The crunchy 197


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Evening gents.

Probably sick to death of seeing all the project threads on here, but I thought I'd create my own so I can keep a bit of a history my time during 197 ownership.
My friend originally bought the car back in February of this year in the hope of starting to do trackside alongside me who had an ST170 at the time. Due to other commitments he ended up selling it to another mate of mine, and the on to me at the start of August.

The car is a boggo 197, complete with tatty paint, rusty boot, power increasing bonnet vent, and crunchy gearbox.
Over the course of my ownership I hope to turn it into a clubsport style track car which I will use on UK tracks and trips over to the Nürburgring.
The car is a very basic spec, having only a secondary decat, ktec (I think) cat back exhaust, drop in filter, and h&r springs coupled with cup shocks.








Once Christmas is out the way I wanna try and get the box sorted and will likely chuck a diff and clutch in at the same time.
I'd really like to get myself some coilovers for next year's trackdays too, but the current setup feels that good I don't particularly want to mess with it.
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Little bit of footage having a play around on Monday at Oulton Park. Was completely blown away with the performance of the car despite having to wait 3 years between gear changes.
Bit of a boring update for this evening. Hit a pothole Wednesday night and it seems to of killed one of my tyres.
Shame as they're only 6 weeks old. Fingers crossed the rim hasn't can see on the lip where the rim protector has folded over.


If anyone was wondering , you can fit 16" focus wheels over the stock brembos :sweatsmile:

Yes bud. There is quite a bit of clearance.
I do have 20mm spacers on though which helps.
You're right. I do take them off every so often and clean the insides. Just going to be a bit annoying now having one fresh tyre.

Also, upon further inveinvestiga, the focus wheels bind against the calliper :oops:
Looks good! Rusty boot may be eligible under Renaults 12 year warranty.

If there some fancy setup with the vent or still stock airbox?
Looks good! Rusty boot may be eligible under Renaults 12 year warranty.

If there some fancy setup with the vent or still stock airbox?
I wasn't even going to bother investigating it through a dealer as it's never had a full service history.

The vent is courtesy of the previous owner and does absolutely nothing..... I don't even think it would be beneficial with a k-tec intake tbh
To be honest, entirely depends on the dealer. Mine didnt bother, just checked paint depth and sent it off..
I might give it a bash then. Do they just paint the area or replace the entire boot?

Depends how bad, mine was quite bad but they opted to repair it. I have heard people have complete new bootlids. I guess that could be more down to colours and colour matching rather than how bad the rust might be? Worth a try anyway!
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Well it seems I’ve not updated this for nearly 2 years.
I think in my own head, I’d decided it becomes a bit boring reading the same shit over and over again. But I shall put some effort in tomorrow to update. So much has changed since then!

It’ll make a good distraction while I’m procrastinating at my desk as opposed to writing the technical report I’ve been promising I’ll finish for the last 2 weeks
Bit strange that i decided upon myself to miss the entirety of 2019. Did quite a few trackdays, having told myself that i was going to calm it down a bit.

Oulton Park above bought about the end of the DS2500's. These had been fitted by the previous owner and i'd punished them til the end - but they started juddering. I remedied this by fitting some new discs and DS3000's on the recommendation of a friend.
Around the same time, my good friend Ben decided that he'd had enough of sharing my car on trackdays, and bought himself an RB 197 - this bought about the start of the clio gang (more to follow)
Q1 2019

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The car had a few bits fitted by the previous owner. There were a few loose ends, and obviously some play in the suspension on the front.
Despite being absolute skint (a reoccurring theme here) as me and the missus were due to go away to The Laes he managed to pressure me into booking a trackday at Cadwell.


Snow forecast meant that i didn't particularly want to take my RS which i was dailying at the time.

Upon returning home, Cadwell bought about the necessity to buy some more suitable tyres, as i'd been using PS4's for as long as i could remember.
A set of freshly powder coated Lagunas cropped up on here, and i put some AD08's on as they were cheap cheap.

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Ben having now fully caught the bug, then decided that he wanted to do Donington. I had no choice in the matter, he bought my entry and added me to his black book of debt (again, another reoccurring thing)
As most of you know, Donington is horrifically slippy in the wet, but great fun. It's a fantastic time to try and find the limits of the car whilst still going 'relatively' slow.


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Absolutely no idea why my tongue is hanging out on this one. I guess i must of been thinking about the hotdogs they had on in the canteen.
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Q2 2019

Having paid off my debts to the black book of debt, i had enough coin floating round in order to purchase some speedlines. Much better looking that the Lagunas IMO


Fitted these ready for my trip to the Ring for the Circuit Days even they run over there twice a year. Absolutely love the place! The Clio smashed the trackday and a few 'steady' TF laps

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The Clio was starting to really tire from all the track abuse... loose steering, brakes were getting a bit dull, and the gearbox was absolutely cooked. So i did the most sensible thing and addressed none of those issues by booking another trackday. This time at Oulton Park, which is one of my local tracks.
The weather was absolutely disgusting. There was a massive post on FB about how the event should of been called off. Most people went home, but me and Ben had a cracker of a day.


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For good measure I also did (Ford) RSOC at Croft with a load of my Ford frens. Ben kindly lent me his R888R's for this as in my wisdom i'd decided to sell the white Lagunas and AD08's in the hope i could find some more Speedlines and some better rubber.

Q3 2019

I've always been quite lucky, in that i've had a huge workspace to play with the Clio in, as my old man used to run a garage. September came around and the plans to build a number of houses on the land resulted in the garage being flattened :worried:
Not a great deal of trackdays went on around this time, as having sold my Focus RS earlier in the year, me and the missus put an offer on a house

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Fortunately, my dad had acquired that much crap over the years, he needed somewhere to store it. Cue our 'new' unit. The 'new' daily on the ramp having it's massively overdue gearbox service.


At this point, the Clio gang started growing in numbers. My mate Fiesta Dave had got rid of his Fiesta track car, and bought himself the most expensive LY 200 he could find. Another friend also bought himself a 197 with a scrap engine, which he then rebuilt. I'd also manage to source some more Speedlines, and clad them with some V70a's, which were highly reviewed on the web.


We all booked on to do Blyton Park - What a track!!!! For a place which is so flat and short, it was great fun racing each other.

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Blyton took it's tole on some of the gang :expressionless: Fiesta Dave's car had the dreaded clutch cover failure. This meant that debris took the crank sensor out and the car wouldn't run.

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Q4 2019

The house me and the fine lady had offered on, had taken an absolute age to get through to sale. This finally came into fruition in October. At this point i was very very poor, but fortunately it's my birthday at the end of the month. The missus bought me some track credit, which i used to book Donington.
Ben's mate from work realised how much fun we were all having, and had to join the club. This bought the total of us up to 5....



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Sat in a conference call now, and haven't said anything for the last 36 minutes.

Q1 2020

More toys! My old man bought a new 4 post ramp. Certainly makes life easier than trying to manoeuvre onto the 2 poster. Also now means i can use the alignment gear without having to lie on the floor.


The crunchy 197 is no more! New clutch, cover, slave, and a refurbished box. Also took the opportunity to finally replace the shocks (with early 200 units) and all swivels, both balljoints, and all suspension bushes with Powerflex ones.
Had to polish up on my welding skills in order to get the lower swivel pinch bolt out.

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Also took the oppurtunity whilst it was in the air, to fit the new K-tec AC delete bracket. Really nicely machined lump, but fitting was a bit of a maul. Took 3 of us to get the stretch belt on, but K-tec assured me it was the correct length. Link to kit:


Another day at Oulton. This time the weather was spot on. We only got 2 complaints throughout the whole day, which is good going given the 5 long Clio train. Note the brown marks in the background where each lad behind me got progressively further and further off the track.

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Managed to finish my front V70a's. Really weird wear on the outer edge - which was a little disappointing given i'd only done Blyton park on them previously.

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A mate of mine at work decided that he was emigrating for a new career, so thought i'd take his 200 off his hands. This i've now sold on to another friend who has started doing trackdays with us too. Count of Clio club now up to 6


Ben had booked another day with the lad he works with, but with his car on axle stands waiting for parts, i let him take mine. Another wet day at Cadwell, but i'm told it was a real good day.

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