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Shelby Gt At Roebling Road Track


AndyGJ

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I just came back from my second annual Track Weekend trip with my SGT...and I can't wait until next year's trip!

 

Here is a short clip of my weekend at Roebling Road Track in Bloomingdale, GA (Savannah, GA area). There were 20 of us there with different vehicles - I was one of three Mustang/Shelby vehicles. The other two were 1990 Mustangs that have been substantially modified for track duty.

 

As you can see the better drivers (I'm a novice) were able to catch me in the turns, but of the 20 drivers, about 17 of them came up to me at different points during the weekend to tell me I had the best sounding & sharpest vehicle out there. And two of the drivers were owners of two new Caddy CTS-Vs packing 600hp and Borla exhaust and they both loved my SGT sound.

 

If you have ever doubted how good the KR exhaust sounds on an SGT....check out this sound at about 110-120 mph!!

 

http://youtu.be/FnK68qvezJA

 

The first car that I'm chasing is a BMW M3 Sedan....compare that to the SGT!!! By the way, that red BMW that catches me after turn 3 is a fully race prepped car owned by David Harrison of Harrison Motorsports.

 

I've always loved the sound of the KR mufflers with the SGT exhaust system, but when you have others taping you going down the straight-away it sure brings a smile to this SGT owners face! Several guys came out to the pit row fire wall as far as they could be allowed and pulled out their iPhones to record me coming down the straight-away.

 

And the change from the Steeda Adjustable Pan-hard bar to the SPP Watts Link was well worth the money!! (Thanks Jer for convincing me to go forward with that mod). I ran my new KR rims with 275/40/18s on all 4 corners using 42 psi in front and 38 psi in rear. (Thanks for the advise Albino500!!) I did notice that when jumping up from 255/45/18s on the stock SGT rims from last year, it was a little harder this year with 275s to learn where the edge of the tires starting to slide was going to be on the curves. It took me until the last session on Day 2 to dial into exactly how far I could really push the tires safely.

 

Looks like I just need more track time!!

 

Andy.

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Here are a couple more videos that will give you an idea of what this road course is like....perfect track for a novice to learn how to drive.

 

2008 Shelby GT at Roebling Road - Turns 2 & 3

http://youtu.be/USWatFAv84k

 

and.....

 

2008 Shelby GT at Roebling Road - Turns 4, 5, & 6

http://youtu.be/09VXkhH6Lso

 

 

Andy.

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Nice Andy - and you brought it home in one piece right ? ;)

100%...as far as I can tell! not even a scratch (just a lot of dirt and a few rubber marks from the tire pebbles!).

 

Tires are even in better shape than I had expected, and I think that is primarily from the light sprinkles of rain we had on Saturday that kept the track slightly moist...not even really wet or any puddling of water. It also made it real easy to see the proper line the follow on the course.

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Here's a funny story for you about the return trip home.

 

The other two gents I know from last year who live close to me in Atlanta trailered their cars down there like I did. Two of us caravanned down there on Friday in the rain (safety in numbers & made lane changes easy with one setting a pick for the other), but all three of us caravanned back to Atlanta on Sunday. We left the track just in perfect time to hit Macon as a stopping point for Dinner, then 100 miles to home.

 

PICTURE THIS:

We exit off of I-75 looking for a spot big enough for 3 SUVs pulling our cars....Cody pulling a nice white BMW M3 coupe, Bret pulling a great looking "Desert Rose" Porsche 944 Turbo, and me pulling the Vista Blue Shelby GT.

 

Cody selects the Waffle House - only one car in the entire parking lot, so plenty of room for us. As we pull in, I notice that what appears to be the waitress and the cook/manager are standing outside on the sidewalk overlooking the parking lot...just enjoying the 60 degree temps and sunset right at 6pm. Cody leads in, U-turns, and parks across the lanes on one side of the lot, Bret follows suit and parks beside him, and I just pull straight in on the other side setting up to do the U-turn maneuver to exit when we leave.

 

At this point, the waitress walks into the Waffle House, and the Cook remains outside....and as we walk up she looks over at us and says to all three of us, "that sure is a nice looking Shelby you have there."...not a word about the other two cars! I thanked her, and we all proceeded inside.

 

We went to the counter and all sat down, and the waitress approaches us to take our orders. Before anything is said about food, she says "That sure is a sweet looking Shelby out there." ...and she didn't even hear what the cook had said outside!! At that point, Bret came back with "You folks are starting to make me feel bad about my car!!" Then, the waitress said to Bret, "I'm sorry, what kind of car do you have?" Of course, I thanked her, and I told her that his was the Porsche.

 

After all that, I had to leave her a nice tip when we paid! :) I grinned knowing that my car was the third one they saw entering the lot...not the first!

 

As we drove away, I had a picture come to mind that somewhere up above, Carroll Shelby was looking down with a big smile on his face....An SGT went to the track, got dirty, had fun, and won the praise of a couple folks on its way home!!

 

Andy.

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Roebling is definitely a fun track and a confidence builder. Fast and flowy. Love the exit of turn 9 onto that long front straight into decreasing radius through turns 1 & 2. You can pass a lot of people entering turn one as most brake way to early. I'd enjoy getting back there some day soon.

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Roebling is definitely a fun track and a confidence builder. Fast and flowy. Love the exit of turn 9 onto that long front straight into decreasing radius through turns 1 & 2. You can pass a lot of people entering turn one as most brake way to early. I'd enjoy getting back there some day soon.

 

Viper,

 

I was breaking early some myself, but on Sunday (2nd day) I started holding my speed a little longer before hitting the brakes hard to pull it back down to then settle the car, set the turn in, and lightly throttle back into the turn. I tried to target 60 - 65 mph range as my entry speed into turn 1, hold it, let up slightly, and apply more throttle into 2 and then push it coming out of 2 and into the short straight...that wide sweeping left turn for Turn 3 was one of my favorites, but building the speed into and out of turn 9 is a blast!!!!

 

One time in pulling through Turn 9, I was a little too aggressive on my acceleration and started to feel like I was going to be too close to the rumble strips. I had to back of gently on the throttle without upsetting the balance of the car...not something you want to do when you are exiting the turn at about 85mph! I had Frank Summers, one of the BMW Driving Instructors in the car coaching me around the course, and as we were flying down the straight, Frank was giving me pointers on how proper turn in FIRST, then apply the throttle helps to prevent you from over shooting the turn....like I just about did!!! He was fine, but my heart skipped a beat since that's the one spot you can put a car into the wall if you're not careful!!!

 

The Track is under new management, and the two guys that run the place are very cool and very helpful for polite guests! Might be a great venue for a 20 member Shelby gathering for a track day or weekend!! Just thinking out loud....

 

 

Andy.

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They let you on the track in a convertible.....

 

Do you have a roll bar?

It is a private closed event, so it is "Swim at your own risk." And since it is a closed event, there is NO track day insurance available, hence the reason I'm extremely conservative out there...and the reason that I own the "Barbara Bush Award" for the slowest driver!!

 

Any other place, and the probably would not let me out there with just the Shelby "Style/Light Bar" on my car. I'd hate to rely on that thing as a roll bar when it's primary function is to add some body stiffness since the convertible is lacking a hard roof line.

 

Andy.

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Viper,

 

I was breaking early some myself, but on Sunday (2nd day) I started holding my speed a little longer before hitting the brakes hard to pull it back down to then settle the car, set the turn in, and lightly throttle back into the turn. I tried to target 60 - 65 mph range as my entry speed into turn 1, hold it, let up slightly, and apply more throttle into 2 and then push it coming out of 2 and into the short straight...that wide sweeping left turn for Turn 3 was one of my favorites, but building the speed into and out of turn 9 is a blast!!!!

 

One time in pulling through Turn 9, I was a little too aggressive on my acceleration and started to feel like I was going to be too close to the rumble strips. I had to back of gently on the throttle without upsetting the balance of the car...not something you want to do when you are exiting the turn at about 85mph! I had Frank Summers, one of the BMW Driving Instructors in the car coaching me around the course, and as we were flying down the straight, Frank was giving me pointers on how proper turn in FIRST, then apply the throttle helps to prevent you from over shooting the turn....like I just about did!!! He was fine, but my heart skipped a beat since that's the one spot you can put a car into the wall if you're not careful!!!

 

The Track is under new management, and the two guys that run the place are very cool and very helpful for polite guests! Might be a great venue for a 20 member Shelby gathering for a track day or weekend!! Just thinking out loud....

 

 

Andy.

Thinking out loud is good. That would be loads of fun. I've got lots of experience at Roebling on two wheels, but none on 4. It would be a new learning experience for me. I'm certain the speed entering turn one in a car would be less than on the bikes. I saw 172 mph down that straight consistently on my old track bike. That is intense when you approach turn 1. Doubt I would push that hard in my car.... to scared of wading it up by mistake. ;)

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:hysterical2: :hysterical2: :hysterical2: " Barbara Bush Award" - I LMAO soooo.... hard I think I peed when I read that !!!!

 

What make it worse is that at age 47, I have the full head of grey hair to go along with it....thus the reason that I wear my race helmet in the car and outside of the car. You have to protect yourself while checking the oil, putting air in the tires, etc....LOL!

 

Andy.

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Andy - I had a blast in Ocala, but now I'm sick that I missed Roebling! Awesome video and great to hear that the Watts link lived up to its reputation! I just ordered one from SPP in BLUE!

 

Wished we could've hooked up for coffee while you were here - maybe next time!

 

I think you've got a great idea going for a Team Shelby gathering at Roebling! A couple dozen Shelbys buzzing around the track would be a blast!

 

Sam

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Andy - I had a blast in Ocala, but now I'm sick that I missed Roebling! Awesome video and great to hear that the Watts link lived up to its reputation! I just ordered one from SPP in BLUE!

 

Wished we could've hooked up for coffee while you were here - maybe next time!

 

I think you've got a great idea going for a Team Shelby gathering at Roebling! A couple dozen Shelbys buzzing around the track would be a blast!

 

Sam

Hey Sam,

 

Sorry we didn't get together down in Fernandina/Amelia....the weather turned wet, and then cold...I promise we didn't bring it down there!! Sure wish you could have been at Roebling last weekend with us...but I sure would like to get a group of Shelby owners together at Roebling Road. I'll post up some of the details that I learned from Frank Summers who organizes the event each year. Maybe someone can grab my notes and run with it to pull something together for 20 Shelby owners!!!

 

Andy.

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OK, here are my notes on the Track weekend...I may have posted some of this before, but I'm not totally sure.

 

The event includes 2 full days - 8 am to 5 pm. One hour each day is taken for lunch 12 - 1 on Saturday and 11 - 12 on Sunday. That earlier lunch on Sunday is a mandated quiet hour by the City/County due to the fact that a small local Church is about 1 mile away and the quiet hour is for their benefit. Ironically, it is right beside the gas station where we all fill up during "lunch" so we have to be careful when operating the cars in getting to get fuel on Sunday!!

 

The cost has been the same both years...$350 for the track days and includes a hot lunch plate & drink on both days. The number of cars is limited to 20 total, and we are divided up into 2 groups. Group 1 is usually the faster cars and/or faster drivers, and Group 2 is the lesser experience drivers or lower horsepower/slower cars. Be careful on this one, as a little Miata was tearing up the track...if you don't have to lift up on the gas pedal for the turns, then you never slow down. You do have some overlap as two drivers can buy a time slot and SHARE a vehicle. That is where you see David Harrison of Harrison Motorsports in that little red BMW catching me in that first video...he had another driver using his car in Session 1 so we were usually in the same Session 2 together.

 

They limit the number of cars to 10 in each session for a couple of reasons:

1) 10 or less cars will minimize traffic back-ups from slower drivers on the 2.02 course.

2) 10 or fewer cars only requires 3 corner workers and one start gate operator at the pit row exit. Once you get over 10, then you have to have spotters at each corner station...just increases the cost.

 

On day one, you have to pay for a sound guy....he is there to make sure you don't have any vehicles exceeding the 103 sound decibel level, and after verifying on day one, then he is gone. We run 25 minute sessions, then checkered flag for warm down lap, and into the pit/paddocks to rest and cool down. At the time the we are pitting, then next group is generally making their way to the start area in the pit row. We even had one dad there with his two sons and their two 1990 Mustang LX cars. They only had purchased 1 session, so they would have one car go out for 12 or 13 minutes of their session, then as that car was pitting, their second car was staged in the pit row to do a hot swap of cars to use the last portion of their time slot. Only once did we have 1 too many cars out there on the track for my group when I tried to go out, and they pulled the offender off the track so that we wouldn't exceed the limit of 10.

 

By Sunday afternoon, a few drivers had left to head home, so you could pretty well head out to run the course at any time...not necessarily your time group. Those of us that trailered in our cars took the tow vehicles to the track, dropped the truck and trailer at the inside gated area, and pulled the cars off the trailer to drive them to the hotel instead of the trucks and trailers. They typically like to close the track at 5, but they remained open for us until we arrived at about 5:30pm so we could get the cars unloaded, grab our bags, and head to Savannah for the hotel.

 

Hotel and other food was not included in the $350 track fees....nor was the gasoline, and you can sure run through some of that stuff!!!

 

Hope that helps to get someone started on some idea planning!!!

 

Andy.

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Only ten cars on the track at once must feel like you have the track pretty much to yourself most of the time unless you find a friend with similar pace. That sounds like fun to me. Most of the track events usually have 20 car run groups, but I would imagine shorter tracks like Roebling would be very busy with 20 cars per session. 10 definitely is far more manageable and more opportunity to work on skills without others around you.

 

Side note: We usually had 25-30 bikes in each run group at Roebling which created a lot of "accordion effect" in the braking zones. The intermediate group had a lot of guys with less experience/ability on fast bikes that would roll the throttle on the front straight and pull away, but then short brake into turn one and back everyone up. Then you would have to deal with getting around them through turns 1-9 and if you did not gap them enough they might pass you back on the front straight again and you had to do it all aver again. My bike was a liter bike and had plenty of power, but some of the Ducati's were street legal Moto GP machines and could run 200 mph down the straight. Not much you could do to defend your position against a 30 mph deficit. The accordion effect issue is quite dangerous (once I had to make an emergency pass on the outside of turn one to avoid a collision) and if you have the ability to run in the advanced group with consistent lap times, those guys know what they are doing and it is actually a lot safer.

 

I would imagine the same thing applies with the cars as it is even more difficult to pass than on the bikes.

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This group has VERY strict no passing rules....no passing until you are waived through and told which side to pass on. Even if it means you are stuck back there for several turns, you have to stay put until the slower vehicle is comfortable with you passing them. They allow for one warning, and then you are "invited" to leave on a second occurrence. One guy they had issues with about being too aggressive they told him he would need to find another group...

 

They are very specific about this is not a race....simply a time to enjoy driving your vehicle and working on your driving skills. No one wants to swap paint with another car! This same group has been doing this for close to 20 years, and I think over 15 years at Roebling Road. I feel lucky to have been taken in by such a great group....and to get invited back each year as well.

 

It would be great if we could get a similar group going for Shelby owners to have an event.....

 

Andy.

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Agree. Best way I've always found to get away from slower drivers/riders is to ride through the pit lane and find an open piece of track. :dance:

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Buy the SPP (Maximum Motorsports) caster/camber plates. Don't bother with the bumpsteer kit.

How does that help the handling?

 

Does that have any negative side effects to be concerned about?

 

Andy

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The caster / camber plates allow for you to taylor your alignment to your driving needs. With the change up that you have done ( 275/40-18 all around , watts linkage ) along with going to the track - you probably will be looking for a more aggresive alignment settings. A C/C plate like the SPP/Maximum Motorsports one also frees up the articulation point at the top of your front struts ( which is a load point ) JMO As far as bumpsteer kits go - do you know what is involved with setting bumpsteer correction ? do you know what bumpsteer is ? have you changed the geometry of the front end where as there is a need for correction ? how much TOE change is occuring through the first inch or two of compression verses the amount of change during extention ? is it TOE OUT or TOE IN that is occuring ? Being able to read the tires will aid you in deciding whether to go to C/C plates and/or if the car drives straight.

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Albino - you bring up valid points all around. I have to admit the only reason I was going to change the bumpsteer on my car is because the Shelby piece looked cool, but mainly it was on sale. Plus it matched the Shelby sway bar end links I put on the car. Then I saw a note it requires modification with my Wilwood brakes and bagged the idea. The more mods I do to my car, the more I don't want to put it on the track. I think in a perfect world, I'd like to keep this one pretty and then go buy a 2nd Shelby (hopefully with lots of stuff done to it already) to take to the track and beat the piss out of it. I'll probably still take my car out on the track a few times, but definitely hoping to one day acquire a track weapon like you have.

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I would be up for some track time. This track sounds like a good time and very reasonable. I have done some track time at VIR but the cost is somewhat high. Of course I would have to factor travel expenses as well. I want to add a few track goodies to my KR as well such as the watts. One big thing, I have to break my car in. Only 760 miles on the clock. I will need to get with a few of you experienced track guys on some advice. I don't want to make expensive mistakes.

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I would be up for some track time. This track sounds like a good time and very reasonable. I have done some track time at VIR but the cost is somewhat high. Of course I would have to factor travel expenses as well. I want to add a few track goodies to my KR as well such as the watts. One big thing, I have to break my car in. Only 760 miles on the clock. I will need to get with a few of you experienced track guys on some advice. I don't want to make expensive mistakes.

That is the great part about Roebling Road Track...it is perfect for the novice driver. Lots of run off area if you get loose or sloppy out there.

 

The same reason why I felt comfortable taking a convertible out there without a full roll cage.

Check out some of the GoPro videos from different cars on Roebling Road. There is even one of a Mazda 6 series where the guy has an instructor with him to hive you an idea how to run the course and where the proper lines are. You car also read the Race Primer that someone posted up on TS...it's a great beginners handbook lesson too.

 

 

Andy

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