2009-03-22

Cone marks on my bumper

Sounds almost like a line from a song, doesn't it?

I took the intro class of the Solo Pro driving school series in Danville yesterday. Had 18 runs and two instructors, and have figured out for myself a few techniques that I hope will help me improve through the season.

The car had a number of close encounters with a bunch of cones, and got into a full four-wheel drift once, during my very first run.

Currently, the car is bone-stock, aligned to the same specs as the nationals-going S2000 of a fellow Tarheels member. In the past months I had a chance to get comfortable behind the wheel of the new car, accustomed to its size and weight, so even the first runs yesterday were less haphazard.

This being said, I found that the car was extremely loose. Coming out of a turnaround element towards a two-cone slalom just before the finish line, I shifted from first to second, tripped VTEC somehow, and got the car into a full drift, crossing the finish line completely sideways, in a cloud of dust and tire smoke.

Nothing quite as spectacular happened for the rest of the day, as I got more used to how easily the car oversteers, and also adjusted tire pressures twice, eventually ending up with a 40F/35R setup. That got the car to calm down a bit, but both my instructors said that something needed to be done about it being so tail-happy.

The "something" in question is as massive of a front sway bar as I can find, and I plan on buying one in a couple months. In the meantime, I will continue to play with tire pressures, alignment, and will try disconnecting the rear sway bar to see if this helps.