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Thread: Weekday track days?

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    I wanna go fast! thepass's Avatar
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    Default Weekday track days?

    Curious if you guys have any suggestions for organizations to look at who run HPDEs during the week in SoCal. I usually stick to SV, so not quite sure where to look for this. Considering doing a shake-down day after all the changes I've recently made and I'd like to do it without taking time off from work (I work weekends), plus the possibility of lower attendance/lots of clean laps would be great for that.

    -Ryan
    Last edited by thepass; 05-19-2014 at 10:38 PM.
    Ryan Passey
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    I wanna go fast! thepass's Avatar
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    Edit: I realize this went in general discussion, feel free to move it to the CA section, sometimes I forget this is a world-wide forum and not just a gathering of all my buddies.
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    Open Track Racing runs about 6 Wednesdays a year at WSIR big track. The best track days anywhere. OPEN TRACK RACING
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    Open test days at Buttonwillow are usually awesome. Most of the time we go there on their Friday open tests and often there are only 10-20 cars there all day. Pretty much empty track with open on/off.

    Willow springs also has Friday open tests and are a bit cheaper but they only allow race prepped cars. Im pretty sure your car would be OK.
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    Speed Ventures agershon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by anorexicpoodle View Post
    Willow springs also has Friday open tests and are a bit cheaper but they only allow race prepped cars. Im pretty sure your car would be OK.
    I had heard something about being a "member" of WSIR which allowed you to do test days during the week for very cheap. If anyone has more info on that, I'd appreciate it.

    I have run with Open Track Racing once and I concur they run a great track day and there's more than enough seat time. Only complaint is that they only do Big Willow. They recently tried a Streets day but I guess turnout wasn't enough to do another.

    Weekdays are great for me because "Daddy" doesn't have to miss weekend family time ... I'd be at work anyway

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    enjoys driving fast Jack Olsen's Avatar
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    Open Track Racing is the way I keep my family happy and still get to go out and drive. I instruct for them, and for me the group is a great fit.

    The deal with Willow's open testing is pretty much that the car has to have a cage. There are no corner workers on testing days, but there is fire/rescue. The cost for the day is $75 for the car and also $75 for each driver. And you have to have an annual 'membership,' which is $75, and might (I'm not positive about this) run January 1 to January 1 only. Sometimes the testing days are 'semi-exclusive' which means they limit the number of cars and raise the price. The best way to know the status of a day is to call and ask, since their online calendar is often inaccurate.

    If you do an open testing day, first confirm that it's happening (it's not every Friday) and that it's a testing day for cars, not motorcycles. It also makes sense to check to see what the following weekend's event is. If there are regional SCCA races or a POC event, odds are the testing day will be pretty crowded. If it's a motorcycle event on Saturday and Sunday, or nothing at all, you might have the track to yourself for long stretches of time.

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    ETK
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    I wish there were more mid-week track days - definitely easier for me to burn a vacation day than to reserve a whole Sat/Sun . . .

    Here is a calendar we keep up to date at FastInFastOut that lists all the track days we can find:

    Events - Fast In Fast Out

    As you can see, the Norcal guys have it better with regard to weekdays. Hooked On Driving, Trackmasters, and Checkered Flag racing all run weekday track days. I haven't been out with Open Track Racing, but I have heard they are great. I would love to see more mid-week socal track days . . .

    The open test days sound a little intimidating. What level of driving experience is required to feel comfortable at one of these? Are there professional level teams testing?
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    RaceTape Ninja Force McCocken's Avatar
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    I used to do open track evenings at Gingerman. I worked with in a half hour from the track, so I just brought my gear to work with me. Usually from 5pm til dusk. It was $60, so I could get about 2-3 hours of seat time. I would do that about 2-3 times/week during the summers. It was a really good deal and usually not many cars. I accumulated a LOT of seat time in a hurry doing that.

    Maybe see if any of the tracks out there do that.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Force McCocken View Post
    I used to do open track evenings at Gingerman. I worked with in a half hour from the track, so I just brought my gear to work with me. Usually from 5pm til dusk. It was $60, so I could get about 2-3 hours of seat time. I would do that about 2-3 times/week during the summers. It was a really good deal and usually not many cars. I accumulated a LOT of seat time in a hurry doing that.

    Maybe see if any of the tracks out there do that.
    That would be cool, but practically no one lives near any of the SoCal tracks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ETK View Post
    The open test days sound a little intimidating. What level of driving experience is required to feel comfortable at one of these? Are there professional level teams testing?
    Sometimes there are shops out there tinkering or but most often its just people that want some track time to test something without the formality that comes with a track day. There is no timing and usually only 2-3 manned flag stations. Its super relaxed and informal. Obviously if there is a big thing going on that weekend then its likely to be a bit of a zoo (any Friday test day before a 24 hours of lemons event is not a good choice for those wanting an "open" track)

    As for being intimidated, don't be. We attend the buttonwillow ones regularly and its about as relaxed as it gets. Usually the drivers meeting consists of "So were going this direction and were all big enough boys and girls to own our own race cars, lets behave accordingly" and then the track is just open. Couldn't ask for better.

    No timing, no downloads, no sessions. Pretty perfect for testing since you can just go run 4-5 laps then come in and take measurements, pressures temps etc and go immediately back out without worrying about waiting for your next run group.
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    Speed Ventures agershon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by anorexicpoodle View Post
    No timing, no downloads, no sessions. Pretty perfect for testing since you can just go run 4-5 laps then come in and take measurements, pressures temps etc and go immediately back out without worrying about waiting for your next run group.
    Sounds good to me.

    So if I read this correctly, for WSIR it's $150/day ($75/car + $75/driver) for an open test? That's as much or more as an "organized" track day.

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    RaceTape Ninja Force McCocken's Avatar
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    Yeah, but you come in and go out at your convenience. The 'relaxed' part is exactly what I experienced doing this at Gingerman. A few occasions, a pro team would show up and request an empty track for a bit. I met Pauol Gentilozzi this way. They gave us a tour of their setup and we watched them do some tuning heats on their TransAm Corvette. Pretty cool stuff for an open track evening.
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    enjoys driving fast Jack Olsen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by agershon View Post
    So if I read this correctly, for WSIR it's $150/day ($75/car + $75/driver) for an open test? That's as much or more as an "organized" track day.
    That's right. And it's $225 for the first day you go each year. It's not the same experience as a track day and it's not really targeting track day attendees, either. It's usually just about testing. Guys tend not to drive as much as you would in a track day and people keep to themselves more. Since it's for race-prepped cars, it's mostly guys looking to test setup and work the kinks out before a race.

    Honestly, they're usually not nearly as much fun as a conventional track day.

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    Master of Disaster SteveLevin's Avatar
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    If you are shaking down a car or playing with setups, it's well worth it. Even Buttonwillow at $600 can be worth it because you aren't constrained by run groups -- with an HPDE, you can make, what, 4 or 5 changes at most? You can easily double or triple that -- and generally speaking, every lap is a clear lap.

    Steve

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    Quote Originally Posted by agershon View Post
    Sounds good to me.

    So if I read this correctly, for WSIR it's $150/day ($75/car + $75/driver) for an open test? That's as much or more as an "organized" track day.
    Yes, but you do need to pay a one time WSIR membership fee on the first day of about $75.
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    I wanna go fast! thepass's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the input guys. The more I'm looking into it and thinking about it, while the relaxed open on/off structure would be really nice, I enjoy all the bustle and off-track chat, friends etc. as well, so I think I'd prefer to do an HPDE, even if it is just for a shakedown. Looks like OTR is just about the only option for non-weekend HPDE down here, I was thinking back to when I lived up North and was always hearing about week-day events with various clubs at Laguna Seca or Sonoma.. you don't appreciate what you had till you don't have it anymore

    -Ryan
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    http://www.trackhq.com/Banners/yellowsitesponsor.gif Blackbird's Avatar
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    Ryan, if you do the mid June OTR event let me know, I might want to join you on that one.

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    Speed Ventures agershon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveLevin View Post
    Even Buttonwillow at $600 can be worth it ...
    Whoa BRP test day is $600? That's prohibitive for me.

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    Senior Member JulioG's Avatar
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    BRP test days rates:
    Track Rental | Buttonwillow Raceway Park

    Full Day (Begins at 9:00AM)
    Full Day Rate WITH an Annual Test Card
    $100 per driver, $75 per car

    Half Day (Begins at 1:00PM)
    Half Day Rate WITH an Annual Test Card
    $50 per driver, $50 per car

    Full Day Rate WITHOUT an Annual Test Card (Begins at 9:00AM)
    $125 per driver, $75 per car Half Day Rate WITHOUT an Annual Test Card

    Half Day Rate WITHOUT an Annual Test Card (Begins at 1:00PM)
    $60 per driver, $50 per car



    The Annual Test Card is available for $75 and it works like a discount card. The card may be used during any non-exclusive, OPEN TEST day.

    OPEN TEST Days are open to race prepped cars and street cars.

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    Speed Ventures agershon's Avatar
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    First post and dude brings the knowledge! Props.

    Those prices seems mighty reasonable. Half day is attractive too. Thanks.

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