Never Stop Learning
We head out to the track with Toyota for a fun, skill-honing car-control clinic.
Intriguingly, the Toyota instructors employed a variety of novel approaches to hammer home the concepts they preach: for example, running a strip of tape across windshields and asking drivers to only look through the glass above the tape in order to combat “low eyes syndrome,” a common error suffered by plenty of trackday drivers and even professionals. Another challenge saw pendulums hung from interior rearview mirrors as we lapped the track, their gyrations or lack thereof a real-time visual exposer of how smooth our inputs were or were not. Arguably our favorite exercise involved circling the skidpad with no hands on the steering wheel, controlling the trajectory of the rear-drive 86 using only the throttle, a lesson in
how power application influences a car’s line and a precursor to some serious attempts at drifting— attempts that varied from semi-impressive to hilariously inept and had our entire crew in stitches as we observed each other’s runs.
We finally put all of the lessons into play with some quick lead-follow lapping sessions around Streets of Willow, and the improvements made by almost all of our drivers in a single day were visually apparent and served as a stark reminder that no matter how good you think you are and no matter how often you get out to the track, there’s no substitute for seat time and top-level instruction. If you enjoy the art of driving, then the time, effort, and expense of benefiting from those training tools is well worth it. AM
AUTOMOBILE ALL-STARS ISSUE
TEST PASSED After a long day of discussion,
instruction, and on-track practice, our team felt more prepared than ever for our All
POWER ON But not too much power. Cars such as the Camry and
86 are more than adequate for teaching fundamental performance