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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everybody,

It looks like I'll be getting into some racing with a Supra, hopefully getting my feet wet this summer.
I'm wondering if anyone else has track raced a Mk2?
If so, what mods did you do, and how well did they work? What would you do differently, etc.
Any tips for a newbie racer?

Also, I'd appreciate any websites anyone can recommend with info on racing, whether it be "How to Drive" or "Mods to Do", etc.

Thanks.
 

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Dean:

When you say track do you mean road racing?

If so you might consider getting your feet wet at a few driver's schools. Make sure you get some race compound rubber too. See the other thread about best tires for racing.

You can road race with a stock car (with race tires of course) or modify your suspension with shocks, springs, sway bars.

You can have a lot of fun at driver's schools without having to worry about roll cages, racing licenses, nor meeting class specs. I was able to drive my mk2 at Mid-Ohio during a BMW-CCA driver's school.

Try your regional BMW club, Porsche club. they tend to have a lot of driver's schools across North America.

If you do get into actual road racing with a series, try a club. We have SCCA in the USA. But the mk2 Supra is not very competitive in the class that you will be placed into. Most cars will be lighter and have the same horsepower or more. Albeit, it will be a lot of fun. If you do get into professional racing, the series might ask you to bump up into a more recent generation Supra.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the reply James.

Yes, I mean road racing. I'm thinking of places like Shannonville and Mosport up here near Toronto.

I would be racing my lightly modded 83 Mk2 for starters. It's got intake, exhaust and AFM mods done. I've got Eibachs/Tokicos along with new Brembo rotors and KVR carbon fibre brake pads at all 4 corners.

You say the Mk2 won't be competitive in the SCCA class it's placed into. Do you know what class it would be put into?
How much lighter would the competition be? I know I can take about 400 lbs out of a Mk2 without much effort, if it is a dedicated race car. The next 400 lbs would take a lot of effort (and some money)!

Thanks for the suggestions on the clubs. I was planning on going to a driver's school as a first step. Maybe one of the clubs will open the door to an old Supra to join them. I've got a buddy at the local Z club, I'm going to talk to him.
 

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Dean,

The only person that I can think of that Road Races his MKII, is Ophir Ronen & his 84 7MGTE (at least when he doesn't keep killing the motor, or something breaks). Other than his high HP 7M & the stiff suspension + brakes & 17"'s, I don't think he's done much else. I don't have a current email addy for him, possibly Shawn Pease has one????
 

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Thanks for the opening Chris :)

Dean,Ophir has been thru the local driving school,and participated in several track days.I have not personaly had the opportunity yet,to go along "always during the week while I'm at work".

The mods are ,7mgte,to4e,eibach's,shocks "I forget what units",LJM bar,17x9 Forgelines,245/45/17's on all 4 corners,and a 3.42 rear diff.
5 point harness' are in the garage,awaiting install.

Apparently the car does ecxeptionaly well,for it's age and suspension design.Don Kitsch (sp) is the local school guru "24hrs of daytona0team seattle-saleen" has driven the car with Ophir,and loves the thing,and he hasn't seen it since we upgraded the turbo :shock:

For more info contact Ophir at [email protected] he may be slow to reply,as he is extremely busy with work,new house "can you say PARTY" :) and in the not too distant future,being a dad :wink:
 

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I just started running my MkII at Willow Springs Raceway in SoCal. It does pretty well on the track, even keeping up with a few Porsches (4 cylinders of course!)! Only mods on engine right now are intake and exhaust, but have ss brake lines, rebuilt calipers, new Brembo rotors (slotted and cad plated), Porterfield pads, as well as sways front and rear, springs and struts/shocks.
Unfortunately, Supra GTR is right about placement of Supras into classes that just aren't right for them. It seems we're either overpowered or underpowered with the classes available, so for me, I'm looking at just doing time trials, basically running the track against my own time. Of course, the officials won't place a 6 cyl against semi-stock hondas or something along that line, so we're stuck either modifying the car to its max potential to realisticly compete against more agile, lightweight vehicles, or buying another vehicle (I've been told to get an RX7 or Miata- blah...) to compete with.
Personally, I think the Supra is well suited for the track, suspension is more than adequate with relatively little cost, and the engine really can perform with yet a bit more money, but most of these folks out at the track can't see past the Toyota decals....
Good luck to you on the track!!!
Chris
 

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From what I remember, I think the stock (as in minor suspension mods and intake, header, exhaust, tires - you have to run 14" wheels since they came from the factory that way) Supra will end up in ITS with a some fast Porches, 240Z, and the occasional mid-80s IROC Z. The 240Z's dominate this class nationwide. More HP and less weight. A 944 NA in the right hands will slaughter most. Trust me on this.. my boss used to bring home so many trophies. If the car started, the race was his. Hell he'll make a 944 turbo lap a 911 turbo. A lady friend of mine used to harass 911 turbos in her 944 turbo. :twisted: (Was going to have her as part of my PDQ Racing team.) But I digress. Scott Webb from Road//Race use to be very successful with his mk2 Supra on the west coast. I have 9 hours of in car footage of him racing Willow Springs, Pheonix, and another course on an old airfield. He prototyped the HKS mushroom filter system.

If you turbo or swap motors, you will end up in ITO. Which was called IT-Oddballs. Now you're face with ex-Trans Am cars, old World Challenge Cars. ITO is not where you want to be. These cars are ex-race cars. They are not street cars prepared for the track. These cars are usually gutted and then rebuilt. Trans Am Cars? Fuggetaboutit. They are tube-frame cars with fiberglass shells. 400-600 HP with about 2200lbs. Straight cut gears, etc. etc.. You may want to get fatter fenders so you can get more rubber on your car.

I recommend starting off with driver's schools. It's a lot of fun. And you can run whatever combination of parts you assembled.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for all the input guys.
I need to do some more research to decide what my longer term plans will be for racing.

I'm getting a dedicated race car this week (85 Supra), :D so I'll need to figure out what class I could race in competitively, what mods I'm allowed, etc. Gutting the car to reduce weight will be the first thing to get done. Being 400 lbs lighter should help out the performance a bit.

I'll get in touch with Ophir as soon as I get the car and talk to him about his racing experiences.

I will definitely start out with some racing schools. It looks like I'll have the opportunity to get out on the local tracks at least a couple of times this summer with the local ToyotaNation group and possibly the Z-car club.

Chris, time trials could be fun too. Kind of like golf, always trying to beat your best score.

James, you say I need to run 14 inch rims.... Some 85 Supras came with 15 inch rims (L-types), so would I be allowed to use 15 inchers if I race an 85? And can I go with wider rims, or do I need to stick with stock width too?? Thanks.

Keep the input coming! I really appreciate all the info you guys are giving me!!
 

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Flyin' Hawaiian, when have you gone to Willow Springs and what class did you race in? I'm going to be running HPDE 1 with NASA there this weekend. It'll be my first big track experience with my GTS and it should be a lot of fun. I just hope I don't break anything because I'm autocrossing it the weekend after and then taking a trip home that will probably run about 2000 miles up on my poor old car. Anyway, maybe I'll see you there. I'll be running both days so look me up if you go.
 

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im not gonna be racing at the track but ill see IF I can stop by at Willow Springs after i get out of work :wink:
 

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From what I remember in my conversations with Scott Webb, he said he had to run 14s in ITS. As far as width goes, your track can't be wider than factory. In other words you can get an 8" wheel but you will have to shove them inside the fenders further (higher offset).

Obviously, each sanctioning body, whether its SCCA, IMSA, Petit LeMans, FIA, etc, has their own set of rules for each class. Read them thoroughly. What may be legal in a class in FIA may bump you to a higher class in IMSA, ie. Getting aftermarket springs on your street car in autocross will bump you in the E-Street Prepared class with trailer queens that are fully built with 10-11" wide wheels.

When you do a couple of driver's schools, talk to the instructors. 95% of those men and women have racing backgrounds, ranging from Pro-racing to club racing. Those guys can give a general idea on what's allowed and whats not. Some will even tell to go to a specific sanctioning body to compete in a specific class.

Some sanctioning bodies will allow for modifications to the engine to allow it to be more competitive in the field. Supercharging M3s to compete against Vipers, Turbo Supras, etc. We were even allowed to install aftermarket turbo, but only allowed to boost so much. Hell we had to in order to compete with the turbo 911s and Viper. But mind you all these are cars that are within their designated model years.
 

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Once you determine what sanctioning body and what class you will race, you might want to consider the following:

Balance and blueprint your motor. This is expensive, but it will ensure the longevity of your motor at high rpms. You can eek out a few extra horses from this as well. This will also give you the opportunity to go through and bring life back into an old tired motor.

Gut the interior. Some people will acid dunk the chassis to get rid of excess material including some metal. Not sure if I'd recommend this on the mk2.

Seam weld the chassis to ensure strenth.

Roll cage - do not skimp on this. This determines whether you walk away or not. Consult the rules. Some are specific on what is required. Autopower makes a good SCCA legal roll cage. My boss always has NASCAR-bars welded to protect him in case he gets T-boned. This will require gutting out your doors so that you will have arm room. This is bit of extra weight will protect you and is worth it. Considering my boss has been t-boned several times at events, he is able to walk away with only minor bruises.

The roll cage will tweak your car's chassis (sometimes not in a good way). So your suspension points will be a little off. Make sure you have the book on your chassis points so that you will know how far off your suspension points are and know where and how to bring them back to alignment. A lot of people never do this when they install a roll cage.

Fire suppression system: This is required by some sanctioning bodies. Some people use a halon-type system. (Halon has been deemed an ozone depleting substance.) There are newer substances similar to Halon that won't chemically etch your metals. Chemical extinguishers are bad for the remaining part of your car that isn't damaged by fire. Plus it's a big PITA to clean up. Your engine if it ingests chemicals will be nearly toast.

Personal safety:

Obviously, a Shnell 2000 or higher helmet. The new rating I believe comes out in 2005. And you will be forced to upgrade your helmet. Bieffe makes some inexpensive legal helmets. Then you have your standard Simpson, Arai, and Bell. Then there are exotics like Stand21. If you foresee yourself racing in hot climates, then a helmet with an air tube will help cool you. There are device that you can plug to your helmet that will draw cool air from an ice cooler. Makes a big difference especially for endurance racing.

Drivers suit: FIA legal suits that are fire retardant obviously. The higher the rating the longer you can withstand a fire. Momo, Simpson, Sparco, Stand21 offer many suits to go with your style.

Driving shoes: Once again a good quality leather racing shoe is ideal. Momo, Sparco, Simpson, Stand21, Piloti have readily available fire resistant driving shoes. A good high top shoe will protect your ankles. Other manufactures include Asics, Adidas, Puma, etc.

Something you might want to consider: A new device that has been talked about more since the Earnhardt crash is the HANS device. This will literally prevent your head from separating from your neck. Your class legal harness belt will keep your body in place, but your head with the additional weight of your helmet will put undue stress on your neck when you have a frontal impact. Seen this happen too many times. It can happen to anyone even a person with a car like a Del Sol. This device is gradually becoming accepted. The reason why you don't see a lot more club racers wearing this device is due to the cost. The HANS device costs over $3K. There are other devices that are smaller out there. This is not a necessity. Some people even don't like it because it can make getting in and out of your car very difficult.

Whatever you do. DO NOT SKIMP ON SAFETY. I cannot emphasize that enough.
 

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Things to bring with you at the track:

Lightweight garage jack - nuff' said

Several sheets of plywood. Makes working on your car in the rain a little bit more tolerable.

Eazy-up canopy - protects from the rain and hot sun.

Four 1'x1' sheets of plywood or MDF - to place under the jack stands so they don't sink into the ground.

Flashlights - OK.. so you're up all night working on your car.

Portable generator (because your 53' transporter didn't come with its own generator and air lines :lol: ) - to hook up your lights, power tools, microwave, and portable heater/fan

Rain gear - nuff' said
Extra clothes.
Knee pads
A floor pad for when you do have to work underneath your car for extended periods. Makes life a little easier at the track.

Food. Never know when the munchies hit you. And it's no fun when you are cold and hungry. :?

And of course your tool box.

Bring a friend or two. No sense going at this alone. Besides it will be a good bonding experience. :lol:
 

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There's a guy on here from France who road races his MkII.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks for all the info guys.

I just picked up my dedicated road racer Mk2 today!! "The beast" is slightly modded, and I'm really looking forward to getting it out for a test drive.
This car has Eibachs/Tokicos, a blue front sway bar (not sure of brand) stock rear sway bar on the car and a spare aftermarket blue one included. Although lowered, it doesn't seem to suffer from negative camber in the rear. I'll be looking at it tomorrow to see how that was done! It also has a GAB front strut tower bar on it and a rear shock tower bar waiting to be installed. It has BFG Comp T/A Slicks on stock rims as well.

Performance mods include headers with 2.5 inch side exit exhaust, cone filter and Crane Ignition system.

Interior is pretty well gutted and has full cage, racing seat and five point harness. Instruments include tach, oil press, water temp, A/F meter, Fuel Pressure, etc.

It's an 82 P-type (not an 85 as I first thought). Previous owner raced it in ITS. I'll start out by going to some lapping days and drivers schools to get a feel for driving the car.

It looks like my first mod on the car will be replacing the bad starter tomorrow! Second mod will be some more weight reduction.
 
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