So you love watching races and rallies, but would rather try it on your own? We have some tips on how to become a real racer instead of an armchair one.
Many of us consider motor racing to be something outside the realm of normal people. A pastime for the extremely wealthy, or a career for the immensely talented. It doesn’t have to be. There are many ways of getting into racing, even on a modest budget and without extensive training. Let’s look at some of them.
It’s probably the most obvious form of amateur racing, and certainly the easiest to get into. You just find a go-kart track, pay some money and you can start driving your timed laps. Bring a bunch of friends, and a “race” (or rather, a timed event) is on.
However, go-karts are more than just toys. If you get serious with them, you can move on to higher levels, where they become a serious sport. Especially for kids, karting can become a gateway to serious racing – and it’s the first step most pros take in their careers.
Depending on where you live, you may encounter this motoring sport under various names. Either way, it is a timed event, run on a track set up with cones on a large paved area such as a parking lot or the runway of an unused airport.
The combination of relatively low speeds, no real obstacles and the fact that there’s only one car on the track at any given time makes this one of the safest motoring sports – and perfect if you want to use your everyday car. An excellent start for a beginner.
Another (relatively) easy way of experiencing the heat of competition is amateur rallying. Timed events have the advantage of you not coming into contact with other cars, so there’s much less risk of damaging your vehicle.
In many rallies, you can even use your street-driven vehicle, without special racing seats, harnesses or rollcage. And who knows, maybe you`ll discover your hidden talent and end up as one of the customers for our Fabia R5!
Historic Racing or Rallying
Are you a classic car enthusiast? You can take your oldtimer racing or rallying! While full-fledged historic racing can be expensive, there are many events that are not. In particular, classic car rallies are often open, even to stock cars without racing modifications.
There are even circuit races that you can run with your street classic. Or you can go full crazy and build your own replica racecar. Maybe you could take a look into Škoda history and pick one of our classic racers? A 130 RS, or maybe a 130 LR?
Amateur Track Racing
Maybe you lust for wheel-to-wheel, action-packed, “real” racing with other racers on the track around you. Unlike timed events, the track races are harder to get into, because you usually need a dedicated racecar with safety equipment.
Even so, you can get into it on the cheap. In many countries, you can find various racing series open for street or lightly modified cars, like the American series of 24h LeMons, which we will talk about later this week.
Interested in going racing? Pick one of these and do it – you only live once! Or just take your street car and go to a trackday on some circuit near you. It’s the best way to find out if racing really is for you!