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First-Timer Thread

202
240
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
3-5 Years
Raleigh, NC
How about a thread to showcase first-time / fledgling trackers?

I'll start...my daughter has been asking to drive for some time but I needed to wait until she was 18 (eligible for track insurance). I just started teaching her to drive a manual 2 months ago, spending 1/2 hour a day every afternoon driving around town. I took her to Summit Point this weekend with Chin Track Days. Apparently she did well (I wouldn't know, I could not ride with her since I'm not an instructor). As expected she was one of the slower cars out there but it sounds like she got the line down very well, especially the carousel. And she was a boss with the point-by's (which was my biggest fear...I did not want her driving her mirrors). She had a great time.

And I now know what it feels like to be the one sitting in the paddock all weekend. :crying:

Julie Mustang.jpg
Julie Summit Point.jpg
 
202
240
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
3-5 Years
Raleigh, NC
My daughter is now a second-timer. She had a fabulous time at Summit Point this weekend! Not the fastest but she's predictable, great point-bys, and visibly improved over the two days. And MikeDV4 took me for a very helpful ride. I would say that if he's on the roster as an instructor that you should request him. Very smooth, very fast, and his "bedside manner" as an instructor is great. I improved based on the ride with him.

8A320774-230F-4DA9-B61C-4520A77CCAFF.jpeg
 
55
90
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
5-10 Years
Nova Scotia
This has been my 17yo son's first full season in autocross. He's also signed up for the local PCA HDPE school in a few weeks.
Two weeks ago we got to run at the Canadian Nationals in PEI.tempImagepJnzZo.pngIMG_8681 2.JPG We ran a slalom/skid school on the Friday, and he got the hang of the car pretty well. Once he was able to manage the 160ft skidpad correctly, I sent him out with the OEM skinny tires on the rear to try again (intentionally upsetting the car balance so he could get the hang of the oversteer). He handled that like a champ, so he got to give the tires a proper Viking funeral at the end of the day.

Unlike many other drivers on day one of the 2 day national event, he stayed on course every run and got quicker each time out. Even got to take a more experienced competitor around who was having issues staying on course. Day two he was much quicker. Neither of us finished in any position to brag about, but we both learned a lot about the car and each other. Definitely heading to PEI again next year for the [email protected] event.

He can't wait until the PCA Acadia Region school in a couple weeks!
 

Bill Pemberton

0ld Ford Automotive Racing Terror
7,000
6,143
Exp. Type
Time Attack
Exp. Level
20+ Years
Blair, Nebraska
Such a cool thread Dads, and having started with my son when he was 12 ( he could ride along in an autocross ) and he was ripping through cones at 15, it not only teaches them great car control skills, there is no better time to spend with your children. You will both remember these times for years and who knows , those years may go on and on and on , for a very long time. Cornerz, your son has to think you are the coolest Dad around after allowing him that mosquito killing burnout, that was impressive! JP X, as an Instructor I often choose to take out the young ladies because they don't have testosterone ego and they tend to listen very well. The fact that she is hitting her lines is so important, because it is amazing how many drivers have talent but can not repeat their runs time after time. If she is smooth and nailing her lines speed will come. I have some married couples where the wives constantly beat their husbands now, because they perfected the craft and worked hard on consistency, and now hubby can't keep up with them. Keep having fun, and don't be surprised if she catches and passes you in the future, ha.

Ryan and I ran Spec Miata for 8+ years and I am now his official tyrewarmer in A Street Prepared ( SCCA ) since I just can't seem to beat him anymore at the cone cavalcade. We run his 2006 Silver EVO 9, so hope to see some of you at the Solo Nationals in Lincoln this September.
 
229
258
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
20+ Years
NC
I had forgotten about this thread. My son now has two events under his belt. VIR full and Carolina Motorsports Park(CMP). I figured he would do pretty good at VIR. Hes played it on Forza? Hes ridden with me a bunch of times and has driven touring laps a bunch of times. He did quite well in green group. So well I almost moved him up to yellow. I was quite surprised; guess it comes naturally:rolleyes:.
His next even was at CMP this past July. He was really nervous since he'd never been on this track before. Said he watched a couple of my videos to try to help him prepare. Well nervous or not, he did great again! Was consistent with apexes and was just as fast as I was through the kink.
I think doing aoutcrosses and/or HPDE's is a good way to bond with your teenager and to teach them car control. Looking forward to more posts
 
Just seeing this thread, very cool, and I was inspired to add my daughter's first time to the mix from June 2021. Shame on me for not getting more pictures, but I did get some good video, and made a RaceChrono video of her best lap. A buddy of mine was her instructor, and he's kinda visible in the left corner. She was not used to the clutch, so she drove the entire 1.7mi MSR-Cresson in 4th gear! I put on a brand new set of PS4S's, so she'd have decent grip. She went from being tentative and getting passed a lot on Saturday morning, to not getting passed in the afternoon, to passing all but 1 car on Sunday - the guys in her run group were impressed! She's currently in nursing school, and not sure if she will ever pick this up, but I wanted her to learn about car control and have confidence behind the wheel. She has less "fear" than I do, and I know she would be faster than me if she ever decided to pick up HDPE as a hobby! My son just turned 18, so he's next!

As an aside, I couldn't go to the track and NOT drive! They let me run a couple times in a lower run group, so it was fun passing the types of cars that I don't normally get to pass in the top group. ;)

Emily first time.jpg
 

Dave_W

Cones - not just for ice cream
622
730
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
20+ Years
Connecticut
learn about car control and have confidence behind the wheel
Slightly off-topic for this thread, but I can't recommend enough the Tire Rack Street Survival school if you want a one-day class in car control for young drivers. In most autocross and HPDE, the goal is to keep the car under control; in Street Survival the goal is to feel the change in the car up to and over the edge of control in a variety of low-risk exercises.
 
202
240
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
3-5 Years
Raleigh, NC
Slightly off-topic for this thread, but I can't recommend enough the Tire Rack Street Survival school if you want a one-day class in car control for young drivers. In most autocross and HPDE, the goal is to keep the car under control; in Street Survival the goal is to feel the change in the car up to and over the edge of control in a variety of low-risk exercises.
I hadn’t seen the Tire Rack one, thanks for sharing. My daughter went to this one: https://putonthebrakes.org/ which was great, but they have limited locations compared to Tire Rack. All kids need this.
 

Bill Pemberton

0ld Ford Automotive Racing Terror
7,000
6,143
Exp. Type
Time Attack
Exp. Level
20+ Years
Blair, Nebraska
There was a guy at the Solo Nationals have a blast with an ecoboost auto. so you two may consider running SCCA autocrossing in the stock/street Class the forced air Four Ford would be in!
 
202
240
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
3-5 Years
Raleigh, NC
There was a guy at the Solo Nationals have a blast with an ecoboost auto. so you two may consider running SCCA autocrossing in the stock/street Class the forced air Four Ford would be in!
Good suggestion as a way to get him started. Locally we have the Tar Heel Sport Car Club who organizes a lot of AX.
 

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