Yesterday was a huge amount of fun! The day ran smoothly and the car was faultless. It has been over a decade since I had done any type of drifting, so I was pretty rusty at the beginning. A few runs in and I was linking turns and growing in confidence. As the day went on, however, my skill deteriorated in the face of mental and physical fatigue. I started spinning from stupid little mistakes that I wouldn’t have made when I was more switched on. Regardless, it was still enjoyable.
The participants were divided into groups of four to six to run on the wet skid pan for about 5 minutes at a time. It doesn’t sound like much but you can have a pretty good go in that time. We had about two runs an hour, with at least sixteen by the end of the day. Dodging other cars as they spun was one of the most challenging parts, but even with six on track it wasn’t hard to find some space.
Early in the day, a fellow participant experienced a small fire when his power steering reservoir spilled onto the exhaust headers. He ended up rejoining later without a power steering belt to avoid a repeat but I’m sure it was a horrible, anxious time as he watched the organisers swiftly descend on his car with fire extinguishers. The lesson for me was to check and wipe small my own power steering reservoir after each run. The day ended up pretty hot but my coolant and oil temperatures were generally in the low 80s as I exited the track. The car was really faultless.
It was also very easy to drive. There were many low powered cars present, especially compared to a drag racing meet. The wet track means very little power is required to drift. My car has plenty of power, so generally only light throttle was required to maintain a slide. I’m very confident that it could handle the skidpan dry without any issues. I ran the car on low boost all day which still provided plenty of grunt.
One thing I struggled with was initiating the drift. The KAAZ 1.5 way diff was very predictable, wit the rear snapping out with any decent application of throttle. With light throttle the car would understeer and plough forward. I was actually surprised by how much rear grip I had in these conditions. I tried to use the hand brake but it needs some tensioning. Yesterday it was far too loose to be reliable and predictable. My favoured method ended up being a ‘clutch kick’. I can see why a 2 way diff would be preferable in initiating the drift with its increased aggression in locking up on deceleration.
In summary, I would highly recommend such a day to anyone with a rear wheel drive car. Over the next bit I will edit and upload some of the footage I took on my VR camera and phone.