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High speed driving training

Discussion in 'North & South Carolina' started by rtajaly, Apr 27, 2009.

  1. rtajaly

    rtajaly Karting

    Mar 26, 2009
    111
    I was considering taking Fast Track's 3 day basic oval course in June. Has anyone here ever taken that class? If so, what did you think of it?

    And, are there any other racing and high speed driving classes available in the Charlotte and surrounding areas?
     
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  3. cgh1

    cgh1 Formula Junior

    Nov 5, 2003
    375
    Charlotte, NC
    Full Name:
    Chuck Hawks
    #2 cgh1, Apr 27, 2009
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2009
    Andy's school (Fast Track) is a good experience if you are looking for a circle track school. I haven't worked with those guys in years but a good friend of mine still does and tells me what they're doing and how good their program is. The Petty Experience is also available in the Charlotte area but honestly, it is more of an entertainment experience than a school. There's also the BMW Performance Center, which has great schools in new BMWs on their own private track and also at places like VIR and the Michelin proving grounds. I have worked with those guys for years and they put on a great road course driving event.

    If you want to drive your own car, there are a plethora of HPDEs available at tracks within a 5-hours drive of Charlotte (Lowes, CMP, VIR, Road Atlanta, Roebling, etc.) These are usually 2-day events and cost much less, as you are driving your own car, yet offer perhaps more in-depth instruction in some areas but no racecraft if that's what you're looking for. Check www.trackschedule.com and/or www.motorsportreg.com for more info.

    If racecraft is what you're looking for, you may also look at NASA's comp schools (you bring your car or rent one - they can point you to several places from which to rent a track car) for good instruction at a relatively low price point. There's also the Skip Barber school which comes to VIR, Road Atlanta and CMP from time to time (there was one going on today here at VIR), which is a great school that focuses on road course driving in formula cars. It can also be a bit more expensive than the other driving schools but has a reputation for being worth it.

    Having worked for most, if not all of these, I don't want to say that any are better than others - it depends on your goals.

    I also run driver advancement clinics (rEvolution Performance Driving) in the area in which you bring your car. Most of my clinics are geared toward seasoned/advanced drivers and racers. The next clinic I'll be doing is at the new Bluegrass Motorsports Park in KY and it will focus on driving instructors (not an instruction clinic, a driving clinic for instructors), if you are among that group. You can find more info on that at www.asphaltventures.com - my partner in crime for such events. PM me for more info if you like, as I feel like I'm plugging my own deal - which is not my intent (and why I mentioned it last.)

    You have many options in this area.

    Cheers & C U @ d'Track!!
    C

    Chuck Hawks,
    Pro-Driver, Coach, Instructor & Facilitator
    DreamsFulfilled, LLC & rEvolution Performance Driving System ©
     
  4. ProCoach

    ProCoach F1 Veteran
    Owner

    Sep 15, 2004
    5,439
    VIR Raceway
    Full Name:
    Peter
    Ah, Chuck's beat me to it! Can't type very quick on the phone while driving home from VIR <grin> but I think Andy (Fast Track) runs a great program. He bought NCMS (Rockingham) a few years ago and does some program there, too. Watch out exiting Turn 2, it's tighter than it looks. Turns 3 and 4 at Lowes is awesome!

    If you want road course training and are early in the curve, Skip Barber and Bertil Roos are terrific.

    Have fun!
     
  5. rtajaly

    rtajaly Karting

    Mar 26, 2009
    111
    Thanks for the info, Chuck. I am by no means an advanced driver, but wish to learn how to control my vehicle at high speeds, and also acquire a taste for the track. When I was younger I would drive really fast and crazy, but haven't done that in years. With all the racetracks around these parts, I thought that it would be a good chance to get that feeling again away from public roads.

    Also, I wouldn't want to track my car--it's my baby :) But would like to use a course-provided race car, or rent one, or maybe even buy a car for track use if the other options aren't easily available.

    The 3 day course at Lowe's sounded pretty good because I live in Mooresville, and can't really leave the area for more than a day (a geriatric, demanding cat that I need to care for).

    If you think the Fast Track course is still good, then that's a good enough recommendation for me. And if you think any of the other options that you mentioned, including your own, would suit what I've described above, then that could work too.
     
  6. cgh1

    cgh1 Formula Junior

    Nov 5, 2003
    375
    Charlotte, NC
    Full Name:
    Chuck Hawks
    Considering your situation, I'd say that the Fast Track 3-day is your best bet. Just be prepared to go elsewhere later because this stuff is like crack/heroin... it only takes once and you're addicted! ;)

    Al the best and keep us posted about your experience!!

    Should you go to Fast Track, look/ask for Norbert Watts - he's a good friend, driver and instructor.

    Cheers & C U @ d'Track!!
    C

    Chuck Hawks,
    Pro-Driver, Coach, Instructor & Facilitator
    DreamsFulfilled, LLC & rEvolution Performance Driving System ©
     
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  8. sainthoo

    sainthoo Formula 3
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Jan 20, 2007
    1,041
    Full Name:
    Christian
    Ditto what those guys said.

    I was in your position a few months ago. Went and did the 3 day course at Road Atlanta with Skip Barber. It was an absolutely fantastic experience. As Chuck pointed out, it is like crack. I have now bought a dedicated track car, and will try to get out at every opportunity from now on....

    Go do it!
     
  9. ProRallyCodriver

    ProRallyCodriver Formula 3

    Oct 25, 2005
    1,233
    Alexandria, VA
    Full Name:
    Dave Shindle
    If you wanna do roundy round NASCAR driving, the Buck Baker school is much better then Petty Experience.

    Here is their schedule:

    http://www.buckbaker.com/schedules.html

    Fun bunch of people. Buddy Baker is a riot.
     
  10. rtajaly

    rtajaly Karting

    Mar 26, 2009
    111
    Thanks, Chuck. And I really appreciate your advice. Will do, and I'll post my experience there after I do it.
     
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  12. rtajaly

    rtajaly Karting

    Mar 26, 2009
    111
    Thanks Christian. Is the Cobra your dedicated track car?
     

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