EIR Test Drive School Reviews
Cari Kilmartin On: Jun 15, 2021 At: 11:28 AM
I should start by saying that the world of cars and racing is a bit of a mystery to me. Terms like NASCAR, the Indy 500, and Ricky Bobby all sound like a foreign language, and to be honest, I get a little freaked out when I reach the speed limit on the highway. So, while participating in Edmonton International Raceway’s test drive on the actual race track was an exciting idea, it was also a daunting task.
From the minute I arrived at the raceway, I was at ease. Walking onto the tarmac of the track for the first time was more thrilling than I expected, and as the group walked around the track with our instructor, I was beginning to feel more and more confident. Our instructor was calm and funny, while still making sure to slap us in the face every now and again with a little reality, ensuring we knew the potential danger that came along with what we were about to do. It was obvious after listening to him talk for a few minutes that he was an experienced racer, and his familiarity with this particular raceway was impressive. He shared his knowledge with us as we walked around the track, showing us how to drive the tough corners, explaining how and where the best drivers brake and accelerate. By the end of the walk around the track, it was obvious we were all eager to get into a car and test out our newfound know-how in real life.
Although we were all excited to get behind the wheel, no one in my group was jumping at the chance to be the first one buckled in, myself included (even though I felt insanely cool in my race suit). Eventually, people braver than I stepped up to the plate. 15 laps total, 5 practice laps at a slower pace, then we got the green flag and were free to step on it. I was the last in the group to get into the car, and it was exhilarating to watch from inside of the track, noticing the others gain confidence and getting more and more gutsy with their speed after each lap, and taking corners tighter than I even knew possible. At the end of each run, every single person climbed out of the car with a big smile on their face. And then it was my turn.
The staff explained the best way to climb in and out of the cars, as we had to go in through the windows. I’m still shocked at how awesome I felt doing it, yet I know for a fact I looked like an absolute klutz- the pros make it look so easy. Once settled in the car, I got strapped in and put on the helmet, and I feel like an absolute pro. The pace car driven by the instructor pulls up beside me and gives the thumbs up, and off I go. While normally I am not a huge fan of loud engines, that was not the case on the track that day. The roar the car gave when I got going just added to the experience. As I went around the track for the first few laps, trying to remember all the queues we had been given, and doing my best to follow the instructor’s expert tire path, I realized I was actually having fun while driving a car, something I’m not sure has ever happened to me. I’m not going to tell you how fast I went, but let’s just say I resembled more of a turtle than a fox. The car was solid and steady and I knew from witnessing others speeding around the track that the car could easily handle me stepping on it, but I was more than happy at my borderline crawl. Finally, the checkered flag was being waved, and my laps were finished. I knew I went slow, and I knew that the staff knew I went slow, but they were all happy for me and congratulating me nonetheless, filling me with pride and joy. I want to go for a test drive again so badly, and maybe step on it a little bit more next time.