430 F430 first track day impressions

Discussion in '360/430' started by drmc, Feb 17, 2021.

  1. drmc

    drmc Rookie
    Silver Subscribed

    Dec 12, 2013
    Full Name:
    I purchased an F430 spider about 1-year ago and just got my first chance to drive it on a track, so thought I’d write up my quick impressions.

    Car is stock except for an S-line exhaust and a Sparco bucket seat. I ran the tyre pressure at 32 psi hot which was about 28 psi cold (Michelin PS 4S, track temp 23c). Track is Phillip Island in Victoria, Australia.

    To sum up the F430 in one word: EPIC FUN!! (two words but whatever)

    I’ve driven my 997.1 Carrera S, BMW 1M and 2017 Mustang GT previously on the same track and, though lap time wise all cars were all pretty similar, I found the F430 to be the most exhilarating car of the bunch. The rawness of the F-car is kind of a love hate thing for me while street driving, but as soon as I put it on the track it all made sense.

    As I gained confidence through the day I switched the manettino from sport to race which enabled me to pull these huge Chris Harris type slides. Ok, that’s not exactly true but it really loosened the car up – the tail felt ‘light’ like it was just dancing around the corner and may break loose at any point. Around the hairpins I could do these tiny drifts like you do in go-karts. By the end of the day my face hurt from smiling so much.

    Downsides: the suspension is definitely too soft, but being a street car I certainly wouldn’t swap the springs out for the stiffer scud ones. Also the car was a little understeery when pushed hard into a corner. Finally, tracking a convertible when you’re 6’5 and your head sticks out the top of the car is a concerning, but hey, what’s life without a little risk?

    I’ve driven the car up some mountain roads previously, but after experiencing it on the track, I can say that I didn’t really understand the car until now. I’d highly recommend anyone that hasn’t tracked their F-car to give it a shot. I drove at maybe 7 / 10ths of my driving ability (which is probably 2 / 10ths of the cars ability) which I figure inflicts negligible wear and tear on the car and provides no more chance of crash then a leisurely drive to the shops (famous last words).

    As a random side note, how cool would it be if Ferrari had made the Pista with a manual box? Ahhh a man can dream!

    POV lap:

    alum04org, bupilot, CAV 430 and 7 others like this.
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  3. stoked_7

    stoked_7 Rookie

    Nov 9, 2020
    Wonderful video, thank you for sharing. Your F430 really sings running around Phillip Island. What a nice track to have access to with your F-car.
    drmc likes this.

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