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Michelin reader test drive: With semi-slicks and boxer power

Toni Bader
Michelin Readers-Test-Drive
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' You have to drive the slalom with a very calm gas pedal, that only works if you put your left leg on the Footrest firmly in the seat. ”The instructor during the Michelin Pilot Sport Experience driver training course, in which eight a uto motor und sport Readers were allowed to participate, knows what is important. The extremely precise Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 semislicks are not yet at operating temperature, the rear of the Porsche Cayman is still dancing a bit restlessly between the pylons. But that's okay.

Michelin Pilot Sport Experience on the Circuit Paul Ricard

From lap to lap, the lines are closer to the pylons, the pace increases noticeably, the first learning effects at Michelin - Race track training on the small course of the legendary Paul Ricard race track become visible. “Hey!” Yells the instructor's voice over the radio, “when I say accelerate, I mean accelerate. Flat out! From the starting line! ”The eight ambitious auto motor und sport readers don't have to be told twice: The Porsches screech, load the gears with a bang through to the braking point. Now into the iron, loosen, turn in and accelerate in a controlled manner from the apex in the deflection. That needs to be practiced. The 1.6 kilometer long, selective circuit near Le Castellet in the south of France offers plenty of opportunity for this with a wide variety of curve types.

After basic exercises, braking and slalom, the ideal line is worked out step by step. While in the morning the slower, tighter turns are the first to go, in the afternoon the faster corners are taken under the now hot tires. “It's amazing how quickly you can build trust in tires and cars,” says reader Sascha Peschke after working his way up to the limit lap after lap, turn by turn. Kristin Herrmann proves that restraint does not have to be a female virtue. She finds the ideal line intuitively and quickly, and easily copes with the Cayman's technology and dynamics. No wonder, the auto motor und sport reader is an enthusiastic motorcyclist and, as a trained aircraft mechanic, has to deal with large passenger jets every day.

The speed increases with the heat

In the afternoon heat, guided driving is available for the entire routeProgram: Eckhard Fetzer is happy, the motorsport enthusiast Franke is surprised by the high grip and the nevertheless good controllability of the Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2. Up until now, he had never thought possible that such cornering speeds could be driven so safely. The instructor driving ahead accelerates lap after lap. There are already the first brakes in front of the corners, and unspectacular slips can also be seen. Become a professional racing driver in one day? That will probably remain an illusion.

Is driving risky? No: Wide exercise zones and a sensible training structure put the safety of the participants first. The fact that the racing adventure is not neglected can be seen as the participants step out of the heated cockpits. It takes time for the facial muscles to relax and the corners of the mouth to slowly loosen again. “That's just great, you don't want to get out of the car anymore,” gasps Julius Traber as he peeled off his seatbelts, “are you going to do the event again next year?” In view of the dynamic, extremely enthusiastic group of readers and the good teamwork Michelin would be happy to be a reliable host again ...

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