How To Prep For Your First Autocross

Thinking about doing your first autocross?

Good. You shouldn’t think about it, you should do it. Now. I’ll wait for you to sign up.  Capital Driving Club is a great place to start in the Washington D.C area.  Ok. Now that you have signed up, and it’s the night before your big day.  What do you need to do to prep?  I’ve outlined below what I think are some top tips to prep your car for its first autocross.

Prep Tips For First Autocross:

  1. Safety: If your car falls apart while driving, you can no longer race.  So make sure you get your car inspected by your mechanic to check that are your bolts are tight.
  2. Driver’s License: Make sure that it’s valid and up-to-date.  You’d be shocked how many people forget to check that!
  3. Helmet: Even though you are racing around in a parking lot, autocross does require a helmet.  Follow your local autocross for guidelines and regulations. And if you are thinking a bicycle helmet will be OK, think again.
  4. Air: The most overlooked automotive tip is having enough air in your tires.  Over inflate them, and take out air as needed.
  5. Beach Goods: Think like you are going to the beach.  Bring sunscreen, a chair, snacks, bottled water, hats, proper shoes, and maybe an umbrella.
  6. Tools: You will need basic tools.  A jack stand, air compressor, screw driver, duct tape, zip ties, spare fluids and maybe some spare parts if you drive something other than a Mazda Miata.
  7.  Good Attitude: I wrote about this previously but this is the most important thing to bring.  The people who have been there before will guide you if you are open to them.  So be a good person and network!
  8. R&R: Nothing beats a good meal and a great night sleep.  Period.
My 1994 Mazda Miata at my first autocross

Now put it to use!

Today I’m doing my first autocross of the year with the Capital Driving Club at Harry Grove Stadium in Frederick, Maryland.  I’ll report back on how it went.


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