Having picked the 987 up miraculously under-budget, I dangerously found myself with some spare cash.Although in great overall condition, it was due a major service. The seller had advertised the car as including this service, which gifted me some discount leverage. Knowing I had a specialist in mind to take care of it elsewhere the arm-twisting could commence. With Forge Motorsport’s annual track day at Castle Combe booked, it seemed the ideal opportunity to combine the service with thefirst round of modifications.
Often equipped beyond dealer level in both equipment and training, a local independent specialist is a great way of servicing your Porsche. By no means local, my chosen specialist to get the Cayman up to scratch is Regal Autosport in Southampton. No stranger to these pages, the guys at Regal specialise in making water cooled Porsches obscenely fast, as well as taking care of high-level repairs and servicing. Having campaigned a 997 in the Carrera Cup, plus being distributors for EVOMS and Sharkwerks, I knew my Cayman would be in safe hands.
Eager to see how the Cayman would fare on track, I dropped it off to Regal with a boot full of extras, accidently proving the practicality of the mid engine layout in the process. I knew I wanted to keep the PASM system active, so I chose an ST suspensions spring kit to bring the body 30mm closer to the deck and close up the arch gap. The factory PASM has often been criticized for being too soft, then dramatically too hard with no middle ground, and I’m inclined to agree. However, in fitting the ST springs the softer PASM setting now gives a firmer but still compliant ride around town but when stiffened is no more harsh than before, which really is how it should have been from factory. To suit the new focus for the car, Regal set the geometry to a much more ‘track’ orientation.
At the same time as installing the springs, Regal also fitted each corner with a 15mm ST spacer that widens the track and makes the Cayman a whole lot more purposeful looking. While on the subject of looking purposeful, a JTC front lip spoiler strengthens the trademark Cayman weak chin, and does a great job of reducing front-end lift too. Along with the service, Regal upgraded the spark plugs and renewed the heat damaged coil packs. It’s worth noting that after the remedial work the engine is much more responsive and perky, the new coil packs breathing new life into the stock drivetrain.
The final improvement to aesthetics came as a bit of a happy accident at the Porsche Club Great Britain annual meet. Noticing a Boxster Spyder sporting some interesting looking side vents, I sneakily noted down the chassis number and ordered a pair in the hope they might fit. With some less than gentile persuasion they do fit and make a huge difference to the visuals.
Unhappy with the limp brake pedal feel even on the road, the first ‘GT’ part to find its way onto the car is in the form of a GT3 brake master cylinder. Along with a set of braided brake lines and Castrol SRF brake fluid, Chris at Regal recommended this would make a massive difference to the braking confidence and it certainly does. Although not making the brakes anymore powerful, with more feel and more modulation it’s proved an important ally in the battle against much better equipped cars and is a regular upgrade for 987s and 996/997s that pass through Regal’s workshops.
Around the fast Combe track the Cayman coped astonishing well. With modest brakes, well worn road tyres and ‘just’ 295bhp it had no right to lap as quickly as it did. All day it was smooth and competent, never missing a beat. I definitely think the Cayman and I are friends now, with fantastically neutral steering the new ride height and track geometry really came into their own on the drying circuit. Needless to say the Cayman really impressed me as a track car, especially considering the mild modifications. It bodes well for the future and I really cant wait to get some more hardcore modifications under its skin and hit the circuit for round two.