GTA Finals 2019 @ Buttonwillow (Formerly Superlap Battle) is less than a week away! Nov 16-17
Currently buttoning up the car and thrashing on those spreadsheets to make sure nothing is forgotten. There's several Miata/MX5 entries on the sheets this year:Pro/Comp
Ryan Raduechel Raduechel Performance Motorsports Mazda Miata #89 Unlimited
Ryan Helmuth Sancon Racing Mazda Miata #126
Gary Drew Sancon Racing Mazda Miata #510Limited
Tarek Latouf All Automotive | GG Racing Mazda Miata SC #241
Ryan Passey Goodwin Racing Mazda Miata LFX #13
Daniel Tran All Automotive Mazda Miata #45
Ulrik Szirka UMS Racing Mazda Miata #29Street
Milo Eurocompulsion Fiat Abarth 124 Spider #32Enthusiast
Bret Nicoletti Rooney Speed Mazda Miata MX5 (NC) #10
This year will be the most difficult yet. Classes are no longer separated by drivetrains, so just as at Superlap Battle USA at COTA earlier this year we are up against everything, not just RWD. Limited class has 28 entries as of today.
On a personal note, I've put a lot of work into the car this year to hopefully make another step forward. Feeling a lot of pressure and nervous excitement to lay it down and see that work deliver in the lap times. Everyone knows by now that the HyperMiata is now supercharged via a custom Rotrex setup. More power is good but doesn't guarantee anything. With it comes more hurdles to overcome, a bit more weight, longer braking zones, lower min speeds, etc. so it's hopefully a matter of 1 step back and 2 steps forward. Moti (Blackbird Fabworx) has been closely involved as we refine the aero and keep making adjustments and improvements.
We've been testing and refining:
Coming off just setting a new Miata lap record at Laguna Seca but losing the clutch a couple laps in, a new clutch is in and if it holds together we should be running fast.
The big looming goal for us going into this event is the one I set back when the car was reborn with the LFX; to set a new Limited Rear Wheel Drive record at Buttonwillow 13CW. The current record stands at 1:44.456 by the very dialed and fast C6 shown below, and it's a bit of an anomaly; it was set in the final year that the Limited class rules were more open (stickier tires and flat bottoms were allowed back then), and back when it was set it was over 3 seconds faster than anyone had ever gone before, and and nobody has ran anywhere close to it since then. After the rule change to slow the Limited class down, we've been sort of leading the pack at drilling the times back down towards that record, and we're now the second fastest Limited class car to ever lap Buttonwillow 13CW behind just this Corvette, but as of last year with a PB of 1:46.8 we're still a ways off.
To put that lap time into some perspective, the Miata lap record is 1:44.8, held by Supermiata / 949 Racing with Vegas (pictured below) with Emilio behind the wheel in the Unlimited class on Hoosiers. So we need to be on pace to beat the fastest Unlimited Miata that's ever run there... but do it with street tires from a class down.
Can we do it? There's just one way to find out.