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New Extreme Performance BF Goodrich Rival

 
Old 01-28-2013, 03:06 PM
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New Extreme Performance BF Goodrich Rival

It was a short but intense trip down to The Big Easy and NOLA Motorsports Park to test the new BF Goodrich G-Force Rival. This was a trip filled with fun, great cars, awesome instructors, a professional wrestler (really) and most importantly, impressive tires.

Link to video introduction starring yours truly.

Kudos to BFG for not simply limping back into the segment but intending to dominate. Whenever one attends a launch event like this, it is important to go into it with a skeptic's eye. Fortunately BFG came to the table with some excellent tires for comparison.

After a delicious Southern breakfast and bumping into former professional wrestler (and car guy) Bill Goldberg we headed to the track. Our first event was a skid pad in the Mazda MX-5. In this test we got a baseline of the Rival (Extreme Performance Summer) against its family mates, the G-Force Comp 2 (Ultra High Performance Summer) and the R1-S (Track & Competition DOT). As expected, there was a very clear 1,2,3 order in grip. The jump from Comp 2 to the Rival seemed more significant than the numbers indicated, alternatively, the jump from the Rival to the R1-S seemed less marked.

Here is an exceedingly handsome driver in the MX-5 on the skid pad:



The second event of day was a short autocross course pitting the Rival against some very stiff competition, the Hankook Ventus RS-3 and the Toyo Proxes R1R. Per BFG, the STIs were completely stock and running door placard tire pressures. For me, this course didn't do as much to highlight the capabilities of the Rival as some of the others. There was however one important take away from this event. Each STI spent the whole day on one set of tires each. With 60+ participants of various skill levels testing the limits of the tires you could expect significant wear. After all of the runs in our group had been completed we all took a look at the tires to see how they held up. Below are post run images of the three tires in the test:






Hankook after 48 runs



Toyo Proxes R1R after 48 runs



BF Goodrich Rival after 72 runs

Our third stop of the day was an abbreviated portion of the road course in FR500 Ford Mustangs with the Rival taking on the Falken Azenis RT-615K. Handling limits on the track were a bit difficult to discern on the big track as we were unable to perform any warmup laps and the course itself is ridiculously flat. The story of this portion of the event was stability under braking. The Rival exhibited significantly better manners under hard braking than the Falken. Where the Falken could feel a bit skittish and tend to walk out some under braking at the limit, the Rival felt a good deal more composed. The Rival also facilitated more awesome burnouts (hey, what do you expect, they let us drive a factory race car).



Our final stop was the long autocross course in an E46 M3. This was my favorite part of the day as I felt it exhibited the capabilities of the tires most thoroughly. Even though the M3s had already been sufficiently flogged by the previous groups and the brakes wear nearly toast it was still a great exercise. This is where the forgiving nature of the Rival really showed. The tire was very good in transitions and easy to correct when my bravery and excitement exceeded my talent. While the Hankook is still a great tire, I found I wasn't able to recover as quickly, nor was I able to negotiate a pseudo slalom that was part of the course as well. On the plane ride home I watched some GoPro video illustrating that the Rival exhibited very little sidewall deflection comparatively.



We finished the day with some ride along hot laps in the Mustangs with the professional drivers. :burnrubber:



It was an all around great time and I am excited to experience the Rival in our own testing this spring to get a more thorough feel of its capabilities.

I'm not ready to say it is going to be the new king, but if nothing else, I am certain it is going to be a strong competitor in the category and worthy of consideration.

Lastly, let me list the instructors as they did a fantastic job.

Andrew Comrie-Picard – Team BFGoodrich

Team BFG Member Information: Andrew Comrie-Picard, or ACP as he's better known, competes in the Rally America series as well as X Games RallyCross. When he's not racing, he writes and produces car-themed television programs including Top Gear USA. He's also the only Team BFGoodrich® member with a law degree and MBA.

Jason Childress – Team BFGoodrich

Team BFG Member Information: Jason Childress got into motorsports as a monster truck driver, so he knows all about how to have fun behind the wheel. Today he runs Gateway Classic Mustang in St. Louis with his brother Lonny. Specializing in Ford Mustangs, they upgrade classics and modern cars alike, with help from BFGoodrich® tires.

Kyle Tucker – Team BFGoodrich

Team BFG Member Information: Kyle Tucker was an engineer in Detroit before heading south to open Detroit Speed and Engineering with his wife Stacy. The pair set up shop in the heart of stock car racing country where they design, fabricate and install modern engineering for classic muscle cars.

Terry Earwood – Team BFGoodrich

Team BFG Member Information: As if learning to drive fast cars wasn’t enough fun, Terry Earwood brings his own style of entertainment to Skip Barber Racing School instruction. He explains the complicated details of racing lines and vehicle dynamics with just the right mix of experience and humor.

Dan McKeever – Team BFGoodrich

Team BFG Member Information: Dan McKeever is an accomplished road racer and instructor at the Ford Racing High Performance Driving School at Miller Motorsports Park. He helps aspiring racers lower lap times on racing-spec Mustangs with BFGoodrich® tires.

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Last edited by [email protected]; 01-29-2013 at 09:09 AM.
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Old 01-29-2013, 08:28 AM
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That's a great post and boy, does it look like one helluva benefit for being in your profession!

Say, shouldn't the Michelin tires have been in that comparo? Doesn't this new tire match up to the Pilot Super Sport or similar tires?
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Old 01-29-2013, 09:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Ballinger View Post
That's a great post and boy, does it look like one helluva benefit for being in your profession!

Say, shouldn't the Michelin tires have been in that comparo? Doesn't this new tire match up to the Pilot Super Sport or similar tires?
It definitely is a benefit! Technically the Michelin is in the Max performance category, even though it skates the line pretty close. Certainly the comparison can and will be made, but since BFG is owned by Michelin, I am sure they wanted to avoid pitting them against one another at the launch.
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Old 01-29-2013, 10:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Ballinger View Post
That's a great post and boy, does it look like one helluva benefit for being in your profession!

Say, shouldn't the Michelin tires have been in that comparo? Doesn't this new tire match up to the Pilot Super Sport or similar tires?
The tires being tested here are all the top tires for SCCA street tire classes, (requires a 140+ tread wear rating), along with a a couple other tires from BFG's high performance tire lineup. That way you can test the Rivals against their competition, (Toyo R1R, Hankook RS-3, Falken RT-615, etc), and also against a lower and higher performing BFG product.

The Michelin Pilot Super Sport is not in this test because it is not a preferred tire for street tire classes. It is designed for street driving and blends more comfort, durability and wet traction while sacrificing a bit of the dry handling. The Super Sport has a 300 tread wear rating and is not quite as soft as the other tires being tested here, not counting the BFG G-Force Comp-2 which is also not a preferred tire for SCCA street tire classes.

These tires will all be purchased by weekend track day enthusiasts and will see little actual street driving. I've actually heard from a few of the top SCCA racers that were invited to the launch. All of them said it blew them away but didn't know how they would compare to the Toyo R1R on lighter vehicles like the EF Civic Si hatchbacks that rule the ST class.

Good review Sonny. Glad you had fun. Did you get to smash any cones? It's always so much more fun when it's in somebody else's car.
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Old 01-30-2013, 07:27 AM
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Originally Posted by BDoggPrelude View Post
The tires being tested here are all the top tires for SCCA street tire classes, (requires a 140+ tread wear rating), along with a a couple other tires from BFG's high performance tire lineup. That way you can test the Rivals against their competition, (Toyo R1R, Hankook RS-3, Falken RT-615, etc), and also against a lower and higher performing BFG product.

The Michelin Pilot Super Sport is not in this test because it is not a preferred tire for street tire classes. It is designed for street driving and blends more comfort, durability and wet traction while sacrificing a bit of the dry handling. The Super Sport has a 300 tread wear rating and is not quite as soft as the other tires being tested here, not counting the BFG G-Force Comp-2 which is also not a preferred tire for SCCA street tire classes.

These tires will all be purchased by weekend track day enthusiasts and will see little actual street driving. I've actually heard from a few of the top SCCA racers that were invited to the launch. All of them said it blew them away but didn't know how they would compare to the Toyo R1R on lighter vehicles like the EF Civic Si hatchbacks that rule the ST class.

Good review Sonny. Glad you had fun. Did you get to smash any cones? It's always so much more fun when it's in somebody else's car.

Thanks! LOL, you're right it is definitely more fun when the car belongs to someone else! I did clip a cone or two but nothing egregious
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