Monday, August 31, 2015

Club Civic Quebec Track Day at St-Eustache

Jules enjoys some quality time in the race car while it sits in our garage
Thanks to Carl and Alex, I was able to attend a lapping day organized by and for Club Civic Quebec. Except for a couple of laps in a student's car this past spring, I hadn't driven on a track for a year. At the same event last year, I had achieved my personal best lap ever in the Civic (under 1:00.1). Was it realistic that I would break that record? Not really. Although Carl and Sajan have carried out work on the Civic to make it more reliable, they did not try to add any performance. Sajan told me that they had used the car recently at St-Eustache and were lapping in the 1:01 range. The car was wearing some pretty old Hankook RS3 tires, which would be the limiting factor as far as the car's performance went. The other limiting factor would be the driver, who might be a bit rusty!

 photo IMGP9151_zpsetew1u0l.jpg
The Civic is ready for action
I thought I had two good mounted wheels in my basement, but I quickly realized only one of them was usable, as one of them had a badly corded tire. I therefore had only one spare tire. As I prepared the car, it felt just like old times. I set up the lap timer and installed my camera. Carl had installed a suede steering wheel. This really helped with the steering effort (when wearing gloves) and one did not need to grip the wheel so tightly. The Civic lost its power steering when we installed the 2.3 liter JDM Accord engine.

My goal for the first session was to ease into things and get down into the 1:02 range. After a few laps, this was achieved. However, at one point, the car snapped into oversteer just after the entry to the carousel. I headed off track on the inside, and quickly reentered the track. Unfortunately, the grass is not level with the track, and this involved hitting the equivalent of a curb at a decent rate of speed. The result was a flat tire and a dented wheel (sorry Carl!). I limped back to the pits and installed my only spare (luckily, it was the same model of tire and the same size and offset wheel).

In the next session, I was taking it easy in the carousel, yet the same thing happened again (without the flat tire). In the following sessions, I simply took it very easy at that portion of the track. After a while, the issue seemed to have resolved itself (Pascal theorized it might be a sticking brake caliper). There were six sessions available to us, but I hoped to have a good fifth session, then call it a day, so I could be home early enough to make dinner.

In the last session, everything finally came together. I had several good laps, there was no weird oversteer, and I managed a best lap of 1:00.7. Of course, I could have driven more smoothly and maybe knocked off a couple of tenths, but I knew that it was not realistic to break my record with these tires. I packed up the car satisfied with my day.

I still love the Civic. It's hard to imagine a different newer Civic becoming my track car. There were several really nice 2002-2005 EP3 Civics and some 2006 and up Si's. The owners of these cars had spent a lot of money, and they just didn't seem as fast as Carl's car. The fastest Si was supercharged. That is a very expensive modification. I drove a student's Si sedan with several bolt-on engine upgrades, and it just felt very sluggish. I guess it was a bit of an eye opener: newer cars are heavy, and they need a lot more power to feel quick and generate good lap times.

I don't need all that stuff that makes a car heavy in my Civic. Yami, one of the instructors, was lapping in 1:01.5 in a 90's Civic hatch with a non-vtec 1.8 liter. It seems the number one option for me, as far as my next track car goes, is to hope Carl will eventually sell me back my old Civic... I think with the right tires, the car can do the magic 59-second lap (and maybe even 58, in the right conditions).

Here is a video I made:



Couldn't wait to start!
 photo IMGP9152_zps2x4vppyv.jpg
Mostly Hondas on hand
 photo IMGP9153_zps28qj83rx.jpg
But not all Hondas...
 photo IMGP9154_zpsfnqzyozy.jpg
From the far right, Yami's Civic, Jérémi's Civic, and Maxo's Integra

 photo IMGP9157_zps04uq9ei4.jpg
Marc-André's Civic is a bit of a sleeper
 photo IMGP9158_zpsshsvrz0a.jpg
Other instructor cars
 photo IMGP9159_zpsczqjw8lx.jpg
The conditions were ideal
 photo IMGP9161_zpsvsuc2ftx.jpg
The car was looking good with the Perry Auto logo
 photo IMGP9163_zpst1disrzn.jpg
Amélie with one of the lappers
 photo IMGP9165_zps8ih7jzwi.jpg
Marc meditating
 photo IMGP9166_zpsl7v0z1jd.jpg
Amélie's Corvette doesn't quite fit in
 photo IMGP9169_zpsnh4kppil.jpg
Intermediate group on track
 photo IMGP9171_zps7x20mhjj.jpg
 photo IMGP9175_zpsl3pbs6mu.jpg
 photo IMGP9178_zpsqldfqmuk.jpg
 photo IMGP9179_zpskqoohgkd.jpg
 photo IMGP9180_zpsqfzaumew.jpg
 photo IMGP9186_zps46drv4df.jpg
 photo IMGP9187_zpseast1flo.jpg
 photo IMGP9188_zpsj245hawu.jpg
 photo IMGP9189_zpssoq0tmzj.jpg
 photo IMGP9190_zpsdml3vyzb.jpg
 photo IMGP9191_zpsv6cy9p8j.jpg
 photo IMGP9192_zpsvh4peopr.jpg
 photo IMGP9193_zpslnemswbn.jpg
 photo IMGP9194_zpsecgdyonb.jpg
 photo IMGP9196_zpsuzsdskty.jpg
 photo IMGP9197_zpsfwacwhoj.jpg
 photo IMGP9198_zps0yziv4rh.jpg
 photo IMGP9200_zpshom56ssq.jpg
This lovely R33 Skyline was just visiting
 photo IMGP9201_zpsexppuzwl.jpg
This car featured a supercharger
 photo IMGP9214_zpsoxtzpkhi.jpg

 photo IMGP9204_zpsy5c80qqg.jpg
A couple of Mitsubishi's crashing the Honda party
 photo IMGP9205_zpslhgt15ou.jpg
 photo IMGP9206_zps2rmioq12.jpg
 photo IMGP9207_zps8aoocj9g.jpg
Pascal, Yan and Maxo
 photo IMGP9208_zps3fytslze.jpg
It almost looks like a car show!
 photo IMGP9215_zpsfew4puye.jpg

 photo IMGP9210_zpsls8oxgeh.jpg
This Civic had to be towed away after a mishap in the first session
 photo IMGP9213_zps1alv2ndb.jpg
 photo IMGP9217_zpsfqdpemwi.jpg
Jérémi's EG hatch
 photo IMGP9218_zpsngj1rahd.jpg
Amélie let me drive her Z06 for a few laps. It was very nice
 photo IMGP9219_zps9jpjvysl.jpg
 photo IMGP9221_zpsqypy5qje.jpg
 photo IMGP9223_zpsvgablcct.jpg

 photo IMGP9225_zpstedfquov.jpg
 photo IMGP9228_zps3j9azdv8.jpg
 photo IMGP9229_zpsqarlg2fy.jpg
 photo IMGP9230_zpsxlbphgcm.jpg
Student group on track
 photo IMGP9231_zpsoy969u0o.jpg
 photo IMGP9232_zpsrthygmgi.jpg
 photo IMGP9234_zpsixulhqnt.jpg
 photo IMGP9235_zpssfd5nwcz.jpg
This lightly modded WRX was very quick
 photo IMGP9236_zpsgm0n2rzl.jpg
 photo IMGP9237_zpsvhk9kgw4.jpg
 photo IMGP9238_zpss5tdt03b.jpg
 photo IMGP9244_zpseexj1kd9.jpg
 photo IMGP9246_zpsalnktzg9.jpg
 photo IMGP9248_zps6fajkn8m.jpg
 photo IMGP9249_zpswc1g6arf.jpg



 photo IMGP9254_zpslrx549o6.jpg
 photo IMGP9259_zps4gmzuqti.jpg
 photo IMGP9260_zpsdtt0mm8k.jpg
 photo IMGP9261_zpsby3djplu.jpg
 photo IMGP9262_zps4dgtww9n.jpg
 photo IMGP9264_zpskgf4yjap.jpg
 photo IMGP9265_zpssmcg0kag.jpg
 photo IMGP9269_zpshqk1dloa.jpg
 photo IMGP9270_zpsqrdulf68.jpg
 photo IMGP9272_zpsmmgmjzrw.jpg
 photo IMGP9273_zps5wmouzxd.jpg
 
 photo IMGP9274_zpsdxjq0zyv.jpg
 photo IMGP9275_zpsrspnpy3c.jpg
Who would have thought a brown Civic could be so nice?
Surrounded by EP3's!
 photo IMGP9276_zpsljphlev1.jpg

No comments:

Post a Comment