15/09/2019 - Trackday Abbeville
I did 2 trackdays in the last couple of weeks. First one was at Abbeville in France.
It's a track that is quite technical with some very interesting corners. Should be very suitable for the Cup 250.
I did however have some issues that day.
In the front I was still running my old A052's and in the back new A048's. The circuit itself felt very greasy and slippery so I was struggling quite a bit. Even more so when near the end of the day, all of a sudden I spotted that one of the rear tires was mounted the wrong way. It took me about 30 seconds on track to figure out something wasn't right with the car so I didn't have the confidence to go all out and didn't figure out the problem till later on the day, which is a shame. I wouldn't have been able to fit the tires correctly anyway but atleast it would have given me peace of mind and made me less frustrated. "what the h*ll is going on with the car?"
Also the lack of a limit slip diff was something that bugged me a lot and was costing me lots of time. I could just feel the car just pushing on just one wheel on corner exit, which was a shame.
Didn't do great laptimes as the confidence in the car wasn't there.
Decided to just throw out the tires and go for a complete new set.
27/10/2019 - Trackday Folembray
I've been to Folembray before and it was my first ever trackday with the Lotus Elise Cup 250. Some of my friends don't really like this track and say it is 'boring' but I think the track is absolutely fantastic in the Lotus.
A week before the trackday, I decided to fit a complete new set of Toyo R888R tires and Pagid RS14 brake pads. Everything was looking good but 3 days before the trackday all of a sudden the weather changed and there was a rain forecast.
Oh well, let's see what happens. I learned my lessons and now always book a hotel nearby so I can sleep in and don't have to wake up at 5 in the morning. Woke up, looked outside... great... pouring
Arrived at the track and there was a lot of standing water, which obviously isn't great on dry semi's.
Since it was just slightly raining, I decided to let other cars 'clear' the track of standing water a bit and waited about an hour before going on track. No need to take unneccessairy risks.
Although it was very slippery, I did notice the sheer difference in the wet between the Yokohama's and the Toyo R888R. If you're fitting semi's and driving on the street a lot, I can definitely recommend these tires over the Advans as they feel much more stable in the wet. (and we do have our fair share of rain in Belgium and the UK).
Doing some very slow laps and kept building up the pace.
On my first trackday there I did manage a 1 minute flat with less perfect driving lines and more cautious driving so driving laptimes like the ones in the movie above in light rain was actually very surprising and I was pleased.
As the confidence started to build and I felt more confident pushing in the rain, I started pushing harder.
I also made sure I was qualified for my vanity plate. Got Apex? Yes we do!
The photographer present is a great guy and he always makes some nice shots. So here is some extra car pr0n for you guys. Love the picture with the carbon hardtop.
The Reverie wing might not be as pretty as the OEM Lotus wing but it does look mean and sure does the job. There is a significant noticable difference in the rear downforce with the wing fitted although it does eat away quite a bit of topspeed due to extra drag. Stickers from my local car club present obviously!
As you can tell on the last picture, the rain stopped later in the afternoon. I did still struggle with some grip as some parts were still extremely slippery due to the dampness of the track, however, we did manage to do some better rounds.
For some reason, my AIM camera starting to act up and I wasn't able to record the fastest lap of the day but you can tell by comparing with the other video, I'm already braking later, going in more aggressive and pushing a lot harder. I also really need to figure out why the throttle input is completely off. It looks like I'm never full on the throttle or never completely off the throttle. Will sort that out later.
It was obviously impossible to keep up with the super trofeo on soft wets, but nonetheless, I do find it impressive that the gap is so small because it's comparing a purpose built jetfighter to a paper plane as far as I'm concerned. The amount of speed it could carry through the corners and acceleration under rain conditions were just mindblowing compared to the Elise who was really struggling on semi's. Also the lack of the LSD didn't help me here and I would easily shave of another second more just by an LSD alone.
Day over... time to drive home... then disaster struck.
All of a sudden, complete loss of power. Was this my first Lotus issue? Lot's of trouble usually serious? The car struggled to get up to 100km/h, losing speed when going slightly uphill and the engine was choking when I gave it too much throttle. Like I was flooding the engine. Might be coilovers, sparkplugs or O2 sensor I think. Probably nothing to serious but I can tell you, driving 300kms home with a car that accelerates slower than a bicycle isn't a lot of fun.
Going to drop it off at the dealership soon as we're disassembling the interior aswel to have it trimmed with alcantara. (update on that in 2 weeks!).
All in all, great day, had a blast and I hope to see one of you guys at the track one day!