Location: Portland International Raceway, Portland, OR
Weather Conditions: Cool, partial cloudy, dry (high was about 63 to 65 I'd guess)
Club: Alfa Romeo of Oregon
Event: Spring Lapping Day
Some 11 months after taking possession, I finally got my Fiesta ST out for its first track day last Saturday and had a great time. This car is just fun to drive. My setup is not entirely stock, but it is not extreme.
Main points of modification:
- MP215, mountune high flow induction hose, mountune FMIC, mountune quick shifter
- Quaife LSD
- BC Racing BR Type coilovers (6K/4K springs; set to 10 clicks under full stiff), camber bolts
- Stock calipers and rotors; StopTech brake lines, Torque RT700 fluid, Carbotech XP8 pads
- Nitto NT01 tires in 205/50-15 on Team Dynamics Pro Race 1.2 wheels in 15x7
- 16 ounces of Torco per about 10 gallons of gas (shooting for rough 94 octane equivalence)
- Water/water wetter and Mobil 1 5W30 oil
Car handled almost like a go cart, although I could not really go all out in the curves (not enough rubber, minmial negative camber, top heavy, etc.). Nonetheless, it was easy to drive given this was a shakedown event for me in the car. I dialed back a little in the ABS braking zones (broke a little early and progressively), but as a result the brakes really held up. Here are a couple of photos of the pads after the event was over (3 15-minute morning sessions and 3 20-minute afternoon sessions).
Passenger side front:
Driver side front:
Hardly even looks like I used them, although we probably need to get them off to really see. I experienced zero fade (on an admittedly perfect -- cool -- day) and when I needed more brake when standing on them later (usually pursuing another lapper), response was perfect. RT700 worked like a charm. I got into the ABS a few times at the bottom of the main straight as expected when closing on and getting set to pass a slower driver. PIR is mostly easy on brakes if you are not late braking like that. Carbotechs are a little more progressive upon initial stop request, but their ultimate stopping power is very good.
The BC Racing coilovers did great -- set at what was really not that stiff of a setting (10 short of full stiff). The Quaife LSD performed flawlessly as far as I could tell. Only truly called upon LSD when exiting the chicane, and the little car pulled like a champ out of that slow sequence with virtually zero wheel spin. I never drove this car at the track with the open diff, so can't really compare. I did drive my prior FWD car with the open diff at the track, and the difference was noticeable once the Quaife went into that car.
The NT01s performed as expected, holding lines and letting me build speed from lap to lap. These tires do not squeal, but they do break very progressively when asked to slip a little (in my case when aggressively exiting the PIR chicane).
I am not a super aggressive driver in general, so I did not really test the limits of this car, the tires, or the brakes. Within the context of my minimally enhanced car and my recreational approach, this setup worked great and I had a ton of fun. YMMV.
A couple photos taken by Charles White Photography at the event:
And, if you made it this far, I have some paddock pics hosted at my google+ account