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Does anyone auto-x their F-Car?

Discussion in 'Northwest' started by blackferrari, Mar 16, 2008.

  1. blackferrari

    blackferrari Karting

    Feb 13, 2007
    86
    The Highlands
    Full Name:
    Ming Alen
    I would like to take my car autocrossing for the first time. I don't really want to take the risk of track driving yet, but autocrossing might be a good start.

    Ming
     
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  3. Mordalo

    Mordalo F1 Rookie
    Sponsor

    Sep 7, 2005
    4,208
    That is a great idea.
     
  4. Krafty

    Krafty Karting

    Feb 25, 2006
    150
    Lake Oswego Oregon
    Full Name:
    Alex Kraft
    autoX is a blast, if u dont mind people hating on u for driving an f-car. and u dont mind getting beat by $1000 cars then give it a shot. there was a lambo diablo at one down here in eugene, he had fun, but the car was too big for autoX.
     
  5. $$$=SPEED

    $$$=SPEED F1 Veteran

    Aug 18, 2004
    5,289
    Portland, Or. USA
    Full Name:
    Depends who's asking
    Auto cross is a great way to learn your car but you do not have to be afraid fo the track. Do a Pro School day in your car. You are not pressured to drive beyond your means and 100% totally safe. The better you get the faster you can go. Great fun and good experience in your car for the road.

    Mike
     
  6. walawdog

    walawdog Formula Junior

    Nov 9, 2004
    819
    Bluefield, WV
    Full Name:
    Anthony
    I did it, once in my 78 308. I had a good time, but it's so true...all of the smaller, lighter (super cheap) cars will smoke you. It's fun though.
     
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  8. RAllen

    RAllen Formula Junior

    Aug 27, 2006
    444
    Rogue Valley, Oregon
    Full Name:
    Richard Allen
    I know exactly how you feel: That's what I did when I purchased my first sports/gt car. I joined my local AutoX club and still A-X from time to time.

    As "Speed" said: No need to fear participating in an HPDE. I've been doing so for a few yrs. now. Started as a complete Novice. Now Instructor class and giving back to Novices what I owe all those who helped me learn a bit about driving.

    It never ends tho: I'm signed up as a *student* for the 4/23 Pro Drive HPDE (prodrive.net). I still take instruction whenever I have the opportunity. :)

    FYI: ProDrive start the driving day by holding a mini A-X in the hot pits #PIR. Lotsa Fun!

    I plan to take my new car out for the first time on track on 3/25. ORPCA's Instructor day. If you're in the area come by and look for the Orange Superleggera. Or just ask anyone where i'm at.

    Finally: I am so glad to hear that you want to improve your driving skills. Methinks you'll never regret it. ;-)

    Peace,

    Richard.
     
  9. bwassam

    bwassam Formula Junior

    Jan 3, 2005
    611
    North Bend, Oregon
    Full Name:
    Robert Wassam
    I'd like to do some X-crossing but it's such a trek from the coast. If I were to do it I'd get a little tuner car. Are there any hot rod mods for a Mini. With the old school Mini's you could go get around the track pretty well especially if it has a lot of turns with short straights. I've got a MGB and have consider bolting up a tuner engine to it. That would be a lot of fun.

    Bob Wassam
     
  10. Scotty

    Scotty F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed

    Oct 31, 2003
    7,033
    Oregon
    Full Name:
    Scotty Ferrari
    I wouldn't necessarily shy away from the track, and it in fact might be a "lower pressure" venue to learn. Autocross tends to be very intense for very short periods of time, and you don't necessarily get numerous runs on one day to figure out what is going on.

    The novice groups at most track days tend to be very slow, and you will likely end up a bit frustrated if you only focus on going fast. The plus is that this (lower) speed really allows you to get comfortable with the car, learn the line at the track, etc. Almost every group will also have required instructors that ride with you--increasing the learning curve dramatically.

    There are really two choices for HPDE's. One are more professional schools (ProDrive, Cascade), the other are local car clubs with volunteer instructor corps. I would think either would be fine, but never having done a ProDrive school I would leave that for someone else to comment on.

    Days like GPI's and RTGT's tend to have fewer cars, and more exotics--for some this is more comfortable. RTGT has (in the past) also required an instructor to ride with virtually every driver the entire day--there is always some value to this, and absolute value as a beginner.

    Having said that, I had my Ferrari's at all manner of track days and never had a bad experience.

    If you want to "scope things out" without any pressure consider coming out to the track this Tuesday if you are available. You won't be able to drive (it is an instructor training and advanced driver day) but you can talk to instructors, soak up the vibe, and see if it is something that appeals to you. I'm also an instructor, look for me in the Grey Cayman S (or Richard, the lucky SOB, in his new Lambo). It is overall a friendly group. Feel free to PM me (or Richard) if you want more exact details as to where things are happening--either of us can check with the main organizer to make sure it is cool for you to come and watch.

    If you decide to move forward, there are a few car preparation things that are reasonable to do--ask away if you need more info.

    Scott
     
  11. RAllen

    RAllen Formula Junior

    Aug 27, 2006
    444
    Rogue Valley, Oregon
    Full Name:
    Richard Allen
    Excellent advice Scotty!

    I've lost count of how many Pro Drive HPDEs and "Open" lapping days i've done. I've also driven, or ridden (i used to be a sportbike nut, looong story), w/almost all orgs in the western US (over 30yrs in motorsports) .... none .... I repeat; *none* offer a better experience for Novice drivers than ProDrive. Did I remember to say ... "none?" <chuckle>

    ProDrive administer events for RTGT. But no passengers are allowed. IMHO, the RTGT events focus more on socializing, great food!!! and car-talk. Fun but not my faves.

    As of last year, GPI's events were run w/the help of two of ProDrive's finest (Tony and Gary). Very well organized events. I hope to be at all of them this year.

    Ditto!

    I wonder if the "powers that be" will allow passengers? If so, please bring an SA2000, or better rated helmet. Open face is best.

    Spectators have always been welcome in the past. But PMing for details is always good.

    As always, HPDEs fill fast! Plan to register at least a month ahead.

    Peace,

    Richard.
     
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  13. PDX Tifosi

    PDX Tifosi Karting

    Jun 19, 2007
    109
    Vancouver, WA
    Full Name:
    Dan
    If you're looking at learning the big track, ProDrive would be my first choice, but as one of the instructors I "might" be a bit biased.
    Next on the list would be a Cascade school, closely followed by a Porsche or BMW club school. After that, the other clubs get lumped in my "also ran" catagory. They may be good clubs to run with but I'd question getting instruction from them. It's very hit and miss as to how good of an instructor you'll get. I was at one unnamed club day drivers meeting, and the (self proclaimed) advanced group were TOLD they would be instructors for the day. Kinda scary if you ask me.

    All in all, I think the novice learns more at a good HPDE than they would by themselves at an autoX. I mean heck, IF you had an instructor in you car for an AutoX whats he going to tell you? Critique your run at the end then hope you remember the next run? And you get how many runs in a day 5-6?? I guess it's worth $25. If you did a whole season I guess you'd see some results. Don't get me wrong, AutoX is a good place to learn, but it takes awhile to get the skills.

    A HPDE lasts one day. You'll have an instructor spend more time in you car in that one day than you would all season AutoXing. And you'll learn more than you think too.
     
  14. RAllen

    RAllen Formula Junior

    Aug 27, 2006
    444
    Rogue Valley, Oregon
    Full Name:
    Richard Allen
    Hi Dan! I am *not* biased. I'd be the first to criticize ProDrive if I felt it true and correct. Study my posting history .... I am quite blunt. ;-)


    And Team Continental?

    Both offer great ground schools. Similar formats and (like most orgs) use some of the same instructors.

    Dislikes:
    1) Both are race oriented and the general atmosphere *may* be intimidating to Novices. Whom I find I often have to remind that we are *not* racing. It seems to set their minds at ease.
    2) Both used the "Pro Pits" which I find somewhat risky.

    Specially like (prodrive inclusive): All three use Instructors who teach consistent lines and techniques. For example Dan will teach a Novice the same lines and techniques as Tony does.

    Even Porsche and BMW may be *At Times* justifiably criticized for having Instructors who teach slightly different lines and techniques than other Porsche & BMW Instructors. In their defense I must say that admin go to great lengths to assure uniformity. But doo-doo occurs. <chuckle>

    Agreed.

    The fact is that there are many, many, outstanding drivers who may not be outstanding instructors.

    An inverse example: One of my first Instructors was an Intermediate driver .... due to an extreme shortage of qualified Instructors. Of course this was years ago when we often didn't fill an event. He was GREAT! I learned so much from him!

    Agreed!

    Hope to see you at ProDrive's 04/23 HPDE. I'm signed up as a student. Shhh, don't tell on me Dan. <tic>

    Peace,

    Richard.
     
  15. Scotty

    Scotty F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed

    Oct 31, 2003
    7,033
    Oregon
    Full Name:
    Scotty Ferrari
    I was at the day--and was blown away. Kinda scary is putting is nicely.
     
  16. Scotty

    Scotty F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed

    Oct 31, 2003
    7,033
    Oregon
    Full Name:
    Scotty Ferrari
    'Twas a nice day yesterday at the track. No rain, and no accidents. A few GT3's, one Ariel Atom, and Richard's Superlegerra added a bit of an exotic feel.

    There was also a red 328 lurking around the outside of the track for several hours. Someone here?
     
  17. ndnguyen

    ndnguyen Karting

    Jul 27, 2005
    166
    Hi Scott,

    Unless there's another 328 there, it would be me, although I was there for only an hour or so. I got stuck in the mud a bit while driving over grass to see the "new" turns from outside perspective. I didn't sign up since I thought rain would be a certainty.

    Nguyen
     

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