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Thread: Track days.

  1. #1
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    Track days.

    I just purchased 08 M3. I want to see what itís like on the race track. I do a lot of motorcycle track days. Never tracked a car. How do I start?
    [

  2. #2
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    Join the BMWCCA and start looking for DE / BMWCCA "Driving School" events near you. Most likely the same tracks that host your 2 wheel track days are the same places you will be going with your car.
    There are also lots and lots of other clubs that host track days (aka HPDE or just DE) outside of BMWCCA (PCA, NASA, SCCA, Chin, various other marque clubs).

    Start an account at Motorsport Reg [https://www.motorsportreg.com] plug in your zip code, your radius you find acceptable to travel, then check the boxes for Driver Schools (I'd also try Open Track Day just to see if those clubs might have instructors for novices).
    Soup.
    jimmy p.


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  3. #3
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    Thank you so much!! Canít wait to get started.

  4. #4
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    Motorsportreg has a sort by radius as well as a selectable option for "Driving School" to filter the results. Highly recommend any BMWCCA or PCA event in your region as a great place to have mentored initiation to this overwhelmingly exciting hobby.

    Just be ready to start hemorrhaging money and come back here once you are ready for advice on preparing for your first HPDE!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by PUNG BISS View Post
    I just purchased 08 M3. I want to see what it’s like on the race track. I do a lot of motorcycle track days. Never tracked a car. How do I start?
    Germantown, MD?

    If so, I instruct for nearly all the orgs that run track events in the area, and can help with any questions. But as stated above, MSR will give you a lot of info and options!

    Nearly all the orgs (SCCA, BMW, Chin, etc) will provide a safe controlled environment, an instructor in the right seat, class room instruction, and at least 4 20 minute track sessions if not more.

  6. #6
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    If you're in Maryland, I'd also suggest TrackDaze, which probably offers the most track-time per dollar in our region.

  7. #7
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  8. #8
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    I would also add spending some time auto crossing your car with the SCCA, or an local equal. Getting seat time with your combination of horse power, weight, chassis dynamics, breaking threshold and tire choice will pay dividends on the track.

    The BMWCCA track/school program is a formal, multi step entry in to track time that I am going through and can endorse. I have been tipping cones for years and over the last four years I am adding the West Coast tracks as I can make the events. Each Chapter that sponsors the event, in California we have four that I have run events with, are the gate keeper. The first time you run with a different chapter you might find your self running with the novice group, they run the show, it's their sand box.

    Make sure you take advantage of the ride-a-long with an instructor laps. Locally we have an instructor that runs a 1970'ish 2002 that is an expert of maintaining momentum. Brian Moon is the real deal, I have learned that driving to the corners is only part of your lap. Getting out of the corners lowers your lap times.

    David
    Last edited by jr02518; 11-09-2018 at 11:12 AM.

  9. #9
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    Best place to start is by participating in an advanced Driving Skill School..offered by most BMW chapters.
    What is a Advanced Driving Skill School ?
    The Advanced Driving Skills School is designed to help you improve your driving skills and to learn about vehicle dynamics. The school's dual purpose is to prepare students for our High Performance Driving School and to teach skills useful in everyday driving situations. The school is held in a large parking lot, using plastic pylons/cones, to provide a safe learning environment for these low to moderate speed maneuvers. The skid pad area is operated under a sprinkler system to practice the exercises at low speed and also to reduce tire wear.

    Not only will you learn how your car handles but you'll improve your car control skills at the same time in a safe environment, greatly reducing the risk of damaging you nice M3 on the track in an unfortunate incident.

  10. #10
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    There's certainly nothing wrong with starting with a "Driving Skill School" and slow speed skills, BMW or otherwise. But thousands of first timers start on-track every year, with great results. I wouldn't limit myself to forcing my first time to be a Driving Skill School.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by aeronaut View Post
    There's certainly nothing wrong with starting with a "Driving Skill School" and slow speed skills, BMW or otherwise. But thousands of first timers start on-track every year, with great results. I wouldn't limit myself to forcing my first time to be a Driving Skill School.
    True, never meant to imply that someone should avoid HPDE's until they attend a DSS. Most chapters do however run a DSS before the first HPDE of the season and the difference between students who have attended a DSS to those who haven't is significant. Those who have are more confident, have a much better capacity to learn because they understand what is happening with their car dynamically as it relates to their driving. And knowing what to do if they happen to exceed the limits of their car and recover enables them to explore more comfortably their driving skills.

    Seat time on the track is great, but it's not the best place for a novice to push the limits of their driving skills or their car. So if a person really wants to jump start advancing their skills on the track there is no better way than attending DSS schools. Doing multiple DSS schools in conjunction with HPDE's is a surefire way to become an accomplished driver in the shortest amount of time.

    No bragging but I'm a great example. I had done a few autocross and HPDE days when the BMW White Mt Chapter was just starting up their DSS program so I volunteered to help out. They ran a DSS before each HPDE event so 3 to 4 per year. As a volunteer I helped to set up the courses, point students in the right direction on the various exercises and then spread the water around on the skid pad "figure 8" before the students headed out in my car. By the end of the 2nd season doing this I started coaching at the DSS events. The following season I entered into the HPDE instructor development program and at the end of that season became an instructor while still instructing at DSS events. Before the next season started I had bought an e36 M3 Lightweight took the BMWCCA Race School and by the end of that season I had acquired my competition license with BMWCCA Club Racing and the SCCA. In comparison their where others that I ended up racing successfully against that had been racing for decades.

    I went from novice to instructor to finishing on the podium as a racer in less than 5 years, one season as the NE Regional Champion in BMWCCA racing. Again I'm not bragging and I'm not a naturally gifted driver. The only reason this happened is because I got so much seat time on a skid pad developing my car control skills. Now after instructing for 20 years I'll get in a car with a student that has done dozens of HPDE's, but they still have little or no car control skills. So they may be out enjoying themselves on the track and that's fine but they are not making any real progress in advancing their driving skills - simply because they can't do at an HPDE what they could at an DSS or autocross which is drive over the limits continuously, learning what it feels like to approach the limits exceed them and recover.

    I strongly recommend to each and every student who is eager to learn and advance their driving skills that they participate in at least one DSS every season as part of their training program.
    Last edited by CMM3; 11-14-2018 at 10:09 AM.

  12. #12
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    PUNG BISS:

    You are welcome to join MVP Track Time (www.MVPTrackTime.com) at our track events. Happy Motoring!

    Feff

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