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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I tracked my Elise again today at Road Atlanta. The day started off with a 7am drive through light snow flurry's. As you can imagine, I was really thrilled with the weather conditions as driving over a twisty mountain with the A048's was a little unnerving. I arrived a little late but still got my car teched and ready in time to drive. The weather was around 45 degrees and there were periods of rain and high wind in the morning. Luckily, the afternoon was dry. As recommended by some of you I started with lower tire pressures than the previous visit. (22psi front / 25 psi rear) I was so happy with the setup I never changed it all day. The side wall wear was perfect and tire wair seemed consistent. Unfortunately, the day started with a wrecked boxster that somehow lost it in turn 4 doing a lead follow warm up! I was right behind the boxster when our group was ok'd to leave the pits but someone's timing was off and another group caused me, the last car, to have to stop and fall in behind another group. 2 laps later the boxster was totalled. The driver wasn't hurt but the track was littered with all sorts of parts. Any wreck usually changes the vibe as it causes you to think a little too much but I was really wanting to improve my driving today so I put it behind me and took almost 4 seconds off my lap times. Again, I'm running Lotus stock suspension with SSR's and A048's (not recommended by some) and found the setup to be completely neutral. At times, I would intentionally induce oversteer just for the fun of it and found it to be perfectly controllable. I did a lot of passing and found the quicksilver exhaust to be addictive. It just wails when in cams and often pops and gurgles when shifting. A lot of people commented on how great it sounded. By the end of the day the exhaust had 700 miles on it and seems a little louder now than when it was new. Perhaps I spent too much time driving at 9/10ths but I was a little tired of the noise during the ride home. Maybe the 12 hour day with 4 hours of sleep was the cause but it seems to have gotten louder.

The handling just keeps amazing me! I had a guy in a spec miata yell, "Man, that car is f**%ing fast!!! Not to brag but I found myself passing a lot of porsche 911's (one turbo who was pushing it)an evo with mods, and a lot of vettes. Of course there were a few vette drivers (z06's) who pulled by me on the straights but couldn't out brake me or pull me in the corners. Once these tires are heated up I must say they really stick and communicate if they start to lose grip.

I started off in group B (the slower of 2 groups) but found I was driving a lot faster than the other 27 cars in this group. For 10 minutes straight I was behind a c5 corvette that was braking 400-600 feet too early for corners and was so unsmooth with the steering and pedals I was sure he was going to cause a wreck. He was very fast on the straights (passing zones) and made it impossible for me to pass. Finally, he let me by after flashing my headlights at him for 4 laps. Within 1/2 lap I was so far ahead I couldn't see him at all. As luck would have it I got 1 lap without traffic before the checkered flag came out. I requested to be moved into group A (12 cars!) and had a great rest of the day. The tire pressures worked great and the car ran perfrectly! I video taped with my ChaseCam so if Randy can post a link or two that would be great. By the way, I never once ran a cool down lap because I never needed to! The temp ran between 190 and 192 all day and the brakes never showed any sign of fade. I was using the brakes hard on a consistent basis but never experienced a bit of fade. (I was hitting 135-140 on the back straight and braking at 80-100 ft marker at 10a time and time again. Since I've ran the car twice I ordered Shinoo's brake lines and plan on flushing the stock fluid for Motul. Does anyone know if Lotus uses high temp fluid already or should I change to Motul. I've had good luck with it in the past.

Overall it was a great day and the car performed perfectly. After watching the videos I can see I improved considerably in corners 1, 4, and 12. They are all fairly high speed corners and the first event was a big learning curve. My last car was a TT so entry speed wasn't so critical as it is in the Elise. I was coming down turn 12 with full commitment (WOT, 4th Gear) and realized I was apexing the curb a bit to close. Rather than change my line, I stayed in it and got the right side of the car to go a little airborn. It cause me to track out a little more than I hoped but the car stayed planted and I found myself getting the most speed I've seen going down the next straight.

MickOpalak showed up with his Ardent Red Elise and took a few pics. Damn fine car. I'm dreaming of a hardop now! ****, since I don't have a single photo of the day could you post a few here?

I hope to get into VIR and Birmingham this spring and summer so hopefully I will know my car well enough to start trying new courses. If anyone is interested in driving any of these tracks, please let me know. It would be helpful to have another Elise on track, the place I think it was truly meant to be.

By the way, a few people told me they saw a slight fuel ignition coming out of my exhaust tips during certain down shifts. The inside of the tips are a little white. Is this good or am I running lean or rich?
 

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Dan, let me get this straight...you were at 130-140mph on starights and you started braking at 80-100ft???...wow, Im abit suprised the car brakes so well...was the turn at end of this starightaway a 90 degree turn or a fast sweeping type of turn?...also, if the brakes worked so well w/out any fade, why upgrade to SS lines and fluid?...I find the SS lines to be abit overarted myself(or I should say instead it didnt seem to help my brake feel at all with my old car).
 

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I hope to get into VIR and Birmingham this spring and summer so hopefully I will know my car well enough to start trying new courses. If anyone is interested in driving any of these tracks, please let me know. It would be helpful to have another Elise on track, the place I think it was truly meant to be.
Nice write-up, Dan.

Regarding VIR, I'll be instructing there for Mazda Drivers Association and Tarheel Sports Car Club. I'll be at VIR with MDA March 26-27 and June 18-19. Also likely at the new Shenandoah Circuit at Summit Point Sept. 3-4.

THSCC VIR dates are Feb. 12-13 and April 9-10; also at the new/old Rockingham road course June 4-5 and Sept. 10-11.
 

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Also I'll likely be instructing for Audi Club at VIR Nov. 19-20, and at Roebling Road in Savannah May 21-22. Possibly a few more dates (Alfa Club, Chin Motorsports) too. Hope to see you on track!
 

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Nice write-up, thanks! I've heard others say that the QS exhaust
pops with downshifts but it shoots flames too?! Awesome!, I can't wait!:clap:
 

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Discussion Starter #9
if the brakes worked so well w/out any fade, why upgrade to SS lines and fluid?...
MACT,

I am used to stiff pedal feel and when it comes to brakes I believe in massive overkill.
 

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Road Atlanta

Hey Dan,
Excellent article!!! Sound like you had fun and were quite brave with those cold temps!!!! What were your lap times there if you'd care to share them. I want to get an idea how the S2 compares to my Exige. I have driven there only once and loved it. Can't wait to get back. Please let me know of any events that are there that run for at least two days and where you get plenty of seat time. It's a long haul for me and is not worth it unless I get to drive the tires off my car. I did an HSR event there and just didn't get out enough............Good going!!!!!
 

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eliseowner2b said:
By the way, a few people told me they saw a slight fuel ignition coming out of my exhaust tips during certain down shifts. The inside of the tips are a little white. Is this good or am I running lean or rich?
Randy had blue flames pop out his QS exhaust also.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
What were your lap times there if you'd care to share them.
I didn't put a lap timer in the car as I was already testing a g-force/gps tracking device and had my chasecam plugged into a splitter. I didn't want to complicate things any more than I already had but I was told by someone that I was running around 1:50. I am waiting to get the actual track mapping data which will show my laps in real time. It (traq-mate) will show the g-forces as well. After watching some of the video I found my laps to be between 148.4 and 151.5. That's with the track temp very low so I'm hoping for better times when the weather gets warmer.
 

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Dan, blue smoke means oil. Blue flames means too rich.

And yes, I was told I was shooting blue flames under WOT. :)


The video camera does function well as a lap timer.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
I see a video in the future! A ChaseCam on the back bumper pointing toward the tips? That would be nice mixed with some Pink Floyd.

Is running rich ok?
 

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does it mean more airflow would help add a bit of power? i guess i would have just assumed it meant that there are some very hot gases coming out that pipe!
 

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Thanks Dan and **** for the write-up and photos
(and Kyle for the edited photos)
 

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Discussion Starter #18
2 videos have been sent to Randy. They should be posted here in a while.
 

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At least there's no plastic or fiberglass in close proximity to the exhaust tips. I've seen an NSX with cat bypass pipes melt a sizable chunk of its rear bumper. Looking forward to the video.
 

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JimK said:
At least there's no plastic or fiberglass in close proximity to the exhaust tips. I've seen an NSX with cat bypass pipes melt a sizable chunk of its rear bumper. Looking forward to the video.
I was wondering about that. I was running Talladega GPR in Sept. when a turbo Viper GTS shot a big flame and caught the back bumper on fire. It looked like the entire rear of the car was going up in flames, and then the fire just died.

Great write up Dan!
 
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