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Road Course/Track and Autocross For road course/track and autocross discussions.

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Old 07-08-2009, 09:08 PM   #1
sharbaugh
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Sebring Road Course

I am taking my Camaro to Sebring with SAFE in August to run the road coarse.

What do you guys think?

Wife says I'm crazy.
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Old 07-08-2009, 09:15 PM   #2
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heck no.

You ever driven a race course before? I would advise taking a high speed training course that offers both classroom and track portions to learn some more about driving vehicles that way if you have not already done so. No matter how many years of experience on the street, you will learn a lot from them. I have taken five different ones so far and they remain the best money I have spent as far as vehicle performance goes.

EDIT:; some suggestions are the Jim Russell 3 day course, Skip Barber High Performance School and the Bondurant High Performance School. While they all offer similar instruction, from this you get F2000, a variety of Porsche and BMW sports cars and CTS-V cars. I would round this out with either of the Lotus Performance Driving School or the Bridgestone Racing Academy.

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Last edited by SoloSK71; 07-08-2009 at 09:22 PM. Reason: Adding schools.
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Old 07-09-2009, 12:34 AM   #3
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Solo is spot on

Took my first class at Riverside Raceway when I had a 1969 Alfa Romeo 2.5Liter GTV. Went to a one day "save your ass", (skidpad, wet and dry, accident evasion, et al) class at California, now Auto Club Speedway. Best money you can spend.
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Old 07-09-2009, 09:52 AM   #4
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Aw hell, don't worry about the training.. just tool it around the track a couple laps and then hammer it!
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Old 07-09-2009, 10:59 AM   #5
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I have been invited up to Watkins Glen in August with a Porsche Club.
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Old 07-09-2009, 12:01 PM   #6
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I have been on Road Atlanta before and I guarantee Sebring will be a blast. Your gonna love it.
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Old 07-09-2009, 02:03 PM   #7
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I agree with the others that you should take some classes, but if you don't just make sure and take it easy around the course. You don't want to get into a situation you can't handle.

Be safe and have fun!
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Old 07-15-2009, 03:48 PM   #8
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If you're not racing against other cars, I see no need for a 'high performance driving class' If you know how to drive your car, maybe just take it easy around the track one or two times to get the feel of it, and then push it further as you get more comfortable with what your car is capable of. It doesn't take education to know how to drive... unless you consider education growing up in the country and learning to drive at age 4
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Old 07-15-2009, 06:10 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sharbaugh View Post
I am taking my Camaro to Sebring with SAFE in August to run the road coarse.

What do you guys think?

Wife says I'm crazy.
I'm jealous! Respect their track rules, and have a great time!
Don't forget to revive the thread and tell us all about it.
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:13 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brokinarrow View Post
If you're not racing against other cars, I see no need for a 'high performance driving class' If you know how to drive your car, maybe just take it easy around the track one or two times to get the feel of it, and then push it further as you get more comfortable with what your car is capable of. It doesn't take education to know how to drive... unless you consider education growing up in the country and learning to drive at age 4
I doubt there is any way you can just take your car to a race track without going through a high performance driving class. For one thing, the clubs that run these events carry insurance that depends on them providing instruction. For another, it's not like you'll sit in a classroom for days and eventually end up on the track. The first time I went (Lime Rock Park in Nov 2007), it was a one-day event where I was in a classroom from 8:30 to 9:00 am, and then on the race track at 9:30 am. The rest of the day consisted of two more 30-minute classroom sessions and three more 20-minute track sessions. The policy is that all beginners drive with an instructor in the passenger seat. Only when the instructor signs off that you are ready to go solo do you go alone. Again, this is all for liability reasons, plus for the safety of others at the track.

It's possible you are an expert driver with knowledge of the various high performance driving techniques, without formal instruction, but most people are surprised at all there is to learn. At Lime Rock I was surprised that experienced drivers in cars like a Mazdaspeed3 could get around the track faster than inexperienced drivers in Corvettes.

This past Monday I went to my third HPDE event at Watkins Glen in NY. That's a world-class 3.4 mile race track, where IndyCars and NASCAR Cup cars race yearly. For $275 I got five 30-minute track sessions and three 30-minute classroom sessions. How can you spend your money more wisely?

I attached a picture of me at the Glen in another thread in this forum, and my avatar picture is from Loudon New Hampshire last year. There's nothing like driving your car on a race track. It will exceed your expectations, and no doubt, the Camaro SS is track-ready!

It's also a lot safer than I would have thought. In the three track days I have been to, there were over 100 cars at each event, and only 1 car wrecked (it was an AC Cobra kit car, and it was his first lap at Lime Rock on cold tires!). And super high performance cars attend these events, such as Porsche GT3, BMW M3 and M5, Lotus, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Ford GT, Audi R8, Mercedes AMG, Z06, etc. Ironically, the beginners as a whole have the fewest incidents, because they have instructors in the cars with them, and they're generally fairly cautious and take few risks. The advanced group also has few incidents, because, well... they're advanced! But the Intermediate group is the dangerous one, because they're starting to attempt advanced techniques and explore the limits of their cars.

I would suggest to check out a local HPDE club that sponsors events. The club I have been going with is the SCDA. Check out their website for an overview of what HPDE is all about.

http://www.scda1.com/
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