Join Date: May 2008
Location: Venice, California, USA
Big Willow, turns 6 to 8 vs turns 5 to 9... This depends mostly on the car you're driving.
In my 240z, which is light and under powered, I can full throttle it in high gear from 5 to 9. Somewhere after the apex of five, when I'm going straighterish, I'm full throttle. I can clip the apex of six (full throttle). I can full throttle through eight until I need to slow for nine. I don't need to brake for nine, anymore. Improved driving skills? or I changed my threshold of fear?
I've driven other cars on Big Willow, faster cars and/or heavier cars. There's enough rise in six to unweight some cars. This means slowing down and/or taking a wider line and not clipping the apex of six. The outside line has less rise.
These cars with more motor can build up enough speed to force me to slow for eight. Not so sure I want to eat dirt while doing 120+ mph.
So, yes, it's one long straight from 6-8 or 5-9 depending on the car and/or the skill set. Seven doesn't count as a turn. Until Paul told me turn seven existed, I wasn't even aware that I was actually going straighterish in a perfectly straight line.
Turn five deserves a discussion unto itself. It's off camber and decreasing radius. Setup and late turn-in are crucial. Being smooth and having a later apex is important. Entering five to hot and trying to slow down (during the turn) will upset the car, this is a throttle control turn. I get ALL my braking done before I start my turn-in and while at track-edge. Some double apex here, I tend to do a single and very late apex. I'm at part throttle through the turn for the purpose of suspension balance. After I apex, I start rolling on the fuel and am at full throttle while going straighterish. This means I've started my full throttle straight line before exiting turn five.
I think it's only fair to say that I've gotten out of shape in turn five more than all the other turns combined.
Turn nine, the end of the long back straight (and the beginning of the front straight)... Some brake for nine, others just lift the throttle. Throttle steer and later apex are key. I can slow by lifting the throttle, gently, during the long turn-in [but yes, I slow before turn-in]. Hug that outside edge until turning in for the apex. It's a later apex than what we're used to doing around town. Roll on the fuel after the apex and full throttle while going straighterish.
Depending on the specific turn and how I feel, I can full throttle just before the apex. Perhaps my motor is simply that dead. Perhaps experience has change my skill level. In thinking about my before and after driving styles, this is not how I drove when I was first starting out.
Racer Z ... 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C
2017 Alfa Romeo Ti Q2