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Old 02-26-2008, 07:24 PM   #1
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Default Street Tires vs. Race Tires

The hottest topic in Reno!

Let's keep it civil... what you you all think about the new ST PAX factor?
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Old 02-26-2008, 08:36 PM   #2
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I'm glad I'll be able to flop back and forth between the year.

I'm definitely going to be trying out race tires next year just to see what its like in my own car and we'll go from there. But, its nice to always be able to go back to street tires if I need to.
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Old 02-26-2008, 09:20 PM   #3
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At 5,000 ASL, the PAX is really only for those with boost or big cubic inches. The rest of us just watch the show...
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Old 02-26-2008, 11:11 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TracDaz View Post
At 5,000 ASL, the PAX is really only for those with boost or big cubic inches. The rest of us just watch the show...
Street Tire PAX? What's that got to do with horsepower and altitude? In fact, the evidence shows that it's the big power cars that lose out the most under the street tire PAX rules, since their advantage (esp. at altitude) tends to be on the straights where race tires help you the least.

If you're just watching the show 'cause you think the Miata isn't effected by the street tire PAX, you're likely going to get beat up on by another Miata that's making smarter tire decisions based on the new ST PAX factor.
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Old 02-27-2008, 06:54 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sperry View Post
Street Tire PAX? What's that got to do with horsepower and altitude? In fact, the evidence shows that it's the big power cars that lose out the most under the street tire PAX rules, since their advantage (esp. at altitude) tends to be on the straights where race tires help you the least.

If you're just watching the show 'cause you think the Miata isn't effected by the street tire PAX, you're likely going to get beat up on by another Miata that's making smarter tire decisions based on the new ST PAX factor.
Hey Scott.....he drives a S2000 now....look at his post with car type....

Russ you should be able to hang wth the Saturn Sky is AS....they are real close on race rubber.I have a freind who ran both last year.
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Old 02-27-2008, 07:56 AM   #6
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I think Pat Riley running the S2000 was pretty competitive when he was up here.
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Old 02-27-2008, 06:19 PM   #7
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If anybody is bored and wants to see the calculations I did using National SP and ST results, say so and I'll post the spreadsheet somehow.

EDIT: Here it is... Just as it was sent to the board.

Due to weather, a bunch of the data is bad... I am attaching a spreadsheet that can be quite confusing but includes all the data for comparable class trophy places. It further attempts to isolate the actually comparable cars on an individual and class basis.

I have highlighted what I believe is the useful and most valid data in green and it runs from the high .93s to the low .97s... This just goes to show how hard this is and how it depends on the course and car

That said, this is a significant change from the last time I did this when it ran from the .92s with nothing above the low .96s. At that time we erred on the side of race tires and went with .968 which was the same simple 60 seconds on R compound vs. 62 seconds on streets.

I am going to suggest the same thing again. R=60 VS T=61.5 which is a 1.5 second handicap and comes out to .9756 which is higher than all of the data I remotely trust.

I can round either way to .975 or .976 or leave it at 4 decimal places if the software supports it.

I am also threatening to do a statistics based replacement for PAX based on all of the nationals data....

If you care, the most comparable cars are:

89 CIVIC SI
STS places 1-3
FSP places 1
93 Civic
STS places 4
FSP places 2

Honda CRX
88-91 STS2 places 1,3-8
86 CSP places 6

Mazda Miata
92 STS2 places 2,9
91-99 CSP places 1-5

BMW 325i,is
89-95 DSP places 1-7
93 STX places 2,6-7

I'll try and answer any questions on the data if I can. (Ignore the hidden columns, they are from my PAX work.)
Attached Files
File Type: zip 2007 Nationals Street Tire.zip (18.3 KB, 1347 views)
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Old 02-27-2008, 06:22 PM   #8
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Yes, please.
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Old 02-27-2008, 06:32 PM   #9
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Yes, please.
See above.
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Old 02-27-2008, 06:45 PM   #10
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Maybe we can arrange a closed-session test at Stead sometime this year? Maybe get some drivers who have the ability to run R-comps and high-end street tires back-to-back?

Also, can you run STU vs. BSP Dean? I know the classes dont' exactly corroborate like STs and DSP/CSP, but it's still an okay indicator to those of us who know that BSP has faster cars.
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Old 02-27-2008, 06:49 PM   #11
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"some" drivers will not produce worthwhile stats.
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Old 02-27-2008, 07:12 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nmhansen View Post
"some" drivers will not produce worthwhile stats.
Yeah, and the results would probably be skewed towards street tires, since everybody who would have both mostly runs on those.


...I'm not seeing a problem here Nick.
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Old 02-27-2008, 08:44 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin M View Post
Yeah, and the results would probably be skewed towards street tires, since everybody who would have both mostly runs on those.


...I'm not seeing a problem here Nick.
To clarify, I meant "some" in reference to quantity not quality

I'm sure you could even argue that nationals isn't exactly that statistically significant either, but its the best we have.
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Old 02-27-2008, 10:38 PM   #14
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Nationals is as close to statistically significant as it gets. In my work on a PAX replacement, it became clear that the tour events don't cut it statistically at all.

I tried to do STU, but there are no comparable cars between the two. The M3 in 7th was my only chance really.

Swapping tires on the same car is a problem as is having the same driver drive both.

Setup on a car for T vs. R is significantly different in camber and likely spring rates as well as other stuff.

Yes, a driver could drive both well, but it would take many runs of practice in each, and the results would still be dubious.

IMHO, the best data out there are the best drivers driving the best prepared cars. Please note I only compared trophy drivers. In general, there were 3.5 X #of trophies number of actual drivers in each class.

Probably the biggest thing to remember is that Rs only have an advantage when a T would be using 100% of their traction. So, the tighter and more heavily transitional the course is, the more advantage R has. The straighter and smoother the course, that advantage goes away.

Think of the two extremes.

A drag strip and a skid pad.

Unless the car can break the tires loose on launch, there is no advantage to the R car on a drag strip. Times should be close to identical.

On a skid pad, the R uses it's traction advantage 100% of the time and should be faster by more or less whatever percent greater traction they have over the T tires.

So, it really depends on the course as much if not more than the car or the driver.

So I took the best cars and drivers and two significantly different courses from nationals and made our best statistical guess given that the preperation levels for ST and SP are not the same.

Is .975 perfect? I would be the first person to tell you no, but it is better than nothing.

Don't get me started on PAX... As far as I can tell, there is no math or statistics behind them at all.
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Old 02-27-2008, 11:04 PM   #15
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You can just put the STU Evos and STis up against the BSP Evos and STis Dean. Not perfect, but it's the only data you have for comparing heavier cars. Also, are you using actual trophy placings, or top raw scores? I would throw cones out for this analysis.
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Old 02-28-2008, 12:48 AM   #16
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Here's what it takes to get statistically meaningful data:

500 pairs of cars. Each car in the pair is identical to it's pair-mate wit the exception of the tires, but each pair is a different power/layout/type/class/preparation level/etc from the other pairs.

1000 drivers. Each driver is an expert at setting up and driving one particular car at the absolute limit on the tires for that car.

50 different track layouts, from a drag strip, to a pure skid pad, to 48 varying tracks somewhere in between.

50 different weather conditions, from blazing hot, to pouring rain, to light snow, to everywhere in between.

10 brands of tires, that's 5 different "top" street tires, and 5 different "top" R-comp tires.

50 million set of tires. That's two sets of tires of each brand (one practice set to make sure the driver is at 10/10ths on that brand of tire on that particular track, and one test set to run laps on from brand new until they're corded) for every driver in their car, on every track, in every weather condition.

Assuming each driver can get through two sets of tires in a day, and each driver can run 5 days a week w/o getting tired and burnt out thus going slower than the car's best possible time, and assuming all 1000 drivers can somehow all run at the same time at some super-massive test facility, and assuming the weather conditions will somehow luckily match the required test scenarios without every waiting for the right weather... this test will only take a little over 96 years to complete.

Now that would generate some statistically useful data. Unfortunately, it would all be invalidated by the fact that the drivers would all be old geezers driving slowly around with their left blinkers on the whole time by the end of the test cases.
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Old 02-28-2008, 10:11 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin M View Post
You can just put the STU Evos and STis up against the BSP Evos and STis Dean. Not perfect, but it's the only data you have for comparing heavier cars. Also, are you using actual trophy placings, or top raw scores? I would throw cones out for this analysis.
No, but you can.

I have no interest considering the changes in boost.

The M was the only NA possibility, but there is no comparable M in SP I can find.
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Old 03-01-2008, 02:29 PM   #18
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Scott,
The race tire-equipped car with surplus torque (read Corvette, etc) will carry more speed on to the straight and will be able to accelerate sooner and harder than a similar car/driver on street tires.

At the end of the straight, an R-tire car can continue accelerating longer as their braking time is shorter, plus they can enter the corner off the straight at a higher speed. Your argument that race tires are least effective on the straight seems to suggest that those points don't hold much water on a Solo course. Can you share with us way this is? Thanks!
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Old 03-02-2008, 11:57 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TracDaz View Post
Scott,
The race tire-equipped car with surplus torque (read Corvette, etc) will carry more speed on to the straight and will be able to accelerate sooner and harder than a similar car/driver on street tires.

At the end of the straight, an R-tire car can continue accelerating longer as their braking time is shorter, plus they can enter the corner off the straight at a higher speed. Your argument that race tires are least effective on the straight seems to suggest that those points don't hold much water on a Solo course. Can you share with us way this is? Thanks!
What you're describing is independent of the type of car. A Miata on race tires will also carry more speed onto the strait than a similar car/driver on street tires. Also, at the end of the straight, the race tire Miata will be able to out brake a street tire Miata. That's true regardless of the type of car in question. The thing to remember is that the acceleration and braking advantages of race tires are far less important than the cornering advantage of race tires. Regardless of car type, the cornering speed of a race tire car will be much higher than the cornering speed of that same car on street tires, and that's really where the lower times come from.

The reason why is, you will never generate the same G force braking or accelerating as you can while turning. This is even especially true at autocross where the tight courses make cornering speeds that much more important, as there is relatively little acceleration and braking time as a percentage of total time on course. Cornering is king.

Take a look at . Granted it's at a track, not autocross, and granted I'm pulling some pretty heft braking manuvers, but that's cause I'm braking from 130mph, not from 65. But what you'll see is that while I'm turning at 1.5G, I'm braking a 1G, and accelerating at only 0.5G. In essence, accelerating is by far the least use of traction.

To illustrate, here's my G-G plot from that session:



As you can see, the it's the race tire advantage in the corners that really make the race tires faster overall. Using the 1.5G/1.0G/0.5G turning/braking/accelerating numbers from my telemetry, if my street tires are let's say half as sticky as my race tires, then my G's are cut to 0.7G/0.7G/0.5G. So, while I'm cornering at half the speed, I'm accelerating at exactly the same pace!

So that overpowered Vette on race tires has to race against street tire cars who have a factor designed to counter the cornering effect of race tires, thus taking away the Vettes advantage since their advantage is in the area least effected by tire type.

To put it more simply: a Vette's greatest advantage is on the straights where it can use all that horsepower and torque to make up for being slower in the corners. On a long straight, that Vette isn't using 100% of its traction. So the street tire PAX doesn't help them as much as it helps a car like a Miata which relies on its cornering speed.
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Old 03-04-2008, 08:59 AM   #20
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Default the difficulty of tire-type analysis

Really interesting exchange of views going on here. I think the R vs ST problem is similar to (really a part of) the challenge of understanding the effect of high altitude on autocross times.

It's true that very few cars have the torque to overwhelm their tires when they're accelerating on a long straight. But, here's something you might consider. The last portion of a corner and the first portion of the following straight are a transition zone. A Street Tire car will corner at a lower speed and take longer before it's "hooked up" (even longer for higher-powered cars), which results in a speed penalty that it suffers from all the way down the straight, no matter how long or short the straight is. Since the ST car starts its acceleration-only phase later and at a lower speed, it's slower at every point on the straight (unless the straight is so long that terminal velocity is reached!). In my opinion, it is not true that the major difference between R- and ST-equipped cars is found mostly in corners, especially on the more-open type of courses we favor here in Reno Region. And, in my opinion, tire type affects both high- and low-power cars in a similar way and to a somewhat similar amount.

Now, consider the effect of traction control. And consider the effects of boost and lag for forced-induction cars. Yep, it doesn't take long before things get really messy from a theoretical viewpoint. Guys, this is why I've been a consistent advocate of our region trying to do some testing. Logical analysis can take the R vs. ST debate only so far (same for the high altitude/PAX debate, too). It's very easy to laugh at the idea of testing, but the problem remains, we have very, very little real-world information to go on.

Enough whining on my part. I'm enjoying the forums (and I was apprehensive about them); thanks, Scott!
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Old 03-04-2008, 10:44 AM   #21
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Really interesting exchange of views going on here. I think the R vs ST problem is similar to (really a part of) the challenge of understanding the effect of high altitude on autocross times.

It's true that very few cars have the torque to overwhelm their tires when they're accelerating on a long straight. But, here's something you might consider. The last portion of a corner and the first portion of the following straight are a transition zone. A Street Tire car will corner at a lower speed and take longer before it's "hooked up" (even longer for higher-powered cars), which results in a speed penalty that it suffers from all the way down the straight, no matter how long or short the straight is. Since the ST car starts its acceleration-only phase later and at a lower speed, it's slower at every point on the straight (unless the straight is so long that terminal velocity is reached!). In my opinion, it is not true that the major difference between R- and ST-equipped cars is found mostly in corners, especially on the more-open type of courses we favor here in Reno Region. And, in my opinion, tire type affects both high- and low-power cars in a similar way and to a somewhat similar amount.

Now, consider the effect of traction control. And consider the effects of boost and lag for forced-induction cars. Yep, it doesn't take long before things get really messy from a theoretical viewpoint. Guys, this is why I've been a consistent advocate of our region trying to do some testing. Logical analysis can take the R vs. ST debate only so far (same for the high altitude/PAX debate, too). It's very easy to laugh at the idea of testing, but the problem remains, we have very, very little real-world information to go on.

Enough whining on my part. I'm enjoying the forums (and I was apprehensive about them); thanks, Scott!
Jim, I totally agree with your assessment of ST effect entering a long straight. I don't think there's any flaw in the logic that an ST car will be slower. This effect is supposedly accounted for by the ST PAX factor.

However, when we start comparing low vs. high horsepower cars in the same class (or in Open PAX... though that's another can of worms), I think the low horsepower cars gain more than the higher power cars on the straights. The high power car has to use the straights to press it's advantage over the cars that are cornering more quickly, and in doing so it can make more use of the race tires than the low power cars. In the same way that an open course helps the high power car, the ST PAX factor hurts them, because relatively speaking the ST factor helps the slower cars the most right in the spot where the high power cars need to have their biggest advantage.
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Old 03-04-2008, 03:49 PM   #22
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I'm curious if we'll have many "mix and match" class battles this season, like AS last year with Randy and John. Or will most of the classes be a one tire group, either race or street?

Since no one seems to want to try to achieve any empirical data by real world testing (which granted would supply numbers that everyone could argue are inaccurate for some reason or another - just like now) we're left with using best guess estimates. At what point do we know the modifier is correct? Is there a way-point we reach that we can say "Yep, it's an even handicap now" because car X finally beat car Y? Do we wait until one group or other becomes completely uncompetitive through all classes and then readjust from there?

It seems to me any kind of test, even one not perfect and not using all available options, would be better than "guessing." Granted, the results would probably burst one side's bubble, but the way we're doing it now - to me anyway - is just like selecting the NCAA Final Four in November based on all the expert's polls, instead of actually playing out the season on the basketball court.
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Old 03-04-2008, 04:02 PM   #23
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I'm curious if we'll have many "mix and match" class battles this season, like AS last year with Randy and John. Or will most of the classes be a one tire group, either race or street?

Since no one seems to want to try to achieve any empirical data by real world testing (which granted would supply numbers that everyone could argue are inaccurate for some reason or another - just like now) we're left with using best guess estimates. At what point do we know the modifier is correct? Is there a way-point we reach that we can say "Yep, it's an even handicap now" because car X finally beat car Y? Do we wait until one group or other becomes completely uncompetitive through all classes and then readjust from there?

It seems to me any kind of test, even one not perfect and not using all available options, would be better than "guessing." Granted, the results would probably burst one side's bubble, but the way we're doing it now - to me anyway - is just like selecting the NCAA Final Four in November based on all the expert's polls, instead of actually playing out the season on the basketball court.
Here's the way I look at it:

The number is "right" when those that are complaining about it are split equally between people running on ST and RT. I don't think it can ever be "mathematically fair" but if the majority of those racing feel like it's fair, then it's as right as it gets.

Which is why I support the recent change in the factor. We weren't hearing any of the ST folk complaining, and we were hearing more and more from the RT folks. So it was time to push the number in favor of race tires. If after this season we have a mob of ST people who feel like they're being shorted, then it's time to revisit the factor again.
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Old 03-04-2008, 07:53 PM   #24
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OK, I want to be counted as one who feels the race tire crowd got more of a benefit than was deserved in this latest adjustment. They were the squeakiest wheel in this case and they got their deserved grease, as Scott suggests. My biggest beef is in the Stock or Street 'anything' classes, that Race tires are allowed. It's the call of the whole national SCCA squad, but the essence of street-legal cars in a race setting is that they show and race on the tires that got them there. That we choose to see a 2008 vintage R-DOT tire being anything other than a race tire with two grooves shows how far technology has progressed since BF Goodrich introduced the first R-DOT back in the 80s. In the 80s or 90s there weren't any 140 or 200 wear rating street tires, either. R-DOTs are what, 40 wear rating? That tells me they are substantially stickier than street tires.

This year, we'll see Rs beating STs and, as Scott suggests, an adjustment will be made. I would suggest that an assessment is made after the first 1/3 of the season draws to a close. If another adjustment is called for, it would allow for spectacular finishes at the end of the season. Whattya think?
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Old 03-04-2008, 08:51 PM   #25
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Car: 1993 Impreza wagon
Class: 19 FP
 
Kevin M is on a distinguished road
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Zero chance of an adjustment to the street tire factor during the season, Russ. That's not fair to anybody.
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