Steeda Tackles NASA Time Trials At Sebring
This year hasn't been an average year by any means when it comes to the world climate. With that said, racing hasn't necessarily been the same either. Thankfully, we're all starting to get back to some normalcy and Team Steeda was extremely excited to attend a NASA Time Trial event at Sebring International Raceway!
This was a first-time race for us here at Steeda. We've seen a lot of enthusiasts out there racing these time trial events, specifically with NASA, and we were curious to see how our #20 Yellow S550 would fair in competition against the other cars in the TT2 class. And, we were pleasantly surprised by the end of the weekend!
Additionally, we were excited to have our tech, Jamie Bell, behind the wheel of our Q350 EcoBoost for some testing out on track. We ran into a couple issues with oil temperatures along the way, but were happy to get things ironed out by the end of the weekend for some successful testing.
In-Depth Video Recap
#20 Yellow S550 Racing TT2 Class
The #20 Yellow S550 Race Car has been an amazing test bed for many of the mainstream Steeda products that we currently offer for the S550 platform. All of that testing and R&D happens mainly on the racetrack where we put thousands of hours pushing both the S550 platform and Steeda parts to the absolute limit to ensure they'll stand up to the lifetime guarantee we back them with. And, this weekend was no different!
With 2020 throwing everyone a major curveball, we were looking for new opportunities to race our #20 car in. We love to race in SCCA-sactioned events, but after hearing from our customers about these NASA Time Trial events, we were excited to give them a shot and see how the #20 car stacked up!
On Saturday, we got out on track and placed #2 in the TT2 class at about 4 seconds behind a very quick C5 Corvette. A saying we have here at Steeda is that weight is the enemy of performance. This came into play when we were disqualified after the last session on Saturday due to being just two pounds under weight for TT2! It was certainly a bummer, but it gave us an opportunity to learn and add some weight before we started back up Sunday morning.
We were excited to get up Sunday morning and give TT2 a stab yet again in the #20 car. After adding weight, we came in just over the weight minimum and were ready to race! Sometime during the first session on Sunday morning, the C5 Corvette that was giving us a hard time on Saturday had a cooling system failure and ended his day early. In turn, giving us the win for TT2 on Sunday!
After reviewing the results from the weekend, we were also pleased to see that the #20 Yellow S550 was the fastest Mustang all weekend long - including the American Iron series, which has a better power-to-weight ratio than TT2! We were even more excited to see that Glen was four seconds faster than the C7 Corvette ZR1 racing in TT1 on Sunday!
Q350 EcoBoost Testing In HPDE
Being the first time that our tech, Jamie Bell, was out on track at Sebring, we were a little unsure of what to expect. It also had been a while since our Q350 EcoBoost had been on a road course.
Once Jamie got on course Saturday morning, it was apparent that some learning needed to happen in terms of getting familiar with the course. Racing with the HPDE group allowed Jamie to do just that! Throughout the day on Saturday, the Q350 EcoBoost was amazing when it came to braking and handling, however it did fall short when it came to some oil temperature issues, which isn't terribly uncommon when tracking these EcoBoost cars - even with a Mishimoto Mustang EcoBoost Thermostatic Oil Cooler Kit installed!
Saturday night, we made some adjustments to the car and got back out on track Sunday morning. In addition to the minor suspension tweaks, Jamie also tried short shifting a bit more around track which enabled the engine & oil temps to stay cooler - allowing him to make power when he needed it!
The weekend was full of learning for both Jamie at Sebring and the EcoBoost and handling the harsh temperatures of track racing in Florida during the dead of summer. We're excited to get back out there with this car and push it even further!
Plans For Racing The Rest Of This Season
Team Steeda had a very successful and fun weekend out at Sebring International Raceway for the NASA Time Trials & HPDE! We were extremely excited at how well the #20 S550 did in comparison to the competition both inside and outside the TT2 class, along with the Q350 EcoBoost getting some solid testing time out on track.
Stay tuned to our website and social channels as we will be out again pushing these cars to their limit on the race track throughout the rest of 2020!