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Hey, I'm back and still giddy! I will give you the blow-by-blow.

Day 1: After introducing ourselves, we are taken on a tour of the propery-shop, kart school and finally a van ride around the school's track. I knew it would be interesting when they asked if anyone got motion sick. Being the glutton for punishment I am, I sat in the back. The instructor proceeds to take us on the track full out while casually pointing out various features to us. The ride rivaled my favorite rollercoaster. Then we got our class pictures taken. I ended up with just myself and 1 other guy (Greg) in my class. After ground school, we get in our cars (mine was #30) We start out doing a throttle steering drill, then slaloms. After that we get in the skid car. It's this crazy thing they have with hydraulics to artificially create skids. It was hilarious. First we went around in an oval and eventually in figure 8's. Ryan (my instructor) had a wicked sense of humor so just when I would get a good handle on things he'd throw something else at me. At the end of the exercise he took out all 4 wheels and yells "black ice!" The afternoon was spent doing emergency braking drills and accident prevention drills. Not exactly thrilling stuff, but good to workon.

Not having anything better to do that night, I signed up for the Super Kart course where they teach you how to drive these little 6 speed racing karts. What a rush! I must have spun out 8 or 9 times during the course of the evening. You are so low to the ground and once I got the hang of it I was maybe getting up to 60mph in the straightaway. Major adrenaline rush.

Day 2: My superkart experience has left me with some sore muscles but we're spending much more time in the cars today so off we go. It had rained and was still drizzling which Ryan insisted was just great. Our first exercise was heel-toe downshifting. I had to talk out loud to myself in the car to do it right (brake, clutch, shift, rev, clutch) but I was doing well enough that when Ryan rode with me he said he didn't think he needed to give me any feedback. (What he really wanted was to get back in his instructor car and do donuts in the skid car area. Doesn't rain much down there.) After that we were on the practice oval learning the proper line. One constant radius turn, one ascending radius turn. At first I was slowing down too much on the constant radius turn and Greg, my classmate was slower than me so I would catch up to him and have to drop back a bit. But I started to get the feel of it. Next we autocrossed about 8 runs. The track was pretty wet at this point and my car only had 1 wiper (at least it was on the driver's side) so that made it interesting. The bummer was even tho my times were more consistent Greg had the best time around by a couple tenths of a sec :mad: In the afternoon we headed out to the Maricopa oval. By now it's raining steadily. Ryan is egging us on to really push it which means...spinouts. Yes, I spun out 3 times, the third time I ended up in the gravel and hoped like mad that I didn't have to get towed out. The car was still rolling forward and thankfully a little throttle got me out of that mess. We finished day 2 with a lead-and-follow around the entire track. It was my classmates last day so he graduated.

Day 3: I have a private lesson! We start out in the skid car again, this time Ryan wants me to keep an oversteer going all the way around the figure 8. That was good fun :wink:. Next it was back to the Maricopa oval, this time to practice heel-toe downshifting. Ryan's fuel pump went out on his instructor car right in the middle of the track and had to call for a tow truck. But he doesn't let that stop my lesson. We hop in the Mustang and he's going around this track at speed while the towtruck is still there. I was rather alarmed. Ryan says,"he knows what I'm going to do and I know what he's going to do. It's OK." And it was. The dowshift is harder for me now (more pressure) and I have trouble getting good revs but I keep at it. We finish the morning back at the autocross where, being the only one I got to do 12 runs. I was pretty consistent again but Ryan of course is pushing me and I did spin off course once. But my best time was 1:01.36 which according to Ryan was excellent for a student. In the afternoon I get to drive on the track for 2 hours (yes!!!) with only Ryan there as well. Here's where I came to appreciate what the pro's go through. You have to be so focused on what you're doing. My downshifting was still sometimes good, sometimes crappy and the fastest I got in the straightaway was about 85 mph but I have caught the fever. I wanna be a race car driver. Next-graduation. I got a diploma, a plaque with the class picture and date on it and my report card. They grade on a 1-5 system. Ryan said the average student grade was 2.2-2.7 And I got...a 3.2!! Ryan said I was an excellent student and he wishes all his students were like me. Major confidence boost! I haven't stopped smiling since.
 

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Congrats Tracy,
Hope you took all the rain back with you. I could not believe your luck, you had what like two out of three days were rain. Least it was not like a down pour. So when are you going back? The temps were like 15 degrees cooler than normal, hope you don't pull a summertime 15 degrees hotter than normal?
Pics where are the pics?
 

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Outstanding!!!!!!!!! Your so lucky. How much does it cost to do the same?
I've always wanted to do something like that.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Bullittgirl had so much fun she lost her brain and left her camera in the hotel room :roll: I don't have any pics of me driving anyway. The photographer was too busy with the Grand Prix class to waste time on one HPD student I guess. Here's a scan of my plaque with me, Greg and Ryan (instructor).

A couple of pics from Bondurant's website-the skid car (a Taurus, I drove a Mustang)


and the superkart

When my camera arrives I will post more.

_________________
Tracy Brown
Hibernating since 11/19/01
DHG#2832
MGWLTD bits & pieces
100mm densecharger
Steeda Tri-Ax shifter

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Bullittgirl on 2001-12-16 12:01 ]</font>
 

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Discussion Starter #6
<TABLE BORDER=0 ALIGN=CENTER WIDTH=85%><TR><TD><font size=-1>Quote:</font><HR></TD></TR><TR><TD><FONT SIZE=-1><BLOCKQUOTE>
On 2001-12-16 11:33, Jimmy Ray wrote:
Outstanding!!!!!!!!! Your so lucky. How much does it cost to do the same?
I've always wanted to do something like that.

</BLOCKQUOTE></FONT></TD></TR><TR><TD><HR></TD></TR></TABLE>

Jimmy Ray, the 3 day HPD was $2850. They do run deals in the summer but it'll be HOT down there. Maybe we could get them to do a Bullitt group thing which could save some $$$. Their standard class size is 12 so it might not be that hard to get 12 people together for a group thingie.(Seriously, if people are interested I would be more than happy to work with the Bondurant sales people. Hubby already said I can go back at some point to do the Grand Prix class if I want.)
Other than the fact that I got 1 day of private lessons no extra charge, I felt like I had picked the wrong class. The grand prix class got more track time. You could go 3 or 4 days. Now that I've done HPD I can go back and do just the last 3 days of Grand Prix if I want. You come out of that one with an SCCA racing license.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Well, Bob, that would just be too cool!! I'd probably get run over though.
 
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