: Gingerman Raceway track day



Trionalaw
10-02-12, 03:05 PM
Yesterday, I was at Gingerman Raceway in South Haven, Michigan.The combined round-trip was 857 miles. Besides how much I love driving my CTS V coupe, books on tape makes the time fly. (I highly recommend Janet Evanovich and her Stephanie Plum series.)

This was a new track for me. Even though I qualified as an intermediate, I knew from looking at the other participants in that category (at least 75% trailing their car to the track!) I would probably be spending most of my time checking my mirror so I wouldn't hold them up. Remember, I started this high-performance driving stuff at age 50, with three kids, and am slowly increasing my speed! The novice category had only five cars in it. As an intermediate I was not required to have an instructor. I was allowed to drive in the novice category. I am glad I did. There was enough space between the cars that passing for me was no problem.

Some thoughts.

1.I am still utterly amazed at the speed of the car. No news there.

2.I had placed an AirRaid intakea couple of weeks ago – no, my 11-year-old daughter, Lily, and I installed it – and I now know precisely what everyone means about the supercharger whine. Utterly intoxicating.

3. I still think my CTS-V coupe handles better than my E90 M3. May be that is me being biased towards my beast. However, I think the magnetic shock system is the difference.

4. With the shocks in sport mode and driving in competition mode, I lost the backend at one point. Kudos to me. I saved it with out leading up on the gas. This is what I'm trying to achieve with the schools. I want to feel what the car is doing and learn to control it. Speed will always come.

5. The Brembo bakes are still stunning. I reached 122 mph on the longest straight. Not one hint of brake fade. And I am not running dot 4 brake fluid– yet. I watched C6 ZO6 owner believe his brakes and pumping his brakes to create I guess the suction. I checked my calipers and I have a similar leader not or whatever you call it. I mentioned this to the individual who was putting on the event (http://www.cgimotorsports.com/, which I highly recommend), and he inform me about an actual brake bleeder system and that pumping the brakes was not a good idea to bleed the brakes. So I'm going to find one of the systems and guess what? Lily and I are going to change the brake fluid to.4!

6. I cannot imagine what this car would feel like if it weighed 500 pounds less. I suppose that will be the ATS-V.

So I again had a great experience at a new track. I readily agreed that my reviews will be much more helpful once I can drive a track with all the computer nannies switched off. I may be able to speed up process.One of the other attendees mentioned to me that he had gone to the Bob Bondurant school. I mentioned that I really didn't need five days of training because I have no aspirations ever to be an amateur racer. He told me that there are three-day programs and sometimes specials on them at something like $1500. What I found very interesting was the school uses both ZO6 and CTS-V's. I think that says a lot. So I am keeping watch for a three-day special.

Regards,

Jim

NAX-121
10-02-12, 04:05 PM
Its so nice to see more and more V2 owners taking the step of putting their cars on the track and really being able to tap into the V's true track DNA and really drive the car well beyond anything that one could experience driving on the street. My wife and I both track our V in the Cadillac Challenge here on the west coast. If you do your homework you will find a quality driver program. You might also call a friend of mine Sean Southland with TrinityTEK racing. They also have the Driver X academy but he would be able to provide you with helpful insight and he
would give you an honest opinion on whats the best route for you. 1-800-734-9690. Give Sean a call and tell him Matty in Las Vegas told you to call. Best of luck with your CTS-V and future track events. Dont forget to post some pics for the rest of us.:thumbsup:

Trionalaw
10-02-12, 04:36 PM
Thank you, so much. I really appreciate it.

I am one of these guys who drives his car year-round as a daily driver and hopefully two or three times on the track. With this beast I'm going to get all season tires for the winter since it doesn't snow much in Cincinnati. Right now I'm looking strongly at the Goodyear F1 asymmetric all seasons. I believe by December – according to a nice woman at Goodyear– the OEM rears will be available. The fronts are already available. On really bad days I will drive my two older daughters' Toyota RAV4 which neither uses.

Thanks again,

Jim

NAX-121
10-02-12, 05:09 PM
Just have a Bowl of Skyline Chili for me. I was born and raised not far from Wright Pat so I feel even better helping out a fellow Buckeye...... thats awesome. I can say I dont miss the winters. !5yrs out here in Lost Wages has me already dreading that walk off the plane when I head back there for Christmas. LoL I do however always hang my OSU flag in the paddock on race weekends.

Brian in GA
10-02-12, 05:13 PM
Yesterday, I was at Gingerman Raceway in South Haven, Michigan.The combined round-trip was 857 miles. Besides how much I love driving my CTS V coupe, books on tape makes the time fly. (I highly recommend Janet Evanovich and her Stephanie Plum series.)

This was a new track for me. Even though I qualified as an intermediate, I knew from looking at the other participants in that category (at least 75% trailing their car to the track!) I would probably be spending most of my time checking my mirror so I wouldn't hold them up. Remember, I started this high-performance driving stuff at age 50, with three kids, and am slowly increasing my speed! The novice category had only five cars in it. As an intermediate I was not required to have an instructor. I was allowed to drive in the novice category. I am glad I did. There was enough space between the cars that passing for me was no problem.

Some thoughts.

1.I am still utterly amazed at the speed of the car. No news there.

2.I had placed an AirRaid intakea couple of weeks ago – no, my 11-year-old daughter, Lily, and I installed it – and I now know precisely what everyone means about the supercharger whine. Utterly intoxicating.

3. I still think my CTS-V coupe handles better than my E90 M3. May be that is me being biased towards my beast. However, I think the magnetic shock system is the difference.

4. With the shocks in sport mode and driving in competition mode, I lost the backend at one point. Kudos to me. I saved it with out leading up on the gas. This is what I'm trying to achieve with the schools. I want to feel what the car is doing and learn to control it. Speed will always come.

5. The Brembo bakes are still stunning. I reached 122 mph on the longest straight. Not one hint of brake fade. And I am not running dot 4 brake fluid– yet. I watched C6 ZO6 owner believe his brakes and pumping his brakes to create I guess the suction. I checked my calipers and I have a similar leader not or whatever you call it. I mentioned this to the individual who was putting on the event (http://www.cgimotorsports.com/, which I highly recommend), and he inform me about an actual brake bleeder system and that pumping the brakes was not a good idea to bleed the brakes. So I'm going to find one of the systems and guess what? Lily and I are going to change the brake fluid to.4!

6. I cannot imagine what this car would feel like if it weighed 500 pounds less. I suppose that will be the ATS-V.

So I again had a great experience at a new track. I readily agreed that my reviews will be much more helpful once I can drive a track with all the computer nannies switched off. I may be able to speed up process.One of the other attendees mentioned to me that he had gone to the Bob Bondurant school. I mentioned that I really didn't need five days of training because I have no aspirations ever to be an amateur racer. He told me that there are three-day programs and sometimes specials on them at something like $1500. What I found very interesting was the school uses both ZO6 and CTS-V's. I think that says a lot. So I am keeping watch for a three-day special.

Regards,

Jim

Thanks Jim for sharing your story, take your time and enjoy, there's always someone faster so just be happy with the experience so many never experience. Sounds like you're doing all the right things and you have a great pit crew as well. My girls, when they're a little older will also become my helpers!

I'm afraid it will only be a matter of time for me. I "think" I'm a pretty good driver but I've never raced a car as powerful as this one is on a road course. Road Atlanta is my mistress!! Nothing like having a world class and renouned road course 45 minutes from your door. I raced and still have my NA Porsche 944, I've turned a best time of 1.44.xx in it, all 138 HP with a tailwind. The great thing about learning to be fast in a slow car is you have to drive it fast around corners as opposed to using HP as a crutch to go fast. I've instructed many who are as fast as anyone on a straightaway but but are timid children in the turns.

I can only hope I get over the newness and the dragstrip so I'll put it on RA for a romping. If/when I do I'll be sure to share my experience, my only reservation is that I have an automatic and I'm not sure how that will be not being able to choose which gear to be in upon entering a turn, it's pretty important IMO.

B.

NAX-121
10-02-12, 05:29 PM
Also before I forget, Greg or Ro at D3 cadillac can help you with the brake question. They have helped me out so much when it comes to tracking issues. My car is headed their way shortly for its track prep since i am running in a couple events next month. Brake fluid was one of the things Greg has on the list for me so give them a ring and they will have the real answers since we are always learning what setups work and dont work on the track. Trust me you want opinions and suggestions from people who are actually paying their dues on the track. Being the climate your in and that your not tracking a lot would lead me to believe your ok you just might want to look into a good set of brake pads. I ran Hawk HPC's when I started and they were awesome....ive since moved myself into more of a race pad going with porterfields. Hope that helps you Jim and good luck with the V.

Trionalaw
10-02-12, 08:46 PM
My first instructor at a 944. It was that Nelson Ledges just outside Cleveland. He told me something that I assume all instructors tell virgin students: " you have to learn to go slow before you can go fast." I think part of it dealt with squeezing the brakes rather than stomping on them like you are trying to squash a rattler's had (assuming you have knee-high thick leather boots.)

I watch a ton of videos on heel toe shifting because I am really into it, although far from as good as I should be. I am always fascinated about how it appears a little break is being applied, notwithstanding when they have the data overlay showing rather significant pressure is being applied.

I will probably go to Skyline Saturday afternoon.

Jim

Trionalaw
10-02-12, 08:47 PM
My first instructor at a 944. It was that Nelson Ledges just outside Cleveland. He told me something that I assume all instructors tell virgin students: " you have to learn to go slow before you can go fast." I think part of it dealt with squeezing the brakes rather than stomping on them like you are trying to squash a rattler's had (assuming you have knee-high thick leather boots.)

I watch a ton of videos on heel toe shifting because I am really into it, although far from as good as I should be. I am always fascinated about how it appears a little break is being applied, notwithstanding when they have the data overlay showing rather significant pressure is being applied.

I will probably go to Skyline Saturday afternoon.

Jim

Trionalaw
10-02-12, 08:50 PM
Thanks, NAX-121,

I will give them a call. I think I can bleed the brakes and put in the new fluid. Next, changing the pads! No more schools for me this year so Willy and I will be reading and watching videos about it.

Jim

NAX-121
10-03-12, 03:40 AM
:thumbsup:on the Skyline. Yep slower is faster and when you apply the physics along with the factor of shortest distance between two points is a straight line, you find that your avg top speed may be lower but because your traveling less distance = a faster lap time. Our last Cadillac challenge event was at Buttonwillow raceway,now add in the counter clockwise configuration which was track config #1(ck it out sometime) I think added up to 80 plus cars off track Saturday alone. Insane:cookoo:,yep sure was......but after all was said and done the technical experience alone built confidence not only in my driving but also i noticed a huge step in my wife's confidence in her driving. Our cars being as heavy and bulky looking as they truly are, with magnetic ride(plus our car has springs and sways...FYI a huge difference, under steer gone) allow you as a driver the ability to use trail breaking to load the rear suspension and just throttle it thru turns carrying amazing speed. Had a guy in a modded s2000 follow me back into the pits after one of our sat sessions just to find out and I quote "what in the world did you put that CTS-v body over,whats the racing tube fame race suspension setup is it ?" Priceless was the look on his face when he realized its an 09 cts-v daily driver with only intake,exhaust,springs,sways,and racing dynamic 18x10 wheels square setup with hankook 285/35/18 hankook ventus rs-3's. You have experience putting money into serious track cars so its a no brain er that's very little investment for the return you get in performance but most importantly if needed i drive home at the end of the day. But being bit badly by the race bug we now trailer to events.(guilty yes im bad) The fact that so many people in our speedventures run series now know how fast us V boys are on the bigger less technical tracks now are realizing how awesome a 4300lb sedan looks as it literally dances thru a tight technical course. And i catch myself all the time during the day watching some of our guys running their sessions and just shake my head at how everything in your rational and logical mind are saying thats not right yet the cars look so graceful and truly at home on the track from which they were born. Best wishes and FYI dad its good to plan your daughters racing fund along with college cause if shes there now at 11.......dad's seat time is looking like its in jeopardy. Good luck Jim and stay in touch.:)

Trionalaw
10-03-12, 11:15 AM
Much appreciated,NAX-121,

I think once I start feeling confident running the car without all the computer nannies, I will start investing in modifications. I don't think I deserve the latter until I conquer the former.

I have great fun telling people that my beast handles better than my previous M3. And I believe it does. I'm not trying to make myself feel better about getting this car. I would get it again in a heartbeat.

I mentioned to Lily last night that once I became confident in her ability to actually drive a car, I would take her to a driving school with me and we could share the car. Her response: " What you mean share a car?" When I explained to her what that meant, of course her next response was " You mean my car won't be cool enough for a driving school?" Your advice about a racing fund is spot on.

I will stay in touch.

Jim