By on April 19, 2012

Spring is here, which means it’s time to get ready for another season of motorsports. The people at SoloMatters put this video together to capture some of the best moments from last weekend’s DC ProSolo. Long-time TTAC readers know I am not a world-class autocrosser, but that doesn’t mean I don’t occasionally take a swing at it. You should, too. Unless your daily driver has nine inches of ground clearance or more, chances are it’s completely Solo-legal. Get out there!

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10 Comments on “When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Turn ProSolo...”

  • avatar
    Jordan Tenenbaum

    I just did my first autocross for `12 this past weekend. Unfortunately, they classed my poor `88 Caprice Estate in F stock with the Mustangs and what not. Oh well, I was within four seconds of an `03 Mustang GT.

  • avatar

    I signed up for our local club’s autocross class this year. Will be my first time. Should be fun in the Civic Hybrid, on LRR tires.

  • avatar

    And if it’s lightly raining, *definitely* go. Autocrossing in the wet is a hoot.

  • avatar

    ProSolo is more than autocross.

    Side by side start (the courses diverege after a hundred feet or so)

    Drag style start with the lights – clock starts when the light turns green.

    6 runs on each side with the best on each side being combined to give a total time

    SuperChallenge elimination rounds for class winners and other qualifiers.

    It’s the best style of autocross there is.

  • avatar

    I find surprising that road course junkies don’t autx more often than not. Anyone one can hold the steering wheel or throttle for a couple of seconds at a time. You can really learn the dynamics of a vehicle when tossing it’s weight over all four corners within a split second.

    • 0 avatar
      Creature of the Wheel

      I disagree. While there is some overlap in skill sets, I think autox and road courses should be viewed differently. I stopped autocrossing after moving near a road course that provided a half dozen events a year. Running a car through the variety of corners on a road course allows a better feel for the car’s handling and your impact on the balance. Repeatedly going through the same corners with very little time between repeats allows all kinds of fun experiments (turn in aggressiveness, entry speeds, throttle timing, etc). Throw in elevation and road camber changes for added education and amusement.

      I saw significantly decreased wear and tear on the car when running on track with brakes being the exception.

      Plus, you get to run with other drivers with all the associated entertainment and terror.

      It’s a good idea to find out the types of people you’ll typically be running with before paying the entry fee. Different organizations seem to draw different crowds. 18 year old boys with brand new Evos and $20k of modifications are to be avoided, in my experience.

      Autox is still a blast, particularly in the rain. I tended to over drive in autox for the sheer enjoyment of it. I’m not out to win anything. This certainly influences my experience on relative wear and tear between autox and road course. Now I need to find a rallycross.

  • avatar

    Completely correct that they are two different sports. Autocross is much more about being on the edge for an entire run. Also, because autocross is run on a different course every time, the ability to read and master a course quickly becomes much more important.

    That being said, autocrossers that transition to road racing tend to do better, especially when first starting out compared to other novices. They have already learned the car control skills that novices coming right off the street don’t have. They have also gained the ability to ‘look ahead’ to where they want the car to go instead of looking a few feet in front of the hood.

    But just having autocross experience doesn’t mean you are going to be an expert road racer. When I look at our SCCA Region’s club racing results I see a lot of mediocre finishes by people that were mediocre autocrossers.

  • avatar

    When I was living in the US I was an avid autocrossers. It’s the most affordable and accessible form of “racing” or car-based sporting event available. And it’s great fun and highly educational to occasionally drive your car in anger, under very controlled circumstances and very low risk (due to slow speed). And about any cars can qualify. I’ve seen an old, rather beaten-up VW Karmann Ghia do it, and a club member brought his police cruiser for a fun run once, siren blaring an all. I’ve even seen a Minivan race, though no full-size van yet. I wonder how something like a Dodge A100 would do? That’ll be the one to watch!

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