On Track, A Road Course Intro

Yesterday I visited and actually participated in on track activity at Harris Hill Road!  Let me explain…

Harris Hill Road sign

Harris Hill Road is a private road course (based on the club membership model), situated in the Texas Hill Country, just outside the city of San Marcos, TX (about 5 east miles from the I-35 exit, by my odometer reading).

The actual road to Harris Hill Road

I arrived there  a little after 9am with a quick detour to see the Simpson Race Products campus just north of New Braunfels, TX (they were closed). 🙁

Simpson Race Products building sign

After getting in through the gated entrance & up the hill (Harris Hill) to the clubhouse, I parked and started to get my bearings.

Harris Hill Road entrance

Harris Hill Road Clubhouse

Going past these cones (to the right of the clubhouse), down the hill is the “pits” location, currently a parking lot just up from pit road.

H2R drive to the pits

The pits at H2R

While I was arriving a Lotus Exige (cool!) had just slide off the track, scattering dirt & gravel on the course.  They had to stop all on track activity, sweep off the debris and verify the cleaning.  I had just met Bo Rivers, the owner of Harris Hill Road.

He says, “What are you driving, would you like to go out on the course to help me verify that the clean up was okay?”  I started to beg off, explaining that my car has this coil misfiring problem…”  He gleefully cut in & asked, “Is it leaking any fluids?”  I answered no & in 2 minutes I was out on the track with the owner in my 2000 Nissan Maxima, my daily driver!  I was too concerned about doing anything wrong, especially with the “main man” at my side.  So, I went a cautionary 30 to 40 mph, tops.  What a cool track!  I’ll go into the details of the track in a near future post, but suffice to say this course is very well thought out.

Bo Rivers of HarrisBo Rivers of Harris Hill Road Hill Road H2R course map

I was told they had almost 50 participants, broken into 4 groups, identified by color; green, blue, yellow & red.  Generally these groups are formed by experience level, from novice to experienced.  Therefore, the green (“greenhorns” like me) group had instructors accompany them (mandatory) on their runs, optional for for the blue group & not at all for yellow & red.  Each group consisted of about 8 cars, and each session was about 20 minutes.  I’m sorry I don’t have the facts down, there was a lot of activity & it was all new to me.

Lance\'s \'Vette

My second track outing was as a passenger in a Lance’s Corvette, driven by Sondra Sondregger.  She is the co-founder of the S2KCA (the [Honda] S2000 Club of America), and currently their South Central Regional Director.  She had coordinated this whole event, walking around, megaphone in hand, huge floppy brimmed hat undulating in the breeze.  She is very fiendly friendly (sorry Sondra) and helpful.  This track outing was simply 3 parade laps that took place at midday, maybe 50 – 55mph tops.

Sondra coordinating trafficSondra reviewing equipment

I’ll stop here, for now.  This was already quite a bit to digest (& post).  Tomorrow I’ll review my first ontrack adventure, at speed!  I’ll explain some things I didn’t know about becoming Racing Ready!

Dan

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