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As I am currently a bachelor since the wife and kids are in CA, I've decided to go nuts. I already did the cross-state MD drive this past Saturday.
On the totally opposite end of the hyper-miling spectrum, I've signed up for a local autocross event in southern MD. I've never autocrossed before, but I'm taking the Bolt this Saturday!

Looking at the entry list, no surprise I am the only plug-in entered so far out of 140 or so entries. Lots of Miatas, Mustangs, Corvettes, Scion FR-S, Focus STs, and Subarus entered. Should be interesting. :)
 

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Set all four tires up to roughly 45 pounds pressure minimum. Otherwise they tend to scrub off the edges of the tread badly.
If it is a standard SCCA event, you will probably end up in H street class.
That is mostly small hatchbacks and sedans.
Try to memorize the course in your mind when you walk it, and remember that it will look a lot different when you drive it.
Also, try to make smooth connecting curves out of course, rather then driving jerky sudden changes, this allows you to maintain the highest speed throughout the course.
Have fun! :)
 

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As I am currently a bachelor since the wife and kids are in CA, I've decided to go nuts. I already did the cross-state MD drive this past Saturday.
On the totally opposite end of the hyper-miling spectrum, I've signed up for a local autocross event in southern MD. I've never autocrossed before, but I'm taking the Bolt this Saturday!

Looking at the entry list, no surprise I am the only plug-in entered so far out of 140 or so entries. Lots of Miatas, Mustangs, Corvettes, Scion FR-S, Focus STs, and Subarus entered. Should be interesting. :)
Man, I should have signed up for an auto cross event while my wife and kids were in Europe. The come back next weekend.

Have you ever done any kind of racing or been trained on navigating curves and hitting your marks (are you familiar with the term apex). You brake before going into the curve, setup the turns by being as far outside as you can be, dip as far inside as you can go at the apex, and accelerate out of each curve letting the car swing back to the far outside (effectively making the curve wider than if you hugged the inside of the curve from beginning to end). Traction control should keep you from losing traction coming out of the turns, but most people don't brake early enough coming into the turns too hot, then lose control. If you haven't practiced this before, go find some YouTube videos and start practicing on every curve and offramp to get into the groove. I've been driving like this for years (except staying in lanes to legally not hog the road).
 

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Discussion Starter #4
As I am currently a bachelor since the wife and kids are in CA, I've decided to go nuts. I already did the cross-state MD drive this past Saturday.
On the totally opposite end of the hyper-miling spectrum, I've signed up for a local autocross event in southern MD. I've never autocrossed before, but I'm taking the Bolt this Saturday!

Looking at the entry list, no surprise I am the only plug-in entered so far out of 140 or so entries. Lots of Miatas, Mustangs, Corvettes, Scion FR-S, Focus STs, and Subarus entered. Should be interesting.
Man, I should have signed up for an auto cross event while my wife and kids were in Europe. The come back next weekend.

Have you ever done any kind of racing or been trained on navigating curves and hitting your marks (are you familiar with the term apex). You brake before going into the curve, setup the turns by being as far outside as you can be, dip as far inside as you can go at the apex, and accelerate out of each curve letting the car swing back to the far outside (effectively making the curve wider than if you hugged the inside of the curve from beginning to end). Traction control should keep you from losing traction coming out of the turns, but most people don't brake early enough coming into the turns too hot, then lose control. If you haven't practiced this before, go find some YouTube videos and start practicing on every curve and offramp to get into the groove. I've been driving like this for years (except staying in lanes to legally not hog the road).
I've been a NASCAR fan all my life and have played my share of simulator video games. I'm thinking I won't make a complete fool of myself. ?
 

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As a former road racer, I can't drive simulators. They lack acceleration forces from the brakes and gas, which is what I cue in on. I always found that I could brake way later and harder than originally expected. With cars you will find the brakes won't last long until they are overheated, I raced bikes so that was never an issue.
One thing that seems to hold true is that braking forces get priority, so if you trail brake or brake in the corner and you are at max cornering, you will spin out. From gocarts we use to just set entry speed, then let go of the brakes and turn. Scary the first time, but it's faster. Have fun.
 

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I've been a NASCAR fan all my life and have played my share of simulator video games. I'm thinking I won't make a complete fool of myself. ?
NASCAR mostly drives ovals and the superspeedways are all about the draft. Look for those windy road courses and try to watch some videos from the driver's seat on how they approach curves. Also at high speeds, actively look at and focus your marks (where you want to go). As soon as you hit that mark look at the next one. Your body and car will tend to go where you are focusing and looking (outside, inside apex, outside.... straightaway, setup the next turn....). Don't mash the accelerator to the floor after you finish a turn. You should be smoothly accelerating out of the turn and adjusting gingerly. A mash at high speeds might cause wheel spin through a turn if you aren't careful, even with traction control.

Does the Bolt have stabilitrak? If the track is dry, don't be afraid to use the antilock brakes to shed speed before turning into a corner, and with stabilitrak you should be able to accelerate smoothly all the way through a curve letting the car system do the work.

I learned a lot of this from a skip barber session driving a CTS-V around a race track. Alas, the CTS-V is much better for this type of stuff than the Bolt, but the bolt has plenty of low end torque, you might be able to keep up and beat mustangs and vettes if the straightaways aren't too long where they have the advantage.

This might be a great excuse to get a go pro camera so you can share footage here. Or get a dash mount for your smartphone....
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
NASCAR mostly drives ovals and the superspeedways are all about the draft. Look for those windy road courses and try to watch some videos from the driver's seat on how they approach curves. Also at high speeds, actively look at and focus your marks (where you want to go). As soon as you hit that mark look at the next one. Your body and car will tend to go where you are focusing and looking (outside, inside apex, outside.... straightaway, setup the next turn....). Don't mash the accelerator to the floor after you finish a turn. You should be smoothly accelerating out of the turn and adjusting gingerly. A mash at high speeds might cause wheel spin through a turn if you aren't careful, even with traction control.

Does the Bolt have stabilitrak? If the track is dry, don't be afraid to use the antilock brakes to shed speed before turning into a corner, and with stabilitrak you should be able to accelerate smoothly all the way through a curve letting the car system do the work.

I learned a lot of this from a skip barber session driving a CTS-V around a race track. Alas, the CTS-V is much better for this type of stuff than the Bolt, but the bolt has plenty of low end torque, you might be able to keep up and beat mustangs and vettes if the straightaways aren't too long where they have the advantage.

This might be a great excuse to get a go pro camera so you can share footage here. Or get a dash mount for your smartphone....
So let's try and optimize my Bolt as much as a stock Bolt can be optimized:
- air up tires to 45 psi
- empty any loose junk out of the car/remove as much stuff as possible
- keep traction control on?
- SPORT MODE ON!
- fully charged battery
- "L" mode
- racing stripes

Missing anything?
 

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How does regen play into braking early, etc...?
Regen should would great unless you brake so hard that ABS kicks in. Although since I don't own a Bolt and never autocrossed on, I dont' know for sure. This is all theory until Bro tests it out for sure.
 

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As I am currently a bachelor since the wife and kids are in CA, I've decided to go nuts.
That attitude has never ended well for me.

I've been a NASCAR fan all my life and have played my share of simulator video games. I'm thinking I won't make a complete fool of myself. ?
Ummm..........

I could say the same and all I can say is...... we shall see. Try to remember that Kyle Larson has been racing since he was a kid and you ain't him. YOU should concentrate on keeping it rubber-side down. Bolt is a bit narrow for its height.
 

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So let's try and optimize my Bolt as much as a stock Bolt can be optimized:
- air up tires to 45 psi
- empty any loose junk out of the car/remove as much stuff as possible
- keep traction control on?
- SPORT MODE ON!
- fully charged battery
- "L" mode
- racing stripes

Missing anything?
Helmet. Also, empty your car of all loose stuff before you go to the event. This includes your 110v charging cable. Put the tires at max sidewall pressure but do that at the event. You have an air pump - use it but leave it out of the car when you are actually racing.

Finally, have fun and enjoy the day.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
That attitude has never ended well for me.



Ummm..........

I could say the same and all I can say is...... we shall see. Try to remember that Kyle Larson has been racing since he was a kid and you ain't him. YOU should concentrate on keeping it rubber-side down. Bolt is a bit narrow for its height.
I guarantee I will not end up on my roof in the Bolt. That huge 960 pound battery in the floor will make sure of that. As the course will be on a flat parking lot with cones outlining the turns, only thing I will really need to worry about is to not clobber too many of those cones.

I'll get 6 runs, so I figure I'll take it easy the first couple of runs to learn the course, then go after it the last 4.
 

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This might be a great excuse to get a go pro camera so you can share footage here. Or get a dash mount for your smartphone....
Dashcam?? And maybe bring a friend to video so we can see you...and hear the electric motor whine!! That's one of my favorite parts of Formula E.

Joe
 

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I guarantee I will not end up on my roof in the Bolt. That huge 960 pound battery in the floor will make sure of that.
Bro, it's a car, not a Weeble (second time this week I typed that). :rolleyes:

As the course will be on a flat parking lot with cones outlining the turns, only thing I will really need to worry about is to not clobber too many of those cones.
Yeah, the wife won't like to see your activities scraped down the side of your car.

I'll get 6 runs, so I figure I'll take it easy the first couple of runs to learn the course, then go after it the last 4.
Should help. Just remember to assume nothing going in. I think you might want to invert your plan of attack though. You're talking about going from rookie to pro in 2 runs. Maybe a couple of Intermediate runs would be wise.

My best advise is "Drive the tires". It pays to know what that means.

This might help but the real learning happens in the car: http://www.roadandtrack.com/car-culture/a32130/want-to-be-a-better-driver-get-a-worse-tire/
 

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So let's try and optimize my Bolt as much as a stock Bolt can be optimized:
- air up tires to 45 psi
- empty any loose junk out of the car/remove as much stuff as possible
- keep traction control on?
- SPORT MODE ON!
- fully charged battery
- "L" mode
- racing stripes

Missing anything?
STICKERS!!! lots of stickers, because you know, they make you faster. :D
 

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#1 Have Fun.
#2 Walk course as many times as you can.
#3 Always be looking way ahead, not the at the corner you are in. You should not be looking at or reacting to cones close to you, it's too late. This is especially true in the slaloms, 2 cones ahead, turn early not late.
#4 Regen is not your friend. Use the brake pedal. More Control More Betta.
#5 Smooth is fast. If the front pushes, you need to get smoother. Smoother <> slower. It means less spastic.
#6 Most events will have instructors or racers who have already run who can ride with you. Use this resource. Ask. It's worth it.

You are going to find out there are some really fast folk out there. You will find out that AutoX is mostly driver, not car.

Remember #1.

Car set up?
TC/SC off. Floor mats out. Car empty. Windows down. Blue painter's tape is great for numbers. Sit forward. Tires at 41. OEM tires aren't really very good for AX.
 

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STICKERS!!! lots of stickers, because you know, they make you faster. :D
And a big ass wing, 3 inch pipe, fart can, slammed down low, window tint, undercarriage neon, plus NOS.

My car has 2 stickers on it: An Apple logo, and an oval that says "My other computer is a CRAY"
 

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#1 Have Fun.
#2 Walk course as many times as you can.
#3 Always be looking way ahead, not the at the corner you are in. You should not be looking at or reacting to cones close to you, it's too late.
#4 Regen is not your friend. Use the brake pedal. More Control More Betta.
#5 Smooth is fast. If the front pushes, you need to get smoother. Smoother <> slower. It means less spastic.
#6 Most events will have instructors or racers who have already run who can ride with you. Use this resource. Ask. It's worth it.

You are going to find out there are some really fast folk out there. You will find out that AutoX is mostly driver, not car.

Remember #1.
Completely agree. If you are fighting the turns and working hard to hold it together, you're actually; working too hard and slowing yourself down. Going into the turns smoothly and exiting smoothly while accelerating ends up being quicker. There's a scene in Fast & Furious 3 Tokyo Drift where they are driving through the mountains - smooth is a thing of beauty, but I hesitate to suggest this movie as you won't be drifting the Bolt. But the scene early in the movie in the parking deck shows exactly how smooth and controlled gets you around corners faster than pushing hard and hitting corners too fast. Again, not suggesting you drift, but speed comes from doing the corners right - enter slow, exit quickly.
 

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As ironic as it sounds, don't be affraid to try it with Sport Mode OFF. That will give you finer control of the power and could be preferable for autocross, according to the comments from one Spark EV driver I've read. You'll want to control the power just at the limit of traction out of the corners and Sport Mode OFF may help.
 
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