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Thread: The "Big" Question for Early Stage Tracksters

  1. #21
    Senior Member bellwilliam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by azngotmilk View Post
    how many people here actually dd their miatas?
    real story, about 2-3 years ago, at Buttonwillow. it was a Friday, day before Miata and s2k Challenge. every s2k were driven to track, every Miata were towed to track........
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    I'm a biased AP1 owner, so to me the s2k seems like the better car for dual duty. Largely because it's a better street car than the Miata. But I can definitely see the upside of doing a Miata instead, especially if the ultimate goal is w2w racing with the lower cost of consumables. It's taken me a long time to learn to drive my AP1 and I have a long way to go, maybe I would've learned more quickly if I started with a Miata. Or maybe I'm just a slow learner
    AP1 S2000 w/KW V3s on 255 RS3s (square setup)

  3. #23
    The Real Captain Slow Red_5's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimt View Post
    You are comparing a driver to car. Put Emilio in his S2K and he would have eaten up some Corvettes too. In fact, I use to make that part of my balanced diet at Willow Springs.
    William said that Miatas are too slow and I was giving an example of how a well driven Miata setup properly even with a junkyard motor could be plenty fast. The Rental still had an interior at that point and 200 pounds of dead weight in the passenger seat and we passed plenty of faster cars on the track. Yes, much of that was due to Emilio's skill but the car still has to be able to accelerate. Another benefit that I mentioned earlier is that Miatas are relatively cheap to fix and replace which allow you to wander closer to the edge with less consequences.

    True, few people here DD their track Miatas but some of that is because they're cheap enough to have as a track only vehicle. When I took my Miata to the track at first, it was still a street car and I drove it there. Eventually they end up being uncomfortable so towing becomes the better option.
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    Administrator ucfbrett's Avatar
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    People will daily drive them till they install a tight race seat. Then it becomes more trouble than it's worth.

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    Senior Member Gian's Avatar
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    There is always a Nissan 240sx. Great handling, lots of JDM parts as well as aftermarket support. As long as you don't go to exstreem very streetable.
    That's not a Typo, I just can't spell no so well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gian View Post
    There is always a Nissan 240sx. Great handling, lots of JDM parts as well as aftermarket support. As long as you don't go to exstreem very streetable.
    It's a drift car. How often have you seen a fast one "grip" driving?
    The deposed former Sheriff of trackHQ . . .

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  7. #27
    Senior Member robburgoon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigHapa View Post
    Largely because it's a better street car than the Miata.
    Like hell it is!

  8. #28
    Senior Member 0.o slow 1.6's Avatar
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    B16 crx or a type r
    Milkshake!!!!!!!!!!!!

  9. #29
    http://www.trackhq.com/Banners/yellowsitesponsor.gif emilio700's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gian View Post
    There is always a Nissan 240sx. Great handling, lots of JDM parts as well as aftermarket support. As long as you don't go to exstreem very streetable.
    True they're cheap and handle nice but are very slow. They barely make more wheel horsepower than a 99-05 Miata but weigh 500lbs more. The USDM version had a 2.4L SOHC engine form the truck. The SE version
    had a DOHC version of the same engine but still only made 20 more HP than a 99-05 Miata. To make them halfway fun, you have to spend a fair amount of money on the engine and there is almost no knowledge base for track use.
    Every shop will be a drift oriented and will suggest oddball modifications that have no use on the track. An E30 makes way more sense if you want a cheap, slow but decent handling sedan/coupe.
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    But obviously I just dont get it. -fatbillybob

  10. #30
    http://www.trackhq.com/Banners/yellowsitesponsor.gif Chris@Xtremespeed's Avatar
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    If it's truly a double duty car. And you don't plan to go racing with it, then an S2000 is the way to go. As much fun and great a Miata is, I just don't think it's a good long term learning experience as the S2. Once you master the miata after a few track days, I find it gets kind of boring as a track day car. For an open lapping day car, the S2 will entertain for years, and you may never master it. With the miata, I think you take the chance of maxing out the car to soon, and you'll need to ad power, or do anything you can to rise the limits.
    madant15 likes this.

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    Senior Member pucsicsal's Avatar
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    The idea won't be well received here, but how about getting a first-gen Boxster, and building it to BSX spec. Basically just suspension, rollbar extension and sport seat and harness (Ultimate Online Resource for Porsche Spec Boxster Racing Series)

    It'd be a cool car, and be something different... Parts are cheap

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    The Real Captain Slow Red_5's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris@Xtremespeed View Post
    With the miata, I think you take the chance of maxing out the car to soon, and you'll need to ad power, or do anything you can to rise the limits.
    Who consistently tracks a bone stock car? Everyone not constrained by class rules modifies their car to go faster on track.
    Quote Originally Posted by pucsicsal View Post
    The idea won't be well received here, but how about getting a first-gen Boxster, and building it to BSX spec. Basically just suspension, rollbar extension and sport seat and harness (Ultimate Online Resource for Porsche Spec Boxster Racing Series)

    It'd be a cool car, and be something different... Parts are cheap
    But then you end up hanging out with Porsche weenies at POC events.
    99 Mazda Miata SuperMiata #515 - AKA Sparky SOLD
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  13. #33
    http://www.trackhq.com/Banners/yellowsitesponsor.gif Chris@Xtremespeed's Avatar
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    Oh no, I never assume the car will remain stock. I would assume that any car used on the track would be altered in some way for sure. You'll have to do a lot more to a mita to raise it limits though.

  14. #34
    Senior Member robburgoon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris@Xtremespeed View Post
    Once you master the miata after a few track days,
    14a8e002-1dca-4fd4-8998-80993bc73510.jpg
    emilio700, hakeem and Red_5 like this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pucsicsal View Post
    The idea won't be well received here, but how about getting a first-gen Boxster, and building it to BSX spec. Basically just suspension, rollbar extension and sport seat and harness (Ultimate Online Resource for Porsche Spec Boxster Racing Series)

    It'd be a cool car, and be something different... Parts are cheap
    I can't believe that you are saying with a straight face that it would be cheap to build and run a Porsche track car.
    The deposed former Sheriff of trackHQ . . .

    2006 Porsche 997 Carerra Coupe 6-MT - daily driver
    1992 Honda (Acura) NSX 5-MT - classic investment I couldn't resist and occasionally drive
    2004 Honda S2000 AP2 6-MT - track day car
    2006 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX MR 6-MT - when I need a backseat, 4-doors, or a real trunk, and still want to haul ass . . .

  16. #36
    http://www.trackhq.com/Banners/yellowsitesponsor.gif emilio700's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris@Xtremespeed View Post
    .. Once you master the miata after a few track days, I find it gets kind of boring as a track day car. .
    I'm reminded of a regular training process pioneered by GP bike racing legend Kenny Roberts back in the 80's. He would invite young hot shot GP racers up to his ranch in Norcal. He had a simple oval dirt track he cut with a back hoe on his property. He'd point the young guys at a small fleet of little 100cc enduro bikes, maybe 18hp at best. He'd then hold informal races. The results of the training are the stuff of legend. The guys learned to be fearless as any teeny mistake that cost momentum would cause them to be pounced upon and passed. Insane dive bomb passes. Or carefully drafting someone for 5 laps to probe for weaknesses and set up all or nothing single pass attempt.

    The lesson there is that guys racing at the time, 220whp GP bikes learned more about racecraft on wheezy little enduro bikes going 45mph than they did growing up on much more powerful machinery. This training technique is still used by many of the top motorcycle road racers.

    So "mastering" a Miata in a few trackdays is an utter joke unless the driver is already so talented and experienced that they are getting paid big bucks to drive already.

    Picture this scenario I often use to describe the challenge of a low hp car:

    T2 at WSIR is done at 85-90mph in a Spec or PT Miata. Exiting T1 at about 90mph, the Miata will barely reach 100 by T2. The entry of T2 is a bare lift at around 100mph then back to WOT. Exit speed is about 95mph. Done right, there is much time to be gained over a poorly driven Miatas. Take that same Miata and (theoretically) come to a complete stop at the exit of T1. Now measure the speed in T2. The low power Miata will never reach more than about 80mph anywhere. Thus getting T1 right, and being brave/skilled enough to carry that into T2 is critical for a decent lap.

    Now we move to a C5Z with the same level of prep. The speeds are about 5mph higher everywhere except the exit of T2 which is about 110. The difference is that the C5Z could come to a complete stop at the exit of T1 and it's T2 sector time would be completely unaffected. This difference in the requirements for momentum preservation outline the difference between driving a high hp and low hp cars successfully.
    The C5Z drive can screw up T1 every lap and lose say, 5.s there but be golden in T2. Our Miata drive screws up T1 for the same .5s loss and he loses more than 1s in T2.

    So errors, sloppy or imprecise driving penalize the driver in the lower hp car more than the high hp car. That said, learning the timing, throttle control, tire management and passing with high closing rates in a higher hp car are an equally difficult set of challenges. I believe starting in a lower power car lays a better foundation for any track driver. Not all that have graduated from Miatas have "mastered" the precision that low hp driving requires.
    Last edited by emilio700; 07-12-2012 at 04:52 PM.
    hakeem, Red_5, pucsicsal and 2 others like this.
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    But obviously I just dont get it. -fatbillybob

  17. #37
    dirty smack talker hakeem's Avatar
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    Excellent post Emilio. As a former Miata owner, I concur.

  18. #38
    Senior Member Gian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard EVO View Post
    It's a drift car. How often have you seen a fast one "grip" driving?
    Not only have I see one. I've driven one. One of the first affordable multi-link rear drives on the market. It was a very underrated car. Held back mostly by a so so motor (US models) and lack of aftermarket parts and Nissan never promoted it. In fact, it's target was working women.

    Drifters like it because 1. Rear drive 2. Easy mas-power gains with JDM parts(motors). 3.Because now (after they stoped making them) aftermarket parts are abundant.

    But the car handles, and with the right motor combo. Is very fast. But still works nice ass a DD.
    IMHO
    That's not a Typo, I just can't spell no so well.

  19. #39
    Senior Member Gian's Avatar
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    +2 on Emilio post. Learning how to drive before learning to handle power, most always makes a better driver.
    The others just have natural talent. Me, not so much.
    That's not a Typo, I just can't spell no so well.

  20. #40
    Not Certified Slow SDSUsnowboards's Avatar
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    Very well said Emilio. As a new driver of a slow car I am finding all of that to be true.
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