So, what does one do during the off season? I know that most professional motorsports have stopped competition. They are in regroup mode, looking to improve on last year’s results, working to go the next step in performance improvement.
I’d say that, on a smaller & more personal scale, the same is true for the amateur competitor. Among the autocross participants I’ve been around, the biggest issue seems to be new/better tires, followed by improving some performance part on their car, or to modifying their car differently to compete in another class.
These areas to improve upon are all well & good. One area of critical interest that I’ve not heard of is…improvement of self!
I see this area as divided into 2 areas:
- the more obvious one is improving upon mental/body mechanics of driving skills learning & improvement, i.e., driving & racing schools
- the other, less obvious area for improvement is the mental, psychological improvement in the way your brain responds to car/driving input & reactions
To help you deal with the learning of driving mechanics at a in-your-face, visceral level, you can try local track kart racing. Alamo Karts is just one such a facility, there are a number of others. You can e-mail Ann Wilson (of Alamo Karts). She would be happy to explain what they have to offer & how you can learn to improve your driving skills.
You have read here about my support for Ronn Langford, of MasterDrive. What he has to say & teach about internalizing the daily & motorsports driving experience improvement is important. Besides physical exercise & conditioning, Ronn teaches that you can only drive as well as you believe you can. He strongly advocates developing the psychomotor skills, as well as mental programming.
Ronn Langford co-wrote one of the Speed Secrets Book Series (#3), with noted racer Ross Bentley (Ronn was Ross’ first trainer/coach). It’s titled Inner Speed Secrets. It’s a tough & thorough read, not something you’ll just cruise through. You will want work your way through it, to get the best results. There are a number of exercises, more important – visualization techniques. You can see more information about it here.
Racing Ready visualizes a fantastic motorsports season for you next year!