In my opinion (and others'), the best Dragon Slayer is a small, light car with big, sticky, tires. Anything over 200 horsepower is adequate. 300 horsepower is ideal; more than that is useless. What you need most is mid-range torque. Dragon regulars, including the Killboy Krew, mostly build cars along these lines.
Killboy has already built his FR-S some. The next step may be a turbo. "It has OK low-end torque, but there's nothing there in the last half of gas pedal travel." That should put the car's power in the 250-300 h.p. range, spot-on for a Slayer. For those interested in following the build, here's a link to his YouTube channel dedicated to it:
The latest additions are the wheels you see in the picture with Cooper summer-only stickies. Unlike Kamal and Hayden, Darryl runs tires with rain grooves which make this possible:
On this trip to, I was privileged to passenger with Darryl on a round-trip pass to the Overlook and back. The video gives a good impression of what the pass was like, except that it was maybe 10% faster on a dry road. He may not be able to pull the same ultimate lateral G's as Kamal and Hayden on their super-stickies, but the grip is "adequate" (as Rolls Royce used to say of its horsepower). The car is loud inside the cabin--the video makes it sound just nicely rorty. He usually makes passes with the stability control on, but at the "minimum" setting.
I heard chatter from the rear tires on exit, which I took to be the l.s.d. clutches trying to keep up, but Darryl said that wasn't the cause. It might be wheel-hop. The new wheel/tire package makes the suspension too stiff. Darryl wants to soften the spring rates for better grip. His kidneys may appreciate it too. He had some fun kicking the tail out. As a Killboy's Highlights commenter once said, "It may not be the fast way around, but it's the fun way."
If orange [whatever color] is the new black, the FR-S/BRZ is the new Honda S-2000. I mean as a Slayer platform. Hotshoe and I saw a lot of them on this trip. It's light, inexpensive, and front engine/rear drive. It has independent rear suspension and a tin top for extra rigidity. And lots of aftermarket goodies are available to make it quicker.
"This is a double apex..."
"The Triple Doubles?"
"Yeah, that was the last one." (I completely missed the first two.)
"...this is Parsons Branch... the exit is always slippery, but you can take the first left-hander after it... here... faster than it looks or than most people do..."
|How did Darryl get so fast on the Dragon? The same way you get to Carnegie Hall. (Photo: Road & Track.com)|