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acav1986 03-27-2008 05:40 PM

My first track day
So today is my birthday and my gf got me a day at the track at the Waterford Hills race track in Michigan.[:D]
Having never taken my car to the track before I was wondering what all I should do to her before I let her loose on the track. What fluids should I use, should I change them before or after or both, what other things do I need to look out for and if you guys have any other tips for that'd be great too.

Thanks in advance.

apex214 03-27-2008 06:22 PM

Things to check/change for a track day:

It all depends on how recently these have been serviced already. The rules I try to follow:

Brake pads and rotors should be no less than about 3/4 of new condition thickness, and brake fluid should be flushed through rather than just bled. Look around for any leaks...that goes for coolant too (next item).

Fresh coolant mixture is also advisable, or at least be sure it looks good and clean, and is topped up.

Make sure there are no weak or worn shocks, clunky or noisy suspension parts, wheel bearings, loose or suspect exhaust hangers etc.

Set tire pressures to factory spec (cold). That's all you need for a starting point. Be prepared to put some visible wear on your tires, depending on the track, amount of track time and how hard you are driving.

Empty the car of all loose items (CD's, clothing, iPods and the like, unsecured speaker boxes, anything that can whack you in the head when under hard braking or cornering).

Wear shoes that will give you some feel for the pedals. Low sneakers with soft soles rather than stiff, ankle-high boots with thick, hard soles...that sort of thing.

Bring water...for YOU not the car. No caffinated junk. You need to be on the ball, not on a buzz!

Nothing personal (I don't know you of course), but this IS important: leave the "street rod" ego at home. This is not about racing, but rather about YOU becoming a more skilled and "in control" driver. If you get an instructor to drive your car you'll surely be surprised how much you don't know about what your car can do...with a track-experienced driver.

Last item to remember: Have fun and be prepared to get addicted!

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