MSR – Cresson : Coaching

A last minute opportunity to drive at MSRC came up for January 2nd, 2012.  I was able to go, and it was an “educational” day.  Another friend had given me some of his old tires.  The story of the day is really a separate post that should include video footage of the “incidents”.  But, suffice it to say that I “fought” the new tires until I finally flat-spotted a tire. 

Anyway, an experienced racer, Craig Janssen, offered to review my video and data with me and offer some pointers on how to improve.  We met at his office the other day.  We spent 2 hours talking things over, splitting the time 50/50 between big-picture stuff, and track specific discussions.  It was a tremendously educational experience.  Lots of things to think about as I further review the video and data.

Below are my notes from the discussion.  After transcribing these, I sent it back to Craig.  He further expanded on my notes in red.

It was an exceptionally generous thing for him to do, on a Monday night with a very busy schedule.  All I can do is hope to be able to return the favor to someone else someday in the future.   Maybe reading my own learning experiences will help someone coming up the ladder behind me.  If you are reading this a year or two from “now” and have questions or want some help, please fee free to comment here.  My email (or door) will always be open, and I’ll share anything I think I know.

Continue reading MSR – Cresson : Coaching

MSRCresson: 2012/01/02

Yesterday was my first time in my own car on any R-compound tires (RA-1 takeoffs). It wasn’t pretty:

  • one 4-wheel off — rear end tried to come around, saved it…realized I wasn’t going to keep it on track, let it run straight into flat grassy area (outside of wagonwheel)
  • one 2-wheel off (the front two on wrong side of the apex curbing) — turned in too abruptly, broke rear end loose, slid sideways through apex CONE before car corrected back to straight (bigbend)
  • one 180 degree spin — missed heel-toe, broke rear end loose spun to outside of track. (horseshoe)
  • one flat-spot — got greedy on entry into turn 1. (rattlesnake entry)
  • I had numerous near-misses that I did manage to save.

Basically, both early morning sessions were like driving on ice, and I just didn’t respect the situation enough (or understand it well enough to know the right approach).  Here’s the video:


Continue reading MSRCresson: 2012/01/02

MSR Cresson track Day – Apex Driving Academy – 7/09/2011


A good day.  Since I ran this direction a month ago, it was a chance to look for improvements in driving skill.


  • MSR-Cresson 1.7CW

Basic setup:

  • 2.8* camber front
  • 2.5* camber rear
  • 0 toe all around
  • Fuzion ZRi street tires
  • Rear bar: min-stiffness
  • Front bar: medium stiffness
  • 50.5% cross weight


  • Cool suit test day, and new firesuit: Sparco Pro-X.
  • Improve on lap times from last month.
  • Evaluate front sway bar change

Big Bend (turn 1)

Continued from Cresson CW Analysis

Looking at the data, I was much less consistent in the braking zone than I thought.  The two laps shown below represent my two fastest laps, and my two fastest passes through this turn and the following straight.  However, they are much different.  The top lines are accel-G, RED is “main lap”, YELLOW is “ref lap”.  The purple line in the middle is the lap time difference between the two laps.  The bottom lines are GPS_MPH, pink = main lap, orange = ref lap.

Main Lap: Red, pink (hereafter the “red” lap)

Ref Lap: Yellow, Orange (hereafter the “yellow” lap)


Continue reading Big Bend (turn 1)

Upgraded to Solo!

So, there’s lots more to tell, and it will take some time to get it all down on “ePaper”.   But, the biggest news of the weekend is that I’ve been upgraded to run solo.  Actually, my instructor got out after the first green session, and said, “Your doing good enough to drive solo.  You don’t need me here.  Just work on tightening up those Apexes.”

At the time I presumed that just meant that he would recommend upgrading me to the intermediate group at the end of the day.  Still cool.  That was my goal for the day because it opens up so many more options for seat time.  Besides the intermediates get a full 120 minutes of green-flag seat time.  The Novice groups only get 80 minutes.

Continue reading Upgraded to Solo!

2010-08-28 Driver’s Log

Location: Motorsports Ranch – Cresson, TX,

Track Configuration: 1.7CCW

Vehicle: 1992, 1.6L Miata, rented from Shannon Mcmasters (Team MER)

School: Apex Driving School

Run Group: Novice

Continue reading 2010-08-28 Driver’s Log

Motor Sports Ranch – Cresson, TX, 1.7CCW

Porsche Club DE – MSRC

Motor Sports Ranch – Cresson, TX, 1.7CW

1.7 Course

Continue reading Motor Sports Ranch – Cresson, TX, 1.7CW

The Driver’s Edge – MSR-Cresson