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Driving tips for Motown's Korkscrew - Modesto, CA


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#1 JimF

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 11:54 AM

Before finishing up the "switchup" tuning series, it seemed to me that maybe some driving strategies for the devious little "Korkscrew" track might be useful to those that haven't been there much. Understanding this little 90' road course is key to setting up properly and also driving it well and doing better in your races. Also, if you understand driving the combination turns on this track, it will give you guidance in your setups.

 

General Situations:

  • There are no long straight sections with the longest being the length of the driver's panel or about 14'
  • The lane spacing is old school 4"
  • The cars (especially the 4.5" stock cars) are seldom settled down unless you tune for and drive for that effect.
  • If you "drive 'er in deep and punch it" you'll be on your roof most of the time.
  • For my driving tastes at least, a lot of brakes in not my friend.
  • In general, there are almost zero good passing spots on this track. Managing traffic is tough at best.
  • The biggest challenge in managing this track is keeping the tail of the car behind the nose. If you overdrive a turn and somehow stay in, your car may not be settled down and you'll probably come off in the next one.

 

1-Korkscrew-2-1024x682.jpg

 

Specifics:

 

Donut - lead on - straight - 90* - 90*: These are pretty conventional turns. Biggest challenge is keeping the car from kicking out on turn exit and being half sideways down the ensuing straight section.

 

Carousel: First big challenge on the track is entry to the Carousel. This is two direction changes built into one 220 deg. combo turn. The Carousel is banked so it is fast but the entry is a tight little right kicker. If you hit the kicker too hard, you may survive but will probably come off in the banked section. Too much brake can make this tough to run smoothly. If you get into it well, the Carousel is very fast and you'll come out of the downhill exit going really fast into the little 4' straight going down into the "Fishook".

 

Fishook: This is a mirror of the Carousel but it is flat. You'll have a lot of speed from the downhill exit from the Carousel and then go into the left hand kicker on entry. I personally suggest that you have some roll here especially on the tighter red and white lanes. On the more open lanes like black and really all the way in to maybe green, the temptation is to really "punch it" from the middle to exit. I suggest being a little careful for two reasons. One, if you are on it too soon, you'll lift the nose, and two, you shouldn't come out of the turn (exit) as hard as you maybe can. The reason is that yes, you can come out pretty hard but the tail of your car will kick hard left. The chances are, you won't be settled down when you hit the little "Kink" which is only about 8' away. My suggestion is to feather the exit here so your car is straight when you hit the kink.

 

Kink: The Kink is shallow enough that almost any good retro car can take it punched. However, you will disappear under the bridge into the donut in about another 6' or so. If you are not set up correctly going into the Kink, you can come out with a hard right kick and your car will still be unsettled when it disappears from view and that is not good news for the donut. I'm not suggesting that you tiptoe from Hook exit through the Kink. I do suggest that you treat that segment almost like one elongated turn even though there is a short straight there. If you can minimize the hard left kick > hard right kick  effect when driving this combo of direction changes you will find it much easier to enter the donut well and also manage passing or (being passed) more effectively.

 

Your car will go through at least five direction changes in less than 40' of lap distance in this section that I've detailed and your car may never really be settled through the whole section. The temptation is to "punch it" as often as possible but if you do, you may find your car being constantly off balance. Driving at maybe 90% is surely cleaner and probably faster as well.

 

 

 


Jim Fowler




#2 Mark Wampler

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 02:39 PM

I think an old fashioned destruction derby with hard plastic bodies running staggered lane direction would be a hoot.   Kidding of course Jim. :)   Probably 1/32 scale with mini-brutes would be a better fit for that track to help alleviate  the impacts you have outlined.  We have local racer with a scaled down 3 lane home version of that track, but yeah, no place to actually pass unless your car is especially ballistic enough to do it.


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You can quote me.

-Mark

#3 boxerdog

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 02:43 PM

I'm going to add one small detail. Drive too slow or get below 90%, as Jim said, and you will get pounded into submission. First, by impatient fast guys because there is nowhere to pass, and second, by over-drivers and/or un-tuned cars who aren't responsible for their actions. I have been in all of these categories at one time or another. 


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David Cummerow

#4 JimF

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 03:47 PM

I'm going to add one small detail. Drive too slow or get below 90%, as Jim said, and you will get pounded into submission. First, by impatient fast guys because there is nowhere to pass, and second, by over-drivers and/or un-tuned cars who aren't responsible for their actions. I have been in all of these categories at one time or another. 

 

Absolutely agree! I will say that going at 90% throttle doesn't necessarily translate to 90% speed. The other night when testing the Stock Car that I gave Gene for his birthday, I found that by exiting the Hook and entering the Kink at something less than full throttle didn't detract from the lap times vs. the "punch it" approach at all. In fact, I think it might be faster b/c the car is going straight more than sideways.

 

BTW.....I think you've graduated to the "impatient fast guy" category on that track now............. :good:  


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Jim Fowler

#5 boxerdog

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 03:56 PM

It's a fine line and it can change with the wrong set of tires.....

 

But racing is a lot of fun on that track. If you win one, you've earned it and you need to repair your car. 


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David Cummerow

#6 JimF

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 06:47 PM

It's a fine line and it can change with the wrong set of tires.....

 

But racing is a lot of fun on that track. If you win one, you've earned it and you need to repair your car. 

 

Especially that! When a car comes out of a Korkscrew race, it's a good idea to strip it completely and put it in the jig. The chances are, it isn't as flat as it was going in.


Jim Fowler





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