Learn the Basic Criteria for Attending an SCDA Track Events
The Sports Car Driving Association, LLC welcomes all driving enthusiasts to attend our events. In the interest of clarification, we would like to outline the basic criteria that should be met, in order to place you in the appropriate run group. We make every effort to ensure that drivers are placed in run groups with other drivers of comparable experience levels. This will ensure that run groups are balanced, safe and fun. This guideline is meant to serve as a tool to help you decide where you would fit in best within our club.
SCDA, LLC Run Group Classification:
NOVICE is also known as the Green Run Group.
INTERMEDIATE is also known as the Blue Run Group.
ADVANCED is also known as the Red Run Group.
NOVICE: The novice run group is designed for the driving enthusiast that has limited or no prior track experience. This student may have previously completed in a few track events, but this is not required. Many of the students in the Novice run group will have never been to the track. Learning the fundamentals of performance driving, with a strong emphasis placed on learning the proper “line” around the track are the top priorities for the Novice student. Typically, the Novice student will be participating in his or her street car – and these cars are usually in stock or slightly modified configuration. If you are just starting out with performance track driving, then the most vital element that will help you become a better driver is getting track time, under the observation of our highly qualified SCDA instructors. Spending thousands of dollars on aftermarket “go-fast” parts for your car (such as racing tires, aftermarket suspension components and engine enhancements) is not as important as getting your street car out to the track and getting seat time! All Novice students will be provided with one on one instruction. An SCDA instructor will ride in your car, and will work on helping you learn the proper line, as well as other aspects of performance driving. Moreover, the SCDA will always provide highly informative classroom sessions, taught by a Professional Driver. Classroom curriculum will include: explanation of the flags, entering and exiting the Pit Lane, line discussion, basic vehicle dynamics discussion, and a question and answer session. We will look at some in-car video footage, and will also provide a track specific PowerPoint presentation – answering all questions that Novice drivers typically have. For reference purposes, if you run with the BMW Club in group 4 or 3, then you would typically be in the Novice SCDA run group. If you have run with the Porsche Club, in the Green or yellow group, then we would want to start you out in the Novice Run Group. Common Novice Run Group Cars may include : VW GTI, Nissan 350Z, Ford Mustang, BMW 3 series, Mazda Miata, Honda S2000, Subaru WRX and the like.
INTERMEDIATE: The Intermediate run group is the home for driving enthusiasts with some level of prior on track driving experience. The Intermediate student will have a basic understanding of vehicle dynamics, as well as an understanding of line theory. This student is working on improving his or her driving through the most significant commodity that we can offer performance driving enthusiasts – track time. We do encourage Intermediate students to ride with an instructor, at least for the first session, as even a person with prior track experience can learn subtle nuances from our SCDA Instructor pool. Once the Instructor is comfortable with the skill level of the Intermediate student, then the transition to driving Solo will take place. Intermediate students will also receive classroom instruction from our Professional Driver, and curriculum in the classroom will usually include : working on increasing braking levels, fine tuning heel and toe downshifting, and looking at areas of the track where more speed can be found. The Intermediate student cars, as a general rule, may have a few more performance modifications than the average Novice student cars, but again, this is not required. A few of the Intermediate level drivers will have made the transition from street tires to R Compound track tires. Also, some of the Intermediate drivers will be drivers with a fair amount of prior driving experience, but it might be the first time that this experienced driver has visited a new race track. Track specific tips will be provided to Intermediate students during the classroom session. We emphasize incremental steps to our Intermediate students, in their quest to gradually find an increased amount of speed and overall comfort level at either Lime Rock Park, Watkins Glen International, or New Hampshire International Speedway. For cross referencing purposes, an SCDA Intermediate student would be a Group 3 or Group 2 BMW CCA Drivers Ed student or a Porsche Club Yellow or White run group driver. Intermediate Run Group cars may include : Porsche 911, Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution, BMW M3, Ferrari 430, Mercedes Benz AMG, Corvette, etc.
ADVANCED: The Advanced run group is designed to provide an outlet for the seasoned track driver. This student will have had considerable prior experience with performance driving, and a portion of the Advanced run group students may have prior competition experience. This is a Solo run group – these drivers do not need an instructor in their car, and for reference purposes, this would be where BMW CCA Run Group 2 or Run Group 1 or Porsche Club Black Run Group drivers would fit in. Advanced Drivers will also get plenty of track time, as well as classroom instruction. A few of the topics that would be discussed in the Advanced classroom may include: Rain Driving and Rain Line Talk, setting up a pass, driving off line, and making the transition from Drivers Ed events to competitive driving. An Advanced run group driver will possess a solid understanding of vehicle dynamics, will be proficient at heel and toe downshifting, and will exhibit the ability to control his or her car in a high speed environment without dropping wheels or spinning their car. A large portion of Advanced Run Group drivers will have cars that are heavily modified for track driving and a portion of Advanced run group cars will be dedicated track cars.Advanced Run Group cars may include: BMW or PCA cars set up to Club Racing specs, SVRA or similar vintage sedans, BMW M cars, Improved Touring cars, Mazda RX7 Turbo, or other high performance automobiles.
At the SCDA, LLC, the most important aspect of the day, regardless of which run group you are assigned to, is driving within your and your cars ability level, and keeping the day safe and fun! The above Run Group descriptions will hopefully help you decide where you would fit in best!