Friday, September 25, 2015

Traction Control OFF

This past weekend, the NMS Fiesta took 2nd of 2 drivers in the HS class at a joint CCR / SCR SCCA autocross at the Michelin Proving Grounds here in South Carolina.  Brian was well off the pace, hanging back on average 2 second.
The Fiesta lies in wait with NMS support team members Kyle and Philip's vehicles.

The first place car in HS was another Molten Orange Fiesta ST, but with the benefit of arguably top of the line rubber for 2016 and an upgraded swaybar.  Brian continued to push the car harder and harder, over-driving the limited traction stock tires.  Despite the loss, the #86 car came home in the top 1/3 of drivers for the day and achieved the goal of not being afraid to keep that right foot down as much as possible.

Post event analysis revealed that the traction control or ESC (electronic stability control) was left on for the entire event.  Under normal driving conditions, the ESC works to control slipping wheels and keep drivers safe, however in race applications, it saps power and prevents the car from responding as desired at it's limits.  Upon returning to the site and same course the following day to help run a charity autocross, the ESC was disabled to reveal an easy drop of almost a full second.  Easily another second was in the car if the driver were able to ease back and get a clean run in.
New "ESC OFF!" reminder recently installed in the #86 HS car.
The NMS Risk Management department has concluded the addition of a new sticker inside the Fiesta is required for all future events to prevent such "blatant stupidity" and "unnecessary loss of perfectly good performance".  Above we see the sticker is quite visible even in low light conditions.

Brian could not be reached for comment following this incident.

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