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Thread: Suggestions on how to handle the astra

  
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    ssa17WS's Avatar
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    Suggestions on how to handle the astra

    Hey there,

    as some of you may know me and a couple of other guys from the AOC are going down to the Nurburgring this weekend.

    I've never personally driven a car round a track before.. so basicaly looking for some advice on what i should be exspecting etc.

    Thanks

    Steve
    Astra VXD
    rburgring - 10:55

    Scottish Region

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    domino's Avatar
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    Common sense.. and be courteous towards other drivers on the ring.


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    First of all good luck mate.

    Tracks tend to be slippery due to large amounts of rubber laid down by days/weeks/years of track action, so my advise would be to take it easy and progress up to set some hot times. On a circuit as large as nurg the circuit will provide more grip in some areas and less in others. Also be wary that a car ahead of you may be leaking oil/diesel on to the track as well.

    The main problem I had was braking areas. The circuits unlike roads are quite wide and have run offs so your sense of depth perseption is a little off so you sometimes go too slowely in the corner and other times too fast. Keep your eye on the speedo and mentally note how long it will take you to get from your current speed into the next corner. Look for items trackside to use as a visual guide to braking. IE count the marshall posts to the next corner or where an advert banner starts/stops. This will only come with practice and experience.

    My best way of learning was sticking close to someone infront of you and watch their entry / exit speeds and watch what their car was doing. I learnt a hell of alot by trying to keep up with an Alfa Romeo. Luckily I pitted 2 laps before he lost it and shoved it into a barrier.

    You will more than likely spend most of your time on the right hand side of the circuit waiting for people to overtake you. This means you'll be spending alot of time with your eyes on your mirrors. Its not always possible to keep out of a faster cars way so don't dilly dally around the corner get round there safely and quickly so as not to hold the traffic up behind you.

    I forgot to keep my eyes on the marshalls so concentrate on them as well so try and keep your wits about you and watch for the marshalls flags who will indicate oil, crashes, other issues.

    Although you'll be having plenty of fun limit the amount of laps you do in 1 go to allow everything to cool down. The last thing you need is to cook your brakes, warp your discs and try stopping from 110mph to find the pedal goes to the floor and your speedo does nothing.
    Its a jam thing

    Haec credam a deo pio, a deo justo, a deo scito?



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    Take it easy and know your limits

    Crashing ont he ring is going to cost you ALOT of money, By all means have fun yes... but seriously, know your limits

    Pedal + Metal ftw
    04 Regal'd Coupe Turbo . Europa . Lowered . Oval Scorpion . Climate Control . Black/Cloth Leather . Bailey DV

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    Whilst Jam's advice is great for any other track - most of it doesn't apply to the Ring.

    In the dry, the Ring is sticky - everywhere. The areas with less grip are over crests where the slicked up cars have not left so much behind. You will be amazed at how much grip road tyres have though.
    In the wet, different story - the slick rubber left behind by the 'racing' cars acts like ice. Apparently there is a different line through most corners where they've laid rougher tarmac, but tbh I won't be pushing it in the wet - up to you if you do.

    Run offs - only exist on about 2 corners (out of 144). The rest of track is 1 maybe 2 metres of grass (sometimes none) then concrete or steel barrier then trees. The sense of distance to corners will be very similar to normal roads.

    You won't notice much trackside, the best thing to use as braking points is where kerbs start and stop. You will rarely notice marshalls unless they are standing in the road waving a flag because they're sweeping something up. Likewise for oil etc - there will be a few cones in the road and a sign.

    Jam's point about following someone else is good - but try and follow someone with a similar car - it's no use following a Porker or Beemer - they will have lost you before the 4th corner.

    Last time, I spent 50% of my time hugging the right kerb and 99% looking in my rear view and wing mirrors.

    The best advice I can give though...

    1) Don't race other cars. Drive quickly, but whilst paying 100% attention to the road ahead and the road behind. Driving smoothly and courteously is the key to getting good tourist laps and being able to drive home with credit card intact.

    2) If you're going to time yourself (officially it's not allowed) don't watch the clock like Clarkson did - it's a shortcut to pushing harder because you think you can shave off a few seconds and finding a corner is tighter than you expected.

    3) Enjoy it.

    4) Grin for days/weeks afterwards and bore everyone senseless with the stories you keep telling about when you went to the Ring!
    0-60 in 6.5 secs and 48mpg- winner!

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    i went this time last year and the day was luckily dry and bright so i smashed the living daylights out of the gsi! if you have esp leave it on but turn it off for the carousel! it doesnt like it too much as mine spazzed out in the middle of it which you dont want! used half a tank in 4 laps so be prepared! there are a few places on the ring that catch you out so be carefull first time round! get a feel for it and go for it! i did and im going back next year! have a good one and get some pics up upon your and the cars safe return!!! all the best

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    Quote Originally Posted by webbo gsi View Post
    i went this time last year and the day was luckily dry and bright so i smashed the living daylights out of the gsi! if you have esp leave it on but turn it off for the carousel! it doesnt like it too much as mine spazzed out in the middle of it which you dont want! used half a tank in 4 laps so be prepared! there are a few places on the ring that catch you out so be carefull first time round! get a feel for it and go for it! i did and im going back next year! have a good one and get some pics up upon your and the cars safe return!!! all the best
    That's 10mpg

    I averaged 23 last time.
    0-60 in 6.5 secs and 48mpg- winner!

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    Watch your brakes, I had brake fade in the mountainous section.

    (I do have grooved 308mm discs with braided hoses on my Vectra)
    Now drives : 2002 Astra SRi Turbo in Black
    PREVIOUS ASTRA'S : 1990 GTE 2.0 8v | 1993 1.4 GLS | 1994 1.6 Cesaro | 1995 1.8 16v Sport

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