9 days to go!
April 21st OTD Registration Update
I'll apologize up front - this is a long winded newsletter with LOTS of info!
Please sign up If you're planning to join us on the 21st. The more information we have before the OTD, the faster we'll get organized and setup. Only a handful of slots remain - don't get caught hoping someone cancels.. Reserve your spot today!
The April 21st Online Registration can be found here: Waterford Hills Track Day #1
Online registration and Mail in payments must be received by April 19th. Any remaining slots will be available at the higher rate on a first come first serve basis the day of the event.
Attendee list - I've modified the attendee list for the registration site. I've included your run group information. I'll be shifting drivers around to maximize our track time, so drivers and groups are not necessarily set in stone but it'll give you a rough idea what the field will look like.
Additional dates available
Registration is now open for the remaining OTD dates:
• June 23
• August 25
• October 13th
Dixie Highway Construction
Dixie highway is under construction where it intersects Waterford Road. You might want to avoid the delays by taking Sashabaw to Pelton road. Make sure you keep the noise and speeds down if you take this route. It's a residential zone and we want to keep our neighbors happy!
Time Attack/Time Trial Group
Rules have been approved and this group is set to debut during Race 3 weekend! I'm inviting anyone interested in competing in this group to join us during the lunch break to get a preview and to discuss how this is going to work. This is a custom tailored race group for Open Track/HPDE enthusiasts. Bracket racing on a Road Track!
Lots of Novices and first time drivers need your help! Think back to your first time on the track. If you've run blue group or green group in the past, you've got the experience we need to pass on. Let me know if you can help!
Novice Group (HPDE-1)
We have a great turn out of novice drivers. For many of you this will be the first time on a road course. Here are a few things you will learn at the driver's meeting. Take a few minutes and review the info below:
• Corner Marshals - these are the wonderful volunteers at the various stations on the track that work to keep you safe. They are out there in rain or shine (and even snow a few times!) Typically they are wearing all white, so they are easy to spot on and off the track. It's hard to hear them at full speed on the track, so they use some basic flags and hand signals to communicate with you. Always acknowledge them when they are signaling you with a nod of your head or hand gesture when safe to do so. Also make sure you thank them-We could not have this event without them!
• Flags - These are the basic flags you will need to know while you are on track. When they are displayed they are applicable from that point to the next manned station on the track.
- ○ Standing Yellow - Something has happened ahead of you. Be alert and ready for an emergency maneuver. This flag is also displayed on your first lap at each manned station so you know where the Corner Marshals are.
- ○ Waving Yellow - If you see a Corner Marshal waving the yellow flag there is something ahead of you that is on or blocking the track. Blockage could be anywhere from 1-100% possibly requiring you to evade. This could be a spun car, multiple cars, or even a corner worker. When you see this you need to ease up on the accelerator and PAY ATTENTION.
- ○ Red - This flag means there has been a serious incident. All vehicles on track are to pull over to the side of the track within eyesight of a manned station and come to a safe stop (don't slam on the brakes - we don't want you to become an incident as well!) This is so an emergency vehicle can get by you safely. You will remain there until the Corner Marshal gives you direction.
- ○ Black - When you see this flag displayed to all drivers, we need everyone off of the track. Slowly reduce speed to a reasonable pace and return to pit lane. If this flag is displayed only to you, something might be wrong with your car, you might be doing something wrong, or maybe your driving skills are so awesome, we want to give you a medal! In any case, acknowledge the Marshall, maintain your pace and return to pit lane. If it's just you, you'll be directed by someone near the starter's stand to the penalty box for your reward.
- ○ Yellow and RED striped - This is the Surface Flag. It means something is on the track that will reduce your grip if you encounter it. This could be Oil or other fluids spilled by another car, or wildlife - we have had everything from a turtle to deer decide that the track was the place to be during a session. Best advice is to slow down a little until you see what all the fuss is about.
- ○ Blue with a Yellow stripe - This is telling you that there is a faster driver coming up on you, or that wants to get by. Please allow the driver pass you in the next approved passing zone for your run group. For those with high horsepower cars, have some consideration for the lower horsepower cars. They will not be able to take you on a straight, but many can easily catch up to you in the turns where you will hold them up. Be considerate. If you know you are holding someone up, you do not need to wait for a flag. Let them by so they can enjoy the ride!
- ○ Checkered Flag - You've won! Well… not actually. But by the time you see this flag, you will probably feel like a winner! This means your session is over. When you see this flag, acknowledge the starter with a nod or wave, slow to a reasonable pace and take your cool down lap to let your brakes and engine drop to a more normal temperature. Don't forget when you get back to your paddock spot… DO NOT SET YOUR EMERGENCY BRAKE! We've seen the rotors warp and pads stick because the assembly is HOT. Set your car in gear and throw a wheel block down to keep it from rolling.
A few tips for those of you joining us from the SCCA Solo program:
• Driving styles on road tracks differ slightly from Solo - aggressive application of the brakes and accelerator can get you into trouble. The key to good lap times on a road course is to be smooth. Take a look at an online guide for road track driving: Race Driving Techniques
• Tire pressures - Using the same tire pressure settings you use in Solo will quickly tear up a set of tires on a road track. Your car will be running significantly longer than a solo event. Start your tire pressures near your normally recommended driving settings. Make only minor adjustments between runs (no more than 2psi) to figure out your ideal settings. I learned this the hard way and have a barely used set of overheated, chunked out tires to prove it!
Schedule for the day
Here's what you can expect to see for the April 21st OTD:
- • 7:30 -Registration and Gates Open
- • 7:45 - Tech Open
- • 9:00 - Registration Closes
- • 9:15 - Tech Closes
- • 9:15 - MANDATORY DRIVER'S MEETING
- • 9:45 - Novice drivers pair with instructors
- • 10:00 - Cars on track
○ Red Group
○ White Group (I)
○ Pink Group (I)
○ Yellow Group
○ Blue Group
○ Green Group
- • 12:00 - Lunch (Low Speed Parade Laps)
- • 1:00 - Cars On Track
○ Cycle Run groups
- • 3:15 - Worker Break
- • 3:45 - Cars on Track
○ Cycle Run Groups
- • 6:00 - Cars Off track
These are the run groups we will have for this OTD
- • White - HPDE-1
- • Gold - HPDE -1
- • Yellow - HPDE-1, HPDE-2
- • Red - HPDE-3
- • Blue - HPDE-4
- • Green - Active Competition licensed drivers
In order to keep the sessions safe, we have some passing restrictions based on driver skill levels...
- • White - Point by passing on back straight only
- • Gold - Point by passing on back straight only
- • Yellow - Point by passing on back straight only
- • Red - Point by passing on back and front straights
- • Blue - Point by passing on entire track except between Turns 4 and 5
- • Green - Open passing on the entire track
Tips and resources
Here are a few sites I've found useful:
• Nor Cal SAAC Open Track Driver's Primer
• Race Driving Techniques
• HPDE Instructor's guide
Let me know if you have a useful link to share.
GoPoint Technology will be demonstrating the capabilities of their auto scan tool, the BT1, at the Waterford Hills Raceway on Sunday April 21st. Come see an exciting demonstration of the BT1 and Harry’s App. Together they will turn your smartphone or tablet into an advanced in-car computer. Witness dashboards that display 27 gauges pulling data direct from the engine and view Engine parameters, Performance, Fuel Efficiency, Trip Statistics, Race Track, Inclinometer, Skid Pad and more! Diagnose the check engine light and clear code in just seconds. Come see GoPoint Technology’s BT1 and Harry’s App!
Enjoy your weekend, and feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns.
Waterford Hills Road Racing
4770 Waterford Road
Clarkston, MI 48346
Follow us on Twitter for latest OTD updates and tips: @WHRWOTD
Remember - I'm not only the organizer - I'm a participant!