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T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
11/15/19 3:02 p.m.

So, I did a 75 minute long practice session at Fuji.

Take aways:

  • If you had a setup that was good at COTA T19, it will feel great at Fuji T3.
  • If you had a setup that was good at COTA T17-T18 the long righthander, it will work well at Fuji T4-T5 the longer right hander.
  • I suspect that if you had a setup that was good at COTA T13-T16 (the twisty stadium bit), it will work well at Fuji T10-T15 (chicane to the 2nd to last turn).
  • In the dry, the setup I used at COTA felt great. Just made 5th and 6th gears one click longer.
  • Rain drops started being visible with 35 minutes to go, but took several laps before they started being visible on the wind shied.
  • Had to turn wipers on full time starting around 27 min to go and it got a little slick for slicks.
  • Changed to rains around 27 mins to go. They worked great. Hopefully, it will be the same story for the BMW. I think my lap times dropped around 10 sec per lap when it was fully wet. At least with the Megane, there is no reason to plan on handing off to the AI to avoid driving in the rain.
  • The setup that felt great in the dry became an understeering monster in the wet. Lots of pushing.
  • So, I tried out my original COTA setup in the wet and knocked off more than a second off my fastest full wet lap on the first timed lap. Car was a complete blast to drive for the 2 laps that I got in before time ran out.
  • I then tried that faster setup in the dry during qualli and had a hard time mastering it with the rear end too eager to come around. Sliding is fun, but scrubs off a lot of speed and wears tires.

I'm going to see if I can come up with a setup somewhere in between the two I have that will be decent in the wet and the dry.

 

BradLTL
BradLTL SuperDork
11/15/19 3:25 p.m.
T.J. said:

Brad, you mentioned about the 5x time progression affecting how much water ends up on the track. If it rains the final third of the race that will be around 25 minutes. If the amount of water is affected by the time progression, then it will be like it has rained for 2 hours by the end of the race and I would think the puddles may be an issue. Hopefully there isn't a low spot like Mulsanne corner at Fuji that becomes an undriveable lake.

I'm thinking I had it backwards... time moves 5x, but weather is real time.  That's why it took "hours" for the puddle at Mulsanne to dry after the rain stopped.  Besides, I had no trouble with that puddle.  I used KERS to pull through it FWD style.  The rain may favor the FWD cars.

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
11/15/19 3:56 p.m.

In reply to BradLTL : (and Dean and Air)

I think you are right on the weather/time progression. The track was still driveable after 25 minutes of light rain at 5x time progression.

If I was a BMW guy, I would see how it was in the rain. The Megane seems pretty good, but the setup seems to matter more in terms of driveability in the wet more so than it does in the dry. Might be the same for the BMW.

aircooled
aircooled MegaDork
11/15/19 4:51 p.m.

I am going to guess the primary issue with the BMW in the rain will be traction coming out of corners.

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
11/15/19 6:17 p.m.

In reply to aircooled :

Agree. Might be good to have a car setup that tends to understeer in the dry so it may oversteer less in the wet. Problem is that we will run 2/3 of the race in the dry, so a compromise seems like the safest bet. 

Edit: forgot who I was talking to. Just figure it out Wednesday during qualli. wink

aircooled
aircooled MegaDork
11/15/19 7:10 p.m.

Yeah, my crew chief is on it....... Dean.

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
11/16/19 9:26 a.m.

In reply to aircooled :

I think Dean has the BMW pretty well sorted in the rain based on last night. 

 

I am still getting a lot of understeer in the rain. I have a plan to try out that hopefully improves the situation without making the car too tail happy in the dry.

dean1484
dean1484 MegaDork
11/16/19 11:52 a.m.

I got a setup dialed in last night that works very well in the rain and I was able to run my fastest laps of the night with it in the dry. I am only about six seconds off my dry times in the rain. 
 

It is very easy to drive in both the wet and the dry. 
 

Changes that I remember at the moment from the COTA tune include.

aero (less)

ride height (more balanced)

toe (set to zero)

gearing (all gears up one click)

I think I may have softened the rear springs a click a but I will have to verify that.  I think I tried this but it turned out not to help so I put it back. 
 

By raising all the gears It helped a lot with traction coming out of corners. You can still break the rear loose if you really want to but generally the higher gears settle the rear on corner exit allowing me to get power down much better. This also helps with the dry conditions as o could get power down much sooner and the car would stick on exit.  The one down side is the start. You are almost guaranteed to bog it if you don't use the clutch. 
 

 

 

dean1484
dean1484 MegaDork
11/17/19 8:49 a.m.

Another night testing with TJ and on the plus side I got a whole lot better at using the clutch for starts. We also figured out the clutch calibration adjustments in the settings and that helps a lot. 
 

I also figured out that every get change I tried to make to my gears was basically a step backwards. 

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
11/17/19 12:12 p.m.

Between watching the 24H of COTA, the Brazilian GP, the LogitechG finale (which looked like it was live yesterday, but I'm going to watch it today), I wonder when I will have time to do some more Fuji practice. Busy day. Lol.

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
11/18/19 10:54 a.m.

I think I have my compromise setup ready. It is decent in the dry and ok in the wet. My COTA setup is a little faster in the dry, but miserable in the wet.

I haven't worked on an all out quallifying setup yet. Since qualli will be dry, no need to worry about wet behavior, so I should mess around and try to eke out a little more time in qualli. If I don't Dean may push me off the front row.

dean1484
dean1484 MegaDork
11/18/19 3:40 p.m.

I just need to get starts down better with the clutch

e30Matt
e30Matt Dork
11/18/19 8:23 p.m.

I ran some laps in the wet tonight, I managed to make the car feel better but not really much if any faster.  I also don't know if it's drivable in the dry or not, but that's for tomorrow's testing.

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
11/19/19 9:26 a.m.

In reply to e30Matt :

I've been finding that in the dry I can run strings of consistent laps, usually all within a second. In the wet my laptimes become much more varied. More like 1.5-2 seconds (or more) delta from lap to lap. Things that seem to work for a certain corner one lap, the next lap do not work. I'm guessing this is driver related but it could also have to do with conditions changing as more water builds up on the track. I am glad that these cars are drivable in the rain and not like the vintage 911's.

e30Matt
e30Matt Dork
11/20/19 9:03 p.m.

In my head this is rather expletive-laden, but getting the boot before one lap was even finished was a real kick in the knackers.  I was really looking forward to the race and thought it would be both interesting from a strategy/rain pace standpoint and close at the end, but alas.  To add insult to injury my driver rating also took a 30-something point hit, hopefully someone else will be the beneficiary of that.  

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
11/20/19 10:38 p.m.

In reply to e30Matt :

Lap 1 was a blast right up until you disappeared. That sucks. Do you know what happened? If I could’ve stayed with you it would have been fun  

I didn’t check, but I’m guessing I got a decent rating bump. After you were gone, I just tried to run consistent laps in an effort to get a gap on Dean before the rain since I knew we had similar pace in the wet. I think Dark King had the best wet pace, but he ended up having to do a 3 stopper which kept him out of contention although he had the lead for a handful of laps after I pitted for wets. 

EDIT: I ran an average of 1:48.8 laptime in the dry and then on wets 1:57. I'm guessing you had more pace than that. Rear ended an AI backmarker going into T3 in the rain and got a little damage. Also got a little bit of damage from contact with Air going into the hairpin/chicane after he rejoined after an AI run in of some sort.

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
11/20/19 10:56 p.m.

I’m going to miss next week due to work travel, so I guess that gives me 2 weeks to prep for Mugello. That should be a fun track for these cars. 

aircooled
aircooled MegaDork
11/20/19 10:59 p.m.

On that fateful day, I can tell you, many a pit crewman suffered by the vengeful hand of a wronged driver...

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
11/20/19 11:19 p.m.

This is a graph of gap to the leader over the race. Dark King was the rain master - he was closing the gap in the wet, but was a lap down I think because of having to do 2 stops to get wets on the car. Then the final stop for fuel.

e30Matt
e30Matt Dork
11/20/19 11:34 p.m.

In reply to T.J. :

It definitely was fun for the first lap, and given the minor difference in qualifying I thought we were in for a close race.  With the high speed and long straight it's definitely possible for the person behind to take a little off their pace but not actually lose time as long as they can stay in the draft where it matters.  In outright pace I had a slight advantage, but if the draft was held it was anybody's game. 

As for what happened I just got a pop up saying I had been disconnected, though I'm glad that didn't cause any weird disconnection issues with anyone else.  

On the pace front I'd like to think I would have been faster than that but never did any long run testing so I can't be sure.  My short runs were faster, but as they were short runs that doesn't matter much, and it also depends on when the rain comes in.  

dean1484
dean1484 MegaDork
11/21/19 7:02 a.m.

It was an interesting race. The beginning was fun. Air and Dark King and I had fun for a while then Air dropped out.  Dark King and I then ran another 5or more laps dicing it up. I was making my car as wide as possible just because it was making for some great racing. He and I swapped the position several times. I finally just let him go as he obviously had much more pace and my car was starting to get a bit more slippery. The rain part was good. I was holding pace with TJ and after an initial serge forward Dark Kings distance behind me also stabilized. Then he had fuel issues and that was the end of the race. 

BradLTL
BradLTL SuperDork
11/21/19 7:55 a.m.

I managed a good start, got all the way along side a stalled air.  In the scrum, he had cars on both sides and I'm guessing didn't see me and I got hip checked and spun onto the grass.  I let the car coast backwards as I got back into 1st gear and because T1 is a hairpin, I was mostly pointed the right direction when I got off the grass and onto the run off.  I think I went from 12th, to 6th to 14th in about 15 seconds.  I picked up 12 damage from the whole thing, but it wasn't terrible so I just kept pushing and was right back on the AIs after a lap or so.

T3 became my nemesis though.  2 twice I was late breaking into the corner and got into a slide that I couldn't recover resulting in a half spin.  The first was on my own.  The second was when I was letting TJ by, I mis-judged my speed and the corner entry.  That second time I hit the wall and ended up with 31 front end damage.  This was miserable.  Left had turns were a slide+recover every time.  Braking resulted in a pull to the right, and it wandered all over going down the front straight.  But that is the same time they mentioned the start of the rain, so I decided to try and hang on until the rain really got there.  My pit strategy was fix damange + rain tires.  I didn't want to fight with trying to setup a new one, so I just waited.

When the rain finally came, I got my much needed pit.  The car obviously drove a ton better, but I didn't do any practice in the rain so I was feeling out the first couple laps and let air zip by.  I finally settled in and started turning reasonable laps and passed a bunch of AIs... only probably was it was always just to unlap myself.  I think I only made 2-3 passes for position.  Another fun part of my night was no headlights.  This made the last 7ish laps an adventure T4 and T5 were almost completely black.  If I didn't have another car around me I had no visual markers for the line or to gauge any slide.  I never did spin, but I'm sure I lost time every lap there because I couldn't see.

aircooled
aircooled MegaDork
11/21/19 10:20 a.m.

The start was pretty bizarre for me.  I did not realize there was any contact with anyone, but I suspect anything is possible.  Before the green light the first thing I saw was Sauce pulling away, then soon after a bunch of cars started moving (none of which was actually happening apparently).  I don't think I got much of a start but there was some serious glitching going on it was hard to tell.  Once I got into the first corner, things seem to clear up, but it also seemed like bad things where happening behind me.

I did run with Dark and Dean for a number of laps, and that was very entertaining.  I eventually slipped up (I was having issue taking T3 consistently just like Brad) and dropped back.  I was wearing a jacket and was getting rather hot, so since I was alone now, I decided to try and take it off on the front straight, well, that didn't work well, got into a tank slapper and hit the pit wall taking damage.

I then had to pit to repair the damage (probably should have sucked it up until the rain like Brad) but needed to do a custom pit request since I didn't want wets.  That worked, the pit stop to change to wets... didn't, got slicks.  This was apparently the theme of the night as I believe only Dean and TJ got correct tires on their stop.

I did end up making up a few places by the end of the race, but I clearly could have done MUCH better.

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
11/21/19 10:33 a.m.

You can create multiple pit strategies before the race and then just select the one you need.

I had:

  • stop and go (this was left over from previous races, wasn't going to use this race due to rain)
  • repair only (in case of early or late damage where I didn't need new tires)
  • repair and slicks (wasn't planning on using this one this race because of rain)
  • repair and wets (had this one set as my selected strategy before the race)
  • slicks only (wasn't planning on using this one this race because of rain)
  • wets only (no real need for this one unless I only had a small amount of damage but needed to save a few seconds in the pits to keep track position)
  • front slicks only (this is the one I used at COTA to save a few seconds in the pits and the rear tires don't get much wear in the Megane)

I've yet to have my pit crew do anything other than what I told them. Spend a few minutes and set up strategies to cover whatever contingencies you can envision, make sure each one is set to do what you want it to do, and make sure if you change your tire pressures in your setup, make the same changes to your pit strategies. Sounds like the issue that was happening last night was having the tires to change set to recommended instead of all for the wets strategy. I think it will only replace tires on recommended based on wear, not on weather conditions. It is confusingly named similarly to the setup choice of 'automatic by weather', but works differently.

Also, if you have one that does tires and repairs, but you do not have damage, no repairs take place and no extra time is spent in the pits. I'm guessing the time for the repairs is linear with the amount of damage you have, but not sure. Last night I think I had 3 damage to the front of the car and had the time to fix it even though it really didn't matter much either way.

aircooled
aircooled MegaDork
11/21/19 10:54 a.m.

Mine may have been some sort of actual glitch since I did have a proper rain tire and damage pit strategy setup.  Doing a manual slick and damage selection from the menu may have confused the situation (as in, it just did what I last did).  The second rain tire stop worked, but I think I re-confirmed the strategy selection.

I do have a bunch of other strategies setup for other situations, but since most of them involved potential Godzilla attack scenarios, they were less than useful last night...

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