Many teams who mostly run the flatter tracks try to set up their cars the same way at the higher-banked racetracks. The higher banking produces much more downforce, and the arrangement of springs that works best on the flatter tracks won't work well at all on the high banking. The higher the banking, the worse it gets. Rear spring split with the LR stiffer than the RR cannot be used because the higher g-forces cause more downforce and magnify the effects of the spring split. This will make the cars very unbalanced.
At the high-banked racetracks, we get more chassis dive and less chassis roll, which is similar to the effect experienced due to running the BBSS setups. Excess camber change is a factor, but traction loss is less obvious because of the high amount of downforce and available traction caused by more load ending up on each of the four tires. Here are the changes that we would make to the setup to make the car balanced for a 14-degree track.
1. Reduce the front spring split to: LF= 350, RF=3752. Reverse the split in the rear springs to: LR = 175, RR = 2003. Raise the Panhard bar by 0.50 inch.4. Move the front MC to the left so that it is 4.0 inches to the right of centerline5. Use the low crossweight range (about 50 to 52 percent)
The following is a setup we would want if the track banking angle were much higher (e.g., Bristol or Salem, about 26 degrees). The car will have a lot of traction due to the high amounts of downforce and, therefore, the cornering speeds will be very high. The resultant force, which is a combination of gravity and the lateral cornering force called centrifugal force, will be in a direction that points between the front tires. This results in a lot of vertical chassis travel and less chassis roll. Bite off the corner is almost never a problem unless the setup is very unbalanced. Here is an example of a balanced setup for a highly banked racetrack for an asphalt Late Model.
Note that the front spring rates are much higher and the rear spring rates are both higher and split to a greater extent. Both of these could be even higher if the radius of the turn is smaller. The front MC is farther to the right, the average Panhard bar height is higher, and the g-forces are up considerably to 2.2 g's.
The front suspension travel will average in excess of 3 inches, and the rear suspension will travel more than 4 inches. If your car normally has a 4-inch ride height, then the car must be raised or it will make contact with the track surface.
The starting cambers might be: LF = +4.0, RF = -1.0. This is because of the high amount of chassis dive the car will experience, which will reduce the positive LF camber (become less positive) by 3 or more degrees and increase (add to the negative amount) the RF camber by about the same amount.
Again, let me say that the changes we have made to these sample cars are the same changes we have made to real cars in actual competition. That is not to say that you need to run out to your shop and put these setups in your car. Rather, remember the directions in which we have gone and trends we have described related to the different types of race cars. The hot tire temperatures as well as the tire wear will be an indication of how close you come to a balanced setup.
The differences that probably exist between these cars and yours indicate that these setups might not work for you. Typical differences include: a) center of gravity height; b) front moment center (roll center) location; c) front-end motion ratios for spring mounting; d) weight distribution front to rear; e) front and rear spring location and spring angles
All race teams need to know certain basic technical information about their cars. Learn the tendencies that make a car's suspension want to roll more or less, and try to match the ends for a more balanced setup. Know your front geometry settings, especially the moment center location and camber change characteristics. If you do, finding that winning chassis setup will be a much easier process. Above all, be willing to take control of your chassis and do not be afraid to make whatever changes are necessary to improve the geometry, the alignment, and the balance of your setup.