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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi Guys,

Let me first start with an apology… After spending time getting the video camera ready for the day, I discovered at midnight the night before the day that I had bought the wrong mini-DVDs and they wouldn’t work with my camera. SO unfortunately I have no video footage of the day for you. I was so angry with myself for not checking earlier… anyhow, about the day:

A few weeks back, Ed from APS contacted me to ask if they could ‘showcase’ my S5 for them on the day, so with the opportunity of free entry, I naturally jumped at the chance!

We arrived at 8:00 in light drizzle to find a paddock full of Audis and V-Dubs, predominantly A4s and Golfs, but with the addition of my S5, which was one of the least modified cars there, pretty much all types of Audi were present, including a couple of R8s. Here’s some piccies of the paddock, so you can spot the 2.7 and 4.2 RS and S4s, A3s URQuattros etc. that were all put through their paces on the day:







The S5 drew a lot of attention on the day, possibly more than the R8!!! I guess because it is more ‘within the reach’ of the ordinary person than the R8… and, lets’ face it… it is remarkable pretty. Here we are parked up with the APS Golf GTi (340 bhp) and just next to the Milltek R8, which as you can see by the guy (also called Ian and the proud owner of a 4.2 S4) standing next to the R8, the S5 is much more interesting to look at!!







At 8:30 we had a drivers briefing, where the layout of the track and basic driving tips for the more technical parts of the course were explained and the ‘rules’ for the day laid out. It was stressed that it was a ‘track day’ and not a race day, and as such overtaking was limited to the two main straights, basic on-track protocol was explained and we headed out to the cars to complete three ‘sighting laps’ behind a pace car. The rest of the day was arranged in 15 minute sessions with a maximum of 10 cars on the track at any time. This meant there was little congestion and plenty of track time for all.

OK, so how did the S5 do? …Fantastic! Firstly, let’s not forget the company it was keeping (R8s and Millteks everywhere)… a lot of people commented on just how good it sounded on the track, so a big +1 for the S5 and Milltek there. Secondly, pace-wise it was right up there. Even though I was driving well within mine and the cars limits, I had no real trouble keeping pace with the S4s and modified TTs, Golf R32 and GTis. Furthermore it was obvious that they were much closer to ‘the limit’ than the S5 in the corners, as they were twitching and moving around in front of me, whilst the S5 was firmly planted with just hint of drifting (I was keeping it safe with my baby!) I have no doubt that driven harder, it could have outpaced quite a lot of the field. Having said that, I have to say, I was mighty impressed with the modified GTis, they were quicker than the R32s which I was able to catch on the straights and I let a couple by me a few times as they were obviously more comfortable driving near the limit than I was with my brand new car!

Mallory Park is a small and simple lay-out of circuit, but there are a couple of corners that are tricky to get right and places where car balance and the driver’s ability to balance the car on the throttle are critical to fast lap times (and staying on the grey stuff!). The S5 was very controllable, accurate to drive with instant turn-in and easy to drift gently with no drama or lairyness whatsoever. I was very impressed in this area and it inspires a lot of confidence in the car at speed, so +1 for the S5 and for the lowered suspension. The short straights only allowed time to get up to 120 mph, before braking to 70 ish for the corners, but it was also obvious that 90mph+ the S5 was more rapid than most… probably due to the torque advantage over the smaller engines.

Braking was the area I was most concerned about, being on just standard brakes (except I have performance brake fluid in), but to be fair, they stood up very well, they got slightly softer and a little more pedal travel but were able to maintain reasonable working temperatures despite the hard work. I guess a more demanding track on brakes or driven a little harder might find the standard brakes wanting, but they certainly didn’t let me down. However, this is an area I will want to modify in the future.

The other cars? Well, most had remaps, exhausts and big brakes. The TTs were 300-ish BHP and the GTis and S3s 310-340 bhp and were all mighty impressive. However, those cars more prepped for the track were obviously quicker, being stripped, some with cages and with more aggressive suspension set-ups. There were some very very rapid motors there. The picture below is of an RS4 Avant, with 540bhp and the most heavily modified road car there. The list and spec of mods was impressive, but it came past me on the track like I was parked and spent the day lapping most other cars.



The fastest cars were the modded RS4s (425+ bhp), many of them 2.7bi-turbos which are still just awesome cars. There was also a 600bhp (yes 600!!) 4.2 RS6 was there and although not the quickest over a lap was monstrously fast on the straights… this car is for sale by the way!! How about the R8? I hear you say. Well, it was humbled a little on the day; partly because there were some other very fast cars, but mostly because it didn’t belong to the people driving it, so it was driven with care and well within it’s capability, but it looked and sounded great, obviously quick and untroubled by the bends, where you could see it was coping easily with track conditions and speeds. I would love to have seen one of the instructors take it round though.



All in all, a great day, and a great chance to drive the S5 at the speeds at which it is capable, and to drive harder than is safe (or legal) on the public roads for longer (10 minutes flat out!) Seeing it’s comparative performance was great too, mostly because it is only very lightly modified and it handled the track at speeds that were comparable with many heavily modified cars… being a car to drive every day, this is pretty impressive.

As a footnote, here’s a picture of the DIS showing the average MPG when I left the track!!!



Of course it wasn’t all serious stuff as shown by this picture of me:




Ian.

PS. I’m so annoyed I didn’t get photos of the cars on the track. After the fiasco with my video camera, I forgot I had a camera on my phone until the end of the day, when I snapped the above. However, I can probably get some on-track shots from the guys who were there taking professional photos… you will have to wait though. Dammit!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
...Oh and I forgot to mention, the DRLs were a big hit... I was chatting to some guys and they said they just looked great on the track and they had tried to photograph me as I past, but i was gone before they could take a picture!
 

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Ianhp1, It is always a pleasure to hear from you. You are a big reason I enjoy this site so much. Thank you for your time and passion. I can tell you really enjoy life.
 

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Thanks for sharing Ian,great in depth review as always ;)

Oh and love the helmet :D
 

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Superb write-up Ian, as always!

Almost made me feel like I was there. :(

For those of you who are unaware, I as due to join Ian on Sat but on Friday night, the car was broken into in a car park in Basingstoke whilst the Missus and I had dinner. Passenger window smashed - couldn't work out what they were after as I couldn't find anything missing from the car (despite there being three pairs of sunglasses, approx 500 quids' worth, stowed at various points).

The Police reckoned that they probably had one of those scanners which apparently picks up battery power sources (i.e., cameras, PDAs, etc) and broke in for a look around - reckoned they were probably disturbed (it was a pretty public car park).

So my Friday night/Sat morning was spent on the phone to Auotoglass (who did their best to locate a window for me, eventually calling me back at 01:30 to let me know earliest they could do would be today), lashing-up some plastic over the window and then hoovering the glass out of the car - it gets everywhere!

Took it into Audi on Sat morning and have to say, they were tremendous. Made a couple of calls to try and locate the glass, then, without me suggesting it, took a window off their demo A5 to get me moving again. All done by lunchtime and no lasting damage apart from a slight tear to the leather on one of the bolsters on the passenger seat where some glass must have caught it when the window came in.

I was truly gutted though - had been looking forward to the track day for ages and now, seeing Ian's pics - sob! Everyone knows Meteor cars are faster than black ones and I would certainly have had him - particularly with those helmet ears going on......

Apologies again Ian and Ed - but glad to see it was such a great day.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Almost made me feel like I was there. :(

For those of you who are unaware, I as due to join Ian on Sat but on Friday night, the car was broken into in a car park in Basingstoke whilst the Missus and I had dinner. Passenger window smashed - couldn't work out what they were after as I couldn't find anything missing from the car (despite there being three pairs of sunglasses, approx 500 quids' worth, stowed at various points).

The Police reckoned that they probably had one of those scanners which apparently picks up battery power sources (i.e., cameras, PDAs, etc) and borke in for a look around - reckoned they were probably disturbed (it was a pretty public car park).

So my Friday night/Sat morning was spent on the phone to Auotoglass (who did their best to locate a window for me, eventually calling me back at 01:30 to let me know earliest they could do would be today), lashing-up some plastic over the window and then hoovering the glass out of the car - it gets everywhere!

Took it into Audi on Sat morning and have to say, they were tremendous. Made a couple of calls to try and locate the glass, then, without me suggesting it, took a window off their demo A5 to get me moving again. All done by lunchtime and no lasting damage apart from a slight tear to the leather on one of the bolsters on the passenger seat where some glass must have caught it when the window came in.

I was truly gutted though - had been looking forward to the track day for ages and now, seeing Ian's pics - sob! Everyone knows Meteor cars are faster than black ones and I would certainly have had him - particularly with those helmet ears going on......

Apologies again Ian and Ed - but glad to see it was such a great day.
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Ess, Sorry I forgot to mention your unfortunate incident in my write up. You were missed (especially your write-up, which would have been even better), and what a sight it would have been to see two S5s with glaring DRLs tearing up the tarmac, even if the meteor paint gives you the aero advantage!

Glad you got it sorted, bthere are some @&%&£*!! out there. :mad: (sorry I can't use the word I put in my text to you on here!!)

I look forward to next time... and I have some ears for your helmet too! ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Traction control, ASR and ESP were left on!!!

Guys, I forgot to mention that for the first run, I left all the electronic aids switched on. The great news is that they intruded very little, so for subsequent runs, I also left them on and was still able to keep pace, so +1 for the aids and hopefully next time, when I'm a little braver and may have organised insurance, I'll switch them off and be even faster! :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Not sure what mileage you've currently got on them Ian, but how did they look afterwards? :eek:
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Very good... the LH side were a little worn on the outside (mostly RH bends) but still plenty of tread, which was also impresive after 30 or so laps. If I had to put my finger in the air and say how much wear, I'd guess the equivalent of a couple of thousand miles of normal road driving. I was, however conscious of this and was driving to preserve them (i.e. smoothly and not ragging it round the hairpin, where you could scrub them badly for an extra 5 mph and probably get a worse line out of the bend!)

One of the GTi guys who drive regularly said he does about 6 track days on his road tyres (as well as road driving every day) before they need changing.

I would say though, if I ordered a set of Sportec Mono wheels (or any other for that matter!) I'd keep the stock rims and put track-day tyres on so I had to worry less about preserving them.
 

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Ess5ive if you ever catch the ba##$"$ds give them a good kicking from me as well,hate scum bags that do that,just jealous thats all,they cant see anyone having a nice motor so why not lets vandilize it :mad:

Anyways good to hear you got it sorted and looking well again,the tear in the leather will be able to be repaired i'm sure just a pity you will have to foot the bill and not the scum as it is probably not worth going through insurance for how much it will cost,well hopefully anyways.


Dave.
 

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Great write up and I love the honesty and respect you show for the other cars.

I have to say, the R8 in the pics looks absolutely fantastic. I'm not normally a fan of cars with decals all over them but with that colour scheme it looks absolutely deadly.
 

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Ian, truly great pics and great report.
Sounds very much like the two days we spent at the AudiUSA track event here recently. I would very strongly recommend this to anyone...some of the best fun I've had in years.
One thing I didn't think of until after though is insurance. Apparently some policies exclude track events, even if there is no racing.
Our loop was just over two miles and very twisty with one long straight. The car felt pretty big at first but was really in its element. Awesome brakes and tires. Best cars out were Lotuses, Porsches, TTs, RS4s, M3s.
I am hoping to arrange schedule to go to the event at the much longer (4+mile) course at Road America in Elkhart Lake, WI in early Sept. Anyone else interested?
S.
 

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Thanks for the great write-up Ian. Great to read about how good the S5 felt on track.

And Ess, sorry for your troubles. Looking forward to reading your track-day stories next time eh?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
After Many Months...

I have full-size piccies from the Track Day last May... (I finally solved the problem reading the CD, which was configured for Mac only!)

I picked a few of the best...





 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
TY...

PS. Was up in Glasgow last night on business... a few bevvies in the beer cafe and the Babbity Bowser then a crackin' Indian at Dhabbas. most impressed!
 
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