2014 Spec Miata Tire Survey

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Bill Bonsell

Well-known member
Currently Section 13 C 1319 states "class shall run under current Oregon SCCA rules, except if the spec tire changes, the previous seasons spec tire will remain legal for the following race season". For 2013, both the Toyo Proxes RA-1 and the Hoosier SM6 and H2O are legal for ICSCC Spec Miata. However, it does mean the entire ICSCC SM field will be on Hoosiers for 2014 unless OR SCCA changes their current tire position for 2014 which will not be known until early 2014. This does not affect CSM which has it's own tire rule. Without going into the pros and cons of respective tires, etc...I think it is timely to survey the Conference SM scene and determine the best tire for 2014 moving forward and whether or not a rule change is warranted. I have already spoken to several SM racers concerned about the cost and shorter life cycle of the SM6, but it is also safe to say the H2O is simply the best wet tire out there. So I am offering up this survey in the hopes that all ICSCC SM racers will respond. Feel free to post your choice here or you can PM me if you would like to discuss things and keep your selection private. Really looking to hear from some of the front runners.

2014 SM Tire survey: Choices are:

1. Hoosier SM6 and H2O rain. (This will happen if nothing changes - will be mandatory)
2. Toyo Proxes RA-1 or RR (the most affordable option)
3. Hoosier SM6/H2O or Toyo RA-1/RR (probably the best compromise)
4. Open tire (Nittos, BFG, Hankook, etc - might be fun for regional racing)

I will be at the July Pacific event and will try and hook up with anyone not yet responding. Any proposed rule change must be submitted by August 28th.

I'd suggest just keeping this year's tire rule in place for next year; as in any tire legal this year is legal next year.

By no means should SM go open tire; That's a huge can of worms that shouldn't be opened, the cost of racing will skyrocket.
Everyone seems to be happy enough with the current tire choices. I totally agree with Kyle, open tire = a giant pain in the ass down the road..
I'd suggest just keeping this year's tire rule in place for next year; as in any tire legal this year is legal next year.

By no means should SM go open tire; That's a huge can of worms that shouldn't be opened, the cost of racing will skyrocket.

Kyle...did you read the Original post? Currently, ICSSC SM can run either Hoosiers or the RA1 this year. That will not be the case next year, hence the reason for surveying Conference racers as to what their preference is.

Jason...there will be no choices next year for ICSCC SM...are you ok with Hoosiers only? Objection against open tire noted. See you at Pacific.
Since NASA is now up and running in the PNW and uses different tires for SM than the SCCA, the ICSCC should rewrite the SM tire rule to allow any tire combination from the SM tire choices used by NASA and SCCA (e.g., SM6, H2O, RR, and RA-1). So, as an example, you could run Toyo RRs as your dry tire and Hoosier H2Os as your wet tire. If I were still living and racing up there, I'd be pushing for a rule change like that.

Regarding the open tire rule, the Cal Club (SoCal SCCA) has the following open tire rule for regional SM:

"Regional Spec Miata Tire Rule:
The tire size must be 205 x 50 x 15. All four tires on the car shall be the same manufacturer and model.
The only modifications allowed to tires are having treads “shaved” or “trued.”"

Note how it doesn't specify tire brand or model. I raced with Cal Club last month and, out of 19 SMs, I was the only guy not running Hoosier SM6es on my SM. I used Toyo RRs. So, at least down here, the SM racers are happy with the SM6.
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Yeah I'm ok with Hoosier only. Most everyone has made the change anyhow. But I do like the Hoosier/toyo combo as it will allow me to use up the last of my ra1s
Yes, I read your post, did you read mine? I suggested extending the current tire rules onto next year as well. Run the RA1's, the hoosiers. Make that rule say 2 years instead of 1.

Mike's onto another idea, but I dont like the idea of showing up to a track with 5 different sets of tires to find out which works. Some weekends at PIR, the RA-1's are faster, and some days the SM6's are faster, who's to say the other tracks arent like that as well.

Or, the club could come together, work out a tire deal with a manufaturer, and all is well?
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The "club" of spec miata drivers. Look at the way the Pro-3 guys have came together, and put together a great program for everyone to compete in.
Adding to that, I don't see anything wrong with keeping the current rule and running the SM6's this year as well. My best lap times are on old (10+ heat cycle) Hoosier's, and yeah, newer tires are easier to be fast on, but if you drive hard enough the old tires can be just as fast. Gary and I out-qualified the field by over a second at the SCCA Majors event this weekend on old tires, cars qualifying 3-5th were on brand new tires.

The comments people are saying of the tires being junk after 6-7 heat cycles is straight up false. As long as you can see one of the two grooves on the tires, the tire will last. I get roughly 25 heat cycles out of a set of hoosier SM6's before they get greasy. Once greasy, I notice a drop-off of a second or so at PIR with the chicane. At the Rose City Opener, I ran a time on the test day, with a passenger in the car (150 pounds overweight, so car weight 2450), on a 25 heat cycle set of SM6's, to qualify me 2nd in group 2.

I also want to note I do not like how the SM6's drive when compared to the RA-1's, but I do not like the false information out there on the SM6's. I suggest to the drivers out there rather then reading the false info online, do your own testing. I doubt those guys could provide proof of their comments.

I'd be happy to compare notes and even prepare video examples for those who feel otherwise.
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Without regards to how many cycles one can get out of the SM6's, the current Conference rule sets the SM tire mandate off SCCA decisions, which means Hoosiers for everyone in 2014, unless SCCA Oregon changes things up.

I actually like Colangelo's idea that would only require the current rules amended to include "class shall run under current SCCA Oregon or NASA rules". The benefit of this is there would never be an impediment to anyone wanting to cross over and race with Conference in SM because of tires. And obviously vice a versa.

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