A great driver training session at Pitwall!

Last Monday, on the 20th of January, a team of redborne racing drivers took part in the first session of a driver training program designed to improve driving ability through highly realistic driving simulation. The session took place at ‘Pitwall’- a brand new go-karting, motorcycing, racing, and rallying shop that specializes in selling accessories, equipment, and leisurewear for all kinds of motorsport. The shop, based in Ampthill, Bedfordshire, is one of our proud sponsors and kindly gave us the opportunity to use their remarkably realistic driving simulator. A team of drivers, comprising of myself, George Golding, and Alex Lockey, were the first to experience the simulator. Accompanied by Mr Brooks and a member of our pitcrew, Jack Croft (who was desperate to have a go in the simulator as well) we attended the first session of our driver training course at Pitwall.

Sat in the tight-fitting plastic karting seat and surrounded by the complicated metal components of a karting chassis, it was almost as if we were about to start the race at the Greenpower National Finals at Goodwood. Projected onto a vast screen was a digitalised karting track and the front section of a go-kart. I was the first to have a go and with a tap of the accelerator I quickly realised just how sensitive and realistic the simulator was, and how careful I would have to be to complete a quick lap time. After a stint of three laps, and much spinning off the digital race track, I set a lap time of around 52 seconds. Alex followed me and set a similar lap time of around 50 seconds. George and Jack were the last to have a go, both setting lap times just under a minute. As we became more engaged with the characteristics of the simulator and learnt how to control the kart better, we got significantly quicker and all of our lap times (apart from the ‘non-driver’ Jack) quickly fell to below 50 seconds.

In the end, I completed the course the quickest, in a time of 47.13 seconds, closely followed by Alex and George who set lap times of 47.28 and 48.64 respectively. Overall, everyone agreed that the simulator was very realistic and definately helped us to improve our driving ability. Even Jack (who was slightly frustrated with his lap time of 59.79 seconds) and Alex (who was desperate to beat me) enjoyed the session and can’t wait to return and set some even quicker lap times.