It was an eclectic mix of drivers, but the common thread was the desire to learn and improve their performance behind the wheel. Two women and twenty men showed up at 7:30 am Sunday at K1 Speed in Toronto to learn driving techniques from Patricio Jourdain (who’s been running these classes all over the US for years). Racing student Dennis even commented “This is already more fun than being at church today!”
There were several men in their 60s, mostly middle-aged guys (wondering why their kids whip them at the track) plus a few teenagers, including Daniel Demaras and Antonio Trabuco, who had won the TRAK endurance race at Goodwood the day before. It takes modesty to win a race on Saturday, then arrive for driver training on Sunday.
The morning began with classroom training, explaining the basics of turn-in point, apex, and corner exit. Patricio pointed out several late-apex corners, which surprised some experienced drivers. But that’s why everyone was there to learn.
Once the brief classroom session was wrapped up, Patricio lead the group, like ducklings following their mama, on a track walk, Seeing a diagram is helpful, but walking past the pylon really emphasizes how late that late apex corner really is.
A series of on-track sessions followed, where Patricio would critique individual drivers, providing them with personal advice on how to improve. Chris was singled out for his ‘ideal racing line’ which made him blush.
At the close of the day, Daniel was singled out in class as the driver setting the fastest time of the day, and the only 23 second lap of the day.
While the Karting Academy isn’t exactly the Bob Bondurant School of Racing, for less than $100, it wasn’t expected to be. K1 provided novice and experienced drivers with some insights into how to improve performance, in a fun and enjoyable way.