First track tires

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billrice
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First track tires

Post by billrice » Tue Aug 14, 2018 7:48 am

Great weekend at Palmer! Thanks to all who made it so.
I’m shopping for my first track tire. I don’t need them to be streetable or good in the rain. I’ll be driving to the track on Michelin 4S’s which proved to be fantastic in the rain this past weekend. My short list so far includes: RA1, r888r, NT01, RE71.
Stock wheels are 225/40/18
Considering 245/40/17
Thoughts?
Thanks
Bill

joncowen
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Re: First track tires

Post by joncowen » Tue Aug 14, 2018 9:20 am

200 tread wear street tire options:
- Re71r
- BFG Rival S
- Dunlop Direzza Z3
- Falken Azenis RT615k+
There are many more. The top two are fastest, but will wear quickest. Grassroots Motorsports did tire testing on all these, if you'd like to research them a bit. The Dirrezza may last a little longer (it's too new to know), but is a little slower. The Falken will last longer and is slower, but is reported to be a great and durable tire.

The others you list are an intermediate track tire. They are likely to have similar grip levels to the top two 200TW tires, but may not overheat as easily. I really enjoy driving on the NT01. Out of what you list, that would be my choice, but I've never tried the R888r.

Make sure whatever you get fits. Find people on forums who have fit whatever size you pick. Make sure you choose a wheel big enough for the tire. If you over tire a wheel, you make a compromise. In some cases a smaller size tire on the same wheel will be faster.

billrice
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Re: First track tires

Post by billrice » Tue Aug 14, 2018 12:09 pm

Great! Thanks Jon. Didn’t know about the wheel size.

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Re: First track tires

Post by brucesallen » Thu Aug 16, 2018 10:36 am

The answer is always Hoosiers
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Re: First track tires

Post by CalypsoBean » Thu Aug 16, 2018 4:36 pm

I like the NT01. You didn't mention what car these will be on - weight can make a difference in selecting a tire.

I've run the NT01 on 3700 lbs car and a 2500 lbs car and it's performed well on both. I also drive the tire on the street.

In the rain at Palmer last weekend, NT01 was not appropriate in my low-powered car.

billrice
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Re: First track tires

Post by billrice » Thu Aug 16, 2018 5:36 pm

Thanks. I'm running a Mk7 GTI . With me and 1/2 fueled 3300 lbs. I was strongly considering the NT01 but they recommend more front camber than I can put on the car. I only have -1 with no adjustability. I was also considering going to 17 inch and saving about $200. Any caveats to that? I won't be streeting the tires at all. Hoosiers I'm sure would be great but I'm still a student. Probably not ready for those yet. I'd like something that gives a little warning before grip is lost.

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Re: First track tires

Post by DanB » Thu Aug 16, 2018 5:52 pm

RE71Rs are great in the dry and in the rain. I was doing 2:04s in the wet on Saturday, not too shabby...
NT01s are maybe a little better in the dry, but only OK in the wet and only when new. They will last longer than RE71Rs. BUT, if you run RE71R and replace them before they're too worn down you have dry and wet tires in one. However that might mean replacing them after two events...
17" probably the way to go as long as they fit over your brakes.
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Re: First track tires

Post by paultg » Thu Aug 16, 2018 8:43 pm

My MX5 is 2600-2650 lbs.
Palmer I did high 1:52s on a 225 width R17 NTO1.
The same car on 215 width R17 RE71R did 1:54s, 2 seconds slower and wore pretty fast for 1 event. They also lost grip / overheated after 1/2 session.

If you want a better tire that will last much longer and not drop off in grip pretty much at all go NT01. In perfect world do an RE71R (or equivalent) on your car for street use / rain backup.
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billrice
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Re: First track tires

Post by billrice » Thu Aug 16, 2018 9:19 pm

Thanks! Great info. Does anyone in the club sell wheels and tires? I'd prefer to give them my business

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Re: First track tires

Post by DanB » Fri Aug 17, 2018 9:18 am

paultg wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 8:43 pm
Palmer I did high 1:52s on a 225 width R17 NTO1.
The same car on 215 width R17 RE71R did 1:54s, 2 seconds slower and wore pretty fast for 1 event. They also lost grip / overheated after 1/2 session.
Interesting... I ran half-worn 235/40-17 NT01s on 17x9s first session Sunday and did a best lap of 1:50.9 on them, 7 laps in (started with full tank of fuel). Next session I ran newish (one dry session on them) 225/45-17 RE71Rs on heavy factory wheels, did a best lap of 1:51.4 on my second lap. After *agonizing* over tire choice for the TT (rain was possible!) I left the RE71Rs on and did a 1:50.669 on 2nd lap of the TT, with ~3/8 fuel.
I don't know if I would have gone faster on the NT01s, but assuming the same delta between TT and practice that would've been about a 1:50.2 on the Nittos.

None of the above is conclusive proof of anything, but on my car I don't think there's more than a half-second between NT01 and RE71R in the dry. They don't last though! I got three track days out of my first set. I could have gotten a 4th easily but was worried about a 5th day so I got the NT01s for the trip to Mont Tremblant. NT01s now have a bit more than 4 track days on them and have at least another 2 in them. So roughly 1.5x the track life vs RE71R, maybe?
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Re: First track tires

Post by paultg » Fri Aug 17, 2018 6:53 pm

I only ran my RE71s for one event. Maybe if I gave them a few more sessions they would have closed the gap a bit. I also think if they were a wider width and wider rim (they were mounted on 17x7 facorty mx5 rims) they would have worked better.
The NT01s for the 1:52s were more used, 225s on 17x9, and most of my track experince has been on NT01s. I’m more comfortable on them and i feel they are great their entire life span.

I wasn’t as impressed with the RE71R but maybe I didn’t give them enough time.

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billrice
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Re: First track tires

Post by billrice » Fri Aug 17, 2018 7:48 pm

I've read several accounts of NT01 wearing unevenly on GTI's due to not enough front camber. I'm leaning toward the R888R 235/40R17 Toyo recommends -1 to -3. I'm fixed at -1. I'm looking for 17 x 8.5 or 17 x 9 wheels. There aren't a lot to choose from and they seem heavy at 20lbs. (Neuspeed, TSW) Any suggestions?
Thanks
Bill

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Re: First track tires

Post by paultg » Sat Aug 18, 2018 9:34 am

You are going to have uneven wear due to lack of camber on any tire, especially with only -1 degree.
Don’t let that steer your tire choice unless you consider lowest cost.
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Re: First track tires

Post by dtlemoine » Sat Aug 18, 2018 9:41 am

paultg wrote:
Sat Aug 18, 2018 9:34 am
You are going to have uneven wear due to lack of camber on any tire, especially with only -1 degree.
Don’t let that steer your tire choice unless you consider lowest cost.
This, for sure. Most guys will flip the tires on their rims roughly halfway through their life. You'll get an extra day or two before finding cords.
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Re: First track tires

Post by TXBDan » Mon Aug 20, 2018 9:56 am

The NT01, as a practice/hpde type tire, is perhaps mankind’s greatest achievement.
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