Wednesday, March 25, 2015

12 Hours of Sebring

I've joined up with some other guys from the r/iracing subreddit to form a team in the 12 Hours of Sebring. We'll be driving the BMW Z4 in the GT3 class.

I know I'm not fast in the Z4, in the GT3 Series races I've run in the past I've always been focused on driving safely rather than quickly. I think this same attitude will allow me to bang out consistent incident free laps for the 2 or 3 hours of my shift.

I ran some practice laps and have found a setup which I find very docile and stable. I've been able to work my way down to a 2:03.060 laptime. A poor run through the hairpin cost me an easy 0.30 and I'm aware of a few more tenths I left on the table. I'm confident I'll be able to get down into the low 2:02's with just a little more practice time.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Mustangs at Phillip Island

2015 Season 2 of the Grand Touring Cup began with Week 1 at Phillip Island. Here's a very enjoyable race that saw me battling for the lead in the Mustang class.

Road 2015 S2 Week 1

I finished Week 1 of 2015 Season 2 very happy with the results in the two series I'm focusing on this season; the Grand Touring Cup and the Ruf Cup.

Two out of three of my races in the GTC were amazingly enjoyable, featuring race long battles for the lead. The 3rd and final race was a bit less intense, as I managed to build a comfortable 12 second lead by the checkered flag.

The Ruf Cup started as I had feared; the first two races saw me taken out by impatient drivers who don't understand that racing at Mount Panorama is a game of patience. Luckily the 3rd race at the Mountain was far better. I let a few drivers by me as I settled in. I ended up finishing in 5th place and looking at the lap timing I probably could have push a little harder in the initial laps and battled for 4th. Actually, if I had of avoided a little offroading at the chase I could have been fighting for 3rd. Still, I was glad to get 86 points in the bag.

The other interesting thing that came out of that particular race was an offer to join a team for the Ruf Cup and perhaps some endurance races. I'll post more when it is official.

I ran some Mazda Cup races just because it was at Summit Point, though I have to admit I didn't enjoy these as much as I had expected. I also ran two races in the WSCS just for fun, the first I really enjoyed the second I crashed out of early. I did a single GT3 race to trade some iRating for Safety Rating, at one point during the week I was down to 2.03 after the single Production Car Challenge race I ran. That race was a pretty terrible display of dirty driving by someone who defended the lead very aggressively and then bomb dived into the side of my car to retake the lead after I'd got by him. I was very unimpressed.

SeriesRacesWinsPointsAvg Start PosAvg Fin PosAvg iRAvg SR
Mazda Cup401032.07.2-34-0.07
Grand Touring Cup321111.01.3470.12
Ruf Cup30863.311.0-70-0.02
World Sports Car Series202912.512.0-700.03
Production Car Challenge10601.03.0-3-0.24
GT3 Challenge Series105222.020.0-200.35

Safety Rating2.63
Corners Per Incident34.73
Total Driving Time6 hrs 47 mins
Race Starts14
Race Finishes8
Qualify Sessions9
Time Trials1
Podium Finishes5
Top 5 Finishes6
Average Finish Postion8.1
Total Laps161

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

iRacing Stats App Update

As 2015 Season 1 was drawing to a close and I started to look forward to the next season I came to realize that my stats app didn't handle viewing information for separate cars run in the same multi-class series.

Earlier in the season I had completed a few races in the Grand Touring Cup driving the Solstice, in the final week I jumped into a race driving the Mustang. When I sync'd up my stats I found that only the information for the Solstice was showing up.

As it turns out making the application handle this situation was a pretty big task. I'm proud to say that I've refactored the code to manage a user taking part in a series driving in multiple classes. I've also put some thought into how to handle driving different cars in a single class series, like is possible in the GT3 series. At this point, I've left them all in together. Since the results all tally for a single championship, unlike a multi-class series.

Here's a screenshot showing off how the series dropdown menu displays the car type in parenthesis:

Mustang Training

I spent my driving time over the last few days putting in a decent number of laps in the Mustang, in preparation for the Grand Touring Cup for 2015 Season 2. I've really enjoyed it. The fun really comes from balancing the weight on corner entry and then carefully feeding the gobs of power through the thin tires on corner exit. It is very satisfying when you get it right and I've found that I'm able to catch the rear end when I get it wrong.

I started tinkering with setups, using the excellent Black Adder set as my baseline. I've made a few adjustments to it and created my own baseline. I started off at Phillip Island and found a few tweaks which helped bring down my lap times. I've also put in a good amount of time at Okayama and Summit Point, again finding a few little changes from the baseline. Since the current GTC series is at Laguna Seca I also did some practice and a race there.

As much as I was enjoying these test sessions and setup tweaking I'm aware that the upcoming changes to the suspension code across the whole service will probably mean I'll need to do it all over again. So I didn't continue working on setups for other tracks. Still, I think it has been good to get an understanding of the effects various changes have.

The main thing I've been focused on when tweaking setups has been finding the right combination of front rebound damping and rear compression strength. These two work in combination to change the rate at which the weight is put onto the rear axle as I'm accelerating out of corners. If it transitions too quickly I have to be very, very careful feeding the power on.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Road 2015 S1 Week 12

I'm going to declare myself done with Week 12 and therefore 2015 Season 1. I've booked some solid results this week and I'm also down at 2.09 Safety Rating. I really don't want to risk dropping below 2.00 and having to grind it back up during the madness of Week 13.

I took a win in my only trip to Bathurst in the MX5 Advanced series, I really enjoyed it. Even though I was able to lead from green lights to checkered flag I was under pressure to hold Stephane ~2 seconds behind me.

I laughed with glee as I watched two very fast, highly ranked drivers have a stupid accident which ended their MX5 Cup race at Lime Rock and allowed me a pretty easy drive to a huge 146 point haul. It took me 3 races before I managed to get a clean race in, but it was worth it.

In the Production Car Cup I needed to score more than 105 points for this week to be counted in my results. I only managed a 104, so this week will go into the drop week bucket. I'm currently 6th overall in the whole championship so I don't feel too compelled to try for more. Risk vs reward makes it pretty easy to declare myself very happy with my performance in the Solstice. I never expected to be able to finish in the top 10 of any series.

Mazda Cup312.36.764-17-0.06
Production Car Challenge103.02.010441-0.18
Adv Mazda MX-5 Cup111.01.0110670.22

Safety Rating2.09
Corners Per Incident24.41
Total Driving Time2 hrs 51 mins
Race Starts5
Race Finishes4
Qualify Sessions7
Time Trials0
Podium Finishes3
Top 5 Finishes3
Average Finish Postion4.6
Total Laps76

Production Car Challenge 2015 Season 1

Current championship standing: 6th out of 2262 drivers

Avg PointsAvg Finish PosAvg IncAvg iRAvg SR

Weekly Average Per Race
WeekTrackRacesWinsTop3PtsFin PosiRSR
1:Okayama Short111731.063.00.07
2:Summit Point Jefferson Rev201835.533.5-0.07
3:Charlotte Road1001006.061.00.15
4:Summit Point Short3011174.066.70.22
5:Lime Rock Full4011274.045.50.03
6:Laguna Seca Full2011053.570.50.28
7:Okayama Full2111112.565.5-0.01
8:Summit Point Jefferson1001165.078.00.14
9:Charlotte Road2011258.0-2.00.09
10:Summit Point3001455.772.70.04
11:Lime Rock Chicane3011134.719.0-0.06
12:Laguna Seca Full1011042.041.0-0.18

Mazda Cup 2015 Season 1

Current championship standing: 40th out of 13576 drivers

Avg PointsAvg Finish PosAvg IncAvg iRAvg SR

Weekly Average Per Race
WeekTrackRacesWinsTop3PtsFin PosiRSR
1:Summit Point1011082.087.0-0.18
2:Okayama Full201956.017.5-0.03
3:Lime Rock Full3111055.324.3-0.02
4:Laguna Seca Full1011022.070.0-0.10
5:Summit Point Jefferson201994.034.5-0.03
6:Charlotte Road400958.8-16.5-0.04
7:Okayama Short1111191.085.00.04
8:Lime Rock Chicane3011255.021.3-0.09
9:Summit Point1111461.089.00.16
10:Laguna Seca Full4011105.87.2-0.10
11:Okayama Full4021346.09.80.07
12:Lime Rock Full3111466.7-16.7-0.06

Adv Mazda MX-5 Cup 2015 Season 1

Current championship standing: 35th out of 2239 drivers

Avg PointsAvg Finish PosAvg IncAvg iRAvg SR

Weekly Average Per Race
WeekTrackRacesWinsTop3PtsFin PosiRSR
1:Summit Point40112011.015.20.03
2:Sebring Club3019710.3-22.0-0.04
3:Silverstone Intl100805.034.0-0.18
4:Motegi East300839.7-20.7-0.13
5:Interlagos GP3011125.032.0-0.11
6:Mid-Ohio Full300917.3-9.00.03
7:Oulton Fosters2003218.0-83.5-0.20
8:Road America Full100994.048.0-0.18
9:Watkins Glen Cup5007610.8-36.40.01
10:Daytona Road400948.5-24.2-0.05
11:Road Atlanta Full201974.537.00.06
12:Mount Panorama1111101.067.00.22

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Full Career Stats

Mazda Cup160203.25.54514-0.01
Star Mazda Championship7319.29.437-90.09
Adv Mazda MX-5 Cup7026.99.549-5-0.04
Street Stock Series3508.97.85260.03
Spec Racer Ford Challenge3226.77.6391-0.05
Production Car Challenge MC25153.34.592490.06
Grand Touring Cup MC16214.213.362100.04
Skip Barber Race Series15011.911.025-24-0.05
13th Week Mazda Cup1453.18.552150.05
GT3 Challenge Series9015.217.630-410.21
NASCAR National Series6011.512.535-160.10
Global Challenge6013.314.328-34-0.03
World Sports Car Series MC3111.711.044-150.00
13th Week Street Stock Challenge1015.012.02400.03
Global Challenge - Open1010.012.021-380.03

Safety Rating2.12
Corners Per Incident24.99
Total Driving Time214 hrs 20 mins
Race Starts424
Race Finishes335
Qualify Sessions197
Time Trials35
Podium Finishes102
Top 5 Finishes157
Average Finish Postion8.0
Total Laps5673