New tire option - SS legal!

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New tire option - SS legal!

Postby jbrennen on Thu Nov 09, 2017 9:05 pm

Just wanted to note for the record that this past Sunday, when I had the #3 Top Time of Day, I was using Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires. I think that just about everybody else in the top 10 times was on either Bridgestone RE-71R or Hoosier R7 tires.

This was the third time I've autoXed on these tires -- the last two points events, and the instructor runs at the PDS.

I'm not going to tell you that the Pilot Sport 4S is better than the RE-71R. It's not, if you're comparing new tires vs. new tires.

But having driven both in anger now, I'm going to say that Pilot Sport 4S tires on their third event are probably as good as RE-71R tires on their third event. And examining the tires after three autocross days, they look absolutely amazing. Plenty of tread left, no strange wear patterns, no chunking, nothing worrisome at all.

Basically, for a 300 treadwear tire, these things are AMAZING. If you want a second opinion, check out Tire Rack's review:

https://www.tirerack.com/tires/tests/te ... p?ttid=223

What We Liked: Does everything asked of it at a very high level.
What We'd Improve: Nothing.
Conclusion: We are genuinely impressed.
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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby ttweed on Fri Nov 10, 2017 7:12 am

Oh-oh. Now we'll have to raise the SS treadwear to 320. :D
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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby mrondeau on Fri Nov 10, 2017 10:20 am

Sized for new cars only.
18
245/40ZR18*

19
225/35ZR19*
225/40ZR19
225/45ZR19*
235/35ZR19*
235/35ZR19*
235/40ZR19*
245/35ZR19*
245/40ZR19*
255/30ZR19*
255/35ZR19*
255/40ZR19*
265/30ZR19*
265/35ZR19*
275/30ZR19*
275/35ZR19*
275/40ZR19*
285/35ZR19*
295/30ZR19*
305/30ZR19*
325/30ZR19*

20
235/35ZR20*
235/35ZR20
235/45ZR20*
245/30ZR20*
245/35ZR20*
245/35ZR20*
245/35ZR20*
245/35ZR20*
245/35ZR20*
245/40ZR20*
255/35ZR20*
255/40ZR20*
255/45ZR20*
265/30ZR20*
265/35ZR20*
265/35ZR20*
275/30ZR20*
275/30ZR20*
275/35ZR20*
285/30ZR20*
285/35ZR20*
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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby jbrennen on Fri Nov 10, 2017 1:48 pm

Yes, the sizes run toward newer European car sizes with 19 and 20 inch rims.

It's interesting that because they only sell Pilot Sport 4S tires in 3 rim diameters (18, 19, and 20), they're not actually legal for SCCA autocross Street classes -- their rules say that a tire must be available in at least 4 rim diameters to be legal in Street class. A rare case where the SCCA Street rules are more restrictive than the current Zone 8 rules.

But I had no trouble buying a set in the exact stock tire dimensions for my car. I can't run SS due to non-stock control arms, but hopefully some folks can get some SS cars back in the top ten times in 2018. :)
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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby kleggo on Sun Nov 12, 2017 7:39 pm

i have them on my Audi A4 Avant.
Really like them, but wish they also came in 18" sizing.
But that probably won't happen.
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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby Cajundaddy on Wed Nov 15, 2017 2:10 pm

ttweed wrote:Oh-oh. Now we'll have to raise the SS treadwear to 320. :D


Haha, too late for your tire-wars proposal this year Tom. The 4s will get a free pass in 2018 for those that still feel the need to run in SS. :roflmao:
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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby ttweed on Thu Nov 16, 2017 7:18 am

Cajundaddy wrote:
ttweed wrote:Oh-oh. Now we'll have to raise the SS treadwear to 320. :D


Haha, too late for your tire-wars proposal this year Tom. The 4s will get a free pass in 2018 for those that still feel the need to run in SS. :roflmao:

Actually, I would never make such a proposal, Dave. Maybe I should have used the winkie/sarcastic emoji, as my comment was meant to disparage the idiotic rule change last year to make 200 treadwear tires illegal in SS classes. The inevitable has now happened--another tire comes along that will be the "must-have" SS tire de jour, and it is even more expensive than the previous one and fits fewer cars. The attempt to legislate the RE-71R out of contention by a change in treadwear limits for SS was folly, as I commented at the time.

BTW, I haven't run in SS for 3 seasons now, even though I have a bone-stock car, so I have no dog in this fight.

TT
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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby Cajundaddy on Sun Nov 19, 2017 9:39 am

ttweed wrote:
Cajundaddy wrote:
ttweed wrote:Oh-oh. Now we'll have to raise the SS treadwear to 320. :D


Haha, too late for your tire-wars proposal this year Tom. The 4s will get a free pass in 2018 for those that still feel the need to run in SS. :roflmao:

Actually, I would never make such a proposal, Dave. Maybe I should have used the winkie/sarcastic emoji, as my comment was meant to disparage the idiotic rule change last year to make 200 treadwear tires illegal in SS classes. The inevitable has now happened--another tire comes along that will be the "must-have" SS tire de jour, and it is even more expensive than the previous one and fits fewer cars. The attempt to legislate the RE-71R out of contention by a change in treadwear limits for SS was folly, as I commented at the time.

BTW, I haven't run in SS for 3 seasons now, even though I have a bone-stock car, so I have no dog in this fight.

TT


I guess I needed a winkie too Tom because I was also joking. Last year I think there were 8 proposals from the general PCA membership to ban, eviscerate, cripple, eliminate, stunt, or otherwise prohibit RE-71R tires from SS classes. Only one of these made it through committee and the region presidents voted in favor of the proposal. There was a big kerfuffle over how this got approved and then... nothing happened, and drivers went on with their lives and had fun playing with their cars.

Looking forward to nice stable AX/TT rules in 2018. :beerchug:
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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby ttweed on Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:22 pm

Cajundaddy wrote: There was a big kerfuffle over how this got approved and then... nothing happened, and drivers went on with their lives and had fun playing with their cars.

Well, not exactly "nothing" happened. It turned out that SS entries this year went down by more than 300%. I compared the number of drivers who ran in SS class more than once at the 10 SDR AX events in 2016 to the first 10 events of 2017. There were 19 this year, and 62 last year. If the rationale for the treadwear change was to eliminate competition in the SS class, it did a great job!

TT
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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby Gary Burch on Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:08 am

ttweed wrote:
Cajundaddy wrote: There was a big kerfuffle over how this got approved and then... nothing happened, and drivers went on with their lives and had fun playing with their cars.

Well, not exactly "nothing" happened. It turned out that SS entries this year went down by more than 300%. I compared the number of drivers who ran in SS class more than once at the 10 SDR AX events in 2016 to the first 10 events of 2017. There were 19 this year, and 62 last year. If the rationale for the treadwear change was to eliminate competition in the SS class, it did a great job!

TT


I think the condition of the pavement in the west lot had more to do with it than the treadwear issue...
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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby ttweed on Tue Nov 21, 2017 3:18 pm

Gary Burch wrote:I think the condition of the pavement in the west lot had more to do with it than the treadwear issue...

Well, overall attendance is down 15% this year, but that is a lot less than the 300% drop for SS classes, so I can't agree that is the reason. It's possible that SS class drivers are less likely to want to beat up their cars since they are generally newer models, perhaps, but that can't explain such a precipitous drop. There were 58 new drivers this year and 65 last year, which is only an 11% drop compared to the overall 15% drop. The number of "1 & done" entries remained equal between the two years, so if people were showing up once this year and saying "the surface is horrible, I'm never doing that again," you'd think that percentage would have gone way up compared to last year, but it didn't.

I'm just looking at the numbers and trying to make sense of them. I think a lot of people just decided to run in CC classes because the tire choices sucked for SS.

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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby rwalker on Tue Nov 21, 2017 3:34 pm

Anecdotal: I was in the process of "building" (i.e. buying autocross wheels and tires) for SS02 (vs CC06) when the rule changes eliminated that choice.

Empirical: Tom's analysis looks to me to be strong evidence that the rule changes killed SS this year. We could also look at what percentage of SS drivers went CC in 2016->2017 vs 2015->2016.
Last edited by rwalker on Wed Nov 22, 2017 9:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby mtcurran on Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:41 pm

The idea of SS Class was to provide an introductory class for new owners to get their feet wet with AX, not feel intimidated by having to compete with long time CC Class drivers, and then after a year or so graduate to CC if they wanted to continue and compete for a season championship. Wasn't that why SS class was initiated? It seems to me that that concept has been abused as competitors pushed the limits in SS rules to gain an edge when that was not why the class was originally set up. Maybe we give out awards at the end of the year for CC results only? Just asking.
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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby ttweed on Wed Nov 22, 2017 7:17 am

mtcurran wrote:The idea of SS Class was to provide an introductory class for new owners to get their feet wet with AX, not feel intimidated by having to compete with long time CC Class drivers, and then after a year or so graduate to CC if they wanted to continue and compete for a season championship. Wasn't that why SS class was initiated? It seems to me that that concept has been abused as competitors pushed the limits in SS rules to gain an edge when that was not why the class was originally set up. Maybe we give out awards at the end of the year for CC results only? Just asking.
Kind regards,
Mark

Not really, Mark. What you are describing is the Novice class. SS classes were originally for owners who did not want to modify their cars (beyond tires) but still compete in AX for a season championship. There used to be a correlation with the National PCRs so that owners could prepare their cars and practice AX regionally to compete in the annual Parade autocross in Showroom Stock class. This purpose has been totally lost in the current incarnation of the rules.

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Re: New tire option - SS legal!

Postby jbrennen on Wed Nov 22, 2017 8:16 pm

I would just pose the counterpoint, as I've done before, that in the SCCA classing structure, the Street classes (Super Street, A Street, all the way down to H Street) are the most competitive and most popular classes at the national level.

There's a real sense of achievement and pride in that crowd of being able to outdrive your opponents in what are basically identical cars. To win a national championship in C Street, you basically need to be driving a 4th generation (ND) Miata, and you need to outdrive 30 to 40 other good drivers in basically the same car.

Note that certainly doesn't mean that every car is competitive. A guy showed up at SCCA Nationals this year in C Street in a 986 Boxster S, and got whooped real good. You're not entitled to be competitive just by showing up -- you have to bring the right car. Don't bring a Cayman GTS -- they'll stick you in Super Street, running against 991 GT3s and 981 GT4s. I was seriously considering going to SCCA Nationals last year in 2016, until they announced that the GT4 was in the same class as the Cayman GTS. I can beat GT4s, but not if they're driven by James Gunn-Wilkinson. And although he didn't do SCCA Nationals in his GT4, some other really good drivers have done so. 6 of the top 8 spots this year in Super Street were taken by 991 GT3s and 981 GT4s. I would have loved to be there and competing against them, but short of getting a co-drive in a GT4, my car really didn't stand a chance. But that doesn't mean that Super Street class is for novices or those getting their feet wet. Super Street is for really good drivers who want to beat other really good drivers.

I'm not sure if Zone 8 or SDR are big enough to have that level of competition in what are basically cars off the showroom floor with just a tire swap, but it might be worthwhile to encourage that type of competition.
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