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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just spent my first day at the track (Sears Point), as a passenger. Had a load of fun, so now I think I'm hooked. I have an '01 Z06. I've signed up for a two day event at the end of November at Sears Point. In the morning, we'll be doing some parking lot driving around cones, the afternoon and second day will be on the track.

For those who have been at Sears Point recently:
Do I need to upgrade my rotors and pads?
What about a harness setup? What is the best for price/performance?
What is the best octane to run at the track?
What else should I do or know?

Thanks for any information. I'm really excited about the event. :guiness:
 

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Depends....

....on how serious your going to get and how much you want to spend.

As to protection, ie roll bar vs harness bar. A Roll bar is of course safer in the event of a roll over. If your going to be doing some serious racing a roll cage is mandatory. There is of course a wide range of price from a $600 bolted in roll bar to a $4,000 welded in roll cage.

I AutoX a lot (local, Regional and Pro Solo) and an occasional Solo I track foray. I only have a Harness Bar as I do not get the car into competition on the track against other cars.

I prefer the Brey Krause Harness Bar and Simpson 6 point harness's. I also have a 2.5 # Halon hand held extinguisher mounted on the Brey Krause seat mount. My next step would be to step up to a weld in 4 point roll bar. It might be wise to start simple with a Harness Bar and then evolve into a roll bar/cage if you really intend to get serious. Be aware that if you are going to dual purpose the car; for example a roll cage or even a 6 point roll bar would disqualify you for Auto X in Super Stock class. Check all the rules first. A roll bar is recommended in Solo I but not required, and as stated before a roll cage is required in T1 and above.

As to brakes: as a bare minimum I would go with a good quality fluid such as Motul or AP600. Make sure you bleed the ABS too when exchanging fluids. You can also upgrade the pads with Malletts, Hawk or Performance Friction, Porterfields Carbon/Kevlar, or CarboMetallic. Pads and fluids are the basic minimum brake up grades. As to rotors the OEM stock tend to heat crack if used too hard. I had mine cryogenically treated and have not had a crack during this past season of heavy use. Chevy does recommend a set for T1 which has thicker "cheeks" for racing. Slotted rotors would help but they may be illegal for stock classes in AutoX. Cross drilled rotors tend to crack sooner and are considered throw away items in racing. A good set of stainless steel brake lines may also be in order. Goodridges are the best. These may also be illegal for some AutoX classes.

Lightweight wheels and racing tires, either DOT or slicks are the next move. I also have a set of Penske/Mallett double adjustable shocks with remote reservoirs front and rear and an after market sway bar on the front.

Some have found that Transmission temps rise after about 10 laps on the Z06. Chevy does make a T1 transmission cooler kit for the Z06. It can also be applied to the differential. Doug Rippie and Mallett also will custom build a trans and diff cooler. Doug Rippie also has a nice racing radiator with intregral engine oil cooler.

Again for track or Auto X my first steps (you are on the right track) would be to upgrade the brakes (fluid/lines/pads/rotors) and a harness bar with belts. Then shocks and sway bar. Then wheels and tires. I would also do a competition alignment with more negative camber in the front and some toe in in the rear.

Don't forget the personal stuff. I bought the best helmet I could find. Full face with Nomex lining. Double layer Pyrotex long underwear. socks and bellaclava. Nomex gloves (I found these also enable me to get a better grip on the wheel). You can never be too safe. I value my ass!
 

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If you don't need them right away, hold off, I'll be installing and reviewing the Breathless bolt in bar and Crow harnesses in the next couple weeks, not that the BK bar is not good, we just need some variety here :)

With everyone installing the BK bar it must be pretty damn good, and I've seen a few installed. Let's see how the Breathless unit compares :)

JC
 

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Responses were great guys!!
:cheers:

Just keep in mind if it is your first event just enjoy and make sure you like it before you commit and spend $$'s.
Believe me I have raced for over 7 years now and things can get real out of control real fast money wise.
:(
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
No Sh_t on things getting expensive. I was checking out the brake fluid alone. $40 a bottle. Whew! Thanks for all the input. I am going to bleed the brake lines (including ABS) and step up to some better fluid. Although I won't be going that fast, you never want to take any chances. Maybe pads also. They don't seem too expensive.:cheers:
 

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Do not be concerned about octane. 93 is fine. I have run less before.
DJ gave very good information.
I have done over 150 track events in corvettes and changed brake fluid before each one. I have never bled the ABS. Never had a problem with it. It will not hurt but I do not think it is necessary unless you run the reservoir dry.
Spend your money on making the car and you safe first. Then spend it on making you a better driver. Reach your and the car's potential before you add performance mods. Performance mods to the car do not make you a better driver. If you have money left put it in suspension/brake upgrades.
I use either Ford High performance or Valvoline Syntec brake fluid.
Cost is somewhere around $7.00 per quart. Either will work fine for you.
One other thing which might make your events more fun. I Made a check list of things to take to the track and use it every time I go. Now I do not forget anything I may need; spare fluids, pads, tools, etc.
 

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A couple of ideas

Itry2hide

On Octane -- my experience, and what I have read is -- using too much Octane actually slows you down. I think it goes like this. You need sufficient octane to prevent pre-ignition/ detonation. Beyond that point higher Octane slows down the burn speed. This costs you power if you overshoot.

I believe the 93 Octane should do the job on the Z as delivered.

On tires -- the Z with stock tires has more than enough performance to learn and go as fast as you need to go. The only issue is the wear, and ruining them (cupping) for street use. It is the latter that is the big motivator to get a "track" set of wheels and tires.

I think it makes sense to drop the car to the factory lowered position. It's easy and will make the car more predictable.

On brake fluid -- I've been told by an experienced GT1 racer and a guy who prepares cars for race rental, that the really expesvie stuff-- Castrol SRF (like $70. GASP!) lasts really long. According to him he puts it in and runs all season. If this is true it eliminates a real pain. at a minimum, competition brake fluid is a must.

Beyond the fluid, the only question is pads. (the rotors are fine) The issue with pads is mostly how long will they last. Keep a close eye on them in the first event. I thought Ferodo's were good (all the Formula 1 crap). A new set were gone in one track day. Then get something better if needed. The pain with pads is, most race pads are noisy on the street, and add one more thing to do when you go to the track.

Without a good harness you can't concentrate on driving. Unfortunately a 6 point is a must also. Beyond this a good helmet and you are ready.

Invest your money in getting seat time. It will be a while til the car is the limiting factor !!

Have fun, and you can't hide on the track !!
 

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I was new once, too

and got lots of help of th equality you see here on this list. Trouble was, I didn't aske enough or often ehnough, before making some big mistakes.
A little money save tho is the Ford heavy duty brake fluid. 0.1 the cost of Motul (my z06 has motul installed by the previuos owner, a real rich kid) but when I raced, most of the guys in SCCA knew about Ford fluid.
Next, here's the deal on tires. aroudn Seattle Int, the z turns 1.35.xx on the stock F-1's, 1.33.xx on Yoko A032R's, and 1.31.xx on Hoosiers, Aoo3, I think is the tire. BTW these times are in the hands of the previous owner. I am still catching up to the thing. WAY faster than my Z28! WITH my race experience and DOT BFG R-1's. Pay attention to your tars!
 
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