NASA HPDE – Autobahn South

First time at the track this year, decided to run with NASA at the 7/9-10 HPDE. Was a really awesome event overall – much more formal than anything I’ve done with SCCA, with classes after every session, exercises to practice etc.

First day in particular was really awesome. Autobahn South is a very technical track with a lot of interesting elements, including blind apexes, super fast kinks, chicanes, etc. It took me a while to get comfortable on the track, with the car pitching/rolling more than I would like it to. Before the 4th session, I decided to stiffen the shocks to 11 clicks from stiff all around, and the car felt really good. In the future, I’ll probably start from 10 clicks and see how the car feels after that.

I started really picking up speed in the 4th session, at speed running a 1:50.x, and then a 1:47.x after that. Was really starting to get comfortable pushing the car at speed, unfortunately ran into a braking issue before the session was over and had to pull off. As it turned out, I disintegrated the driver’s side inner pad. I had originally thought I was on Ferodo DS2500s, which are a decent pad – after finally replacing the pad, turns out I was running on stock pads – a big no-no, and completely unsuited for the track.

Got some used pads from an acquaintance, but I was never able to get the braking feel back enough to push the car. I had help bleeding the brakes after the first morning session, but still didn’t feel good. The brake pedal is sinking a half an inch lower than it used to, and doesn’t feel consistent. It’s also taking longer to brake. Originally was pretty certain it was the master cylinder, but after more driving it feels okay – just a terrible pad/feel now.

Moving forward, I’ll swap in some decent rotors and pads. DBA 5000 in the front, 4000 in the rear, combined with either Carbotech AX6 pads or XP8 pads. Yet to decide, but most likely will go with Carbotech AX6’s.

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