We live in an era where motorsport is no longer purely a “sport for kings.” Certainly, at the top levels, there is still a monetary barrier to entry, as most of us don’t have the untold $Millions to invest in a racing career. However, that does not mean we cannot go out on track and have a thrilling day feeling the limits of our cars.
Courtney Rivers is a racer and instructor who heads up the SCCA Track Night in America program, which for 5 years has been providing a venue to get the casual driver on track.
Several years ago, seeking to increase membership and participation in the nationwide club, the Sportscar Club of America (SCCA), that sanctioning body that brought us the mighty Can-Am and Trans-Am series and more than 60 years of exciting club racing, decided to get the layman on track – and in the process gain new interest and enthusiasm.
The experiment worked as some 40,000 participants (many return customers) have enjoyed a weekday afternoon at hundreds of these events at some of the greatest tracks around North America.
Courtney Rivers, our guest this week who heads up the program for the SCCA, says, “We aren’t telling people what NOT to do. We give basic instruction on passing and flags and seek everyone to ENJOY themselves.”
Check out other Track Day Features in the Journal
Having participated in a few of these events myself, I can tell you that it is a pleasant experience. No pressure. Just drive and have a blast, while working on my basic on-track skills.
Rivers herself is an MA in clinical psychology. In the interview she said the career change not only had to do with her love of cars and instructing but getting to enjoy an environment where she is not listening to other people’s woes, which took an empathetic toll on her. Considering she now hangs around with a bunch of motorheads, I think the clinical psychology experience may come in handy…