Winter AutoX Event 3 2008

There’s something said about going back to the basics. It’s refreshing and humbling at the same time.

I’ve driven mostly FF cars (Front engine Front Wheel). I think the main reason for this is the image of being the “under dog”. You’ll always hear people say that an front wheel drive (FF) is not a race car until it’s rear wheel drive (Front engine Rear wheels). I guess it’s a challenge in my mind. To me it’s just a car.

In 1999 I drove a few solo2’s in 2 different configurations, a 240SX (1989 Hatch with the HUD and a 1990 coupe (it had a trunk), which are RWD (FR).  To be honest it wasn’t very appealing. The car’s handling was slow, unresponsive, and generally lacked power when compared to my ACR neon. Sure, it was fun doing donuts but nothing e-brake couldn’t solve in the neon. Maybe it’s wasn’t a fair technology comparison since 8 years have passed?!?

The real reason for the choice was that it was the same solo2 class as the ACR, so it was easier to compare. I also had the car sitting at home so why not drive and learn. Though looking back I have no idea why it was classed in the same class.  The solo2 times were at least 2 seconds slower and that is a lifetime in racing.

Anyway, for this season Anthony and I have chipped into a Celica-Supra. To be precise it use to belong to Matt and it is now ours.

Just look at that sexy JDM Beast!
22RE TRD Stage2 Celica

TRD Intake, TRD Valve Srings, TRD Pistons, and a bunch of other TRD stuff I failed to remember.

What have I learned:
o Don’t drive like a fwd car – late apex never you friend
o Turn throttle out – also not a good plan (yes, I know a fwd thing)
o Pendulum Throttle – not really needed since a rwd car has that tendency already
** note welded diff might also be the reason too :O
o If the car is already turning – turn the other way… like now
o Be very patient – everything happens very slow in a rwd and then it snaps
o No, you will not feel traction compared to FF – you must sense it

My times were crap throughout the whole day. Consistently 2 secs behind Ant. On my fun run I actually think I ran a very competitive time after getting use to the way the car handled. i was only 0.2 seconds off Ant’s time. The fact is I had so much fun that I laughed in almost all my runs – not once did I ever feel the car straight. Driving is a workout in itself! My arms were sore and I seemed to be out of breath after each run.

I still don’t have much of a feeling as to where the tires are and how much power I am sending to the car. Bill commented that I have to ease power in – to be honest i don;t feel much of the car yet.

Ant explained it the best –


Drove like a monkey on crack …

(not that I would know what crack is….)


Maybe we’ll take the ACR out to compare….

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