C6 Z06 Owner Shares His Confidence in Essex/AP Racing08.06.2019
Being active on various automotive forums is an everyday pursuit at Essex. We enjoy communicating with those seeking advice on their brake system, and the forums remain a great place to do so. While perusing a brake thread on the Corvette Forum, we found a post that really caught our eye. One of our Corvette clients wrote a great no-nonsense post about why he trusts Essex as his brake provider. After trying several sub-par brake solutions that led him to an on-track incident, he adopted our Essex/AP Racing brake kit and hasn't looked back. His comments below really resonated with us, and they exemplify the type of feedback we consistently receive from our clients on the phone and at the track.
“If you get serious, track/race regularly, find yourself fretting over your brakes, run slicks or Hoosiers and are pushing the car in abusive, endurance conditions then go right to AP Racing immediately and don't look back. Don't do what I did and try to hack/patch together a short term cheap solution and deal with years of utter worry and stress. It almost took my life, and most certainly took my $$ and patience.
I raced for three years on the OEM C6Z calipers with stainless steel lines, DBA rotors and Carbotech XP24 pads with cooling ducts. What a disgusting, horrible setup it was, also of which nearly killed me. Did it stop the car? Yes of course, at least most of the time. But I quite literally was the idiot during lunch time sweating my *** off swapping pads, guestimating when a particular rotor would crack (any minute), worrying over pin bolts backing out, dealing with fading, fighting taper, watching the caliper eat itself etc. I would bring a full set of new rotors and pads to every race weekend and knew at some point I would be replacing, and then again when I got back home (and again and again and again and again). I have done the brakes on my car so many times that I never want to see or touch them again. I was always worrying and fretting over my brakes, not just over lunch time but also during races. It was extremely stressful, time consuming and utterly annoying to the extreme. I also wasted ALOT more $$ on pads and rotors than the final cost of the AP racing setup (making long term costs vastly higher doing what I was doing like an idiot). So it was both a monumental waste of time, energy and $$, in addition to simply being not safe when a C6Z with full aero, full suspension is raced at 10/10ths (or even tracked).
After yet another particularly gruesome failure, I finally manned up and bought AP Racing Radi-CAL setup on all 4 corners. My goodness what a difference. I have been to six races this year, multiple HPDE testing (at Watkins Glen - which is so abusive on brakes that it is astounding) and haven't as much as glanced at my setup. I swear they still look brand new. I tried to buy an extra set of rotors from Ritter (as I am used to lugging around multiple spares) and his response was "Why? You won't be needing them anytime soon so I'm not going to sell you them". What the hell!? Sell me another set of rotors, Ritter, so I feel better. Nope, the damn guy refused. And guess what, my rotors look perfect and I have abused this setup to the absolute extreme (sub 2:00 mins at WGI, sub 1:00 at Limerock, NJMP etc etc). The setup is dead-on consistent every single time. It never fades, it never changes, it never gives up. I can go deeper, longer and with far, far more confidence. When I come in, I don't even look at the damn things anymore as they take the abuse easily, as if this is what they were specifically designed for (and apparently they are). And during lunch time I now sit in the shade and drink lemonade, watching all the idiots that used to be me fretting over their brakes in the hot sun.
I did manage to convince Ritter to sell me a spare set of front pads (for piece of mind), and guess what? They are sitting at the bottom of a toolbox somewhere collecting dust. Why I didn't do this three years ago is beyond my comprehension. I regret waiting and I paid the price for it. Some guys on here know what happened to me, and it wasn't pretty.
So my advice is to do it right, do it once and for all, and never worry again. A no-brainer, so easily understood once you have been through it."