Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Track Day #2 -- 2007/05/24

I can't remember why it took me four months to get back out to the track; but I eventually made it back out there. This time, I wanted to be a bit better prepared, so I started keeping notes of things (tire pressures, weather, etc.).

I also bought a Performance Box. It's a nifty little data logger that attaches to your wind screen with suction cups and uses GPS technology to record your position, speed, acceleration (lateral and longitudinal). With the software that comes with the device, you can plot out your driving line (on top of a google-earth map if you like) along with graphs for things like speed vs distance, braking, acceleration; and it tells you lap times. By nature, I'm one of those nerdy, engineer types. I like having real data to look at and thought it would be interesting to really see how my skills evolved by examining the data logs.

Here's a plot of speed vs distance of my fast lap:

By itself, it's not that interesting... however, it does show how fast I'm going around the circuit.

Using the performance box; I noticed a few things. First, my consistency sucks -- I never really seemed to drive the same line more than a few times. Second, my braking was maxing out at about -0.7 Gs -- I need to get closer to 0.9 to 1.0 of negative Gs. Clearly some better brake pads are needed. Finally, my best lap time of the day was 1:43.8 towards the end of the last session which is actually not bad for someone with only one other track day under his belt. I really liked the fact that I was improving steadily throughout the day and had my PB right near the end. That means I'm able to keep learning and improving.

No comments: