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I have gotten into Autocrossing this year after getting my 2012 Subaru WRX. Wanted something I could push a bit harder than your standard daily driver that I knew would hold up. If youve checked out the Cars! Thread youve seen pictures of it.

 

Well June 3rd I had my first event.

 

Was held at the Toledo Express Airport and we (NWOR SCCA) had a record crowd of 220 entries. Thats the largest turnout for a regional event in the country excluding National Level events. The National Tour is making a stop at the Toledo Express Airport this year and I bet a lot of people came out to run, get data and sample the perfectly flat, extremely grippy concrete that we race on.

 

Anyways, I am running this year in the RTA class which is stock class for cars that run a road time on an AWD car. I did much better than I thought, placing FIRST out of 6 cars including a 2011 WRX with mods (stickiest street tires allowed + sway bars), 2 older WRX's and a 2011 STi. The guy in the STi must now know how to drive, he should have slaughtered us.

 

Anyways, heres a video of my first two runs. I held first after the first round and then extended it after the second and third runs. My third run wasnt captured by the GoPro and was by FAR the cleanest run I had. By far!

 

 

Heres my numbers:

 

Front:

 

 

Anyone else race?

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Very cool. You probably won't find too many people racing around here, its a very expensive hobby and most of the nerds here rather use their money to ride roller coasters haha

 

Are you completely stock?

 

AX'ing is super fun - I'm going to get into it eventually. Nothing like being able to use the full capacity of your car legally

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Yea, its bone stock. I'm going to invest in a set of wheels and sticky street tires and call it a day. Maybe a sway bar or better shocks (adjustable) but its too expensive to do too much to. That and I don't want to jeopardize the integrity of the car over the long haul.

 

Hey, I still manage to hit up my parks What ya gotta do is just have a daily driver capable of driving kinda hard without it dieing. I saw a few neon's, even a few stock Cobalt's. Granted, for every one of those I saw 2 SRT-4's and a couple Cobalt SS's but I even saw someone bring a Malibu. Race what ya got!

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Awesome job! I don't race because my Impreza is only a 2.5i so I would probably get smoked, but it would be something cool to try one day when I get something that can hold it's own.

 

Also, looking good with that Grimmspeed relocation kit and RallyArmor flaps! If you do decide to invest in sway bars, RalliTek is definitely a good brand.

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You would probably be in a class that wouldnt include the turbo'd cars Id think. Maybe E or F class. There were cars in H stock. I swear I saw a stock Aveo!

 

Ill check that out. I don't think sway bars come till next year. I want to hone in my racecraft on better tires before I start seriously altering the cars balance. People say "Oh you cant get an AWD car to break the back end" Oh you can. Its called shifting the weight under braking. So I'm going to set myself to learning how to do that so when I do dial in the cars performance, it will be that much faster.

 

Thanks for t comments on the plate and flaps! Plate was bought because I HATE Ohio's front plate laws and the flaps were needed because I was starting to see pitting on the rear wheel fenders from small stones. Not pleased about that!

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Oh lord first track day in and already talking about coilovers.. next time out you'll be looking for a bbk

 

Not sure if they make wheels to fit the Subaru bolt pattern, but I was really digging some TSW wheels in a shop a while back - pretty light without the full forged price. I ended up going another way and honestly now that I got out on a track I'm kind of regretting it.

 

I want to hone in my racecraft on better tires

I can't recommend Michelin's enough, though they are pricey. The racers I know dig Dunlop Star Spec's and Hankook's too, since they eat up tires quicker than I do and don't mind a bit of a compromise for less money

 

Awesome job! I don't race because my Impreza is only a 2.5i so I would probably get smoked

its not like the drag strip. For the most part, HPDE type evnets are more about improving your skills and having fun. I had an absolute blast in a miata and rx-8 (drifting an automatic, who knew?!? lol), pretty sure a Subaru would be a blast too!

 

Speaking of daily drivers on the track, I think this may be the most epic point-by in history..

getoutofmyway.jpg.ee3024ae2bd697e16f19432bcdac6649.jpg

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OMG LOL That picture is full of win!

 

Coil-overs wont come for a year. At least. Im pretty hooked on the Hankook RS-3's. The Star specs are basically the stickiest you can buy to stay in the stock wheel class but they will run 175 a tire. The RS3's are 151 a tire and the only downfall to the SS is in colder temps, they dont grip AS much. To be honest, As much as AutoX is about grip, its about carrying as much speed as you can and good driving can trump someone with better grip long as you drive better. So while Ill be up against someone who has better tires in October, long as I can outdrive that person Ill be ok.

 

 

but no other mods till next year other than Tires and wheels. Looking at Drag's/Rota's. Pretty affordable for what you get. Ill look at TSW's, but the ones I always find are super expensive.

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Yeah, I literally was just yesterday posting on the car forum I belong to that RS3's are something I'd be willing to try. I think they cost less than half of my PSS

 

Sometimes I really hate you non-Euro car guys. TSW's are among the cheaper wheels sold for my car, lol. The amount of bang y'all can get for your dollar is awesome, especially the mustang guys

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The WRX runs 5x100 bolt patterns which tend to be rare for one. Second, Im trying to stay true to the rules (though Ive been told I can fudge the numbers a bit in regional events, just not in national events) so I also need 17x8 which is my stock rim.

 

But 151 for 245/40 -17s I feel is very good. I can even go 255 but I feel thats pushing it on an 8in rim. I havent heard of many doing that. I dont have money to replace rims and parts if I rip the tire off the rim and destroy it. The extra 10mm of grip I lose, Ill get it back in better driving.

 

 

Yea, a quick google search shows TSW's in my specs to be around 200 and up. If I was going to spend that much I would go with a set of Work's. But looks like for my car the TSW's arent really cheap either. I can get Drag 31s or Rota Torques for about 125-130 a wheel.

 

One guy is telling me how much different like 4lbs a wheel will be...I dont believe it. Its autocross. Im not traveling at speeds itll matter.

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The extra 10mm of grip I lose, Ill get it back in better driving.

I saw a very interesting discussion recently about how wider tires/wheels don't necessarily result in more grip, I

ll see if I can find it, cause it went against everything I've ever known haha

 

The loose nut is definitely more important though. That's why I want to do racing school so bad, I'm actually a pretty timid driver, but I've gotten better

 

One guy is telling me how much different like 4lbs a wheel will be...I dont believe it. Its autocross. Im not traveling at speeds itll matter.

it probably matters more in overcoming inertia during accelerations, which is of course half the game in AX. OF course, I guess it matters how the wheel "wears" its weight, tire size, etc, and again, is relatively small

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Well, theres many facets to grip but a main one is the contact patch with the road. It starts with how much tire you have. Then it moves to camber, deflection, etc to maintain that patch at all time to have the most grip possible. Obviously you can increase tire width but if your car isnt handling the loads well, you wont really get that much more grip if the contact patch isnt being optimized.

 

Im still not sold that the 4lbs cant be overcome by good driving. I feel like thats something you do once your skills are already very good and it gets you those extra few tenths. I make too many mistakes to worry about stuff like that. Thats why Im only getting rims and tires this year. When I feel like Im maxing out the cars capabilities, then you look into Koni inserts or sway bars, etc.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I've done it twice. I'd really like to get out more but tires cost a fortune. I do it in South Jersey, It's way smaller than that, the entire course is just tight turns with the occasional 200 feet of straight track. I drive a mostly stock 2007 Chevy Cobalt. I generally finish...last or close to it.

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I finished 1st in my second race and took first overall in the Novice Championship. First in class and first in overall... I will TAKE it. I was really, really fast. The new tires were absolutely fantastic. My last 2 runs I was pushing really hard and I know there was still more time out there.

 

Heres my progression:

 

Run 2

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_7q-OUPmvl4

 

Run 3

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZeWSRVMzHM

 

Run 4

 

Run 5

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53gV0NNeTA8

 

 

Couple comparisons:

 

Run 2 vs Run 5

 

Run 4 vs Run 5

 

 

I posted pictures in the Cars Superthread that my wife took of me.

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