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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Sacramento, CA
    Country Flag: United States

    Default Designing Aerodynamics for Track Performance

    Skip this part if you know me or simply don’t care.

    A little bit about me:
    I’ve been racing for 35 years in 80+ classes of racing, most professionally, including drag, road course, karts & oval track. From low powered Formula Fords & F2000 cars to Mountain Motor drag racing … Midgets, Sprint Cars, Super Modifieds … to GT road race cars, Modifieds, Late Models & NASCAR Stock Cars. I’ve had the good fortune to work with & learn from winning teams & smart people in SCCA, USAC, SRL, NHRA, IHRA, IMSA, Indy Lights, Indycar, Grand Am & NASCAR.

    Most of my modern experience is in road racing & oval track, as I haven’t been to a drag race since 1987. My operation has had 3 names, but settled on Ron Sutton’s Winner’s Circle about 20+ years ago. It was a statement to our commitment to winning. But in 2006, we joked about changing it to Ron Sutton’s Third Place Circle when we had nine 3rds & only one win … then we designed & built new cars in the off season & got back to winning. Today, my business that offers parts, complete cars, technical services & car/track consulting is named Ron Sutton Race Technology.

    Many of you know what “married up” means. I did. My sweet wife Kim is very supportive of my crazy career & involved a lot, but doesn’t work in it on a day-to-day basis. When I look back, the numbers are a little overwhelming. We’ve built 64 tube chassis pro style cars & 140+ sportsman cars for clients. We’ve had a chassis shop, parts store, track stores & engine R&D over the years. I’ve owned 79 race cars myself … including 9 full time race teams until 2012. Most years we were at the track 3-4 days a week, 40+ weeks out of the year. How I stay married is completely a mystery, and I know I’m fortunate.

    After I broke my back racing aero karts at Sears Point in 1991 I realized it’s the friends & relationships I have in the motorsports that I value most. That didn’t change how hard we worked … it just changed my viewpoint about relationships & teamwork. Frankly we started winning more races as I learned how to build better teams & developed more friendships with competitors & resources within the sport.

    I live & breathe competition, and I believe winning comes from doing your homework, testing, working hard, testing more, learning from books, classes & mentors … and testing more. I’m not the smartest guy at the track, but when he goes home I’m still there testing & learning. I figure I have 2500+ days of track testing under my belt. As a driver, owner, crew chief or driver coach I have 498 personal wins & 22 championships. My clients' wins total in the thousands.

    We closed my 9 team operation & parts business at the end of 2012. The economy being so bad for so long dried up too much sponsorship for us to continue racing as we did. When Dale Earnhardt Jr. had 13 races unsponsored in 2013, you know it’s tough. I sold all the parts, equipment, race cars & rigs and took some time off to relax ... whatever that is. I enjoyed a little slower pace, writing a series of tuning books and having fun building my new ’57 Chevy PT/Street Fighter, which is the prototype for my new Warrior cars. It's on hold now as I am busy helping so many clients build new cars or improve their current car. I’m really enjoying meeting a lot of good people in this part of the car sport. I already knew Mike Maier for several years, as he raced Midgets in USAC too. For those of you who know him only from AutoX, Mike won races in USAC Midgets too. He’s a hardcore racer & a winner.

    I’m not an engineer. I’ve worked for them & with them … and had several work for me … but we’re from different planets. One of my friends said, “Ron is a race car designer that did not go to engineering school, so he speaks car guy.” I’m a veteran car guy committed to staying on the leading edge of performance & racing technology. I like to think I’m pretty knowledgeable in my areas of expertise … but I learn every week, if not every day ... and there is a ton I don’t know about street cars, style, paint & body, upholstery, car accessories, etc, etc, etc.

    I know I’m tired of talking about me … so let’s outline the purpose of this thread.

    Last edited by Ron Sutton; 03-04-2015 at 09:52 AM.

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