Opti HalfDork
7/29/18 8:03 p.m.

I finally did my first AutoX today. I ran in the novice class and did terribly. No cones, but I looped her once. Did 19th out of 30 in the open novice class. I did have a blast though. Everyone was super friendly and helpful. My girlfriend did some ride alongs with me and in my buddy's crap can racer. Now she wants to give it a go in her Volt, next time. 

I was in a red ND and it was the Lone Star Park AutoX if anyone was there. I looked for GRM stickers, snd only saw one on a black NC, but I never got a chance to say hi to the owner.

Also any recommendations for a street tire that is going to see street use and mixed motorsports use. Its for an ND in 205/45/17, the car gets drag raced about every 2 to 3 weeks, and after getting into this I dont expect to miss any local AutoX events. I was leaning to the Indy 500s, but am considering something more aggressive like the RE71rs, just not sure Id like their compromises on the street. The car is mostly street driven.

wlkelley3 UltraDork
7/29/18 8:06 p.m.

Another one assimilated. devil


Jerry UberDork
7/29/18 8:07 p.m.

Congrats!  I did an AX today as well in the Abarth.  I have to say I'm happy with my Indy500's- good street manners, hold up well in fairly heavy rain (1/2hr drive to work so this helps), and seemed to do well at today's event.  Being a daily I almost went for RE's but decided the cheaper $ and good reviews (plus knew a few other local people that liked theirs) were enough to sway my opinion.

Ian F
Ian F MegaDork
7/29/18 8:14 p.m.

Don't worry about tires yet.  Finish out the season with what you have.  You'll learn better that way.  New tires next year.

Opti HalfDork
7/29/18 9:02 p.m.

Well they were at 3/32nds before the event, and they are pretty much on the bars now, so finishing the season on them seems unlikely.

Floating Doc
Floating Doc GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
7/29/18 10:24 p.m.

I started this spring, four events so far. Fun, isn't it?

Don't worry about spinning the car. Other than hydroplaning off the runway in torrential rain, I haven't spun or hit a cone. I'm worried that I'm not trying hard enough.

I'm going to stay on my 400 TW summer tires for the rest of the year, see how close I can get to the cars with sticky tires. 

Ian F
Ian F MegaDork
7/29/18 10:28 p.m.

Run 'em until you see cords. Especially if the car is your DD and sees a fair number of miles of just trudging around.  The top 200TW tires don't live long as DD tires, so you may still want a second set for more mundane driving.  Oh - and most of them can be a bit scary in the rain once they've worn a bit.  My ZII Star Specs show plenty of tread depth, but are already at the point where they'll hydroplane if there's any amount of standing water.  They have less than 10K miles on them and 3 autox events. I have another car that is my main DD, so the autox car ('06 MCS) doesn't get driven a lot.  If it were a main car, I'd have a 3rd set of wheels (I store it for the winter on old snow tires).

79rex New Reader
7/29/18 10:32 p.m.

If your interested the hankook rs4 offers great life and good grip.  Slightly slower that an RE71r.  But much better life.  Being a begginer it could be a good tire for you.  However many people preach gerting used to it on a subpar tire though before you switch to somthing 200tw. So keep that in mind.  Seat time will beat out any other mod or chamge you can ever make

Duke MegaDork
7/30/18 8:58 a.m.

Congrats!  Welcome to the fun addiction that most people won't understand.

Job One for your first season - and especially for your first event - is to get all your runs in without going off course.  As I always say in the novice drivers' meeting, "A slow time is better than no time."  Once you no longer need to actively search your way through the course, speed will come.

Practice looking much farther ahead than you think you need to.  The closest gate is already in your subconcious and your autopilot is handling it, so be looking at least at the next gate after that.

Before your next event, go buy a big hat.  You'll be thankful for it.

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
7/30/18 9:57 a.m.

You had fun, so you won. Congratulations and welcome to fold. More questions? Continue to ask away. 

ultraclyde PowerDork
7/30/18 10:01 a.m.

If you haven't looped the car you aren't trying hard enough. Unless it's front wheel drive, then ditto for plowing straight through the cones even thought he wheels are turned.

It's a fun time. Been way too long since I did one.

bobzilla MegaDork
7/30/18 10:17 a.m.

In reply to ultraclyde :

I always consider that I haven't driven the car at it's limit until I've spun it. 

jstein77 UltraDork
7/30/18 11:12 a.m.
bobzilla said:

In reply to ultraclyde :

I always consider that I haven't driven the car at it's limit until I've spun it. 

I haven't spun the FoRS yet, but I attribute that more to the sheer competence of the beast than to my skill.  I'd spun the Sentra frequently.


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Fitz New Reader
7/30/18 11:30 a.m.

Continental ExtremeContact Sport (ECS) are a good daily tire (noise and hydroplane resistance) that doesn't embarrass on an AutoX course, same with a Michelin Pilot Super Sport (PSS).

I only have experience with RE-71Rs, Rivals, and RT-615k for 200tw tires and they're all bad combating against hydroplaning on an NC miata, even in stock widths with a lot of tread. They're also pretty noisy compared to pretty standard tires. It's not bad enough to be more than annoying, but it's definitely noticeable when I switch to my normal old all-seasons.

I'll also +1 to learning on bad tires, I'd try to roll your current ones until they cord if you can get away with it, that's a pretty sketchy path though if that's your only car/wheels.

goingnowherefast New Reader
7/30/18 12:11 p.m.

Just wait until you start racing on a real track. Then you'll be really hooked!

Jerry UberDork
7/30/18 12:21 p.m.
ultraclyde said:

 Unless it's front wheel drive, then ditto for plowing straight through the cones even thought he wheels are turned.

SWMBO got a good photo of me almost plowing thru a Chicago box yesterday, but managed to save it.  At the safety meeting I told people if they had concerns find the safety steward in the reflective vest or the person with the biggest hat.

bobzilla MegaDork
7/30/18 1:04 p.m.

In reply to jstein77 :

I didn't manage to spin the Forte, but only because there isn't enough grip from those 600TW all seasons. 

Harvey Dork
7/30/18 1:35 p.m.

RE-71R won't last very long, probably 15k miles maybe more in a Miata, maybe less depending on how much autocrossing you do. It's probably the best of the top tires in the rain. The Rival S is really bad.

Anything less than the RE-71R will have you wondering whether you could have caught someone if you had a better tire. Sure, you need instruction and what not to get better, but you've already got a good car for autocrossing so why not put the right tire on it?

Run those now, see how they wear for you and if you really like autocrossing and if you do a lot of miles in the car and/or just wear them down fast then just get another set of rims and tires for daily driving and swap them before you go to the events.

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