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126
206
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Louisiana
Run 1: DNF


Run 2: 59.193 I lost it and spun out.


Run 3: 52.757 +1 Best run sullied by a cone strike! Listen to that tire contact in the rear. I will be rolling the fenders Friday after work.


Run 4: 55.026 *yawn*


Run 5: 53.588 Best clean pass


Run 6: 54.355 +1


This weekend I’m attending the SCCA Starting Line event and I’m anxious to learn.
 

Bill Pemberton

0ld Ford Automotive Racing Terror
8,623
8,799
Exp. Type
Time Attack
Exp. Level
20+ Years
Blair, Nebraska
Great move to speed up the learning process, learn some good habits and work on technique. Really good school and you will be sliding by cones with inches to spare in the very near future!
 
126
206
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Louisiana
Great move to speed up the learning process, learn some good habits and work on technique. Really good school and you will be sliding by cones with inches to spare in the very near future!

I want to learn!! I’m going in with an open mind and I’m hellbent on improving.
 
126
206
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Louisiana
Attended SCCA Starting Line school @ NOLA Motorsports Park yesterday. There were 20 entries and it was going to be a long day in the sun. Temperatures were in the 80’s and I was pumped to see what my new tires could do. We had a drivers meeting, they split us up into groups and we got to it.

First up was a slalom and I didn’t do very well in the slalom. It was tough forgetting what I thought I knew and applying what I was being taught. By the end, though, I was getting smoother.

The oval clinic was up next and I forgot to record my initial passes. It seemed to do alright turning left but going right was a different animal altogether. I’ve always been told to look ahead and I thought I had been. The instructor put his hand out with one finger up to show where my eyes NEED to be. That one tidbit of information has forever changed my perspective on driving.

When it was time to piece all of that together on a full course, I raised every eyebrow out there (including mine) and I’m not just bragging. I have video to prove it! I had NO idea how to drive fast before today. My times improved with every run and I finally get it. I’m looking forward to the next event and furthering my personal growth.

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126
206
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Louisiana
Glad to hear you had a good time and I imagine you will be jonesing for you next crack and cone killing? Going to an autocross school is a positive way to start.

Can’t wait to apply my newfound understanding of fundamental skill. My local competition is in trouble.
 

Dave_W

Cones - not just for ice cream
1,060
1,387
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
20+ Years
Connecticut
I’ve always been told to look ahead and I thought I had been. The instructor put his hand out with one finger up to show where my eyes NEED to be. That one tidbit of information has forever changed my perspective on driving.
THIS. If I had only one thing to teach novices, it's to look ahead. "Look ahead. No, further ahead." is one of my mantras.

In autocross, one of the things I'm analyzing when I walk the course is where I want to be looking. A lot of times it depends on where the next element is after the one I'm entering. Not typical, but there have been times I'm looking backwards over my shoulder. By making this part of my course walk discipline and spending brain CPU cycles figuring it out then, it's another thing that becomes more automatic during the run and I can dedicate more thinking to feeling the car's balance through the run and making driving corrections.
 
286
306
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
5-10 Years
Virginia
Awesome! I need to look into one of those schools. Ashley is bummed and always mentioning how she wish she had done a novice school, but a schedule conflict and then COVID meant she never got to do one. Now she is kinda beyond a novice school. This could be just the ticket to push her to the next level. Hell, I should probably take it too if I ever want to win nationally.
 

Dave_W

Cones - not just for ice cream
1,060
1,387
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
20+ Years
Connecticut
Don't discount the benefit of a "novice school" even after a few years of experience. It can help reinforce good habits and uncover bad ones. I find it helpful to get a refresher on the fundamentals whenever I seem to hit a plateau in my skill level.

I highly recommend the Evolution autocross schools. I took my first one when it was still known as the McKamey school and run by multi-time Nats winner Jim McKamey. I've done the Phase 1 & 2 and Challenge schools, some of them twice as a refresher. Haven't done one in several years, but I'm probably due for a refresher Challenge school or the data school, if one comes this way. Instructors are typically multi-time Nationals trophy winners and champions.

 
126
206
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Louisiana
After missing two events due to work, I finally registered and started preparing for some autocross! The to-do list was small but meaningful. The front brake rotors were wearing fairly thin and I had a new pad compound I wanted to try. RoadRace1 set me up with some Hawk HP+ pads and I sourced some cheap, blank rotors from RockAuto. The rest of my chores included fixing a PS reservoir cap leak and just cleaning the filth that accumulated under the car.

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The day of the event was bright and sunshiny. It was also hot and humid. This round, I wore a long sleeved T-shirt and a big goofy straw hat. My friends poked fun and told me I had become autocross. Finished registration, opened the car for tech and set out to walk the course. Three times. Probably should’ve walked it five time and really paid attention in a few key spots that I had trouble with but we’re getting to that part. Assigned #4 corner captain and set out to my station.

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This is a smaller venue, the course was tight but, at the same time, deceptively fast.

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When it was my turn to attack the cones, I decided I would hold back some for my first run. Wasn’t sure what to expect from the new front brakes and I needed to get a feel for things. The first few elements led into a 90° left followed by a 90° and that when I started thinking “maybe I needed to flush the brake fluid and not just bleed them”. The pedal feel was good but not firm, as it had previously been. Anyhow, I exited the “crossover” to the next section of the course and immediately went the wrong way. DNF. Well, crap. After puttering across the course, I finished with a 57.618 +1

 
126
206
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Louisiana
Shrugged that off and lined back up in the grid for run 2. This time, I turned the heat up a little. Didn’t make the 1-2 shift as smoothly as I hoped and, looking back, didn’t apply near enough power. Braked earlier for the back to back 90’s but lost a little time fumbling around with the steering wheel. Made a few unnecessary movements exiting the slalom but did better overall. 52.656

 
126
206
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Louisiana
This pass started out great. Nailed the 1-2 shift without upsetting the car and things were going well. Slow, again, but positive. Still fumbled with the steering wheel in the 90's but found more speed entering the next section. Pushed a little wider in the first sweeper than I should've and made more unnecessary course adjustments. Tried to make up for it in the final slalom but cut back to soon entering the final sweeper. Back end started to come around and I saved it. Pretty much just plowed through the rest of that sweeper to my best time of 52.481

 
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126
206
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Louisiana
IMG_6965.jpeg

My efforts were good enough for 19th overall and 2nd in class. Close but yet so far from the perennial “fast guys” pace in my region but I’m happy with things. This round, I managed to finish 2.2 seconds behind Duke instead of the usual 5 to 6 seconds behind. I know that’s an freakin eternity in autocross but with more seat time I will close the gap further.

I look forward to more!
 

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