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  #16  
Old 02-22-2010, 08:02 PM
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The new england area has a lot of tracks relatively close together. Lime Rock Park, New Hampshire International Raceway, Watkins Glen, Pocono Raceway, Le Circuit Mont Tremblant, Mosport, and New Jersey Motorsport Park.
Don't think you will go to one of those schools and hop in a real race car and be a champion. It just doesn't work like that, sorry. Sure the school will help, but experience and practice play a huge role, as does equipment. If you can't afford the school, how are you going to afford the race car, hauler, equipment, supplies, fluids, gas, etc etc? The whole doing a few races and getting a free ride because you got noticed is a little farfetched and wouldn't count on it for a nanosecond.

I second cmcpokey's auto-x suggestion. It's a great way to learn how to handle a car, you can use your everyday driver too.
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  #17  
Old 02-22-2010, 08:03 PM
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Go experience karting first, even at this stage in your life it's the best start you could have. And it will definately help determine if you even have the skills to go further. The number of people that make it to the pro ranks is tiny... dreams are great, but imagine how many slots in professional sports there actually are for the thousands that imagine themselves competing. A few hundred at best. Well, there are even fewer spots for racers unless you can make your own. And you've narrowed it further to Touring Car. Not likely, sorry.

If you like karting, keep it as a sharpening tool when/if you progress to SCCA. Pick a class that won't break the bank, like IT or F440.
Racing is an expensive hobby, so have fun but always know your limitations.

EDIT: If WHY you're irritated with America is some minor personal inconvenience, you have some other stuff to work on.
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  #18  
Old 02-22-2010, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by cmcpokey View Post
other things to consider:

autox. cheap and easy, held all over the place. not going to get you in circuit racing, but will teach you some great car control.

Lemons/chumpcar. cheaper than real racing, but certainly real racing. i myself am trying to get into a race at some point this year.

links: ChumpCar World Series
The 24 Hours of LeMons
and not sure what city youre in but this is the san fran region scca: San Francisco Region SCCA - Get into motorsports today!
Those race deals look awesome! do you know of any others that aren't so long?
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  #19  
Old 02-22-2010, 09:25 PM
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Those race deals look awesome! do you know of any others that aren't so long?
alas i do not. i have looked. the crapcan endurance racing seems to be the only one in the US at that price point. although, for pure dirt cheap thrills, check out autox. i can not stress that enough. i am going this weekend and i go whenever i get a chance. 30-40 bucks, and the better part of a day for about 4 minutes of sheer terror/excitement/awesomeness (the terror goes away after a few times).
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  #20  
Old 02-22-2010, 09:46 PM
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No doubt, autocross is serious dope for the money. Unfortunately, we've only the dirt version down here, organizers lost what few parking lots were available for tarmac runs. Liability issues. But the last time I was down at Homestead, the line of Mitsus and WRXs waiting for their turns in the lot next to the track was amazing, 20-25 cars. In the past, getting that many out to the Fairgrounds for a Saturday morning would have been impossible.

Speaking of Homestead, Chumpcar has a 14 hour enduro coming up in May. Last fall was when I shoulda thought about a beater to enter, as there's no time to prep now... next year for sure!
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  #21  
Old 02-22-2010, 09:52 PM
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am i the only one who hates autocross/motorkhana?
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  #22  
Old 02-22-2010, 10:09 PM
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Nope... my antipathy stems from the brutal wear & tear on equipment, but that's just a personal (economic) choice. Remember, all my cars are OLD. I prefer track events where smoothness counts and I don't feel like a complete weezer if I just pedal around instead of flogging it. For cheap thrills and worthwhile low-buck seat time, I dig karting.
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  #23  
Old 02-22-2010, 11:55 PM
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agree with wear and tear, but i just don't find it fun? hillclimbs are almost as cheap, if twice as scary/tricky, and at least you go somewhere in those i guess.
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  #24  
Old 02-23-2010, 12:08 AM
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Originally Posted by clutch-monkey View Post
agree with wear and tear, but i just don't find it fun? hillclimbs are almost as cheap, if twice as scary/tricky, and at least you go somewhere in those i guess.
Very difficult to find a hillclimb if you live in a place like Kansas
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  #25  
Old 02-23-2010, 12:58 AM
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Arghhh fml lol I hate that I live in America. I'll be legal to drive in a month and this means I'll be able to pursuit my dream of being a touring car driver, but I really hate that I live in a part of California where I'm sort of out of reach of any major race track and all the driver schools I wish I could get into I can't afford. The two closest race tracks are Infineon Raceway and Thunderhill Raceway. They are a few hours away its really irritating, oh well. Does anyone have any advice? I was thinking of moving to England somewhere near Silverstone, attending college there and trying to get recognized by doing a few races there.
Where do you live/attend school?
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  #26  
Old 02-23-2010, 02:42 AM
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  #27  
Old 02-23-2010, 02:52 AM
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Hi All
I just adapted the thread title a little, just to avoid irrelevant debates......
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  #28  
Old 02-23-2010, 07:01 AM
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Why be irritated with the race track locations? Why not be irritated with the fact that America doesn't have a good racing ladder outside of that which leads to NASCAR. In the old days world competitive drivers could come out of SCCA's FF class. Not anymore. It's not that America doesn't produce drivers with the raw talent to compete with the best in the world. It's just that since about the mid 1980s we haven't had a good ladder to learn on. Thus if you are really serious about learning to drive road courses you generally need to leave the US.

Of course we do have the oval racing thing down pat. Incidentally, anyone who claims ovals are easy has just proven they don't know what they are talking about. Ovals such as the Indianapolis Motor Speedway are some of the most demanding and least forgiving of ANY race tracks.
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  #29  
Old 02-23-2010, 08:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clutch-monkey View Post
agree with wear and tear, but i just don't find it fun? hillclimbs are almost as cheap, if twice as scary/tricky, and at least you go somewhere in those i guess.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockefella View Post
Very difficult to find a hillclimb if you live in a place like Kansas
not just in kansas, but pretty much anywhere. there are very few localities willing to host one, or allow it to happen anyway. a few weeks ago i was talking to a guy that competes in hillclimbs, and the closest 2 to me are on the CA/OR border, which is a good 8 hour drive from here.

i think autox is a very different ballgame to track racing, and you can't go into it thinking it will be the same. it isnt like a track where you try over the course of a bunch of laps to knock little bits of time, trying to find the right brake point and when you can get on the gas. with autox you have 4-5 runs, and thats it. and thr track is different every time. its much more a test of how well can you learn the course, and adapt your driving to suit it.

i'd rather be out on a real track, but it is super expensive, much harder to get track time on a weekend, and the only failure of any kind i have had was at the track. so your speculation about wear and tear isn't 100% fair. it is rough on your tires, but so is track time. it's not hard on brakes at all. it can be on suspension, but that depends on where the course is, and its not as hard it hitting the kerbs at the apex. for someone without a dedicated track car autox is a much more reasonable proposition. this is just my perspective as having done both.
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  #30  
Old 02-23-2010, 03:37 PM
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Why be irritated with the race track locations? Why not be irritated with the fact that America doesn't have a good racing ladder outside of that which leads to NASCAR. In the old days world competitive drivers could come out of SCCA's FF class. Not anymore. It's not that America doesn't produce drivers with the raw talent to compete with the best in the world. It's just that since about the mid 1980s we haven't had a good ladder to learn on. Thus if you are really serious about learning to drive road courses you generally need to leave the US.

Of course we do have the oval racing thing down pat. Incidentally, anyone who claims ovals are easy has just proven they don't know what they are talking about. Ovals such as the Indianapolis Motor Speedway are some of the most demanding and least forgiving of ANY race tracks.
Yeah there is a race track in my city, but its an oval and that's not what I want to get into. I know its a dream and I'll be starting late, I think autocross will be a good way to sharpen up. I just can't afford track days or school right now because I have no job and my three grand is going towards looking for a better car than my 20 year old salvaged corolla. Within the next year I'll be able to afford a track day every other month or so, I'll be fine with that.
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