Wings And Things: How Aero On Track Helps Confidence And Grip
We know wings help with speed, but the grip is only part of the story.
We all know the principals of wings, downforce, and how that works to make a car go faster. As speed increases, so inherently does grip, or, at least friction. Simple stuff, right? Absolutely.
There’s one thing about downforce that acts towards increasing speed that’s not really on the measurable side, and that comes from driver confidence. YouTuber, and S2KI forum member Zygrene demonstrates this very clearly with a new 1600mm wing on his AP2. Zygrene took his Ap2 to a track day at Buttonwillow Raceway Park to see how much difference it would make.
We get to ride along for a few laps, and even the initial few laps with traffic allow Zygrene to set personal best times. Impressive, especially as there is a bit of confidence building associated with a new setup and trusting in the aero to do its work. After a few more laps, it’s evident that the car is much faster, and without traffic, could be nearly 4 seconds a lap faster. Fairly significant for not modifying power or weight at all.
ALSO SEE: Does Your S2000 Need Aero on Track?
As for the speed, the car is noticeably more stable over crests, and in the high-speed section, the car is far more tight. Twitchy and loose handling traits are completely gone, something a stock S2000 would struggle with. This, in turn, raises driver confidence to keep the throttle pinned. Zygrene is pretty sure that v-max at the end of straightaways are much higher as a result.
Yes, a wing does inherently create drag, but a properly set up wing won’t create so much that top end speed is severely reduced. However, most wings have adjustments, and depending if the track has tighter turns, or longer straights, you’ll want a different angle of attack.
So if you have a wing on your car, get out there and play! If your setup isn’t a close kept speed-secret, we’d love to hear about your aero setup.