No one could predict what would happen when the cars turned around and came back at the radar gun to measure stopping distance. To make the test more demanding of the brake system's ability to deal with heat and less a contest of the tires' grip on the asphalt, we measured stopping distance from 80 mph instead of 60 mph, as is usual for road tests. Toward the same end, four stops were done back to back, putting serious heat in the system. While some cars faded after the first stop, others had big-brake systems with pads chosen to work for a full 5 minutes on a road course. They actually needed a few stops to begin working properly. For consistency and efficiency, we had Kevin Schrantz drive all the cars for this test.
We scored the best of four stops. This number shows what happened in this contest, under these rules. Making definitive judgments about which brake systems are better requires strict adherence to a more rigorous and completely specified test procedure than we used, and reasonably sophisticated statistical analysis. It can also include a variety of subjective factors.
Chris Clark's S4 won this braking test by a surprising margin, taking 218.6 ft, versus the second-place AWE car, which took 221.2 ft. Ari Mosisoglu surprised everyone again by being right in there with a 223.0-ft distance with stock brakes, good for third place. All but three of the cars stopped in 230 ft or less. This was the one event in which Keith Rust's stock car did not finish last. There appeared to be something seriously wrong with the big-brake system on Stan Liu's Topspin car, causing it to take nearly 20 ft longer than stock to get whoa'ed down.
The afternoon of the second day was spent at The Streets of Willow Springs, a not-too-fast but technically very challenging, and, of course, fun road course. A turbo oil return line blew off the AWE car during a practice session, causing a fire that could have destroyed the car if it hadn't gotten stopped 20 ft from an extinguisher. ABD Racing's Dave Anderson showed awesome sportsmanship by handing AWE the key to his shop, enabling them to get the car running and ready to compete, 24 hours later, in Sport Compact Car's Ultimate Street Car Challenge. Chris Clark discovered that one of his car's axles, while failing to make the expected sudden and expensive noises, had nonetheless ceased delivering its share of 403 hp to its wheels on the dragstrip.
Nitrous is nearly useless on a road course, so Ari Mosisoglu was down to 350 hp, leaving the Auto Sport Werks/Sportec car as the most powerful. Its 378 hp was magnificent. It breathed freely and pulled hard all the way up, feeling like a good, naturally aspirated engine but with serious poke behind it. The RS4 body conversion enabled the use of 265/35-18 Michelin Pilot Sport Cups. Big power and huge grip helped Kevin Schrantz get the Sportec car around the course in just 91.54 sec., 2.5 sec. ahead of second place, in spite of not yet fully sorted chassis and brake setups.
Next was Hartmann Motorsports, at 94.01 sec. Kevin Schrantz noted the yellow car's Brembos were especially effective and easy to modulate. With a traction-aiding diff in front as well as the rear, it pulled itself around corners under power like a Quaife-equipped front-driver, putting every one of its 322 horses to the ground.