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Discussion Starter · #1 ·

Was looking for a local place to possibly take the Elise. The areas Im used to living in typically have open track days a few times a year but I now live in VA and this is the closest place I can find that has a open track day up to 20 times a year, although their rate is a bit much IMO. 3500 Initiation fee, 170 a month, and 170 per track day.....https://virnow.com/experience/club/

I noticed that they allow members to bring a guest to open track days, is anyone here a member that would let me try a track day to get the feeling of it before I shell out almost 8k for a membership...Or if anyone has anything to say about the track I would love to hear it! I may go and spend a few nights in a villa there and snoop around to get a feel for the place. Im used to just showing up and paying a hundred or so dollars for some track time. (Putnam Racetrack in Indiana)
 
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Hello Danny,

I don't think you need to shell out that kind of coin to do track days. Many marque clubs and track day organizations run events at VIR, including HDPE driving schools. You can look on the VIR calendar or on Motorsportreg.com


Jul
31-2

F - Sun
NASA at VIRginia International Raceway
NASA - Mid Atlantic Region
Jul
31-2
F - Su

NASA at VIRginia International Raceway
NASA - Mid Atlantic Region
Aug
12-13
W - Th

David Murry Track Days @ Virginia International Raceway
David Murry Track Days
Aug
28-30
F - Su

Potomac's VIR DE
PCA - Potomac, The Founders' Region - DE

Sep

12-13

S - Su

NASA at VIRginia International Raceway
NASA - Mid Atlantic Region
Sep
19-20
S - Su

2020 THSCC Jessi Culbertson Memorial HPDE
Tarheel Sports Car Club

Oct
3-4
S - Su
 

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2005 Lotus Elise
Joined
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465 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hello Danny,

I don't think you need to shell out that kind of coin to do track days. Many marque clubs and track day organizations run events at VIR, including HDPE driving schools. You can look on the VIR calendar or on Motorsportreg.com


Jul
31-2

F - Sun
NASA at VIRginia International Raceway
NASA - Mid Atlantic Region
Jul
31-2
F - Su

NASA at VIRginia International Raceway
NASA - Mid Atlantic Region
Aug
12-13
W - Th

David Murry Track Days @ Virginia International Raceway
David Murry Track Days
Aug
28-30
F - Su

Potomac's VIR DE
PCA - Potomac, The Founders' Region - DE

Sep

12-13

S - Su

NASA at VIRginia International Raceway
NASA - Mid Atlantic Region
Sep
19-20
S - Su

2020 THSCC Jessi Culbertson Memorial HPDE
Tarheel Sports Car Club

Oct
3-4
S - Su

Thank you, they had the calander disabled on the VIR page. Ill check that site out!

Edit..Daang 3999 for a David Murray Track day
 

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From personal experience, some track day operators, particularly the marque clubs are relatively sensible, sending the poor or overly aggressive drivers home if they don't behave. Hooked on Driving and their franchisees are pretty good.

Others, particularly some of the commercial operations that shall remain nameless seem to attract drivers who show up with some very fast and high dollar equipment, but poor judgement. I experienced some of that first hand last month at Laguna.

Lastly, considering the cost of replacing and painting a damaged clam, which may occur through no fault of yours or someone else, track day insurance such as Hagerty/RLI is sensible. Since it was my first time out in my stock Elise since I bought the car, it seemed sensible to buy insurance. It was $155 for the policy for two days.

Regards,
Dan
 

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Danny where in VA are you? I'm eyeballing VIR and Summit Point as well but the daily rates are much higher than the two groups I've run with down at NCCAR. When I started two years ago a weekend at NCCAR cost what a day at VIR ran. Hopefully once covid rules are released and once I can get back in the car from my knee replacement three weeks ago I will be able to visit those tracks. For HPDE they are in a lead follow rather than driver and instructor and no spectators or crew as of this point and since I'm intermediate I still want an instructor. It will be interesting doing the lead follow and I can see where that would be useful in the corners. I track with TSSC Tidewater Sports Car Club and Apex Events. Recent Apex event at NCCAR had two Lotus there. NC auto insurance covers HPDE events by law as long as it's not timed or wheel to wheel racing I will have to check to see if that applies to VA tracks as well, if not $155 a weekend is reasonable.
 

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I wouldn't waste my time with a lead-follow. All it takes is one guy out there with all-seasons and your weekend is shot. That being said, the Ariel Atom experience at VIR was pretty fun. It was a lead-follow on the smaller Patriot Course, but the car made it interesting.

I'll probably end up at NCCAR at some point because of proximity, but it really seems like a bland track. Summit Point is awesome though, tons of variety.

Dominion Raceway was close to where I lived in Virginia, but we moved before I could try it out.

@DannyTheDonk I'd say try all your different choices before dropping a full membership to one since you are a day's drive from several tracks.
 

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I wouldn't waste my time with a lead-follow. All it takes is one guy out there with all-seasons and your weekend is shot. That being said, the Ariel Atom experience at VIR was pretty fun. It was a lead-follow on the smaller Patriot Course, but the car made it interesting.

I'll probably end up at NCCAR at some point because of proximity, but it really seems like a bland track. Summit Point is awesome though, tons of variety.

Dominion Raceway was close to where I lived in Virginia, but we moved before I could try it out.

@DannyTheDonk I'd say try all your different choices before dropping a full membership to one since you are a day's drive from several tracks.
For you yes after VIR, one of the best in the country NCCAR would be bland. For me starting in my mid 60's NCCAR is less than half the distance, much cheaper, safe track to learn on. Nice facilities although during covid all facilities are portable and outside. NCCAR changed the peanut added esses and now has four track combinations that can be run. I feel safe learning here but as I learn and become solo qualified I will want to explore other tracks.
 

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For you yes after VIR, one of the best in the country NCCAR would be bland. For me starting in my mid 60's NCCAR is less than half the distance, much cheaper, safe track to learn on. Nice facilities although during covid all facilities are portable and outside. NCCAR changed the peanut added esses and now has four track combinations that can be run. I feel safe learning here but as I learn and become solo qualified I will want to explore other tracks.
The Patriot loop at VIR is just an infield section, and that's all I've driven there...

I sat through a presentation by one of the founding guys of NCCAR and the purpose was to be an automotive test track - varied but no direct intent to be challenging or engaging.
 

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Danny where in VA are you? I'm eyeballing VIR and Summit Point as well but the daily rates are much higher than the two groups I've run with down at NCCAR. When I started two years ago a weekend at NCCAR cost what a day at VIR ran. Hopefully once covid rules are released and once I can get back in the car from my knee replacement three weeks ago I will be able to visit those tracks. For HPDE they are in a lead follow rather than driver and instructor and no spectators or crew as of this point and since I'm intermediate I still want an instructor. It will be interesting doing the lead follow and I can see where that would be useful in the corners. I track with TSSC Tidewater Sports Car Club and Apex Events. Recent Apex event at NCCAR had two Lotus there. NC auto insurance covers HPDE events by law as long as it's not timed or wheel to wheel racing I will have to check to see if that applies to VA tracks as well, if not $155 a weekend is reasonable.
I was at the recent ApexFest at NCCAR with my Stinger as my first time on the track and it was a good time. The instructors said that the lead follow actually lead to the biggest increase in ability over the weekend than they have had ever had. I think a mix of lead follow and in the car is probably the best way to learn since seeing the correct line and visually following behind someone is great. Then the in car will help with more finer adjustment and real time communication (not being able to talk with the instructor mid session with lead/follow is a big drawback).

You can also rent NCCAR for $175 an hour during the week.

I'll be at VIR with THSCC in September (though probably still in my stinger).
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Danny where in VA are you? I'm eyeballing VIR and Summit Point as well but the daily rates are much higher than the two groups I've run with down at NCCAR. When I started two years ago a weekend at NCCAR cost what a day at VIR ran. Hopefully once covid rules are released and once I can get back in the car from my knee replacement three weeks ago I will be able to visit those tracks. For HPDE they are in a lead follow rather than driver and instructor and no spectators or crew as of this point and since I'm intermediate I still want an instructor. It will be interesting doing the lead follow and I can see where that would be useful in the corners. I track with TSSC Tidewater Sports Car Club and Apex Events. Recent Apex event at NCCAR had two Lotus there. NC auto insurance covers HPDE events by law as long as it's not timed or wheel to wheel racing I will have to check to see if that applies to VA tracks as well, if not $155 a weekend is reasonable.
I am located near Harrisonburg Virginia, about 3 or so hours away from VIR. I appreciate all the good information guys. I would definitely get insurance. I am considering picking up a Porsche Cayman as a track car, because I would really really hate for something to happen to the Lotus due to some dumbass on the track (been there done that with idiots on the race track). Im not really looking to get serious into driving (although I would love to). Ive been off and on the track since 2008 and now I take to the back roads but always hesitant about horses and gravel on the road so I never go 100%. Ill keep looking and more than likely start with a overnight at one of their villas there and watch a track day with a cold beer, then the next time do a 2 day course and use one of their vehicles. By then I should have a good grasp of how that place works.
 

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VIR is a fun track but it is also very fast. I have run the Full and Grand course. There are several HPDE groups that run at VIR. I would suggest that you start with Chin Track Days because they are very professional and typically have very good instructors. I will warn you that Novice with Chin fills up in 1 - 2 weeks so don't wait. Also, Peter Krause (http://www.peterkrause.net), does driver coaching at VIR since he lives close by.

Later,
Eldon
 

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Danny. I live just a little north of you. I’m a HPDE instructor for Summit Point FATT and for Track Daze. Actually Summit Point and Dominion are as close to you as VIR so you have several options. I also suggest using MotorSportsReg.com to find upcoming events. I find joining a track “membership” to be quite expensive, but buying individual track-days to be quite reasonable. There are a bunch of Track-Day organizers with events available, both clubs and commercial. You do need to sign up well in advance as events do fill up. Of your options, Dominion is the tightest and does have close barriers in a few spots, but is a fun track. Summit Point actually has three tracks. The main course is fairly open and fast. Shenandoah is tighter but a good Lotus track. VIR is very ope and very fast. I actually love that place, especially because it has great run-off space in most places. So overall, you have some great options. Contact me by PM if you want more information. Randy.


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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Danny. I live just a little north of you. I’m a HPDE instructor for Summit Point FATT and for Track Daze. Actually Summit Point and Dominion are as close to you as VIR so you have several options. I also suggest using MotorSportsReg.com to find upcoming events. I find joining a track “membership” to be quite expensive, but buying individual track-days to be quite reasonable. There are a bunch of Track-Day organizers with events available, both clubs and commercial. You do need to sign up well in advance as events do fill up. Of your options, Dominion is the tightest and does have close barriers in a few spots, but is a fun track. Summit Point actually has three tracks. The main course is fairly open and fast. Shenandoah is tighter but a good Lotus track. VIR is very ope and very fast. I actually love that place, especially because it has great run-off space in most places. So overall, you have some great options. Contact me by PM if you want more information. Randy.


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Glad to hear that you are close, I actually work in WV but live in VA. Looks like I just missed the registration for the July 10th at Summit Point. Thanks for the information on the tracks. I would prefer a open one but does not really matter. Ill check Summit Point out and catch one of their races to get a feel for the place.
 

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I've participated in two track days at VIR. The best was a TrackDaze event about four years ago on the Full Course. I had a blast.
 

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WDCR is offering free track day in exchange for helping out at the Summit Point event 7/18-19. Sounds like a good deal, here is the announcement:

"Have you ever thought about doing a Free Track Day? Is such a thing even possible? Well it is and here's how...
The HPDE & Time Trial Crew is in need of Flag & Communications (F&C, aka Flagger) help for their event July 18th & 19th and are looking for a some volunteers. Now if you volunteer and work both days not only will they feed you lunch both days, they will give you a FREE 1 day HPDE (track day) with an instructor! If you're new to this whole F&C thing they will even train you. All of our equipment has been sanitized since the last event, clean and ready for you.
The event is just 10 days away - register today!

We also still have a few spaces available for the Time Trials, read all about it here: https://www.wdcr-scca.org/time-trials.

Questions: Contact the Program Chair, Lin Toland or 304-261-7277."
 
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Hi Danny,

A couple of suggestions -- Summit Point is about 1-1/2 hours from you. The Main Circuit has a really nice flow -- connected turns that work out nicely if you do them right, and Shenandoah is a really interesting track with every type of turn (and it's my favorite track). These are excellent tracks for an Elise, which is what I drive, especially Shenandoah where a light nimble car like an Elise can keep up with, or outrun, a bigger higher-powered car. I haven't been to VIR, but I'm told it's a better track for high-power cars.

The Elise is a fantastic track car. Don't buy a Cayman if you have an Elise. Or buy a Cayman for the street, and drive the Elise on the track.

I instruct with the BMW club. I'd suggest doing an event with a club that provides in-car instruction. You'll be safer, go faster, and wind up having more fun than if you just drive open track days. (Some clubs are currently not doing in-car instruction because of the pandemic, unfortunately, and are limited to lead-follow).

Best,
Matthew
 
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