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Pfadt Race Engineering Brings you live Q&A with Racing Legend Johnny O'Connell

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Old 08-17-2011, 07:07 PM   #1
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Default Pfadt Race Engineering Brings you live Q&A with Racing Legend Johnny O'Connell

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Pfadt Race Engineering is excited to announce that we will be organizing a live event on CorvetteForum with factory GM driver Johnny O'Connell on Wednesday, August 31st!

From 12pm Eastern to 1pm Eastern, Johnny will be available via the Autocrossing & Roadracing forum to answer your questions you might have about being a professional race car driver, working closely with GM Racing, winning at LeMans, or about his signature suspension line with Pfadt Race Engineering. Submit your questions and comments in this thread or and we will select the best for responses by Johnny before the event begins. As we receive questions during the live event Johnny will do his best to post live answers.

We will be also giving a prize of 50 dollars Pfadt Cash to the best question of the session! Anything interesting, funny, or that elicits a great reaction from Johnny will be considered. We have a couple weeks before the 31st, so think long and hard about what you would REALLY like to ask an American Racing legend!

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Old 08-22-2011, 12:41 PM   #2
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Keep sending us in those questions you have for Johnny! Pfadt Cash is being given to the member with the best question.
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Old 08-23-2011, 10:32 AM   #3
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Old 08-23-2011, 11:31 AM   #4
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Johnny has a future after racing in TV...
I found his Driver's view comments during the ALMS TV coverage very interesting.
PS I have your entire system on my 02 Z and have very much enjoyed it on long tours and track days too.
thank you!
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Old 08-23-2011, 05:26 PM   #5
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I'm wondering if Johnny will be getting back in a Corvette anytime in the future as well as what his opinion of the differences are between driving the CTS-V, the Camaro and the Corvette and which he likes best...?
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Old 08-23-2011, 06:02 PM   #6
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I drive a mostly stock C5 in autocross but this question applies to C6's as well: racing with competition tires in a stock suspended Corvette is murder on the bushings, especially the front. They are literally extruded out of the control arms by brake torque and then the only legal solution is to replace the entire control arm since bushings are not sold seperately.

As a highly influential member of the GM racing team, can you talk to the factory engineers to see if GM would make replacement bushings available, or upgrade the stock bushings for greater durability?
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Old 08-23-2011, 07:11 PM   #7
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On a track only C6 Z06 (so no need to make compromises for street use) with coil overs what spring rates would you use front and rear for a track like Sebring and a track like VIR? Thanks!
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Old 08-23-2011, 08:16 PM   #8
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Just a shoutout to Pfadt Race Engineering ... installed the JO Signature package (bars and shocks) and this 04 ZO6 with 98,000 miles on it feels like new!!! Love'n it!!! Thank you!!
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Old 08-23-2011, 09:43 PM   #9
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What is the typical language that you use with your engineers? High level understeer / oversteer terms vs. the details of say damper plots.

How does this language differ when you are talking with your engineers during a race vs. pre season development testing?

Chris Shay
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Old 08-24-2011, 01:49 PM   #10
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We are receiving some great questions guys, keep them coming! Be sure to tune into the forum on August 31st for your answers!
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Old 08-29-2011, 12:21 PM   #11
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We are still getting more questions coming in for Johnny, like this one from Fairbanks Alaska:

My question is about Trim Height Adjustment.

I have an Edelbrock Supercharger kit installed. This added some weight to the front. We raised the front one turn which the service manual says is 2 MM. We had an alignment done by a local reputable shop. I asked them to match as closely as practical to the Pfadt Engineering recommended settings for a JOS. Prior to the alignment, we purchased on Ebay the Special Kent Moore tool for checking the Trim Height Adjustment. From what we can tell we are at the low end of the specs. Since we did not check the trim height adjustment prior to mods we can't be objective on any differences. I think it is close to height now as it was before mod installation.

Can you comment on trim height adjustment and how important it may be in relation to the JOS and alignment and how a car rides on the street.

I feel the car rides great. Better than my old C5 and previous C6 as well as the C5s & C6s I drove at Spring Mountain. Comments?
Keep them coming in! Best question gets an allotment of Pfadt Cash!
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Old 08-29-2011, 06:28 PM   #12
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What was the best practical joke the Corvette team played on another ALMS team, or conversely, what was the best joke played on the Corvette team by another team?
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Old 08-29-2011, 08:54 PM   #13
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Hi Johnny, just wanted to ask if you remember autographing my Corvette tattoo on my ankle last year at Petit LeMans. Also wondering if you think the Jake logo is going to change with the introduction of the C7?
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Old 08-30-2011, 12:23 AM   #14
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Hi, Johnny, I've heard the JO Signature susp (shocks and bars) are a great product and a real improvement over stock. How much real imput from you went into the product prior to production or was your endorsement more of a marketing strategy post production?? PS. I have a set on order.We miss seeing you behind the wheel of the C6.R

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Old 08-30-2011, 01:33 AM   #15
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Johnny, on your signature suspension kit for the C6 Z06, I assume it was developed for the track. How well does it work at auto-cross?
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Old 08-30-2011, 08:49 AM   #16
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Being that you were involved with the C6 suspension setup I was wondering about the balance you tried to achieve with the cars.

I noticed that the Z51 and GS cars have more understeer oriented spring rates (relatively speaking), but the base and z06 have more oversteer front to rear spring rates.

Seeing that the z06 and gs share the same sways and tire size, what was the reason for choosing the z51 spring rates for the wide bodied grand sport? Also would the GS shock setup be better on a z51/base model instead of using shocks from the z06?

The zr1 is rumored to use softer springs than the z06 - is this true and do #s exist for the C6 tinkerers out here who like to dial in the suspension a little further?

Finally, the alignment settings - do you have some general personal preferences?

I have been trying to study/ test as much of the suspension as possible to get the best understanding of the dynamics of the platform so any and all input is much appreciated!

Thank you!

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Old 08-30-2011, 04:21 PM   #17
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I have a question,

Johnny, as an aspiring pro driver, what were some career decisions you made that you may have been unsure of at the time, but turned out to be the best decision when things started to work out?

(also, you should join the board. the folks are pretty nice)
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Old 08-30-2011, 10:54 PM   #18
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Do you prefer a manual or an automatic for racing/autocross?

And do you believe that advances in technology will eventually eliminate manual shifting in all forms of racing?
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Old 08-31-2011, 12:34 AM   #19
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Old 08-31-2011, 01:01 AM   #20
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Hi Johnny,

Question is how can GM get so much right on a car like Corvette & get it all wrong on the flippin seats, base/option/whatever, they are so awful so far as supporting the driving position, in a car that is otherwise extremely capable.

Thanks & you are doing well as a commentator, keep it up.

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