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Discussion Starter #1
I'm signed up for the NASA HPDE this Sunday at Laguna Seca and was just wondering if anyone else was planning on attending. Pretty good price as far as Laguna Seca track time goes. Should be interesting running my car... low horsepower, autocross setup, and heat-cycled-to-death Azenis. I'll probably be playing with struts and sway bars between sessions trying to find a good setup. I don't know anyone else around here who races cars so I thought I'd check if any board members were planning on attending. Sharing pits with other MR2 owners is always fun...
 

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That track is so much fun to drive. :notworthy
 

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How do you guys find out about information like these? I want to get in on some track time this coming race season, but I still need to upgrade my suspension/brake first before I dump the money for the registration fee.

Thanks

Eric
 

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That is cheap. A lot cheaper that the club I'm in. There's like nothing under $250 for my events.
 

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EricLee7481:
Take a look at www.team-racing.org too. They put on great track events (I may be a little biased as I volunteer as an instructor for them sometimes). The atmosphere is always very relaxed with fairly small run groups. Lunch and soft drinks are included in the price, and everyone in the beginner/novice group is assigned their own instructor. The novice group is usually limited to 20 drivers, so the track is not crowded. There are also intermediate and advanced groups.

You'll also get plenty of track time at a team-racing event. The normal schedule is for each group to receive 6 20 minute sessions, plus a 60 minute open track session at the end of the day, about 3 hours of track time! The last time I was at a NASA event, it was 4 20 minute sessions for the HPDE groups, or 80 minutes total.

There are other open track opportunities. If you're just starting out, Thunderhill puts on there own High Performance Driving School which is very good. All the tracks have calenders which show who is using the track every day of the year.
 

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Hey Zack, You are going to have a blast at Laguna. It is a great track. So you don't have a high HP car, it will just make it all the more fun when guys with 10G's in their turbo's come up to you in the pits to ask you "hey man what kind of turbo are you running in there?" after you lap them a few times. Trust me, you will get far more gratification out of it. If your ever in Sactown, you should call (btw my 2 has not moved in a year).
 

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Ever since I saw "The Pass" video that Jekylandhyde posted, it's been one of my dream to drive my car on Laguna Seca. Hopefully my dream can come true this coming race season...

Eric
 

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I get to go with a customer of ours with a spec miata and run passenger all day and help them with the PI system I installed in their car. I have never been to the Laguna, but i work at infoneon so it is gonna have to be amazing to beat Infineon. If I see any mr2 I will say whatsup, look for us in a orange miata fading into white with orange stars (probably the nicest miata out there :). I'm gonna have my miata out there by June, but for now I'm bumming rides :)
 

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Hmm.. I'm new to tracks. I'm a lil confused after reading all that info on the NASA site, haha. I've got my miata pretty much ready for the track (rollbar, tires, bigger brakes, etc). Does this event have any instructors? $150's a pretty hard price to beat =P I've been wanting to go for a while, but I have no idea what to expect on a trackday. I would bring the mr2, but it'd probably die, haha
 

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Discussion Starter #13
supahamster said:
Hmm.. I'm new to tracks. I'm a lil confused after reading all that info on the NASA site, haha. I've got my miata pretty much ready for the track (rollbar, tires, bigger brakes, etc). Does this event have any instructors? $150's a pretty hard price to beat =P I've been wanting to go for a while, but I have no idea what to expect on a trackday. I would bring the mr2, but it'd probably die, haha
NASA track days are more instructional and learning-oriented than typical track days, I think. Their track days, which they call HPDE's, have four levels. As I understand it, level 1 drivers have an instructor with them the whole time, level 2 is for those with basic track experience, level 3 has more open passing etc, and level 4 is pretty much balls-out. One of the reasons I'm going to be running with them because you can apply for a road racing permit once you reach level 4, as opposed to the SCCA where you need to have a FULL race prepped car and take a licensing school.
 

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I have run both level 2 and 3 (in the same day, they moved me). I was not comfortable with level 4 since most people had big HP cars in the group and DID know how to drive them. I have no problem beating up an a unskilled driver with 500 hp, but going up against someone with 200 hp that knows how to use it is a diff story when you only have 135. Your going for your racing licensing Z? Sweet, any particular classes you are going to be running?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Your experience with level 4 pretty much confirms what I was fearing. As you said, sharing the track with good drivers in fast cars is quite an adventure. At my last motorcycle trackday the A-group riders would sometimes mingle in the lower groups... some of the passes those guys would pull were ridiculous. My tenative plan is to race Pro7 because it's the cheapest class, and the gen1 RX7's are cool little cars. Even so, I'd have to dish out cash for a race car, trailer, tow vehicle... quite a task for a college student with damn-near zero income. Anyways, I plan on capturing a bunch of in-car video this weekend, so at least I'll have something to study until next time. My goal is to get the instructor to say something along the lines of "Are you sure this is your first time racing this car on a big track?" We'll see how that goes...
 

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Z,
You still have your 400 or did you upgrade? You should ride up to sac sometime we could go for a ride.

I love all gens of the RX7. I understand about needing trailer, towing vehicle and race car, one of the reasons I could never pursue any real racing other then autoX.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I still have the 400, but I'm selling it soon... too bad because I really love that bike. In September I bought an '01 RC51, took it to two track days, and sold it last week. I think I'm buying this next week. The guy selling it I know from my last track day (he gave me a ride to the track). The plan is to slap some kind of ghetto headlight and brake light on it to make it street legal. You should come to a trackday at Infineon with me sometime this year... awesome track for bikes.
 

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I know I did the parade laps last year at the AMA races (btw they were not at parade speeds, I was hitting speeds of 100 or so on some of the longer bits.

I would do a official track day on my bike but I need leathers, which means I need to get them custom fit. Nothing off the rack will fit me.

Your going to go from an RC down to a 600??? DUDE! What are you looking to get for your 400. Why sell it, you will never be able to find one again. If I didn't already have two bikes already........
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Man, you really need to get some leathers. I never ride without them. If you have to get custom ones, so be it... they're worth every penny.

I missed out on the parade laps at the AMA race, but racing at Infineon in October was a blast. I wasn't watching my speedometer at all, but I'd guess I was probably going around turn 1 at maybe 110 with my knee on the ground... not sure of the speed exactly but it must have been pretty quick because I was in 4th gear on my RC51. Riding the RC on tracks made me realize how much I miss the flickability of a smaller bike. If I had the money I'd get a RS250 GP bike, but I'll settle for a lightweight 600 track bike. Trust me, less power is more fun.
 
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