Does everyone remember when McLaren refused to post their Nurburgring laptime in the P1? Their reasoning behind it was cars are getting so fast today that to post the time would just mean another manufacturer risking a driver’s life to topple their time around the ‘Ring. There were a lot of rumors that ignited over why they wouldn’t post it and if they truly did beat the 7 minute marker as Porsche and Lamborghini have. It’s a difficult time to fathom, a time under 7 minutes. It takes a loony driver to be able to push the limits of a car and set a time like that. The Dodge Viper ACR has been running around breaking lap records like there’s no tomorrow, and majority of the automotive journalists that go out and review the car can write about how truly fantastic the car felt at 60% of the grip the car has available, while faming the (Insert car here) for how much better the car handled because they were able to find the limitation of the vehicle. What I’m saying is cars today have the ability to outperform a driver’s talent.
It takes decades of practice and talent to be able to do what they best do, and they get paid to prove how crazy they are every time their helmets is strapped on. Competition is glorious, and as the years pass drivers will adapt to how much faster cars are getting and computers will simply keep making cars faster. It’s a new era, and what a time it is to be alive. Fast cars are also getting easier for the average Joe to acquire, and the problem with that arises when the question “Are you testing the limitations of the car or yourself?” gets asked. In the context of this article the true question is, what is your capability behind the wheel? How can you improve that? What’s a safe way to go about testing your limitations? How can you be a better driver? Why should you become a better driver? How does any of this relate to how people are modifying their cars today?
Contrary to popular belief “Track inspired” builds are *NOT* a thing that makes you faster around a track. Believe it or not, canards attached to your bumper that stick out 2” or a rear wing with an angle of attack similar to an air brake will NOT make you faster. The recording setting ACR has a 6 foot rear wing with semi-slick tires and a driver that knows how downforce affects a car, but for normal people who cannot comprehend aerodynamically assisted grip, having confidence in your braking system and consistency within your suspension will give you the opportunity to become faster. Having a good instructor sitting in the car feeding you knowledge will also give you the opportunity to become a better driver. There are a few hundred discussions on what tire, brakes, and which alignment fit your car best, if you search for them. eBay is not your source for track knowledge, Slip Angle (http://shoutengine.com/SlipAngle/ and portions of Jalopnik are. A parking lot isn’t where you learn how to drive, and I’m not talking about Autocross. I’m talking about the dudes blowing clouds with their vapes while standing next to their “Track inspired” pieces of art work.
Attend #GRIDLIFE, start Karting, and read up on how to be smooth. Being a better driver helps you everyday. You might have the ability to avoid an accident by knowing how to drive a little better. The possibilities are endless, but improving your skills behind a wheel is important no matter what your reason is.