My middle name is David too. !Kinda funny how Brendan's last name and his instructors last name are fairly similar. They start and end the same, with just some difference in the middle!
I wish I had an opportunity to drive an open wheeler. I did 6 trackdays last year, but all in my NA Miata with super sticky street tires. I had one session where I got to drive a NB Miata with heavily used slicks and no power steering. Spun it the last lap seemingly out of nowhere!
If I want to really drive a racecar like the opener wheeler in this experience, pretty much my only option is to pay a big rental fee to one of the local companies that have a fleet. Probably super fun, but it ends up costing like what 3 or more normal trackdays cost, so I question how much value I'll get out of it. I suppose it depends on the car and how many sessions/laps I can get out of the day.
Hmmmm, very good point. There's not that many fast corners on the track so I didn't bounce off the revs once, as far as I can recall.@Brend - curious as to whether the car was rev-limited? I had a go in one at Brands Hatch a couple of years back, and whilst it was a lot of fun, the rev limit was very low so I was disappointed to be bouncing off the limiter all the way along the main straight. Knockhill's a bit far for me to travel but I'd love to have a go in one that was derestricted!
I don't know if it's still running, but the best "pay-to-drive-something-cool" day I've ever done was a NASCAR experience at Rockingham (the UK one). Those cars were power-limited rather than rev-limited but allowed you to lap at well into 3 figures. You had your own spotter in the grandstands advising you on racing line and when to get out of the way of the cars that were running passenger laps with a pro driver. The passenger lap gave me a lot more respect for the guys who only turn left. They are very serious race cars with huge amounts of grip, and were running a proper oval setup so that you had to steer right on the straights. You also don't realise from the outside just how different each corner is. I spent the rest of the day grinning like a madman.
I was lucky enough to drive this track a few years ago in what appeared to be a formula ford with a bike engine. Absolutely fantastic! The real eye opener for me was being taken out in a people carrier by a lady who knew her way around the track, showing how easily running off the racing line in the first corner could soon snowball into a full on disaster at the third corner.
From there on I was hooked. Busy track coupled with the thrill of driving over the same kerbs that I had watched the likes of Cleland, Menu, Rydell and Tarquini fly over when I was a lad was absolutely indescribable.
Hope you had as much fun as I had
Cheers mate! It's fantastic, the Type R was a beast...even if my Peugeot'ness made me weary on going full pelt.Good stuff, I did something similar a few years back as a birthday gift in a formula Ford around castle combe.
Although the practice car they have being a Fiesta ST is somewhat less exciting, but I took the instructor out in the Fiesta and was over taking cars with a lot more power which I'm chuffed about.
It got to the formula Ford and after finding my feet after a couple of laps I got far too confident and decided to really go for it on the next lap. I promptly took too much speed into a fast right hander and spun, kept it in gear, did a full 360 and drove off as if nothing happened!
I would love to go around Knockhill though, and drive a Type R but that's a bit of a trek for me. Quality write up!!
Thanks for sharing the experience. 👍
I took part in something similar a few years ago on Brands Hatch Indy: same ex-Formula Palmer Audi single seater, but with an E92 BMW M3 as the warm-up. I've been to that circuit for as long as I can remember for many meetings ranging from BTCC to BSB, so being able to drive it was a real pleasure.
My only single seater experience beforehand was through karting, so jumping into the FPA was a real leap forward. And as you say, it is like a kart turned up to 200%... even if in my case, the engine was rev-limited to half its normal capacity (3500rpm instead of 6000), so you don't need to be a mechanic to know what that felt like on the straights.
But still, the experience was one to savour. The BMW weren't half bad either.