to have a bit of a test drive round a small circuit for 3 laps I literally fell in love. I knew this would be the most impractical car I could set my eyes on but I'm only 21 and I don't NEED a car so I thought why not. I've had my 111r for 4 months now and since the weather is starting to begin to improve here in England I would love to give myself the opportunity to take it to some tracks. I try to drive carefully on the roads since I'm not an idiot.

Anyway I created this thread for a reason. Obviously we have all been track newbies at one point and to be honest I am a little nervous, I have searched the Internet somewhat and I think that some help from you guys you could make me feel more comfortable.

I'm going to get the car serviced in a couple weeks as I want it to be in good condition for the track, I am giving it to a dealer who is a friend of mine who has raced cars and been an instructor for many years. He suggests maybe some toyo888's to get a bit more out of the car.

I think I probably need some training at a beginners track day, the thought of some serious racers in my rear mirror all the time makes me kinda nervous. I also don't want to be a danger on the track to other drivers.

So LT, give me some piece of mind. What tips do you have for a newbie on the track. Is there anything I should know about my 04' 111r when taking it to the track?

Thanks

Dan:)
If you get R compounds, you should consider upgrading to race pads for track days.

-G
 
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