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First track day at Laguna Seca, any advice?

 
Old 03-17-2011, 03:11 PM
  #46  
sundog
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Wow, what a great track. Lots of fun. I had great instruction in my first session, which was wet, because it rained until about 9:00 AM.

My Instructor and I worked on all the course, but we worked specially on double apexing 2, which is very counter intuitive, and none of the other cars in my group were doing it. So following a car that is single apexing the corner, you are heading right for their drivers door on the double apex line.

And I found that depending on how I set up throuth the corkscrew I needed to brake for 9, or if I did it just right, then I just held neutral power through 9 until right before the late apex.

Thanks for all the help. The advice was a good way to reduce the anxiety of a new track.

The last 4 sessions were all dry, and overcast skies.
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Old 03-18-2011, 12:04 AM
  #47  
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told ya !!

glad you had a good time. yes, double apex is a good safe way around turn 2 (also can be faster)

turn 9.... yep, you found out how to drive it right. Glad you and the instructor hit it off.

Mk


Originally Posted by sundog View Post
Wow, what a great track. Lots of fun. I had great instruction in my first session, which was wet, because it rained until about 9:00 AM.

My Instructor and I worked on all the course, but we worked specially on double apexing 2, which is very counter intuitive, and none of the other cars in my group were doing it. So following a car that is single apexing the corner, you are heading right for their drivers door on the double apex line.

And I found that depending on how I set up throuth the corkscrew I needed to brake for 9, or if I did it just right, then I just held neutral power through 9 until right before the late apex.

Thanks for all the help. The advice was a good way to reduce the anxiety of a new track.

The last 4 sessions were all dry, and overcast skies.
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Old 03-20-2011, 12:54 AM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by mark kibort View Post
told ya !!

glad you had a good time. yes, double apex is a good safe way around turn 2 (also can be faster)

turn 9.... yep, you found out how to drive it right. Glad you and the instructor hit it off.

Mk
I was there on Wednesday too, it was a lot of fun and a lot of open track, since some people didn't show up since they thought it would be raining all day. I had never run any PCA events and found that it was a very good group (I normally run POC).

I was in the advanced group and noticed that even there a lot of the guys were tracking out too much after apexing 8B (the corkscrew), and would have to tap the brakes because they ended up on the wrong side of the track to set up for turn 9. I exit 8B midtrack and get over to the right to set up for 9, it works much better and I never had to brake. Even in my street-tired, stock sprung 951 I was gaining on faster, better set-up cars in 9. I'd also have to argue that turn 9 is the most exciting turn on the track, not 8B.

But, I agree with many of the posters in this thread that there are almost no universal truths about any track. Different cars, setup levels, and driving styles dictate different lines. I'll bet that some of the guys in lightweight racecars have to tap the brakes for 9 since they are carrying an insane amount of speed into it compared to us in near-stock street cars.
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Old 03-20-2011, 01:12 AM
  #49  
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Default CDS @ Laguna

Very interesting thread. It was a great day after the track dried. Good comments all, and I agree in part about not braking for T9. Both Mark and Mike have points about it. There is more time in T10 if done right than there is in braking or not braking in 9. 10 can be the most fun of any turn if you do it right. And one can gain 3 car lengths in a flash.
CDS accepts race cars in the Advanced group as long as the car can pass sound. It was 92DB for the Wednesday event. Intake noise can be high on many cars.
I find it interesting that more racers do not have Laguna Seca mufflers. If you live anywhere close to the track it is certainly worth it to get a muffler built and drive there.
BTW CDS has 3 days in Sept. 9-11.
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Old 03-20-2011, 03:35 PM
  #50  
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Great.

Again, whether or not someone has to brake for 9, or should establish zero braking input as a goal is car dependent of course. And at least one previous responder in this thread has given opinions about a type of car he has never driven or ridden in, so take that with a grain of salt.

By definition:

1. Our goal is to be at 100% throttle in the proper gear for max power for the shortest possible distance around a closed circuit. If, where, how and how much we brake depends on variables.

2. Driving through corners on the widest geometric arc gives us the best chance to achieve #1 all else being equal.

2. The geometric widest arc on a corner that is more than 90 degrees around is more than half way through the corner, for example turn 3 at Laguna Seca. We call that a late apex corner.

Here are a couple of pictures of a "Laguna muffler" on my race car. This contraption allows me to make 92 dB or less sound.

Last edited by Mahler9th; 11-21-2013 at 12:41 PM.
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Old 03-20-2011, 05:46 PM
  #51  
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I agree with you, Mike that it is car dependent. The first time that I did not brake for 9 was when I was following Justin Hall somewhere back in the early/mid 2000's. I noticed that he did not brake for 9 and I tried it.

Yes, it worked. And I would never advise someone in a car that I do not know that can handle it to do it. It can certainly be a goal for someone. Blanket advice? Never.

I would guess that I have in excess of 2500 laps at Laguna, and have watched many professional drivers take 9. I would say that the vast majority do at least tap the brakes to set up for the turn. Whether or not it is a left foot tap or real braking I do not know. Watching from the corkscrew you notice brake lights. Following, it is clear.

Will see as time goes by if it works still. I did brake for 9 last Wednesday. The engine and suspension are new and it was not a risk that I wanted to take. It is a goal. If the car can take it I will not brake.

Nice set up, Mike. Why were you not at the event?
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Old 03-21-2011, 12:50 AM
  #52  
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I knew enough about the driver and car to make the comment. Anyone even tapping for 9, is leaving time on the table, unless he is driving a car in the less than 1:30 range, or taking the turn without going up high to the left first. I remeber followig the faster cars in WCGT in the early 2000s, the ones that didnt know the track were the ONLY cars tapping their brake lights down out of the corkscrew. my advice wa ONLY for a new driver for his first time, probably on street tires and not a 500hp supercar, or lightweight spec racer. Sure, anyone can tap, but I thought the advice would be enough to get the new driver there thinking that this is not a turn where you need to lay on the brakes and possibly upset the car where many do their first time. I do like instructing turn 2 as a double apex for a few safety and performance reasons, but that might be a discussion for another time. i certainly could argue that turn 3 is not a late apex turn as I see more cars into walls there than anywhere else on the track because of bad lines, steming from a thought that a late apex is required. Sometimes early apexing, or early turn ins, can make for a safer turn, especially in the early stages of learning a track. Its a suggestion not a rule and yes, most of this advice should be given while in the process of coaching.
we are just a bunch of guys just helping out a fellow driver and helping him with making his first day a productive/safe one. Im sure if you ask him if he came out of 9 and blindly just left off the brakes, based on my suggestion, im sure he would say , "no". But when he tried it a few times, i bet he understood why I suggested it. thats all!
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Old 03-21-2011, 01:16 AM
  #53  
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Originally Posted by mark kibort View Post
i certainly could argue that turn 3 is not a late apex turn as I see more cars into walls there than anywhere else on the track because of bad lines, steming from a thought that a late apex is required. Sometimes early apexing, or early turn ins, can make for a safer turn, especially in the early stages of learning a track.
Really? You really think this???

You have it backwards. The safe way to learn a corner you don't know is to late apex it and then move the apex point earlier and earlier until you have no more room to run out. That is a simplified explanation but relates the general idea.

This is pretty basic stuff....

Scott
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Old 03-21-2011, 01:27 AM
  #54  
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Reallly? Well, my experience has shown me otherwise.

I have instructed more folks that try and run the late apex line, before then truely understand the safe speed to do this . they will "insist" on running the line and then get into trouble. by early apexing, you kind of learn to turn in early, it is a round about way to teach trail braking, and they end up with MORE usuable track to brake longer, IF they get into the turn too hot.
Its a coaching style that has worked for me and those that ive driven with.
If you dont agree, thats your right.



Originally Posted by winders View Post
Really? You really think this???

You have it backwards. The safe way to learn a corner you don't know is to late apex it and then move the apex point earlier and earlier until you have no more room to run out.

This is pretty basic stuff....

Scott
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Old 03-21-2011, 01:40 AM
  #55  
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Originally Posted by mark kibort View Post
Reallly? Well, my experience has shown me otherwise.

I have instructed more folks that try and run the late apex line, before then truely understand the safe speed to do this . they will "insist" on running the line and then get into trouble. by early apexing, you kind of learn to turn in early, it is a round about way to teach trail braking, and they end up with MORE usuable track to brake longer, IF they get into the turn too hot.
Its a coaching style that has worked for me and those that ive driven with.
If you dont agree, thats your right.
I don't know of a reputable source that would agree with you.

By apexing early, you have more usable track brake longer if you make a mistake? How do you figure that?

Scott
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Old 03-21-2011, 02:02 AM
  #56  
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Below is an image I borrowed for the pnwhpde.com web site. Please explain how the red line can be safer than either the green or yellow lines and allow "MORE usuable track to brake longer" "IF they get into the turn too hot".

Scott
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Old 03-21-2011, 09:28 AM
  #57  
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Originally Posted by mark kibort View Post
Sometimes early apexing, or early turn ins, can make for a safer turn, especially in the early stages of learning a track. ...a fellow driver and ... his first day
say...WHAT??????????

Mark...I hate to say this, but you are gonna get someone hurt or killed one day.
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Old 03-21-2011, 10:06 AM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by Veloce Raptor View Post
say...WHAT??????????

Mark...I hate to say this, but you are gonna get someone hurt or killed one day.
Early apex is the best way for novices to learn...


This message brought to you by your local body shop and hospital.
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Old 03-21-2011, 10:18 AM
  #59  
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Originally Posted by SundayDriver View Post
Early apex is the best way for novices to learn...


This message brought to you by your local body shop and hospital.

Ugh...indeed.

Brace for a blizzard barrage in response, laced with insults.

Thread....unsuscribed.
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Old 03-21-2011, 10:22 AM
  #60  
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Originally Posted by Veloce Raptor View Post
Ugh...indeed.

Brace for a blizzard barrage in response, laced with insults.

Thread....unsuscribed.
I prefer that posting of the same charts over and over to the insults, but we usually get both.
That and the total lack of a sense of humor.
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