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New Car, New Track, New Year!
15/03/2015

New Car, New Track, New Year
 
 
New member Jonny Silman attended Goodwood track day with MGoT in February in his new MG ZS 120+. He describes his day out with us here.
 
Words: Jonny Silman, Photos: Nigel Silman
 
\"\"Accelerating  down theLavant Straight for the first time after being released by the pace car was, inall honesty, a slightly scary experience. 110 mph in a car I had only owned fora couple of months, heading straight towards a tyre wall as the track curvedaway into Woodcote, the penultimate corner on Goodwood circuit. I had donetrack days before, taking my dad’s MG TF for a spin (often literally) aroundgreat tracks like Donington, Brands Hatch and Castle Combe. But Goodwood wasdifferent – the first track day of 2015, the first time I had been roundGoodwood, was also the first time I had driven my ZS 120, recently bought froma fellow MGs on Track member, in anger around a racetrack. And what a racetrackit is! I already knew that Goodwood was a fast circuit, but it took first handexperience for me to grasp just how fast this famous old track was – a hugeportion of the course is spent with your foot welded to the floor, interruptedby sharp spurts of braking and tricky double-apex corners like Madgwick andLavant.
 
A circuit that you could instantly go \"\"out and have fun on, but one thatis difficult to master, making it all the sweeter when you get a corner or asection spot on. Doing this was made much easier after an early session withAlan Wilshire, one of the excellent MGoT instructors at Goodwood, who’s inputin terms of braking and turn in points, track position and general driving tipswas invaluable, giving me the confidence to really have a good go at thecircuit, and also to discover what the ZS could truly do. In fact, the ZS coulddo a lot – for a car so well mannered on the road, it handled the track with noproblems, and in the end it was only the fleshy bit behind the wheel that heldit back! Mastering Goodwood was also made significantly easier by the weather –bright sunshine for most of the day, fortunately no snowstorms like previousyears! Additionally, the track’s marshals did an excellent job getting sessionsout on time, and the staggered starts from the pit lane allowed you to goaround at your own pace, often not seeing another car for the whole session.This meant that I could freely play around with different lines into corners,and there was no one to hit if I suddenly ran out of talent! When other carswere around, they quickly got out of the way of faster drivers, and the quickerguys always waited until they were let past to overtake – all very courteous.In the paddock, everyone at the event was friendly and chatty, discussing theirexperiences with the track and their cars, and the committee members workedtremendously hard all day to ensure the event was a roaring success. By the endof the day, the Lavant Straight was no longer scary – it was brilliant, as wasmy ZS. 110 mph? Easy. I’m going to do it faster next year.
 

 

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