Testing speed parts at speed. MSD Atomic Intake, 105mm Throttle body and Pirelli slicks.

Test time. When you run time trails every time you take the track it's test time. This time we take the time too look for time.... ;) We installed a MSD atomic intake, paired to a 105mm Holley Throttle body on our 5.7l LS1 engine. We also tried out some slicks.

This was our first event trying out the Perrelli P zero DM. fitting 225's to 9" wheels was a real pain. these tires did not want to go on.  DM's are allegedly Pirelli's Time attack tire. super sticky.

We also bolted on an MSD atomic intake W/105mm holly throttle body. we had lots of people reaching out to us warning about our TB size choice.  Lots of internet rumors about drivability on such a "small" engine. We also needed to grind our Corvette water pump to clear the intake. 

The lat thing to test was CCP fab Fiberglass doors. already proven to remove 60lbs from the chassis. 

With the updates installed, we sent her out on a flier. 


 Intake and TB.
 Reading the internet gossip was quite intimidating. A constant barrage of "you'll lose driveability" came our way. We aren't sure if they were wrong or if the tapered bore on the TB was that big of a help. Despite all of that we didn't notice any mid throttle hesitation. Mid range pulled just as hard as before. On the top end, we did notice a huge gain in top speed. Previous peak top speed was 155 we where now trapping 157. a 3mph gain is a big deal on our cars with big wings. Overall very happy with the results. 


This was our first experience with "real slicks" Data shows that we were peaking at 1.5G we will compare this to our Maxxis tires that are normally peaking out at 1.3G. a 15% gain. The P Zeros gave us 3 great laps, after that, they were a bit hard to control and needed to be cooled. They did take 2 laps to heat up, a solid lap more then any other tire we tested. Release and brake away was sudden, but not uncontrollable nor shocking. Overall these were very easy to dive very fast.  The second day of running the P zeros was not as fast as the first day. looks like they we already had grip falling off, this was after the first 8 heat cycles. A big punch in the gut after finding out how much they retail for.  The maxxis... old trusty... have lasted us a good year, 80 heat cycles,  and still peak out at 1.3g. going forward despite the time gained we will switch back to the Maxxis to keep costs low.  
 We have heard rumors of a stickey-er Maxxis coming out. 

Times are in. Previous fastest lap set on the same day in 2016 was a 1:34.8, new fastest lap set on 2017 1:32.8. A huge improvement. This puts us on par with corvettes with similar tires. our advantage is much lower operating costs.

We are keeping the doors and the intake. but going forward we will be switching back to the Maxxis.  


Daytona didn't go as planned.

What is that smoke coming from? oh ...... 

About 3 years ago we had a chance to drive under the lights with USCA. The Miata blew a diff seal and we never made a lap under the lights. Exciting news to hear that David Murry Track days, this year was running under the lights. Super stoked to finally check the bucket list we packed up and headed south.  

 Landed in Datona around 1pm. Normally driver meetings require a 5 am wakeup. not this one.  We could get used to tracking days like this. 

The Drivers meeting ended around 3pm and the sun slowly went down. 

After the first Dusk run Fire erupted. Our Dry sump tank vent clogged, pressure built, blew the dipstick out, along with 3 qts of oil and it coated the headers. 

 The real hero was the Little 2lbs fire bottle. Without it, the fire would have grown. It delayed the damage just long enough to allow Daytona Fire to put it out. I owe those guys a lot of beer. 

Here is the little Hero in all his glory. If you drive without one of these your an idiot. buy one a link is above. don't be an idiot. A billy bad ass fire system and another one have been ordered for the Miata. 

I thought I was done. The Boys from Mosler motorsports said: "You're getting the lights" and jumped into action. 

Damage was only cosmetic, the car ran fine. We were worried about damage to the tire. So the last few laps were super slow.  but we got the lights. 

Thank you- My wife Andrea, I know i scared the hell out of you. 
Mosler Motorsports (part of Nine lives racing) for kicking me in the ass and making the car work.
 OG racing for employing me and giving me the safety gear I need.   

and to all of our partners. Holley performance, Maxxis tires, PFC brakes 

CCP Fabrication -Miata Doors review with video.

Doors are on! 
We went down to CCP fab and ordered some lightweight doors for or NB Miata - v8 car. The first thing we did was make a quick FB live un-boxing video, next was to install them. 

The Facebook live video. 

Old OEM doors off. These are 'Gutted' NB Doors with Lexan triangle windows.  The steel doors came out to a whopping 29.6lbs on our handy-dandy bathroom scale.

As you can see not much remains of the original door. Just the bare necessities. Amazing to think this is 29lbs.

The new CCP Fabrication doors. The first impression was 'wow' at how light they are. The second was I thought I could snap them in half. When you're building a race car you sometimes need to build an item a bit more fragile to lose mass and gain speed. I'll keep my tubular control arms. Over the long run, that's where we want strength. The doors' strength is less important. The material is very thin. We found on accident that that light passes through them. A shop light surprised us with that discovery.

The big payoff. 5.6lbs. They feel almost weightless.

Excuse my mess. The shop is full of projects right now. The doors installed easily enough. Uses factory mounting points. OEM latches, Strikers where all reused. Install took a few minutes.

If your looking for more information on CCP follow this link. ( CCP Fabrication website.) and thanks for checking in. 

Road Atlanta June Jam thrash and results.

Most of everyone that follow this blog will also follow my Instagram. @ninelivesjohnny
we had on hell of a thrash getting ready for NASA-SE June Jam at Road Atlanta. included are suspension changes, engine builds and updates. so if you do follow the Instagram, and ninelives racing facebook page here is the pay off to what you've been seeing.

The story starts with a refresh motor rebuild. 

3 years of hard running and John Burchard's engine rebuild still looks fantastic. A huge shout out to him and redline racing oils. 

So he slapped it back together with some fresh bearings. The wife and I went to go grab it.

This is also the first trip for "Blue" our new tower. Given to us by Grandma. The thing does pulls like a train and sips the gas. 

Brought the motor home and got straight to work. NASA was only 2 weeks away. 

This is the bottom of the front splitter. we noticed that splitter area was a huge deal in downforce. so we wanted to make it bigger. that and the plastic is heavy/flimsy. 

A quick chat with some race team buddies and decided that 1/16's Aluminum would be a good thickness. not too flimsy, and also not be too heavy. 

here it is all together. It grew in area by well over 30% and didn't gain a pound. That plastic was really really heavy.  

the next project was in the rear and it set the Miata world on fire. 600# springs. We changed them from 375# rear springs. so now we have a 750/600 combo. a ton of the West Coast miata people immediately snarked thing it would make the car undrivable. (where have we heard that before)

7 days till NASA!! 

next, we had to knock in the alignment and scale the car. 

 PS thanks to Paco motors for the warranty work on the hub stands. We broke an arm and they repaired it for free. super cool dudes. 

Well, we have a problem in the right rear.
 no matter what we did we couldn't get enough weight in it. 

we even tried adding weight to it. this is a 50# bag of peat rock.

 Eventually, we talked with TJ at OG Racing who sets up miatas on the regular.  He said all Miata's are light there.... oh.. well then. So we removed the pete rock and went back at it.  

2 day to NASA!!! Nismo the cat wants to go with. 

1 days to NASA. 
Show time!! fresh motor, fresh shock package fresh springs. let's give it a go. we decided to do a test day with J-Zilla track days and shake the car out. 

The new springs felt fantastic!! we no longer pushed everywhere. the car was neutral through the turns. although it was a Tiny bit loose. I think we will step it down to a 550 spring. we did need to pull the rear sway to make it feel neutral, and I like having a rear say. that way we have something to remove when it rains.   

0 days till NASA with the drivers meeting. 

Joel showed up too! and then his driver side rear wheel hub shit the bed. so that's all we saw of him on Saturday. he spent the rest of the day hunting parts. 

We went out not expecting too much with some old tires. a 3rd place finish would have been great.

heck, 2nd is good enough for free Maxxis tires. We will take it. not bad for a set of tires that are 6 months old.  

then disaster-ish struck. 

went looking for a 1:36 too hot and apexed too late. plus we found some oil.

Rate my driver excuses below. ;) 

This seriously added 50 lbs to the car. 

The only real damage other than pride was the rear hub. We ran over to my crew chief's day job and pressed in a new one.

Sunday we went out and reached for our goal of a 1:36 but came up just .01 sec short with a 1:37.0. good enough for a 3rd place finish and another Maxxis tire. :) 

Time for the thank you's. first off to my wonderful wife Andrea. She was a one-woman band for months as I spent the last 3 months in the garage prepping the car. Without her I would have starved and I love her so much. :) 

The nine lives crew, Jacob, Joel, Alex, John Mcelroy my crew chief, and my dad, Thank you or all the hard work they put in. It takes an army just trying to get to the track, at the track and helping me take tire temps. You are all amazing. thank you 

My sponsors, partners, and friends at Holley performance, Maxxis tire, Grams performance, John Bouchard Engines, and V8roadsters. You guys give me the stuff to go fast. I couldn't do it without your support.   

as we look forward we prep for NCCAR with NASA-SE.com