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Dodge Magnum - 2009 Track Schedule

Button Willow - 24 Jan 09.

This day was the most disturbing I have ever experienced on a track event. It was, in essence, everything that detractors of track driving prattle on about; and an object lesson in how wrong things can go if safety is not kept upon its usual pedestal.

  • A crowded track filled with young, self-trained drivers not paying attention to safety.
  • Minimal rules enforcement (for example, drivers spins rented Corolla off-track, kisses the wall, drives backwards on side of the track ... on the front straight ... back onto track and continues. No flags, no consequences).
  • If I said there were 15 off-track excursions I might be failing to count some of them. With every 'off' resulting in a stuck-in-the-mud car and a full course black flag until the dig-out and tow, track time was abbreviated to say the least.
  • At least one total loss. Mitsubishi Evos sure do have a lot of airbags that deploy.
  • Two or three more repairable but damaged, undrivable vehicles.

Word leaked around the track community about this day. I heard from another vendor that the scuttlebutt was the cones were set up wrong, but that is nonsense. When the first 5 people zig off the side of Magic Mountain you'd think that would be enough to teach an intelligent grownup to exercise some caution. And I saw a guy go so far off course it was questionable if he was still even on the property.

I won't be back to this track unless its run by a different vendor. NASA runs here a lot and I'll look to them to run Buttonwillow, which is otherwise a nice, low-impact, technical course.