Autocrossing Tips

Autocrossing Tips

> This weekend I will compete in my first autocross. I'm not sure if there will
> be many 928's competing but I would like to show them all how well a 928 can
> do even in the hands of a beginner. Would anyone of you care to share some
> tips or advice for me? I would like to make you all proud. How about a tire
> pressure recommendation?
> Wally, 86' 928S, Naples, FL

Dear Wally:
First off, the fact that you are going to do it is reason enough for the rest of us to be proud. At a typical Potomac Region autocross, out of 40 to 60 cars, my 928 is usually the only shark competing. However, things seem to be improving, as this last year I actually had some competition in BSP (thanks Kurt), and there were at least two other 928s in "stock class." Hopefully, this trend wil continue to improve.

You asked for some advice, and if you don't mind it coming from an eight year autocross veteran that has yet to get FTD (Fastest Time of the Day), here goes.

For tire pressures, assuming you are on street tires) I would put the max (usually 44 psi) in the front and about 40 psi in the rear. "Chalk" the tire and find a place where you can go in 100 foot diameter circles at
speeds of about 30 mph or until you hear the tires squeel (not sqwal). See how far down the chalk has been erased. It should still be visible on the sidewall, but gone on the tread. Adjust tire pressures to maximize tread to pavement contact.

Autocrosses are lots of fun, but require a great deal of concentration with very little time to think about the next move. Sounds like an oxymoron, but you will see what I mean when you actually start doing it. Take every opportunity to walk the course. When you can visualize the course in your mind, mentally drive the course. Keep doing it until it's your turn to do it for real. There is a saying among autocrossers that says, "Slow is fast." By this it is meant that being smooth is the most important technique one can use to become faster. Obviously, too slow is still slow. One must learn where to be aggressive and where to be conservative. Rank each turn for its importance. As a general rule, turns that lead onto straights are most important, with the turn that leads onto the longest straight is the most important. Those turns are called type 1. For turns in general and especially for type 1 turns, slow entry/quick exit is preferred. One last piece of advice: Have FUN 8^)

Merry motoring, Ed Ruiz

Tire pressures will vary depending on tires, I'll make a guess that you're on "street tires ", if so I would start with about 45psi. in both ends. Depending on how the car feels,your going to have to adjust from there, however As this is your 1st. auto-x, I would advise you to just drive the car, don't worry about making any changes. 928s are heavy and you have to be real smooooth... during transitions. Try not to spin the tires comming off the corners and avoid any nasty brake lockup going in. If this is a SCCA event your going to run in A-stock, this is usually a fairly small class made up of pre 85 911, 944 turbos. BMW M3 Toyota MR2 Turbos and of course 928s of all model years. Some may not agree with this, but the MR2s are tough to beat. Good Luck, don't kill any cones.
Dave P 85s 5-speed, ex 90GT. and about 2000 auto-x runs.

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