Experiences That Keep Me Returning TO Skip Barber Racing Each Year
The experiences that I had by participating in the Advanced Two Day Racing School are the types that keep me returning to Skip Barber Racing each year: they help me improve my driving and instructing skills
The Advanced Two Day Racing School which I just finished was especially rewarding. It’s the third Advanced Two Day Racing School that I’ve completed, and it proved to be the best.
Jason Holehouse (who served as lead instructor), Stephan Bastrzycki, Travis Washay, and R. B. Stiewing (who provided instruction on day two) supplied excellent coaching, matching clearly rendered theory with solid practical advice. The generous amount of track time (including at least one hour on the autocross course) that I received differentiated this recent school from the previous two, as did the valuable and revealing track walk that Jason conducted. Moreover, with instructors on the track with students for the entire second day, I was able to receive some particularly important, precisely focused advice from Jason, Stephan, and Travis as to how I could reduce segment times in a number of corners. The astutely rendered comments that I got from R. B. on day two of the school helped me drive more constructively and analyze my progress more effectively.
The school combined car control, lapping days, and lead-follow lapping, and I finished the school knowing that I had not only reacclimated myself to a formula car (from which I’d been absent for two years) but that I had also learned more and ultimately driven more effectively than I would have if I had simply participated in a car control clinic, a lapping day, or a lead-follow lapping session. Personally, I got a lot out of the two days, Robert: the high-quality instruction generated from vantage points on and off the track; the different activities (from autocrossing to a track walk to lead-follow lapping); and the ample time on the track with instructors helped me sharpen my skill sets and go faster with greater precision and confidence.
When I completed my three days of instructor training with Skip Barber Racing in 2012, R. B. Stiewing, leader of the instructor training program, provided all of the instructor trainees with copies of the original Skip Barber Racing School curriculum. He indicated that Skip Barber Racing instructors often improvise with the curriculum, adjusting and tuning it to make its impact on students more telling. This school’s curriculum had all of the signs of quality improvisation–of adjustments which emphasized constructive racing theory and sustained practice in a formula car. Those adjustments were, certainly, a direct consequence of the instructional expertise that Jason, Stephan, Travis, and R. B. exemplified on and off the track: their special talents as instructors enhanced the curriculum, generated invaluable advice, provided numerous opportunities for practical demonstrations, and created seamless transitions between segments of the school’s program.
I don’t want to overlook the fact that the cars were prepared to a high standard, a clear indication of the quality attention that the Skip Barber Racing technicians continue to provide. In addition, precise rules were identified for all of the school’s on-track activities; safe, responsible driving was stressed consistently; and corrective advice was promptly provided by the instructors if school participants had or created challenges on the race track.
The experiences that I had by participating in the Advanced Two Day Racing School are the types that keep me returning to Skip Barber Racing each year: they help me improve my driving and instructing skills. This August, I’ll rely on those experiences as I work with the BMW CCA and the Ferrari Club of America.