I see what you're saying.
The thing that I mainly need are breaks once I break I go into a 2 on 1 pass, which I use very well. Other than that the gi passes give me a lot of trouble. I am maily using the single lapel pass, and sometimes the double.
In terms of breaks, I use alot of hip grinds (pushing the elbows into the hips) and I use the jailbreak guard opener alot. I also try and get a knee in the guard and pop it open that way, which works really well.
The thing to be aware of with the lapel passes is that if you lose control of that leg for a second, and your opponent is quick and looking for the submission, there's a good chance you can get caught.
Personally, it's been a long time since anyone caught me in a lapel pass because of my leg flexibility. A good, flexible opponent will be able to lock down your arms even with only one leg. I don't think you have to worry about that at your level, but start working other passes too, because that one has a pretty low success rate against high level guards.