You are currently viewing our forum as a guest, which gives you limited access
to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our community, at no cost, you will have access to start new topics, reply to conversations, privately message other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is free, fast and simple, so please join RX8Club.com today!
Check out The Driver's Edge. They have several events at Texas World Speedway in Bryan and Motorsport Ranch near Ft Worth each year. They still have one of each remaining this year, and have not published their 2004 calendar yet.
TWS also has its own Motorsports Club, which holds several two-day track events per year.
Then of course there's the local autocross club, Spokes, which has an active novice program to introduce you to the sport and help you find the limits of your vehicle in an environment where there nothing to hit but cones.
1985 RX-7 GSL-SE
2004 RX-8 Winning Blue Sport Ordered 1/8/03; Delivered 7/25/03 ; Returned 10/21/03
2005 RX-8 Velocity Red Sport delivered 12/05 returned at lease end 12/07
I'd start with smaller, slower events such as autocrosses. Here in Houston you can find them twice a month. Even College Station has them so I'm sure they have them where you are at too. These small events teach you the basic fundamentals of good driving on a track. If you can't drive good slowly then you can't drive good fast. Do these for a while. Another thing I did was to go find a remote empty parking lot at night and just do a couple of donuts to see if you can get to the point that you can keep it going perfectly. I also practiced handbrake turns. Do these at relatively slow speeds of 15 or 20 mph or so. This teaches you how to do several things at once such as seeing if you can keep the car in the same lane and making sure you don't over rotate or under rotate. You also need to be off the brake and on the gas halfway through the corner. The hardest part of this is making sure you are looking at where you intend to go. When you pull the brake up you should be looking over your shoulder in the direction you want to go. Once you have these down try doing a police turn. A police turn is accelerating backwards and then whipping the car around so the nose comes around and you end up going forward in the same direction. The hardest part about this is that when going backwards you snap the wheel over hard a split second before you slam on the foot brake. Halfway through the corner you should be shifting into 2nd gear and immediately get on the gas out of it. Simutaneously you also need to turn the other wheel the other direction. When you can do this flawlessly you can nearly stay in one lane and lose no speed. This one takes a little longer to learn well. These simple exercises will just teach you to be a better driver in general. Should an out of control situation arise then you will be better equipped to get out of it faster. Once you have got these down them move up to faster events such as the drivers edge on the big road courses. You never know when you are going to spin the car around or when you'll go off the track. The autocrosses and out of control practices will equip you for these situations. Try those, don't get arrested and good luck.
Oh by the way. Speaking of getting arrested, when my friend and I used to spin around in parking lots at night we would set cones out in an organized fashion as an excuse against getting a ticket should a cop inquire. One night it worked! We told him that we were practicing at night since no one was around at that we were using this parking lot rather than public streets for obvious reasons. We said we were getting ready for an autocross event. He let us off! I'm not guaranteeing that this will happen to you but it did to me. When the cop started to drive up we didn't panic. we just acted like we were supposed to be there. we only had an encounter one time and we did it alot.
Cool, Thanks for the advice. I will probably take a class prior to spinning doughnuts in parking lot late at night however .
I remember watching an anti-terrorst/emergency program on TLC that was a one or 2 week class that showed you everything from running bad guys off the road, escaping a water landing to pulling off some crazy manuvers(sp?) like the ones described above. I doubt I really want to go that in depth, but you never know.
Learning how to spin your car around is fun but it is also a very good skill to get down. Not so much for the race track but for real world emergencies. If you can purposely spin your car around and maintain control then you have a better chance of recovering should an unexpected out of control situation arise. Of course the RX-8 has a fantastic computer control stability system but that won't be the only car you drive in your life (even though it should be!). I'm a little rusty now but at one point in my 2nd gen RX-7 I could go forward, pull up the emergency brake and spin the car around and then halfway through the corner do a police turn out of it rotating a complete 360 and keep going back on the same path. That was fun but damn hard to learn. Once you have it down in a rear wheel drive car, try it in a front wheel drive car. It doesn't work the same.