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Below is a recounting of various car events I've attended along the years, from car club meets, autocrosses, track events, and enthusiast drives.

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2005/07/18 M5 at TH (T.E.A.M. Track Event at Thunderhill)
π 2005-07-18 23:34 by Merlin in Cars

After getting my trip to Canada and OLS cancelled (and not being very happy about it), I decided to join a T.E.A.M. track day at thunderhill at the last minute. However, my miata being out of commission (again :( It's at the shop to debug an electrical problem), I was left with taking my backup car, the M5 :)

Yeah, welcome to the track

I got a nice ride in Rick Weldon's car

Temperature was above 42°C, which made some engines hot.
Oh yeah, MPG wasn't too good on the track, but then again, my miata doesn't do much better at full boost :)

My car sure talked to me today, and told me things we had never discussed before :)

By the end of all sessions, I had to short shift to bring the RPMs and temps down, but due to the remaining torque I had, it was not a big deal

My brake pads however totally vanished :)

Unfortunately, I had to bail after 4 sessions because I had just totally ran out of brakes (and did one session with the very little brake pad left warning light on the whole time).
Bonni nicely let me drive her spec miata, and it was such a contrast to go back in a small car that just stuck to the road and had so much grip that I barely ever had to touch the brakes: just gas the whole way.

Even though I only did 4 sessions in the M5, and I did struggle to use any power considering that the street tires would just not hold the massive weight of the car in turns, I was almost able to read a laptime of 2:20.
I know that with a little more practise, and had I actually reached the zone (which I wasn't quite in), I could probably have gone down to 2:18-ish, but still about 4 seconds slower than my miata. Now, if I actually had sticky tires and a bit more practise, I would most likely have been able to beat it, and get in the low 2:10s, but I'm not sure I want the hassle of new wheels and new tires for an occasional visit to the track.

Anyway, good time was had, it was nice to drive the car without traction control on (actually, it was mostly on the slight understeer side of mostly neutral, which I guess makes it safer). My brakes just had a hard time keeping up with the load, and gave up their life trying :)

Trip back was mostly uneventful, due to traffic jams on 80, it took about 2H25. The only interesting part was the chippie coming the other way on 505 when I was doing over a buck-twenty the other way. Either he didn't see me or didn't bother trying to turn around trying to catch up to say hello :)

Pictures are here

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