More of Autocross 101 Events

edited December 2019 in Autocross (Solo II)
Hi guys,

Wouldn't it be nice to have more of Autocross 101 events or something similar to Advanced Test and Tune throughout the year?

During a regular autocross day it's difficult to try different approaches and see consistent effect of them simply because there are very few runs. The morning heat is just enough to familiarize with the course, and the afternoon heat happens after a long break. Even the weather may change during that break (and it usually does).

Seeing how spots for the annual Autocross 101 fill up instantaneously once everybody is allowed to register, I'm pretty sure there are many more people who would like to participate, but unable to get through, and they would appreciate more occasions.

Comments

  • edited November -1
    Seems like you're looking for more seat time to test setups, driving lines, etc.

    What you should consider is building a sim rig.
  • edited November -1
    Exactly, I'd like to get more seat time. But as someone who spends crazy hours at computer on week days, I'd really prefer actual driving.
  • edited November -1
    I think there are some things you can do to get the MOST out of your autox day to improve, here are some of my suggestions:

    - Take the course walk VERY seriously. Don't just walk it, think about how you're going to approach and set up each corner/section. Tag along with experienced drivers to hear their thoughts and ask questions. Try to do at least one walk by yourself.
    - VISUALIZE the course before you go out for your run. Go over the key cones, car positioning, braking and acceleration zones.
    - Ride along with experienced drivers! Most would be happy to have you jump in. Don't be afraid to walk around the grid with your helmet in hand ready to jump in when you're not working. (sometimes drivers will be trying to set a fast time and want an empty car, don't take it personally if they say no)
    - Work on course and pay attention to how drivers are attacking the section you're responsible for. What lines and timing is working or not.
    - If you get a cone or DNF; use that run to EXPLORE the limits and maybe step over slightly. Your time is ruined, use that run to learn.
    - IF POSSIBLE; get or be a co-driver(Add Petrel Data if you're really serious). Not only will it be more fun but I think it doubles your learning if you're fighting for time against a driver in the same car.

    In the end Autocross is a motorsport where seat time is VERY limited, make the most of what you get. Lean on the community of experienced drivers, if you're an eager/receptive driver we're here to help!

    Rich
    http://www.richardbasford.com <<<<< STS Miata Build!
  • edited November -1
    on top of what rich says.. which you should listen to
    get video and data acquisition that has the ability to trace throttle position such as the racecapture track coupled with Solostorm software.
    video and data will help uncover the mistakes and things you are doing well and areas you need to improve quickly if used properly.
    without data and doing the things Rich has suggested i wouldn't have been able to improve as quickly as i did.
    STR #81
  • edited November -1
    Thank you for the advice guys, I'm already doing all that, although I use just general purpose camera and GPS to record my runs.

    The point is though, for events with more seat time per day, there's obviously more people than spots, and such events seem to me a really good value per dollar, so why don't we have a few more of Autocross 101 per year for ones who are willing to pay more for a day and drive the course till exhaustion?
  • edited November -1
    i'll be frank, outside of a total novice, 101 isn't that helpful for you. stations and activities are very small and very low speed, if you've done it once and have done some autox already there's not a lot to be gained from 101 due to the sizing of the half pad setup. thats just my opinion

    finding a co driver that knows what he is doing is likely your best bet to actually improve. codriving with the right codriver and talking to the really competitive guys, asking questions, riding along, trying to understand what they're doing is usually the little bit of secret sauce that will help you go faster.

    doing it all on your own is often an exercise in frustration as you cannot see what you yourself are doing wrong, or not doing, or where to improve.
    STR #81
  • edited November -1
    Frankly, I've never been at Autocross 101, because when the events came, I was already out of novice category, and I failed to be quick enough to register.

    I did go to Velocity School and Advanced Test and Tune though, and I would do it times and times again.

    Now I realize, that I phrased my initial post in a confusing manner.
    So, it's not just about getting better results at autocross, it's more about enjoying the process of driving through the course. Mind you, when we did g-circle exercise at Velocity, there was not even a timer, but it was so much fun!
    When I go spend the whole day in Pitt Meadows, I want to drive more on that day, this is the main idea behind my post.

    Come on guys, do you think that having a couple of extra events like that per year would hurt anyone? There is a place, there are people interested in doing it and ready to pay extra. What's the downside?
  • edited November -1
    I would make use of at least one day in the year for test & tune on the 101 course of a slalom, sweeper and g-circle.
    In setting up a new chassis, it's hard to find this type of time available.


    Thanks,

    Ryan
  • edited November -1
    I think it comes down to pad availability and the club wanting to put on an event. Very few people would turn down the chance to drive, however, I don't think it would make for LESS attendance.

    If you're looking to get MORE seat time; options are of course limited in the winter but you could check out ice racing. Axon is another great opportunity to simulate it!

    Rich
    http://www.richardbasford.com <<<<< STS Miata Build!
  • edited November -1
    GringoFX wrote:
    Come on guys, do you think that having a couple of extra events like that per year would hurt anyone? There is a place, there are people interested in doing it and ready to pay extra. What's the downside?
    The downside is there are absolutely 0 extra days available at Pitt Meadows - every single date offered to the local autocross communities is typically taken. Therefore, putting on another AutoX 101 means putting on one less competitive event. For many of us, an AutoX 101 is not useful so the downside is I get to race less in the year.

    It's also very intensive on volunteers for AutoX 101 and we are often scrambling to try to find people to help run it. Taking on the stress of trying to organize more volunteers who don't get to drive sucks too...

    Those are two of the reasons why it's not a "gimme" to host more.

    I suggest you revisit Rich's advice earlier - he is one of the very fastest drivers in BC and to just say "I do that" to his advice is akin to saying "I can't learn anything or implement anything he suggested." I have been driving for a long time but codriving with him in the last year, the single thing that has improved most in my driving is my ability to execute in run 1. It's easy enough to get a good time after 7 runs (unless you get screwed in the rain... a different topic), but there is a real skill to getting it done in 1 or 2.

    -Mark
    Mark Uhlmann, UBCSCC Ex-Pres
    BM #51: 2004 Stohr WF1
    STX #67: 2011 BMW 128i (sold 2019)
    DSP #67: 1997 BMW 328is (sold 2012)
  • edited November -1
    I am probably going against the grain here, but it sounds to me like, more than anything else, you enjoy driving your car in a spirited manner that autox provides, and the competition aspect of autox may or may not be a priority.

    If that's the case, I'd strongly encourage you to keep an eye out for lapping day events held at VIMC (Vancouver Island Motorsports Circuit). The venue is located at Duncan, BC on the Island. There are multiple organizers that host events there. If you keep an eye out, you'll find them.

    VIMC is unique in the sense that it differs quite a bit from your regular road course / track / lapping day. For a lapping day held there, I'd describe it as more of a 20 - 25 min non-stop autox course (per session) with banked turns (both on- and off-camber) and elevation changes. Typically, you do 4 - 5 lapping sessions in a day. So you're looking at 80 - 120 minutes' worth of seat time. It is a LOT of fun. I'd say the venue is best enjoyed with a light weight, nimble, and balanced vehicle with 170 - 220hp.

    Yes, there is the ferry cost, possibly the hotel cost, and track day registration is more $$$ than autox. But you don't get to drive non-stop for 20 - 25 min in autox. The banked turns and elevation changes are nothing like what we have there at the Pitt Meadows venue.
    GringoFX wrote:
    Frankly, I've never been at Autocross 101, because when the events came, I was already out of novice category, and I failed to be quick enough to register.

    I did go to Velocity School and Advanced Test and Tune though, and I would do it times and times again.

    Now I realize, that I phrased my initial post in a confusing manner.
    So, it's not just about getting better results at autocross, it's more about enjoying the process of driving through the course. Mind you, when we did g-circle exercise at Velocity, there was not even a timer, but it was so much fun!
    When I go spend the whole day in Pitt Meadows, I want to drive more on that day, this is the main idea behind my post.

    Come on guys, do you think that having a couple of extra events like that per year would hurt anyone? There is a place, there are people interested in doing it and ready to pay extra. What's the downside?
  • edited November -1
    lowside67 wrote:
    The downside is there are absolutely 0 extra days available at Pitt Meadows - every single date offered to the local autocross communities is typically taken. Therefore, putting on another AutoX 101 means putting on one less competitive event. For many of us, an AutoX 101 is not useful so the downside is I get to race less in the year.
    It's also very intensive on volunteers for AutoX 101 and we are often scrambling to try to find people to help run it. Taking on the stress of trying to organize more volunteers who don't get to drive sucks too...
    If there is certain amount of people paying certain fee, we might be able to build a budget that would help negotiate with BC Driving Centre and also to offer a monetary or other kind of compensation for volunteers to better reward their efforts.
    VCMC don't schedule any events in winter, so maybe there is a better chance of availability for this time of the year?
    lowside67 wrote:
    I suggest you revisit Rich's advice earlier - he is one of the very fastest drivers in BC and to just say "I do that" to his advice is akin to saying "I can't learn anything or implement anything he suggested."
    I din't mean to show disrespect to anyone, regardless of the experience level, and I do appreciate Rich's advice as a refresher. It's just that I literally follow those steps and other tips I've learned from books and seminars.
    Traum wrote:
    it sounds to me like, more than anything else, you enjoy driving your car in a spirited manner that autox provides, and the competition aspect of autox may or may not be a priority.
    Precisely!
    Traum wrote:
    If that's the case, I'd strongly encourage you to keep an eye out for lapping day events held at VIMC (Vancouver Island Motorsports Circuit). The venue is located at Duncan, BC on the Island. There are multiple organizers that host events there. If you keep an eye out, you'll find them.
    That's a good idea, I'll check that place!
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