Front-end grip is equally huge and the steering is direct, proportional and unambigous. But as speeds rise and downforce builds – the SR10 is able to easily produce more than 2g of lateral acceleration – the force required to turn the wheel grows. Even though the repositioned column gives more room for arm movement, I found myself wishing well before the end of my first stint on track that the factory demonstrator had been built with the optional power steering. Regular exposure would cut down on gym membership bills.
Braking is the other area where the SR10 requires acclimatisation for those used to even the most potent road cars. The Radical’s steel brakes lack the abrupt top-end bite of carbon-ceramics, although the retardation behind this is strong. But the lack of ABS makes it easy to lock wheels by pushing too hard. The margin between peak braking and sliding is sudden and initially hard to recognise.
The factory demonstrator I drove also lacked the new halo-style set-up, although I did get to experience this from the tight-fitting passenger seat of another SR10. The frame surrounds the cockpit like a tight-fitting roll cage and makes getting in and out much more of a gymnastic adventure than in the open car. Initially, it made the SR10 feel surprisingly claustrophobic, given the lack of any roof, but within a couple of laps, my brain had learned to filter it out. Frontal visibility is only slightly affected.