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Old 08-20-2002, 11:26 PM   #1
rkkwan
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Lightbulb So, how much is it to go to track days?

Okay, nobody asked, but I'm suddenly realizing this is getting pretty expensive. Here are some of the expenses...

Entry fees for 2 days with TracQuest: $450 (About $325 with Quattro Club)
3 nights of stay at Ramada Limited: $180+tax (Could have shared w/someone, and could have driven home straight after day 2)
~40% of front R4 pads (at $190/set): $80
~25% of S-03s: $180
Gasoline to/fro track (1,400 miles, 25MPG, $1.6/g): $90
Gasoline on track (300 miles, 7MPG): $65

So, that's >$1K, plus depreciation of car and other smaller items. It's not a cheap hobby...

-Ray
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Old 08-20-2002, 11:34 PM   #2
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Default Re: So, how much is it to go to track days?

Quote:
Originally posted by rkkwan
...3 nights of stay at Ramada Limited: $180+tax (Could have shared w/someone, and could have driven home straight after day 2)


-Ray
You should've stayed in the van down by the river!
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Old 08-20-2002, 11:38 PM   #3
rkkwan
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Default Re: Re: So, how much is it to go to track days?

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Originally posted by Chris N
You should've stayed in the van down by the river!
[daydream]One day, I'll have a motorhome and pull my race car on a trailer... [/daydream]

-Ray
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Old 08-21-2002, 06:00 AM   #4
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Don't forget fluids.. 1700+ miles is half an oil change.

*nods head*... yeah... this sport is going to make me broke.

Fitz
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Old 08-21-2002, 10:19 AM   #5
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Oh yeah, I'm just listing the major costs. Besides oil, there are also rear brake pads, brake fluids, etc... And stuff that I've bought for this hobby, like helmet, gloves, shoes, stopwatches.

My point is that the entry fees is only a small portion of the rear cost, and it's still expensive even if I become instructor sometime and drive for free.

-Ray
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Old 08-21-2002, 10:23 AM   #6
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ray, i'm not even gonna try to do that calculation in spring, i had a spreadsheet with estimated costs - it's blown way out of the water now

at least i get more subaru points on my credit card
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Old 08-21-2002, 10:36 AM   #7
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So, who's going to Open Track Challenge next year?

But, this is all worth it. I never have as much fun as when I'm on a track, since I went to Disney World for the first time when I was 12.

Yeah, it's more fun than sex... Oh, perhaps I just had bad sex...



-Ray
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Old 08-21-2002, 10:50 AM   #8
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It gets a lot more expensive when you hit something. I guess I'm fortunate in that I'm only 40 miles or so from Lime Rock, so my events there were day trips and the entry fees were more like $120 - $150 per day. Lime Rock has free camping, as does Watkins IIRC.

Paul
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Old 08-21-2002, 11:04 AM   #9
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Now, Paul brought up a good point. I could also do day-trip to Lime Rock Park, which isn't that far from me, or NHIS. However, what about the "fun factor"? I still need pay for brake pads, gas on the track, and time to prep/de-prep my car. I am not sure if it's really worth it for a 1-mile track with 6 RH turns, and 1 left. Yes, I will like to do it one day, but it just doens't seem as much fun. [I know others really like doing door-to-door racing there, but I just can't see it as challenging as VIR or Mid-Ohio for open track days.]

I think one track that's reasonable close to here that I'd like to run next year is Mosport in Ontario.

-Ray
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Old 08-21-2002, 12:01 PM   #10
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This is why I love I-club ..I was just thinking about how much would it cost me to start taking my car to the track and like magic the information just appears! I want to go to the track at least once but I'll go to limerock....only 45 minutes drive. The only thing that is stopping me from going in October is that I don't have the helmet. After reading "Going Faster, Mastering the Art of Race driving" I don't know if I'll be able to resist buying the helmet

Pedro
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Old 08-21-2002, 12:16 PM   #11
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I can make Lime Rock in an hour or so, and I could stay up in Needham to make NHIS - but to go to VIR, Watkins Glen or Mid-Ohio would require hotels. Need to hook up with some other people going to share rooms to make it a little more economical. Still doesn't get rid of the wear & tear items, food or track fees.

Doing Lime Rock in November, thinking of doing a couple others over the course of next year - as long as I can keep feeding the car & my mod addiction!
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Old 08-21-2002, 12:19 PM   #12
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I'd love to race at lime rock, I just wouldn't want to use my car... just in case.

Yeah, driving cars is expensive, people nearly pass out when I tell them it was >$1k for 2 days at Skip Barber...
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Old 08-21-2002, 12:29 PM   #13
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Ray, have you driven LRP? I'll agree that it's not as technical or as varied as many of the other local tracks, but it's still a blast. And I can still scare the crap out of myself in a bunch of places. And it's 1.5 miles.

Too bad Bridgehampton is gone...

Paul
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Old 08-21-2002, 12:45 PM   #14
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No, I haven't driven at LRP or NHIS yet. Would like to do them later this year, or early next.

Another thought about money - I still think going to track days is great investment. When I went to the track first time last year (Watkins Glen), I was easily passed by Pat Olsen and Mark Fitz in their then-mostly stock N/A cars. And the Glen is a high-power track that favors the WRX.

Now ask yourself, how much do you need to spend on mods to make a RS or Legacy faster than a WRX? Thousands! And those money are depreciated onto the car. On the other hand, it's a much better deal to invest those thousands in one's driving. The experience and the technique you learned is yours forever. And not to mention the fun...

Sure, it may come to a point where you're not going to learn much more on a track, but so far, I can feel my driving improve everytime I go to a track event.

-Ray
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Old 08-21-2002, 12:46 PM   #15
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Ray,

If you decide to go the instructor route, you'll spend money on communicator batteries and a neck pad (12 run sessions a day and having someone else driving really throws your head around). You can save some on entry fees, but that depends on the club. You won't have to flag anymore . $k for the weekend.....hey, think of it this way, you would have just blown it on beer and cheap women anyways, eh. Or in my case, on Chuckie Cheese and slot car track time.

jack
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Old 08-21-2002, 12:50 PM   #16
rkkwan
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Jack - I doubt I'll go the instructor route. I get very impatient when teaching others. Once upon a time, I had people beg me to teach their daughter piano, and I just said no...

I've already got a helmet rest. Bought a cheapo one before my trip to Hong Kong last Christmas and used it as a neck brace for the 24-hr plane trips.


And batteries... What? Are they made of 24K gold? Really expensive?

-Ray
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Old 08-21-2002, 04:55 PM   #17
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Ray.....

Patience and persistance. Those are key. Having kids helps.


jack: "get off those stairs....get OFF those stairs.....GET OFF THOSE STAIRS!!!"

translates at the track to a new driver coming way too fast to turn 3....

jack: "brake...Brake...BRAKE!!!"

I get the same reaction either time....the recipient stops the undesired behavior and might start crying........well, come to think of it, the kids just look at me like they know they're in trouble....the new drivers, on the other hand.....

jack
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Old 08-21-2002, 04:58 PM   #18
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Default Re: So, how much is it to go to track days?

Quote:
Originally posted by rkkwan
Entry fees for 2 days with TracQuest: $450 (About $325 with Quattro Club)
COM is $150 for one day or $280 for both days.

Quote:

3 nights of stay at Ramada Limited: $180+tax (Could have shared w/someone, and could have driven home straight after day 2)
A lot of tracks will let you camp in the infield. I'm thinking of getting a little 1 person tent and a sleeping bag.

Quote:

~40% of front R4 pads (at $190/set): $80
~25% of S-03s: $180
I haven't done any math on the subject but I'm inclined to think it winds up being cheaper to use a dedicated set of pads and wheels/tires.

Quote:

Gasoline to/fro track (1,400 miles, 25MPG, $1.6/g): $90
Gasoline on track (300 miles, 7MPG): $65
And if you're really hooked, 100 octane unleaded race fuel at $4/gallon! I think I paid $4.89CDN/liter at Mosport. I told myself I was just getting rid of Canadian cash I hadn't spent.

Quote:

So, that's >$1K, plus depreciation of car and other smaller items. It's not a cheap hobby...
Sad but true.
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Old 08-21-2002, 05:18 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally posted by rkkwan
Now, Paul brought up a good point. I could also do day-trip to Lime Rock Park, which isn't that far from me, or NHIS. However, what about the "fun factor"? I still need pay for brake pads, gas on the track, and time to prep/de-prep my car. I am not sure if it's really worth it for a 1-mile track with 6 RH turns, and 1 left.
I can't speak for LRP (give me until October though) but as far as NHIS is concerned, I think the track is a blast when run with both chicanes. I know some folks who think it's kind of boring, but I like it. I think its only downsides are being very hard on brakes and, because it's so close to so many people, it gets a lot of traffic. I expect that LRP will be the same way.

My favorite thing about NHIS is that you're always turning. Your only real break is on the front straight, which is gone in a few seconds and then you're back into the turns....

Quote:

I think one track that's reasonable close to here that I'd like to run next year is Mosport in Ontario.
I don't know if I agree with your definition of close, (it was 9 to 10 hours for me from the Boston area) but Mosport is an awesome track, and well worth the trip. Best of all, we had 6.5 hours of track time (not including the time trials) when I was there with COM. 4 hours of that was open practice on the second day. I'd go out there and drive for twenty minutes without seeing another car.

Check out COM (http://users.rcn.com/comscc) for Mosport next year. Also check out Summit Point in the very eatsern tip of West Virginia. Mosport and Summit Point are two tracks I'll definitely be planning road trips for next year.
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Old 08-21-2002, 06:24 PM   #20
rkkwan
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Well, I will be at Summit Point early October. To me, "reasonably close" means a day's drive. Mosport, Mid-Ohio and VIR are basically the edge of them. I've driven at Watkins Glen and Mont-Tremblant already.

A new track that just opened is Beaverun. However, now they only have one of the two-planned circuits. I think I'll wait until they have the whole course. And there's also Nelson Ledges. But even after the recent repaving, I heard there's still a lof to be desired of that place.

So, I think the next three I'll be going around here after Summit Point will be LRP, NHIS and Mosport. My uncle lives in Toronto, so I can stay at his place.

And maybe I will fly out west to do Sears Point and Laguna Seca if I can get a friend out there.

-Ray
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