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Old 09-15-2014, 02:37 PM   #1
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133 MPH at NASA Kansas Speedway

Sat & Sun NASA ran track days at Kansas Speedway. There were two HPDE groups that were combinations of Levels 1 & 2 in the first group and Levels 3 & 4 in the second group. I signed up as a level 2. Level 1 was novice drivers with an instructor. There were many other types of groups beside the DE groups. The event was well run and things generally ran on time. It was my first NASA event.

Kansas Speedway has a Daytona-style road course in the infield with a couple of road course straights that let you get to near triple digits. Also some very tough / tight corners. Like Daytona, the infield portion starts just before turn 1 and dumps you out in turn 2. The real fun was on the speedway portion. The back straight had a chicane to slow you down before turn 3. But you got a nice run thru 3, 4, and the main straight.

Driving thru the banked turns was awesome! You felt very planted. Having never done anything like this, I took my time building up speed thru those turns and down the main straight. The turn into the road course is 40mph, so you need to knock 85-90mph off your main straight speed. And there aren't good visual brake pts to assist either, so at times that turn was an adventure. But by late Sat, I saw one instance of 131. On Sun there were many 130, 131, 132s and a top of 133. It is amazing how much wind increases at 130 vs 120.

I'm sure there was more speed available, but the banks were intimidating. The safer barrier doesn't look very soft. Plus you had to shift to 5th midway thru turn 4, so you didn't want to be on the edge to take your hand off the wheel. I saw 109 thru 4 at one pt. Guess that would be an advantage w/ a PDK.

Here are a couple of my vids. 1st one is the last run on Sat. 2nd is last run on Sun. Quite a bit of improvement in 1 day. Take it easy on me, I've only been DEing for 3 yrs (probably 9 events total at most). Enjoy!

NASA Kansas Speedway Porsche Cayman 09/13/14 - YouTube

NASA Kansas Speedway Porsche Cayman Day 2 09/14/14 - YouTube
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Old 09-15-2014, 03:04 PM   #2
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Sat & Sun NASA ran track days at Kansas Speedway. There were two HPDE groups that were combinations of Levels 1 & 2 in the first group and Levels 3 & 4 in the second group. I signed up as a level 2. Level 1 was novice drivers with an instructor. There were many other types of groups beside the DE groups. The event was well run and things generally ran on time. It was my first NASA event.

Kansas Speedway has a Daytona-style road course in the infield with a couple of road course straights that let you get to near triple digits. Also some very tough / tight corners. Like Daytona, the infield portion starts just before turn 1 and dumps you out in turn 2. The real fun was on the speedway portion. The back straight had a chicane to slow you down before turn 3. But you got a nice run thru 3, 4, and the main straight.

Driving thru the banked turns was awesome! You felt very planted. Having never done anything like this, I took my time building up speed thru those turns and down the main straight. The turn into the road course is 40mph, so you need to knock 85-90mph off your main straight speed. And there aren't good visual brake pts to assist either, so at times that turn was an adventure. But by late Sat, I saw one instance of 131. On Sun there were many 130, 131, 132s and a top of 133. It is amazing how much wind increases at 130 vs 120.

I'm sure there was more speed available, but the banks were intimidating. The safer barrier doesn't look very soft. Plus you had to shift to 5th midway thru turn 4, so you didn't want to be on the edge to take your hand off the wheel. I saw 109 thru 4 at one pt. Guess that would be an advantage w/ a PDK.

Here are a couple of my vids. 1st one is the last run on Sat. 2nd is last run on Sun. Quite a bit of improvement in 1 day. Take it easy on me, I've only been DEing for 3 yrs (probably 9 events total at most). Enjoy!

NASA Kansas Speedway Porsche Cayman 09/13/14 - YouTube

NASA Kansas Speedway Porsche Cayman Day 2 09/14/14 - YouTube
Nice vids man.
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Old 09-15-2014, 03:14 PM   #3
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That was cool. Thanks for the ride.
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Old 09-15-2014, 03:22 PM   #4
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That was cool. Thanks for the ride.
+1
I got goose bumps while watching the iPad. I felt myself trying to push in an imaginary clutch pedal more than once.
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Old 09-15-2014, 03:29 PM   #5
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Great videos! Looks like lots of fun!
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Old 09-15-2014, 06:11 PM   #6
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What a blast. I've been curious about AX for a few years, but just can't get excited enough about driving through cones. THAT looks fun.
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Old 09-15-2014, 06:19 PM   #7
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That was very cool. Thanks for posting the videos.
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Old 09-15-2014, 07:19 PM   #8
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Very cool video! A few thoughts...

Great track, looks like a lot of fun. I'd love to drive there some day.

Those tire walls that create the chicane on the back straight look, uh, ... a little dangerous. A driver would hate to make a mistake there. I guess if they set up cones, they would just get knocked down and then drivers would be going straight through without slowing. Still, those tire barriers look pretty big and look fairly solid to be that close to the driving line.

I like your lap timer up next to the rear view mirror. Nice place to put it so its easy to see without moving your eyes completely off the road.

I was glad to see that you over-cooked it a bit on the turn into the infield portion about mid-way through the first video! Hey, that's how you find the limit! You did a nice job recovering and kept yourself and the car under control. So many others do not do nearly as well. Good job!

And speaking of car control, yours is very good. You are very smooth with your inputs to the car (steering, brakes, and throttle) and that helps to keep the car balanced and planted. Excellent job there!

I would say that you could attack those apex's a little harder/closer and remember to use all of the track on turn exit (unwind the steering wheel and let it roll out more). You'll be amazed at how much faster you can go using all of the track.

And last, a nit but worth mentioning, try to remember to get that right hand back on the wheel in between shifts. I only notice this because I have a tendency to do the same thing and an instructor once said to me; "You'll get a lot better feedback with that hand on the steering wheel as compared to it resting on top of the shift lever". He was right.

Last, if you haven't thought about an X51 oil baffle or similar, you might want to. Those long fast NASCAR banked turns can reduce oil pressure significantly.

Overall, you looked great! Keep up the good work.
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Old 09-15-2014, 10:41 PM   #9
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Thanks for the input. I'll write your suggestions down as my DE season looks like it's done for the year and I'll certainly forget them by next yr. They are good suggestions and I'm always open to listen to experts.

The tire wall made it thru the 2 days w/o being smacked by anyone. There was a Coke sign in turn 4 that was my line indicator coming off the straight. I think I got a bit braver and didn't take it as deep before I turned out as the sessions progressed. Kind of became like a slalom skier trying to get close to the gates. In hindsight, that may not have been a good idea. You could tell by the sound how close you got to the barriers. The red mist can blind you sometimes.

My home track MAM only requires a 1 gear downshift at various places on the track. Laguna's turn 2 & 11 were my first real experience with multiple shifts before a corner. Turn 1 at KS required 3. It was a learning experience to get all the shifting done as well as hit the brake pts. Was very happy how it worked on the last Sun run. Think I'll need to learn to heel-toe if I'm running courses other than MAM. Why is the slowest corner always after the longest straight?

I wasn't hitting the apex right on turns 2 and 3 and that was my take-away from the event. Your suggestion about apexs & exits will be taken to heart. It's funny how you can naturally do well in some corners and have trouble in others. At Laguna, I felt like I did well in 2, 8A-8B, and 11, which I would consider the hardest corners on the track. My trouble corners were 3 and 9, which are rather benign. Guess it's like golf where you have trouble on certain holes and others don't bother you a lick even if they're hard.

I had 2 students tell me their instructors told them to follow me since I appeared to be running the proper lines. I felt good about that. But maybe they wanted to follow me since I was the easiest car to locate. IDK...

It didn't make sense when I did it, but I put the Pelican version of the X51 in my CSS after I did Laguna Seca. I had too much going on to do it before that DE. I had some fitment issues but thought I got it in properly after some modifications. Had a thread on here about my adventures putting it in and I think you said it was a good idea to have it. Unfortunately, I hadn't been driving my car after I put it in, so the trip down to KC was the shakedown run. After a couple of runs on the track, I didn't worry about something failing that I'd done and blowing it up.

I've found myself cursing the Porsche marketing of keeping the Cayman underpowered to the 911s. I could way outbrake 911s at turn 11 of Laguna, but they'd motor off down the straight with their 50-150 more HP. I thought I'd be bringing a knife to a gun fight at KS since I'd be going against a wider variety of cars with potentially more HP. This track didn't seem like a "handling" track. There were several high HP cars in my group - a GT3, an M3 in the novice group and an LT1 Camero (alum 427) and a Cobra replica in the rookie group. But I was holding my own. Just wish I had 50-75 more HP. Ahhh, the slippery slope is calling.
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Old 09-15-2014, 10:53 PM   #10
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It was early and I somehow double posted prev resp.
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Old 09-16-2014, 06:19 AM   #11
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Looks like fun out there Husker and I agree with Stone's observations and advice.
Turn-in> roll on the throttle> Apex> full gas> unwind.

We had some tire stack chicanes at the Coronado Festival of Speed a few years ago and they were intimidating. If you put your car in exactly the right place you could run through them flat. If you got it wrong, you wrecked your car. Two guys got it wrong that day. I never understood the practice of stacking tires so high you couldn't see past them.
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Old 09-16-2014, 06:26 AM   #12
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I watched the video and in my mind I kept wanting to turn right after the first stack of tires and then seeing the cones. And next lap I would do it again. Those were unsettling on the video but maybe in person it was more intuitive.

I think the Pelican baffle is the EBS, I've got that same one installed as well.

Awesome video.

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Old 09-18-2014, 09:32 AM   #13
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I just saw this entry on the RennsportKC blog about a Cayman that blew a clutch at KS speedway, was this during your weekend?

RennsportKC – Cayman Clutch Replacement

This blog is pretty cool BTW and has some good info (at a high level, not so much in a DIY format)

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Old 09-18-2014, 11:39 AM   #14
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Think I'll need to learn to heel-toe if I'm running courses other than MAM.
Yes, learning to heel and toe will help quite a bit in improving your corning abilities as it keeps the car better balanced. It helps to ease the wear on the transmission too. Just practice in your car on the street and then perfect it when you get time at the track.


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I had 2 students tell me their instructors told them to follow me since I appeared to be running the proper lines. I felt good about that.
You should feel good, you drove very well. My comment was meant to get you thinking about that next 10% improvement in performance.

Once I hired an ex-Indy car driver as an instructor and he complained that I left about 1 foot of track unused on turn entry and exit. A foot? Seriously? But when I used those extra feet, I found that my times dropped by about 0.3 sec per lap. Do that in 3 or 4 corners and you'll pick up ~2 seconds per lap (you also get the additional speed down the straights that come with a higher corner exit speeds).

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I've found myself cursing the Porsche marketing of keeping the Cayman underpowered to the 911s. ...... Just wish I had 50-75 more HP. Ahhh, the slippery slope is calling.
LOL! Yes, welcome to the "We're Sick of Being Underpowered" Boxster/Cayman Club!
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Old 09-18-2014, 01:18 PM   #15
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I just saw this entry on the RennsportKC blog about a Cayman that blew a clutch at KS speedway, was this during your weekend?

RennsportKC Cayman Clutch Replacement

This blog is pretty cool BTW and has some good info (at a high level, not so much in a DIY format)

Steve
Yes, the poor guy got 1 or maybe 2 sessions in before it failed. Mechanical failure is always a bummer at DEs.
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Old 09-18-2014, 04:44 PM   #16
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Each one I have been to has had some mechanical incidents. At Roebling a few weeks ago somebody spilled coolant all over the track, and then later another older 911 dumped all his oil out, and then drove it all the way around the track where he finally ground to a stop, smoke pouring out the back. Then they shut the track down for about an hour while tractors with oil-dry kitty litter type pellets, sweepers, and all kinds of stuff were used to clean it up. I heard somebody say that was like $100 a bag and they used a lot of it. And I guess it is on the driver to pay for that.

I've had my breakdown (on the way to Sebring, so hopefully it still counts ) and hopefully I don't have another one for a while...

Nobody rolled their car is hit anything that time which was good. In June at Road Atlanta a Cadillac CTS-V over cooked it into turn 1 and rolled a few times, and a 911 got sideways coming over the hill into turn 12, tried to save it, and then when traction regained he flew off track to the right into the wall. All his airbags deployed and it tore up the right side of the car. Me and my son saw that one because we were in the hospitality/media building getting some AC. Ouch. I was very timid my next session and running laps around 5 seconds slower than my other sessions...

It is still great fun!
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Old 09-19-2014, 03:09 AM   #17
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In the very 1st session of the weekend, a pro driver shorten up the front of his Mustang. The flatbed driver paraded the carcass around the padock, maybe to provide a sanity check to the other drivers. Fortunately, that was the only contact during the w/e.

There was a guy in a yellow Cayman who wrecked rather badly in the corkscrew at Laguna in June. He went straight off in 8A, so the thought was he lost his brakes. He was uninjured but you couldn't say the same for his car. It was the third to last session of the day, so they cancelled the last 2 sessions, which was one of mine. I almost didn't care as I was debating about running it anyway. The Sun afternoon sessions were getting a bit wild and I figured the last run of the day could be dangerous with everyone trying to get their last hot laps in. My plan was to be the very last driver out so I wouldn't be in the middle of the carnage.

Which brings me to my point. I want to improve as a driver and I appreciate the suggestions. I put my work out there for suggestions, so people are welcome to comment. But I also have to drive my car home at the end of the day (in the case of Laguna, 1700 mi) and to work on Mon. So I don't mind driving at 85% in corners because that will get me home. I truly believe in slow in, fast out as a good preservation rule. Things can happen that are out of my control, but I don't want to wreck my car because I needed to got to 120 in turn 4 so I could get to 140 on the main straight. Especially after only 8 sessions at the track. I'm not that good. In the words of Clint Eastwood, "A man's gotta know his own limitations". I'm not saying I don't want to hear suggestions, I'm just saying I also have to balance my enthusiasm with my everyday life.

At least that's the plan until the green flag drops.
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:05 AM   #18
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I hope my last post doesn't sound pissy - that's now how I intended it to be. Your suggestions were all given in a positive manner and that's how I took them. I'm just saying I have to balance going fast and being safe. I tend to lean on the safe side. There is a danger side to this hobby.
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Old 09-19-2014, 01:46 PM   #19
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..... duplicate
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Old 09-19-2014, 01:48 PM   #20
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And last, a nit but worth mentioning, try to remember to get that right hand back on the wheel in between shifts.
I had the same thought. Here's a great video, I loved watching his movements. Click, click, click. Very efficient. Note the casual no helmet driving

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IzGs7pNIBio
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