Winning can just mean that you had a good time, right? | Garage Rescue Miata

David S.
Update by David S. Wallens to the Mazda Miata project car
Jun 23, 2021

Turtleshark Shooter photo

Maybe our 1992 Miata isn’t a ringer in the SCCA’s new Xtreme Street class. Where turbo Miatas have become the norm–at least locally–we’re out there with 113 horsepower at the wheels and a slightly rusty driver.
But we’re having fun, and that’s the important part. The chassis feels planted, we’re digging the new Falken Azenis RT660 tires and, well, it’s a Miata fitted with a limited-slip diff.

[Learn more about our Miata's Falken tires and Kosei K1 wheels.]

Event prep: check tire pressures, check oil, torque lug nuts, pack a sammich. Remember our toll transponder if necessary to get to the event site. Easy. 

Our latest event: a Martin Sports Club autocross at its home court, the Lake Tech Institute of Public Safety Weapons and Driving Range in Tavares, Florida–right next to the landfill. (Don’t worry, you can’t smell it.) The Martin Sports Car Club is an independent autocross organization, but they follow SCCA classing. 

A few people have asked why we’re volunteering to be outgunned in the Xtreme Street B class. For one, we like the open rule structure: street-legal, finished interior, 200tw tires and a 2150-pound minimum weight for rear-drive cars. That’s pretty much it. 

[How to put a parked Miata back into service.]

We could maybe sneak our way into the Street Touring Roadster class–our Kaaz diff bumps us out of the STS class–but technically a few small mods disqualify us. Locally it might fly, but we like to keep kosher. And, with a 1.6-liter engine, we’d still be fairly outmuscled.

So, at least for now, we’re enjoying our Miata as is. Call it a bit retro as it’s still a build from 2000. Plus, thanks to Ed Senf’s tuning, it just runs so well, from cold start to redline.

Next autocross with the Miata: Look for us at the Central Florida SCCA’s Daytona event in early August. J.G. was right, that kart track is fun.

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Comments
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Tom1200
Tom1200 SuperDork
6/23/21 10:04 a.m.

My main goal at any event is to have fun, sure I like to do well but I want to have fun.

I can relate to this car; My Datsun 1200 has half the horsepower of the cars in my group  but it's great fun to drive. Plus I haven't spent 10K on an engine.

Jordan Rimpela
Jordan Rimpela GRM+ Memberand Dork
6/23/21 10:52 a.m.

I was dead last, but hustling the Mercedes around cones was a hoot for me and everyone watching. 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
6/23/21 1:02 p.m.

Driving and not winning is a lot more fun than not driving because you won't win.

slowbird
slowbird UltraDork
6/23/21 1:33 p.m.

Hmmm. 1.6 you say? I've got a 1.8 BP engine and don't know if I want to keep it or not. It's in a Ford Escort, bolted to a bad automatic transmission. If I sold the engine I could justify going a different route with the car...like a V6 or V8 and custom fabricated front clip...

bobzilla
bobzilla MegaDork
6/23/21 2:46 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:

Driving and not winning is a lot more fun than not driving because you won't win.

Troof right here. I go for the giggles. If I place high good for me. If I don't I don't care. I had fun with car friends.

Tom1200
Tom1200 SuperDork
6/23/21 3:40 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:

Driving and not winning is a lot more fun than not driving because you won't win.

Kiethius Tannerates...................the greatest philosopher of our time. 

dean1484
dean1484 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
6/23/21 5:09 p.m.

I certainly don't do motorsports for the money. laugh

300zxfreak
300zxfreak Reader
6/23/21 6:52 p.m.

Sometimes, competing like you don't care if you win leads to................winning, in both senses of the word.

vwcorvette (Forum Supporter)
vwcorvette (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
6/23/21 7:25 p.m.

I like trying to be fastest of the slow in my 2. 

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
6/24/21 7:37 p.m.
slowbird said:

Hmmm. 1.6 you say? I've got a 1.8 BP engine and don't know if I want to keep it or not. It's in a Ford Escort, bolted to a bad automatic transmission. If I sold the engine I could justify going a different route with the car...like a V6 or V8 and custom fabricated front clip...

If that's an offer, thank you. We've had some talks about adding more power because, well, that's what we do, right? When we built the car back in the day, we pondered individual throttle bodies. I know, easier ways to make more power, but they would look and sound so cool. The conversation has come back up. 

Or the K-series swap in intriguing. Very. 

Or, as an old friend says, enjoy it for what it is--just a cool 1.6L. 

AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter)
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
6/24/21 7:50 p.m.
Tom1200 said:
Keith Tanner said:

Driving and not winning is a lot more fun than not driving because you won't win.

Kiethius Tannerates...................the greatest philosopher of our time. 

He's a good guy, but let's not get crazy.  

Brett_Murphy (Agent of Chaos)
Brett_Murphy (Agent of Chaos) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
6/24/21 8:04 p.m.
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) said:
Tom1200 said:
Keith Tanner said:

Driving and not winning is a lot more fun than not driving because you won't win.

Kiethius Tannerates...................the greatest philosopher of our time. 

He's a good guy, but let's not get crazy.  

Keith Tanner, the greatest Miatasopher of our time. 

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