Analysis, Motor Racing, Racing, Track Driving, Video

Art of Overtaking

Overtaking cars while racing is very tricky business. It sounds very easy, yet difficult to implement and is absolutely nothing like the video games. To help folks see how the masters perform the Art of Overtaking, we want to share some great examples of drivers following their lines, anticipating other drivers, and powering on at the exit of the corners.

All we can say – watch and learn.

First is a two lap ride in Al Buncombe’s Nissan GT-R, racing in the 2014 Blancpain Endurance series at Monza. Al fights from 32nd out of 44cars, and ends up in 14th after two laps.

Then we sit with Steve McAleer, who drives the ModSpace Motorsports MX-5 in the Continental Tire Series from 30th to 15th position in a single lap during the 2014 race at Sebring International Raceway. Unlike the GT-R, the Miata shows it is not always about power.

If this does not get you excited about driving, then nothing will.

Analysis, Automotive, Car Parts, Cars, Driving Enthusiast

Track Day Prep – Brake Pads

Okay – some people said the blog isn’t personal enough. Or question whether I am qualified to question automobiles and race cars. Well…. I have finally decided to share more about my fleet here at Sunday Drive.

What better way to introduce to the car than through some upgrades. First up are some general maintenance items necessary for a recent track day. The ’94 Mazda RX-7 (touring model) in my fleet was running on EBC yellows on all four corners. The yellows worked well, but they lacked the initial bite when out on the street. Last year’s two day track event in November left the front pads with about 1/3rd meat. Overall they are a great pad, but at times on track left me wishing for more feedback. Considering the car was built in the 90’s pedal feel is hard to come by – it just was not at the top of the list. For those that do own a RX-7 FD, you can upgrade your master cylinder to a 929 cylinder which will allow for a little more feedback, since it’s larger and you can modulate the pressure.

Back to the upgrades. Understand though – I believe the true driving experience is driving your car from the street to the track and back home again. It’s a full weekend of getting in touch with the car, as you really get to explore the limits of grip and risk.

To help with the street compliance I decided to run the EBC blue stuff.  Nearly the same compound as yellow stuff, but with a focus on strong initial bite. After slotting these lovely pads in the car, I can surely say it was a true upgrade. Kind in mind, the car is roughly 2810 lbs. with a half take of gas and a spare tire in the trunk. The cold initial bite of the pads out on street are definitely enough to get the tires to squeak. These pads do not necessarily help with the pedal feel, but they inspire confidence when needing to brake.

EBC Brake 1 EBC Brake 2 EBC Brake 3

Analysis, Cars, Driving Enthusiast, Motor Racing, Racing

2013 Formula 1 Car Round-up

It’s only the second month of 2013 and the formula one teams are announcing their prized contenders for the new year. The biggest change is the FIA technical rules allow for a “decorative piece” (a.k.a. vanity plate) to be added to the nose to show a more atheistically pleasing nose. Long gone are the stepped noses? Nope, not if Adrian Newey, Infiniti Red Bull chief designer, has anything to say about it. Little technical changes were put into effect this year since 2014 will call for another round of overhauls, including engines. Looking at the press release photos the only major aero change are the fins located on top of the air intake side funnels which are most notable on the Caterham and the Force India. The only team missing from the lineup is Williams who will be releasing their updated car on February 19th 2013. In the meantime enjoy the newest contenders of the 2013 Formula 1 season.

01marussiamr02 Launch Marussia F1 Team MR02 04mercedesamgf1w04 Lotus F1 Team 2013 Launch Photoshoot Lotus F1 Team 2013 Launch Photoshoot 02mclarenmp4-28 01mclarenmp4-28 03sauberf1c32 01sauberf1c32 02caterhamct03 04caterhamct0307infinitired-bullrb9 09tororossostr8-136006634301ferrarif138 05ferrarif138 06forceindiavjm06 Motor Racing - Formula One World Championship - Force India F1 VJM06 Launch - Silverstone, England

Analysis, Automotive, Cars

Behind the Numbers – BRZ vs FR-S

All the talk is about how Toyota and Subaru have created the newest, most pure driving vehicle. Now as the 2012 sales have kicked off for May and June we can clearly see that Scion is outselling the BRZ here in the United States.

It’s hard to point out one particular reason why one would outsell the other, but we have provided nearly identical photos of both the Scion FR-S and the Subaru BRZ (provided by Autoblog). From the photos you can see how the two cars are identical, yet are very different. Ultimately the consumers will decide which model will take the overall win in number of units sold, but for now its all about getting more rear wheel drive vehicles back on the road.

Below is a summary table of the sales after two months. It’s important to know that Scion is selling through 1,000 dealerships while Subaru is selling through 600 according to USA Today. Looking at the numbers we see that the FR-S is selling nearly 3 times as many vehicles versus the Subaru BRZ in the past month.

Model Average Price(1) Units Sold (2) Est. Total Revenue
FR-S $25,653 2,684 $68,852,652
BRZ $29,085 818 $23,791,530
(1) Numbers provided by USA Today
(2) Numbers provided by Bloomberg Terminal