03-03-2006, 12:31 PM
Heartland Topeka Park, here I come!
In about 30 minutes, I'm driving down to Kansas for their C/F/R school so that I can learn about being a road course safety worker. It's totally free, and includes lunch and party afterwards (trained volunteers are always hard to come by). We're doing it at SCCA central, Heartland Topeka Park. I'm taking my camera and will update everybody on Sunday/Monday about the experience and upload any cool pics.
If I would've known about this, I could've asked off for work and come up there to meet with you. Topeka is only about 3-4 hours away from Oklahoma City, and it'd give me a great excuse to break in the new tires! Anything SCCA is starting to sound fun anyway...
Have fun! I'm interested to see all what goes on when you're there.
03-04-2006, 05:07 PM
Awsome! I would love to flag at a SCCA road race (best seat in the house) but the closest track is about 3 hours away. Have fun and post pics when you get back :)
03-05-2006, 01:47 AM
This'll be short, as I am exhausted and have to get up relatively early in the morning,
but I had a great time. Even though I got totally lost and it was monsoon season in
Kansas apparently. SCCA headquarters looked bigger in the pictures I saw before...
Attended workshops on Tech Inspection, Registration, and Medical Response.
The speakers were great and made what could have been boring subjects very fun.
Of course the big dose of coffee right off the bat helped. Not because it was
high in caffeine, but because within 3 minutes of the first workshop beginning
I managed to spill the whole thing on my crotch! [:0] I was certainly wide-awake
after that, and though I looked like I had a serious bladder problem and smelled
like stale/musty coffee the rest of the day everybody still treated my very well...
After lunch we moved out to the track and worked on "Extrication", which is the
surprisingly tough skill of removing a hurt/uncouncious/bleeding/pissed off driver
out of a wrecked race car while keeping their neck and spine perfectly still to avoid
any possible spinal cord damage. Super deep race buckets plus full roll cages
make this VERY difficult, especially when you would likely still have race traffic
moving around you, all the more so when you realize that you could literally
paralyze some body for life if they aren't perfectly stabilized.
We then leared about fire suppression and all the wonderfully nasty, flammable
chemicals a race car spits out everyhwere when it has a big off. In this pic that
entire thing is very much engulfed in flames. It's just that Alcohol fires are totally
invisible! (The only reason you can see faint anythis is because it's burning off
other chemicals on that training pad. That's something fun to learn whe you just
ran over to a car to help. A favorite quote was, "If you see a driver or worker
run from a wreck and slapping themselves, yelling, and rolling in the grass, trust us,
they are on fire..."
Then we went down to the roadcourse and practiced some
Flagging and Communication drills. It was cold as well out there, but very informative.
Lastly we rode on some slow parade laps of the (wicked awesome) new road course
that is stilll under construction in many ways. Oh lord was it nice, and in fact they said
it's going to be the most advanced road course in North America when it's done.
Technical, fast, with elevation changes and banking, it would be quite a hoot to drive.
Then I saw something that I got even more excited about, seeing as I will probably be
there before I ever get to the road course.
Boring pic you say? Not when you are an autocrosser and hear that that is just some of
the new SOLO II Nationals site. 23 full acres of virgin Competition Asphalt, with
nary a drain, ripple, rut, or lightpole. The surface is literally 3 times as smooth as newly
laid highway asphalt, and far grippier. Nice...
That's it kids, I'm cashed for the night.
Thanks for sharing, Aaron. What tracks and SCCA events do you plan on being the road course safety worker for?
03-05-2006, 02:19 AM
OK gotta go to bed after this...
I am just 2 hours from Mid-American Motorplex, a main site in this part of the midwest.
In addition Blackhawk Farms in Minnesota (Wisconsin?) is not terribly far away, and when
it's done this summer, Heartland Topeka Park is an easy 3 hour drive.