It's mid-summer and hot. And a great time to enjoy driving! A few ACF members and friends took a trip down to Quonset Point to attend the July 19 session of ADSI's high performance driving school and autocross. I wanted to see how many of my cars I could get down there to experience so I enlisted the aid of Alex SdB and Mike M so we could manage three: the '07 997, the '86 944, and the '73 914.
Folks, one of our own from Providence and ADSI has had a spell of bad luck at a hillclimb at Okemo. Many of you probably know Jesse Whitsell, proprietor of Banchwerks - a great auto shop in Providence, fierce driver of an E30 M3 which spends most of its time going sideways, and all around great guy who is always ready to provide automotive advice and a helping hand.
Should you be so inclined, you can help him with medical bills and not being able to work for a while as he recovers from surgery.
I hope everyone is having a good summer and is getting excited for ADSI at Quonset on July 19th!!
Here is some breaking news! A very experienced driver–and a person I'm very happy to have recently met: Ron Savenor–has posted a much more in-depth look at the right way to get around Palmer Motorsports Park at speed. I found it pretty fascinating to compare his impressions to mine. The big takeaway for me is that I was throwing out too much of the theoretical line, thinking I was finding a faster way around the track. I now realize that it was faster largely because of my own limited skills! This info has helped me to see that I was on to something by observing the helpful camber in places on the track, but I was also leaving a lot of speed on the table by trying to cut corners too sharply. That was also probably hurting my tires a bit more than I should have been.
I hope you find it as instructional as I have. Thanks, Ron!
It's been almost one full year since I decided to put a helmet on my seven year old son and put him into a gas-powered racing vehicle for wheel-to-wheel racing. As he climbed into a kart at On Track Karting in Wallingford, CT yesterday, I couldn't help being struck by how much has changed and how much we've both grown in a year.
While you are all planning out your summer activities, block off this day on your calendars: 7/19 8am to 5pm. We'll be headed down to the autocross at Quonset Point in North Kingston, RI to be instructed by ADSI's crew. The morning will start at 8am with lessons until noon. From about 1pm to 5pm, the full autocross course will be up and running for timed runs and refining the skills learned in the morning.
Should anyone have forgotten how much you learn and how much fun it is, I'll just leave this here for you to refresh your memory (link to video):
What a surreal weekend with the Porsche Club at Palmer Motorsports Park in Palmer/Ware, Massachusetts this weekend! I still can't quite believe it actually happened. We had Thompson Speedway's road course come online last year in this region and had the joy of working to figure out that new track. And now this! And this one is unbelievably complex. How you ask? Try adding about 150 feet of elevation change per lap!! Let's take a minute to explore why that changes everything.
The fun of summer is well upon us folks! It's track season! And wedding season. And graduation season. And where the heck are my kids going to summer camp season. And all that fun too! But mostly track season! This weekend's main event is the ADSI autocross at Quonset. Most of you should be there.
I, oddly, will not be there. I'm going to be trying to not do anything stupid at the new track up in Palmer called Whiskey Hill or something like that. The PCA overlap with ADSI is rough this year for me, but such is life I guess. If you don't think it's quite so dramatic, take a look:
And here is Ron Savenor (those who've been on Charles Street in Boston may recognize the name) taking his Cup car around the course.
Our fellow ACF member Alex G. is supposed to be there with me so hopefully we'll learn this beast together. But in the mean time, I fully expect you all to get yourselves down to Quonset to enjoy the amazing driving at ADSI!! No excuses this time! And I promise I'll be a regular for the rest of the events after this one, especially when Anthony puts two in one month for July!!
So get this stuff on your calendars folks and get to some driving, will ya?
A Driver's Education (DE) event with the Porsche Club has become one of my more favorite things to do. But it has been an evolution to get to that place. Despite my normal love of driving and, now, amateur car-control events, I'll admit that my first trip to drive my own car on a real race track in 2013 was a bit nerve-wracking. Everyone thinks they are the world's best driver, especially before they have ever been trained (where we learn we aren't nearly as good as we think we are...). So I at least had that going for me. Yes, I had driven other people's car on a race track before - Skip Barber High Performance Driving School at the historic Lime Rock Park track in CT - so it wasn't that I hadn't been on a track before. Tracks are certainly a bit intimidating, especially New Hampshire Motor Speedway with it's full NASCAR stands around the oval. You really just don't know quite what to expect.
As we go from freezing our nuts and bolts off to baking our coolant, it's a good time to look ahead and do some planning. The Formula 1 boys may take a few weeks off, but here in New England we're just getting started. In less than two weeks, ADSI will host it's second school and autocross of the season. The date is Sunday May 17th. My son has a karting event that day so I may catch the late afternoon at best (2-5pm??) or may miss it altogether. My grand plan to hit all the events again this year is being somewhat confounded. But that does not dissuade me from encouraging all of you to take advantage of one of our local natural resources!
Some days are truly better than others. Today was special. At the invitation of brother Attilio, a few of us lucky souls got to venture up to Thompson, Connecticut for a bit of fun doing circles around their Speedway road course today. I had been planning to go for some time, as I'm a bit of a "track [woman-of-the-night]", in family-friendly parlance. At the last minute I convinced Christian to make the trip with me and to bring at least one of his siblings along as well. With his brother-in-law, a car nut who makes me look quite tame, in town from California, I was sure it would be him, but instead I met Steve from Boston, his other brother, at the track. And Steve was a phenomenal guy.