Any recommendations for performance driving books?

AaronFL

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I want to get into doing some track days. I have a limited knowledge about some of the concepts. I played countless hours of Forza and Gran Turismo in my younger days:headbang:(okay current day too :D). I read the series "Twist of the Wrist" back when I was learning about motorcycle riding. Are there any books similar to that for car driving? A lot of the principles overlap, but the physics of being on 2 wheels are definitely different than on 4. I know there is no replacement for seat time or a driving instructor, but I want to develop a good base knowledge before I go out.

Thanks!
 

Allan

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Going Faster-Mastering the art of race driving, is one of my favorites. Seat time is the most valuble thing, but reading up first helps to have some idea of 'how-to'. Also, will give you an informed clue as to what the instructor is talking about, if you get one.
 

EXHLR8N

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Hi Aaron - I too loved the Twist of the Wrist books (although extremely technical). 6 years ago I transitioned from track days on my 2002 MV to my, now, 2003 Viper. As you can see, there is a little crossover, but very different.

A simple book I like (and pretty much covers everything) is Bob Bondurant on High-Performance Driving. As you know, he has a driving school, featuring Corvettes as his base car, which is certainly more similar to Vipers, than, say, Porches or other cars. It is a quick read, but you can quickly see the differences between your motorcycle experiences and your Viper.

I can't tell you how helpful for me (and even today) the use of instructors has been. At my level, most of the time made up on laps is carrying more speed into the corners, braking later, trying to get the car rotated into a position to get back on the gas at exit and finally accelerating to the next turn. I always get stuck at certain times, and then am amazed how I can drop 3-4 seconds after having an instructor in my car. I can here them now .... "don't brake, don't brake .... turn in now ... gas gas gas".

Most track day events have volunteer instructors. I would not be afraid to approach them and book one to work with you during the day. You will truly have your biggest gains with them in the car. One time at Buttonwillow, I had my instructor drive the track during lunch break, with me in the passenger seat (scared the heck out of me), the next session I carved 5 seconds off my best morning time. I think just knowing that the car could handle certain situations gave me additional confidence.

I have had a blast with the Viper (way more fun than the motorcycle). The comraderie of the Club (we are SoCal) is incredible, and the help I have gotten from fellow members and instructors is immense.




I want to get into doing some track days. I have a limited knowledge about some of the concepts. I played countless hours of Forza and Gran Turismo in my younger days:headbang:(okay current day too :D). I read the series "Twist of the Wrist" back when I was learning about motorcycle riding. Are there any books similar to that for car driving? A lot of the principles overlap, but the physics of being on 2 wheels are definitely different than on 4. I know there is no replacement for seat time or a driving instructor, but I want to develop a good base knowledge before I go out.

Thanks!
 

VIPER GTSR 91

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Going Faster is ok but gets very technical. The best book by far to get is, Driving On The Edge by Michael Krumm (pro road race driver). Its at Amazon. The book is very well written and really hits the high lights of road racing without getting too technical. Basic car control, set up, wheel to wheel racing, etc. You will love this book and its easy reading.
 

Dom426h

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Stop reading books & playing video games and get on the track already!!! :)

If youve read the atwistofthewrist series then you are on the right track IMO. A lot of that stuff applies to cars as well. Also, going through the GT & Forza career things give you alot of relevant knowledge for the track.

This is all technical info though. No amount of that can teach you one of the most important things: Track Etiquette. Follow the trackday rules and Up your level of consideration and common sense towards others to ensure everyones safety.

Another thing i recommend getting familiar with is all of the typical flags and their meanings. It can be overwhelming on the first morning having 10 different flags flashed at you and being expected to remember what they all mean when your out on course in the zone.
 
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AaronFL

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Thank you for the responses! The "Twist of the Writst" series was great. I am a bit of a nerd, so the technical aspects were some of my favorites. I am going to buy some of those books and do some reading. Good pointing out the importance of track etiquette! Good etiquette is definitely something that is important to me. I don't plan to do any wheel to wheel racing. I just want to be able to have fun on some weekends and see how far the limits can be pushed in a safe environment. The power the viper has is a blessing and a curse. You can't wind out the engine and row through the gears without going to jail! There is a road coarse here in Gainesville, but they don't seem to be open very often. There is a local road racing club with some Vipers, but their website hasn't been updated in a couple of years. I am going to get into contact with the local track and see if I can get an instructor. I have been dreaming of doing this since I was a little turdface kid.
 

MTGTS

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Thank you for the responses! The "Twist of the Writst" series was great. I am a bit of a nerd, so the technical aspects were some of my favorites. I am going to buy some of those books and do some reading. Good pointing out the importance of track etiquette! Good etiquette is definitely something that is important to me. I don't plan to do any wheel to wheel racing. I just want to be able to have fun on some weekends and see how far the limits can be pushed in a safe environment. The power the viper has is a blessing and a curse. You can't wind out the engine and row through the gears without going to jail! There is a road coarse here in Gainesville, but they don't seem to be open very often. There is a local road racing club with some Vipers, but their website hasn't been updated in a couple of years. I am going to get into contact with the local track and see if I can get an instructor. I have been dreaming of doing this since I was a little turdface kid.

I have Roebling Road in Savannah rented out on May 18-19th if you are interested. We don't have instructors but I can jump in the car with you for a few sessions and show you around. It's a great little track with ony 1 wall. PM me if you're interested.
 

Magnus_

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iRacing is a great simulator for the PC. It's helped a TON 10/10ths consistency.

As far as additional education, DE's (Driver Education) track days with instructors are HUGE.. HUGE!!!! in driver skill development.

I've done a ton of HPDE's with instructors, tons of classrooms, tons of ride alongs, talking to others at the track, etc.. and now I help instruct.

Most HPDE's will offer free instruction. Do all the classrooms and take an instructor with you every time you go out. It really helps you learn, apply, adjust within a short period.

A book can teach you the fundamentals, but most of the basic fundamentals are just that, basic, and it will be harder to learn the more advanced concepts until you have real-world experience of the basic ones.
 

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