April 22, 2011

Tough Gig

In most cases, e.t. and speed are the primary focus when we perform tests taking Mustangs from Points A to B on the dragstrip. However, for this project, we decided to put those two criteria on the back burner and center our research on collecting quantitative data (using a Motec ADL3 datalogger) to see the differences in our Mustang’s launch characteristics when the car is outfitted with street/road-race suspension gear and street/strip hardware.

Maximum Motorsport’s owner, Chuck Schwynoch, and his team (Engineering Manager Luka Dugandzic and Tech Specialist Jack Hidley) have been most helpful when it comes to recording data and tuning a ’Stang’s suspension based on that info. Team Maximum provided outstanding trackside assistance for our entry in the 2010 Castrol Syntec Top Car Challenge. Their collective knowledge and suspension calls helped us secure a Fourth Place finish in the competition.

After outfitting our ’Stang with the datalogger and making runs over the course of two test sessions, the data (results) showed us areas of inefficiency when stiff, road-race-specific components were on the car, and how the same launch variables improved when changes were made. The important thing we learned from this project is that setup is critical to various Mustang-performance applications. Simply bolting suspension parts on your Pony is one thing. However, when parts are designed for a specific use, their optimum performance will only come through testing and collection/analysis of data (using timeslips or a datalogger).

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