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Thread: Using a Spec Racer Ford as a track day car?

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    Master of Disaster SteveLevin's Avatar
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    Default Using a Spec Racer Ford as a track day car?

    I'm seriously pondering going the SRF route (I previously mentioned I was going to test one at Buttonwillow on Sunday). Given the number of Spec Miata's and other race-prepped cars at most track days, I can't imagine that any organizers would have issues with the SRF car, but if anyone has any knowledge of issues they've seen, I'd appreciate hearing about it.

    thanks!

    Steve

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    Chest hair required Olitho's Avatar
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    My only concern driving one at a track day would be that it is a smaller, low, and very light car. Generally the lightest cars on the track are Miatas and Elises at over 2,000 lbs up to Mustangs and Chrysler 300s weighing in at close to 4,000 lbs. I would not want to tangle with one of those on a track while in a hard to see SRF.

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    Master of Disaster SteveLevin's Avatar
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    You'd definitely have to keep your head on a swivel with it, that's for sure. With me in it, I'm not how much lighter than a Lotus or a Miata it would be, though

    Steve

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    Master of Disaster SteveLevin's Avatar
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    Just adding information to this thread...Groups that I've confirmed are good with an SRF car:

    Hooked on Driving
    Green Flag
    Alltime Racing

    I'll add others as I speak with them.

    Steve

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    Senior Member mlk_f1's Avatar
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    I'm sure Redline and SV are OK with the SRF. I've seen open wheel formula cars run with them before.

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    Master of Disaster SteveLevin's Avatar
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    That makes sense...Green Flag is a no-no with open wheels, including the Atom, though.

    I'm still depressed that we had a seat malfunction and I didn't get to test on Sunday. Now I have to wait until the 29th to test -- but at least it'll be a full day.

    Steve

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    Senior Member plastique999's Avatar
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    Steve, I'm following your lead on this one....going to test an SRF in about a week at Buttonwillow
    www.facenbody.com
    2005 Elise: Ohlins DA, BWR sway bar, RAC monolites, Pagid blues, Larini SE exhaust, CF everything, BWR s/c...
    SRF #237

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    Senior Member robburgoon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by plastique999 View Post
    Steve, I'm following your lead on this one....going to test an SRF in about a week at Buttonwillow
    That's awesome! I love the sound of a pack of SRFs, they have a very charming growl. SRF was my 2nd choice.

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    Master of Disaster SteveLevin's Avatar
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    Holy resurrected thread!

    Steve

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    Senior Member mlk_f1's Avatar
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    alright Eddie! I sense W2W racing in your near future. The pinnacle of the "pyramid of speed."

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    Senior Member plastique999's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveLevin View Post
    Holy resurrected thread!

    Steve
    Search is my friend....
    Steve, I'm going to be asking you some more questions in the future...
    I just watched your vid. at ACS sev. mos. ago on the infield passing.
    Doug has a super nice car for sale, and his vid. at Laguna is awesome.

    Only thing is...there aren't too many forums out there with a wealth of info.

    Quote Originally Posted by mlk_f1 View Post
    alright Eddie! I sense W2W racing in your near future. The pinnacle of the "pyramid of speed."
    Racing is way too addicting...and I'm going to continue LCS, but after getting my SCCA license, I need to find a more economically feasible way to track W2W. How can you beat open cockpit W2W racing...
    www.facenbody.com
    2005 Elise: Ohlins DA, BWR sway bar, RAC monolites, Pagid blues, Larini SE exhaust, CF everything, BWR s/c...
    SRF #237

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    dirty smack talker hakeem's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by plastique999 View Post
    How can you beat open cockpit W2W racing...
    Motorcycle racing

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    Master of Disaster SteveLevin's Avatar
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    To be honest, safety was one of the things that landed me in SRF's. Amongst many things, the robustness of the chassis (and the structural sidepods) appealed to my wife. Compared to a Formula Ford, for example, the car weighs a lot more, but if you take the bodywork off an FF you realize how exposed you really are in that cockpit.

    I also didn't realize that the formula car fields are a lot smaller in general. Now I feel lucky, because I really like the big fields and all the raciness it provides.

    Steve

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    Member Feffman's Avatar
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    Steve:

    We run a Radical SR3 at track days. We (www.MVPTrackTime.com) have a SRF and two Lotus 2-Elevens joining us for our April 18-19 track weekend at Putnam Park. All about the same size.

    Feff

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    Master of Disaster SteveLevin's Avatar
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    Radical is very nice! I'd love to try one some day...but it's out of my budget to race one...I saw something where the rear wing alone was like $4,500 to replace!

    Steve

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    Senior Member plastique999's Avatar
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    All right, I just got back from a private track day at Buttonwillow with my Lotus, and I got a chance to meet Mark (CSR at BW) who let me take out an SRF for a few laps.....OH MY!!!!!!!!!

    I thought my Elise was the best handling car on the track...perhaps as a street car it contends well, but it is absolutely NO comparison to the SRF. The SRF grip and handling is simply phenomenal...the inputs and feedback are 10 times more sensitive than the Lotus. Open cockpit also gives one a great perspective. It truly is a race car diff. from the Lotus.
    The SRF is also really a momentum car, as it has only just over 100 hp. But it really moves and forces you to drive and "feel" the car a lot more...carry it into turns, less braking, etc...

    I'm hooked, and I'll be looking for SRF's for sale.
    Mark who owns MBI Racing at Buttonwillow is one of the nicest guys I've met in racing. He's very knowledgeable about SRF's and offers a lot of help and support for SRF racers. Thanks Steve for tipping him off to me.
    How has your experience been thus far?
    Last edited by plastique999; 03-07-2009 at 09:49 AM.
    www.facenbody.com
    2005 Elise: Ohlins DA, BWR sway bar, RAC monolites, Pagid blues, Larini SE exhaust, CF everything, BWR s/c...
    SRF #237

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    Master of Disaster SteveLevin's Avatar
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    I'm glad you had a chance to check one out! I do think there's something fundamentally...racecar about purpose built machines that you truly strap into and become a part of it.

    That said, I never spent any time in any of the prepped street cars most folks here have...so maybe I am jut talkin out my behind as usual.

    I will say that the SRF has taught me a lot about weight transfer. You'll find that the fast guys all brake early and then get on the gas hard and early -- seemingly impossibly early -- to keep the rear planted.

    I'd say see what cars Mark knows about, but the car Kevin Rogers has up here in the Bay Area may be the best bet -- it is an absolutely toprate machine with a new engine and tranny if I recall correctly. The only thing it lacks is data acquistion.

    Steve

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    Senior Member plastique999's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveLevin View Post
    I'm glad you had a chance to check one out! I do think there's something fundamentally...racecar about purpose built machines that you truly strap into and become a part of it.

    That said, I never spent any time in any of the prepped street cars most folks here have...so maybe I am jut talkin out my behind as usual.

    I will say that the SRF has taught me a lot about weight transfer. You'll find that the fast guys all brake early and then get on the gas hard and early -- seemingly impossibly early -- to keep the rear planted.

    I'd say see what cars Mark knows about, but the car Kevin Rogers has up here in the Bay Area may be the best bet -- it is an absolutely toprate machine with a new engine and tranny if I recall correctly. The only thing it lacks is data acquistion.

    Steve
    Thanks Steve...Yes, I'm looking into Roger's car...

    I'm going to Buttonwillow again on Fri. for an open test day, as it is before one of the SCCA race weekends.
    Btw, Dave emailed me a very handy list you guys were making on what to look for in SRF's.
    How'd you find your car, and how's it running?
    www.facenbody.com
    2005 Elise: Ohlins DA, BWR sway bar, RAC monolites, Pagid blues, Larini SE exhaust, CF everything, BWR s/c...
    SRF #237

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    Master of Disaster SteveLevin's Avatar
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    My car was owned by a SF Region local. But when it was listed he wanted more money than I really felt the car was worth. And my original intention was to not buy anything for the first year, but just rent Dave's rental car (now affectionately known as "Salmon McQueen" for its "not quite red" paintwork with yellow trim).

    But then a couple of weeks before driver's school I got an email saying "are you sure you aren't interested in the car?" So I told Paul (who then owned it) to name his absolute price, and that I would either take a pass on the car, or I'd come over the next day to see it with the intention of handing him a check (this was already a car Dave knew and had seen, so while we'd take a quick look at it, the expectation was that it would be fine). Paul named a much lower price more in line with what I judged to be a 'good deal' and the next day Dave and I ran up to Sacramento to see the car -- and not only was it in a bit better shape than Dave expected it to be, it turned out I could fit in the Butler seat (a huge upside for me). So I did the deal.

    And overall the car was really good. Probably the biggest issue that Paul forgot to mention was that the car wouldn't pick up fuel down past about half-tank (i.e., down at 4 gallons) and that he'd just been running the car with a full tank -- of course, since he was also having to run a little ballast to make minimum weight, he didn't have any incentive to really check it out. (and to be honest, we didn't actually fix it until late last year; it turned out the surge box had been installed incorrectly. Actually not a huge fix).

    My feelings were that if I could avoid spending more than another $3,000 after buying the car, I would consider it a 'good deal.' But no matter what you buy, you are always going to have two issues: 1) things that just go wrong, and 2) things that you really prefer to do different than the previous owner, maintenance wise. For example, I didn't like where the fuel vent hose was mounted, and I wanted 6 point belts instead of 5 point... so I spent money right off on those and a couple of other little things. But not a ton of money.

    I spent more money on radios (but I like having the radios), the Chasecam recorder (I got the car with a Hoytech camera and the wiring, just not a recording device), and, of course, the AIM dash (expensive, but well worth it for being able to compare my laps to Dave's and others -- it really has helped me be quicker).

    Steve

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    Chest hair required Olitho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveLevin View Post
    But no matter what you buy, you are always going to have two issues: 1) things that just go wrong, and 2) things that you really prefer to do different than the previous owner, maintenance wise. For example, I didn't like where the fuel vent hose was mounted, and I wanted 6 point belts instead of 5 point... so I spent money right off on those and a couple of other little things. But not a ton of money.

    I spent more money on radios (but I like having the radios), the Chasecam recorder (I got the car with a Hoytech camera and the wiring, just not a recording device), and, of course, the AIM dash (expensive, but well worth it for being able to compare my laps to Dave's and others -- it really has helped me be quicker).

    Steve
    Absolute words of wisdom,absolutely.

    To the right of The Sheriff. Isn't everyone?

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