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#Under230

Discussion in 'Sepang Circuit' started by NukeeZoid, May 16, 2015.

  1. NukeeZoid

    NukeeZoid Senior Member
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    [​IMG]

    So here's a little history lesson, back in Q4 2010, TCEC introduced Malaysia to the RenaultSport Megane RS250.
    Heralded as the hottest hot hatch-back at the time, what would have been a more fitting venue to hand the first batch of owners their keys? Well, Sepang International Circuit of course!
    As if there was any doubt about the Megane's trackday pedigree, the launch at SIC, where the new owners gave the car a good hard "run-in" on the track confirmed it to the nation.

    [​IMG]
    RenaultSport's first trackday with the first batch of owners

    In all honesty, I didn't pay much attention to the Megane until it caught my eye early 2012.
    I had sold my Integra DC5 Type-R in January, and was on the look out for a replacement. One fine night, while at Kayu Nasi Kandar in SS2, an Oyster Grey thing-a-majig caught my eye in a parking lot in front of the Mamak. It had yellow seat belts, a gnarly grunt to the exhaust, and an ass that would put Kim Kardashian to shame. I was intrigued.

    [​IMG]
    I still miss her sometimes...

    Booking a test drive the very next day, I fell in love with the perfect seating position, linear acceleration, zero turbo-lag, and cornering prowess. Knowing I couldn't afford a brand new one off the shelf, I scoured Mudah.my and came across an appropriately priced 2011 model with decent mileage, made an appointment with the owner, paid a deposit, and married what would be one of the biggest loves of my life in May 2012.

    [​IMG]
    But who could pass up an ass like this!

    I've had some circuit experience from my DC5 days, but nothing too serious, and I never really caught the Sepang bug... Well not at least until the Megane happened.

    [​IMG]
    The DC5 is still regarded as one of the best performing track monsters

    TCEC organizes a bunch of trackdays every year for owners. 6 to be exact.
    My very first was a last minute registration on the day of the event itself in June 2012. I had owned the car for a little over 1 month, had made ZERO changes/mods to it, hadn't even got the brake fluid checked, and there I was, blasting down the main straight topping 200kmh. Exhilarating.

    And that's when it hit me. The Sepang bug.

    [​IMG]
    "Hi, my name is Eugene, and I'm a track junkie"

    Over the next few months, I was a regular attendee at all the Renault Trackdays. Without fail, I would be ripping up the tarmac, trying to improve on my personal best lap after lap. Things didn't start to get really serious until 2013 when TCEC changed out the format of the trackdays, and decided to have a year long "season" where drivers would collect points every trackday (based on fastest laptimes), and a winner would be crowned at the final trackday in Dec 2013. Alas, I ended up in 2nd place that year, falling just 2 points short of the top spot.

    [​IMG]
    Eric Yong in first place. Me in second. Eow Wan Lin in third.

    So 2014 came about, and looking around, the FD2R Civics were dominating the scene. With laptimes in the two-twenties on semi-slicks, we Renault owners would have never dreamed of reaching such crazy feats. Most of our cars were relatively stock, and with a limited aftermarket scene, there was barely any support (both locally and internationally) for the Megane.

    With our limited modification options, Professional Driver Denis Lian paved the way with a blistering laptime in Dec 2013 of 2'30"9xx.
    That was the turning point for us...
    How could a Megane, with stock engine, stock turbo, stock intercooler, stock suspension with H&R springs, a remap, and some light exhaust & lightening mods be capable of scratching the lid on the two-twenties barrier?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ly78dhRCLZI
    Click above to view Denis Lian's 2'30"9xx run in Dec 2013

    With that, I made up my mind, with the pride of the community on my shoulders, to seriously challenge the "two-twenties is impossible" myth.

    So what was the game plan?
    I knew two things:
    1. I didn't have big budgets for big power. Which meant no forged internals and certainly no bigger turbo.
    2. This was my daily driver. So any mods I made had to be practical and still allow me to drive to and fro from work.

    Looking to the FD2R's for inspiration, their success formula was largely in their ability to carry insane speeds through corners thanks to trick handling and overall lightness.

    So I set out to source for a new suspension setup, and decided on the Nitron R3 3-way coilovers. A local vendor (Nexus Racing) meant I had the support I needed, so I blew a large portion of my savings on the upgrade.

    [​IMG]
    Porn. Simple porn.

    Next in-line was to shave more weight off the car. Knowing that I still had to drive the car to work everyday, any weight saving mods had to be bolt-on parts that I could plug & play a day or two before tracking. With the help of other club members, we managed to figure out a few improvements that would lighten the car, such as a light weight battery (-15kg), empty headlamps (-8kg), racing bucket seats (-15kg), and completely removing all other excess dead weight such as passenger & rear seats. The total weight cutting exercise resulted in roughly a 100kg decrease to curb weight.

    [​IMG]
    Welcome to my office

    With that, I went to the March 2014 trackday with high hopes. My previous best on Hankook Z221 semi-slicks was 2minutes35seconds. If I could get anywhere close to that on Yokohama AD08R street tyres, it meant that progress was being made. However, the car was a mess as I struggled with suspension settings that resulted in some obnoxious understeer, and only clocked a 2'37"9xx.

    Unphased, I went back trackday after trackday, refining my settings, and improving my Street Tyre personal best a second at a time. The breakthrough finally happened on 31 July 2014 when I clocked a 2'33"800 on AD08R's, and shattered any premonition or doubt that two-twenties was unachievable.

    [​IMG]

    Enthused, I went out and purchased a fresh set of Hankook Z221's.
    My first outing with the tyres was at the Dec 2014 TimeToAttack finale. Going from a year's worth of street tyre experience to semi-slicks, I had a hard time adjusting my driving, and ended the event in 3rd place with a time of 2'32"599. I was slightly disappointed because I expected to shave at least 3 seconds off my laptime, but only ended up with a measly 1 second.

    [​IMG]
    Podium topping run

    Nevertheless, I knew there was more in it, and in January 2015, I finally managed to snatch the standing lap record from Denis Lian with a heart wrenching 2'30"100 lap. It was a bittersweet day because despite getting the record, I was just milliseconds away from cracking two-twenties.

    But I knew two-twenties was just an arms reach away. Persevering, I mentally prepared myself for the Renault Trackday on 2 May 2015. I knew I had to pull every last ounce of strength, courage and (for a lack of a better word) balls, out.

    [​IMG]

    I lined myself up at the pit-exit.
    I was the first car in-line on a cool Saturday morning.
    And as the lights turned green at 9am, the marshall waved me out.
    I warmed the tyres up on the out-lap, doing some power-braking to get heat into the Z221's.
    And as I cleared Turn 15, I slammed the throttle, and brought it all home with a 2'29"312.

    Everything that I've been working for over the past year and a half boiled down to that magnificent lap. All the hard work, all the heart ache, all the blood, sweat and tears made sense when my onboard laptimer showed 2'29". And after cross checking the lap with Sepang's transponder timing to confirm, I finally did it. I finally put the RenaultSport community on the map.

    [​IMG]
    Celebratory fist pump

    Watch my 2'29"312 run by clicking on the link below:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QdmEQ2Df8VI

    And with that, I'm not sure where to go from here on out.
    Do I continue pushing?
    Do I continue improving?
    Or do I retire, and leave this fuel-infested world of racing behind?
    Well, only time will tell, but for now, I'm still basking in the glory of finally receiving my membership card for the Two-Twenties club.

    [​IMG]
     

    Attached Files:

    #1 NukeeZoid, May 16, 2015
    Last edited: May 18, 2015
  2. Izso

    Izso Boooooossst
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    Nitron! Wow!!!!
     
  3. NukeeZoid

    NukeeZoid Senior Member
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    yup, and they cost me a small fortune. :bawling:
     
  4. Izso

    Izso Boooooossst
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    I've never met you in person, but I've molested your car the last TTA (not really la. Exaggeration) and having seen the bits and parts you have your car, I'm sure all that money spent has given you those extra seconds off those laps!
     
  5. NukeeZoid

    NukeeZoid Senior Member
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    You should say hi the next round. :)

    In all honesty, apart from the Nitrons, I really haven't spent that much money on the car.
    Just did a whole lot of "stripping" on my own.
     
  6. Izso

    Izso Boooooossst
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    That headlight intake was bought or custom made?
     
  7. NukeeZoid

    NukeeZoid Senior Member
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    it's not an intake. it's just the shell of an old headlamp. bought it used, and just gutted out all the insides.
     
  8. Tom

    Tom 15 Year | Platinum
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    I had no idea you had a DC5 before this.

    A touching story Eugene, encompassing your life story before, during and modding the Megane.
    This is going into the feature pages real soon too

    Great job!

    [​IMG]
     
  9. NukeeZoid

    NukeeZoid Senior Member
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    Looking forward to it Tom.
     
  10. Tom

    Tom 15 Year | Platinum
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    Anything else you want to add on?
     
  11. NukeeZoid

    NukeeZoid Senior Member
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    Nothing that I can think of. Suggestions?
     

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