Our penultimate event for the 2015 calendar year was, as has been the case for a number of years, was the ever popular Driver Training and Gymkhana run by BMW Driving Experience and sponsored by Bridgestone.
The very capable and experienced duo of Lucas and Jakes were again on hand from BMW Driving Experience to guide the participants and run the day.
There were a number of new faces, both BMW and non-BMW drivers. BMW Driving Experience were very accommodating and allowed non-BMW drivers to either use their own vehicle or one of the BMW Driving Experience M135i’s to get a taste of what a real car feels like…
Lucas first demonstrated the correct driving position before participants did the first exercise - an emergency lane change left or right and then oversteer (aka drifting) practice on the other side of the very wet skidpan.
In order to show the impressiveness of ABS (Anti-lock Brake System) and DSC (Dynamic Stability Control) we were given a run up from the very back of the skidpan in order to get up to speeds of up to 80km/h before slamming on the brakes at the first cones and turning either left or right to avoid the cone obstacle.
After this, we went onto the more fun bit – a dedicated oversteer exercise.
After this we moved onto the fun timed gymkhana to end the day. Lucas laid out a nice and simple track that basically practiced the earlier exercise. Starting on the left apron of the skidpan you had to negotiate a slalom of cones into a sharp left followed by a sharp right then drift along to the other side of the skidpan, into a 360 degree turn before stopping in the four cone garage a few metres from the apron of the skidpan. If you knock over a cone, you get a two second penalty and it you stop short of the garage or overshoot the garage (into the kitchen) you also get a two second penalty.
Each driver got two timed runs and the fastest of the two run times counted. To add a bit of a twist to this fun gymkhana and to level the playing field, everyone used the same BMW M135i kindly provided by BMW Driving Experience.