Motorsport Column November/December 2016

track-by-christian-bouchez

The 2016 track season was pretty exciting in my opinion! We had only one rainy day, the last track event of the year at The Ridge, where pontoons on the cars might have been useful! For those who were there, you all learned how to hone your wet-driving skills. All cars came home on their own power, just a little wet. In fact, we had an incident-free event for the entire year, a testament to the driving skills of the all the drivers! Let’s continue this into 2017!

For the coming year, we will continue to have run-group leaders and have them organize download sessions. I have received numerous comments on how well this is working and how much you all get of them. This past year, we added a D-group leader which I think has really helped educate new drivers and build confidence. Does it take a dedicated instructor to be willing to wrangle all you drivers; yes, but that is part of being an instructor. I would encourage you all to take advantage of these sessions. As you move up to C-B-A groups, we will show you alternative lines, analysis of corner entry-exit point, and advanced car handling skills. Note, this is not racing and we do not run a racing school. If you have the desire to go racing, check out the PRO3 Line or talk with a PRO3 racer!

Perhaps one of the main reasons for attending the run-group sessions is to become acquainted with other drivers in that group. Remember, you will be sharing the track with them, letting them by-being let by, and having lunch! Get to know your run group members. We will be sending out a group email to each group. Hopefully, I will be leading several track walks early in the morning at Pacific Raceways and hopefully The Ridge.

What should you be doing in the off-season? Getting ready for 2017 of course! Read as much as you can about performance driving. We are fortunate to have Ross Bentley in our own back yard; take advantage of his webinars, on-line weekly newsletter and try to attend on his in-person seminars. Start thinking about what your goals are, what aspect of your driving do you want to improve upon, and yes, what modifications do you want to make to the car.

The journey to right seat starts at the beginning. Your instructors all started as D-group drivers and put the effort in to work on their driving skills. Not everyone wants or should be an instructor, but if you are an advanced driver, please consider it. We have a program in place to develop the skills needed to become an instructor. Just let us know, we will help.

As you might know, I will no longer be President of the chapter which only means that I will have more time to devote to the track program. I am already thinking about what changes and repairs I will be making to the speedy 318is “TRAKCAR” for 2017! So, ask Santa for some a set of R-compounds and plan on freeing up track dates for 2017!

See you in the paddock,

Steve Libby

 

Track Days for 2017:

May 12- Pacific Raceway

June 16- Pacific Raceway

July 14- Pacific Raceway

August 25- Pacific Raceway

September 30-The Ridge