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Discussion Starter #1
I have always thought it would be good to know how to drive in a high performance style. However, I really know nothing about driving except what I have learned in the time I've had my license (2+yrs). Are there any good books that the people of this forum can recommend. I don't want to be a Michael Schumacher, but I am looking for basic information about performance driving (possible entry level SCCA). Thanks.
 

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I have these 2 books, and have talked the author of the first book at local Porsche Club events in the SF Bay Area. They are both useful to get you started with the concepts. However, driving is a mostly hands-on experience. Nothing comes close to actual seat time. I have been going to track and autocross events rather sparingly - once or twice of each a year, and realize after all these years, I am still learning my car.

All cars behave fundamentally the same - FWD, AWD, RWD, front-engined, rear-engined, mid-engined. That aside, there are important subtle differences and nuances. I don't try to be competitive. So to me, the biggest sense of achievement comes from feeling that I am making full use of the capabilities of the vehicle. And I still have ways to go.

I would strongly suggest going to track or autocross schools where they try to give you a good grounding of basic principles with practice. Always ask for instructors to sit with you while you drive. And ideally, they should be familiar with the Saab or at least FWD vehicles so they can give you good pointers.

You drive fundamentally the same way between track and autocross events. For track events, as you drive faster, you learn that being smooth (very steady on gas and steering and brakes) is critical. You also learn to explore the limits of braking. For autocrosses, you learn more about the technical aspects - how to throttle steer and trail brake precisely. In that sense, being exposed to both is a good idea. But focus on one.

Secrets of Solo Racing: Expert Techniques for Autocrossing and Time Trials
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0962057312/qid=1112461538/sr=8-1/ref=pd_csp_1/002-9655627-1869622?v=glance&s=books&n=507846

Bob Bondurant on High Performance Driving
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0760306036/qid=1112462518/sr=2-2/ref=pd_bbs_b_2_2/002-9655627-1869622
 

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I deffinatly recomend Going Faster. It is by the Skip Barber Racing school, and is very through. Pretty much everything you would want to know.
 

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have the above mentioned, Going Faster by Skip is definately awesome. totally planning on attending the 2 day at Limerock, CT.
 

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Ive done some advanced driving courses and i have to say reading really means nothing untill the skills can actualy be practiced in a controlled situation. So perhaps you should book some advanced driving lessons, then you can read the material provided and put it into practice :) This will definatly make you a better driver. :cheesy:
 

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Going Faster: ~$30
Skip Barber Racing School 1 Day course: ~$750
Skip Barber Racing School 2 Day course: ~$1700
Skip Barber Racing School 1 Week intensive with cart-like vehicles: dont even wanna think about it

Point: I barely have $30 as it is (20 and in college). If this book does a tenth its job it has worked, I'm sure it wasn't written to bring out the next Andretti or Loeb. But yes, the expirience is worth it, and I'd so rather go to the school.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I agree that an actual lesson from a performance driving school in a semi-race car would be the best. However, this fall I enter college, so my funds for this sort of thing are limited. I can read the book and at least dream...During the summer our local track, Portland International Raceway, has some open "Club Track Days." I have a friend who might be able to help me get in, and then for a very reasonable price I can have an instructor help me for some laps. Plus, I think reading a book, especial Going Faster, probably won't hurt. :D
 
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