I’ve bought a 911 T.
It’s a 1973 Californian delivered car still LHD and now painted in ‘73 RS Grand Prix White. Along with the paint colour it also sports the front and rear bumpers, ducktail and the obligatory flared rear guards of that model. The car had been configured for track driving by its previous owner, sporting a solid 3.0 litre injected SC engine with a close ration 915 gearbox and LSD. Completing the setup are engineered fibreglass race bucket seats, a welded in half cage, a set of street legal slicks and suspension components are as tight as a drum. It was a turnkey proposition into the world of supersprints, motorkhana and track days and I’m all in.
I enthusiastically turn up to an independent track day at Wakefield park and drag an instructor into the car to find out how best to get around the track. Halfway round the first lap I realise I’ve forgotten twenty plus years of driving and can’t work out how to do it! Let’s say I put on a less than impressive performance - the instructor smiles and says, “Try to get a few laps under your belt remembering what I told you, and when your cup stops overflowing let’s hit it again!”
There is so much to learn and I realise I’m on the first rung of a very tall ladder. I come away responding to questions about the day with - yeah it was ...fun... If your version of fun means being totally overwhelmed by an alien environment! But all new things will be just that... NEW, I bought this car to improve my driving craft and that’s what I intend to do.
So the following track day I’m the first name down to go. This time it’s not so daunting, I’m listening, learning and slowly working out sections of the track, trying to put the puzzle together! I start to feel comfortable with the car and my history of coaxing overpowered under chassied drag cars up the strip comes in handy when things get loose. My car isn’t the fastest on the circuit but it’s no slouch either, and my hope is that learning track craft with a more analogue car will be a rewarding journey and it has been so far!
My advice to fellow newbies looking to get out onto the track is DO IT! Put your ego in your pocket and go to learn, everyone has a first day and don’t let that stop you getting involved. If you want to impress, your lap times will do that in time...