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Tim Suddard
Tim Suddard Publisher
1/17/21 9:06 a.m.

In our world, rattling off how many tracks you’ve raced at, or at least driven, is a badge of honor. It’s a common bench-racing topic.

Recently, I put another notch in my belt by driving Thompson Speedway in rural northern Connecticut. This wonderfully tight, fun and seemingly very safe track got me thinking again about how many tracks I’ve driven …

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imgon
imgon HalfDork
1/17/21 10:12 a.m.

My list of tracks I've been too is pretty short, only 10 or so but hands down is Watkins Glen  with Wiskey Hill in Palmer  MA and Lime Rock as the next best. My bucket list has VIR hopefully this year or next. The Glen just flows so well and the history of the track make it alot of fun

Purple Frog (Forum Supporter)
Purple Frog (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
1/17/21 10:35 a.m.

Road Atlanta my favorite by far.

After that in no special order: (I've had a fortunate life)

Mosport,  Watkins Glen,  Road America, VIR,  Laguna Seca, Lime Rock, Pitt Race, Barber, Mid-Ohio

Each is special in its own way.  Notice I like big tracks with grass on both sides of the pavement. smiley  And areas of the country that are great to visit.  (Food, scenery,History,  museums, etc)

Second tier:

Roebling Road, Sebring, Daytona (afterall I am a SEDIV guy)

Third tier:

CMP, New Jersey, Topeka, Thompson

Didn't get to do Indy...  frown

Since Mrs Frog is always along: It needs to be a "complete experience"...  Dining favorites:

Lime Rock:  Woodland   or   When Pigs fly

Road America:  Siebkins

Laguna Seca: Nepthe Inn

Roebing Road:  Girls - The Pink House   Guys - The Shrimp House

Watkins Glen:  Lunch - Village Marina   Bar -  Seneca Lodge     Dining - Red Newt

 

jimbbski
jimbbski SuperDork
1/17/21 11:15 a.m.

There's tracks that I've raced at and those that I have only driven so in order of ranking.

Best racing:

Blackhawk Farms - First track I raced at and still my favorite.

Gingerman- Fun, safe track.

Grattan - Roller coaster type track with blind turns and one long straight.

Autobahn - Closest to home.

Road America - Fun in a fast car but can be scary in a slow one due to the fact that you have to keep your foot planted on the "Go Pedal"  at times even when your mind say lift!

 

Most fun driving:

Road America

Watkins Glen

Mid Ohio

Heartland Park

Indianapolis Raceway Park

Putman Park

Nelson Ledges

 

L5wolvesf
L5wolvesf HalfDork
1/17/21 11:16 a.m.

Most fun to drive - Sears Point, Carlsbad (gone now), Hallett, Las Vegas (no under the current Vegas tack), Second Creek (gone now)

Most laps at - Riverside Intl (gone now), Willow Springs

captdownshift (Forum Supporter)
captdownshift (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
1/17/21 12:36 p.m.

Palmer, Sebring, Road America, Mont-Tremblant 

frenchyd
frenchyd PowerDork
1/17/21 1:58 p.m.
jimbbski said:

There's tracks that I've raced at and those that I have only driven so in order of ranking.

Best racing:

Blackhawk Farms - First track I raced at and still my favorite.

Gingerman- Fun, safe track.

Grattan - Roller coaster type track with blind turns and one long straight.

Autobahn - Closest to home.

Road America - Fun in a fast car but can be scary in a slow one due to the fact that you have to keep your foot planted on the "Go Pedal"  at times even when your mind say lift!

 

Most fun driving:

Road America

Watkins Glen

Mid Ohio

Heartland Park

Indianapolis Raceway Park

Putman Park

Nelson Ledges

 

Elkhart Lake ( Road America) is an absolute blast in a slow car if  and only if  you are with other slow cars.  Group 1 is prewar and MGT series. 
Thundering  down the main straight with the windshield  folded down tonneau stretched tight  and  the driver sliding down in the seat so all 54 horses  will maybe let you reach 75 mph 

Racing in the Bahama's was basically street circuits. The first ran around Ranfurley's circus which always had the thrill of  the overflowing fountain providing a nice little slippery spot  where the water ran across the track. Later track was longish straights followed by tight corners. Chasing Sir Sterling Moss in the Aston Martin DBR2 with my own Black Jack special let me follow the master and understand his brilliance. 
Finishing second to him after a week of racing was my greatest effort in a lifetime of racing. 

Olemiss540
Olemiss540 Reader
1/17/21 3:19 p.m.

Road Atlanta by far. Then Mid O second probably. 

Barber is next tier along with NCM, Road America, and Hallett. 

Putnam the tier after that (but still fun and lots of runoff) along with Topeka.

Scraping the bottom is St Louis (Gateway).

Want to try out NOLA and the new track in Lake of the O this year. 

 

rustomatic
rustomatic Reader
1/17/21 5:07 p.m.

I've done Laguna Seca, Thunderhill, and Sonoma (or Sears Point or Infineon, depending on your decade).  Sonoma was by far the most fun (most like a river road I lived on for eight years before leaving CA), as most geezers who do these tracks usually agree.  I've done the most laps at Thunderhill, which always made whatever car I was in feel slow.  I both fear and look forward to doing Road Atlanta, from which I now live about 60 miles away.  I haven't been on such a high-speed track, so my car's brakes are somewhat in doubt . . .

There is much to look forward to in normal, post-vaccination times.

lotusseven7 (Forum Supporter)
lotusseven7 (Forum Supporter) HalfDork
1/17/21 6:19 p.m.

NHIS, Loudon NH

buzzboy
buzzboy Dork
1/17/21 7:53 p.m.

Sebring was a religious experience. I had played it on Forza for years then on my first lap out I was like "I've been here before!" Forza even got the cadence to the squares of concrete correct around 17 and 17a. It also helps that I took checker with the instructions "drive for a half hour and we've won" which made for an amazing final 1.5 hour stint.

TurnerX19
TurnerX19 SuperDork
1/17/21 8:04 p.m.

Best I ever drove was Bridgehampton, lots of wins and always a challenge. The best currently available that I have driven is VIR. Just down from that is Shenandoah, tied with the old Bryar at the site of NHIS, which is now near the bottom rung along with any of the Pocono variants, where I have had good results. I like least of all Lime Rock.

Jay_W
Jay_W SuperDork
1/17/21 8:06 p.m.

I've only driven 2 road courses, once in a gravel prepped rallykar. Which is ridiculous as well as hysterical. Went through the timing gates backwards at PIR, I did. At Pacific Raceways in my old hotrod 510, I had pigdog understeer all the way around the last turn before the straight, and then oiled that straight a bit when the oil pressure line fell off the block. Glad I happened to glance down and see zero on the guage and shut her down before it blew up, but that lil incident didn't endear me to the folks running the joint.

Portland is safer, nice big runoff areas. Pacific Raceways is more exciting, that's for sure. 

 

amg_rx7 (Forum Supporter)
amg_rx7 (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
1/17/21 8:36 p.m.

Bridgehampton (sigh rip)

Thunderhill 

Laguna Seca

Watkins Glen

Sonoma

Buttonwillow

 

BlueInGreen - Jon (Forum Supporter)
BlueInGreen - Jon (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
1/17/21 8:58 p.m.

Gingerman is my favorite place to hang out. It’s friendly to drive, paddock is right on the pits, and just a fun place to go racing.

Watkins Glen is a gorgeous environment. I’ve never even actually driven on the track but just pulling in the gate feels significant. Between the history and location it’s a special place.

Favorite place to drive is Waterford Hills. It’s such a great old school club track. Zipping up and over the hill is fun.

frenchyd
frenchyd PowerDork
1/17/21 9:11 p.m.

In reply to BlueInGreen - Jon (Forum Supporter) :

I like temporary circuits. They set one up at my Navy Base and used the runways and service roads to set up an interesting and challenging coarse. The advantage of those is nobody has a home court advantage of driving it so much they know all the nuances. 
We all come at it fresh and I just seem to figure things out quickly. Maybe not the perfect lap but one that gets the job done.  Yet I know there will be drivers who with more familiarity will beat me. At least for that weekend I'm as good as anyone. 

Tom1200
Tom1200 SuperDork
1/17/21 9:38 p.m.

I'll go on order of the places I raced at:

Firebird (motorcycle)

Willow Springs (motorcycle and car)

Riverside (motorcycle) happy memories there as my 125 did 130mph. By the time I rode their it was bumpy as hell.

Las Vegas Motor Speedway 3 layouts on the outside road course plus the IMSA inside road course.

Spring Mountain Motorsports Ranch (5 layouts) this is my favorite track and not just because it's my local track. It is great to.drove in both horsepower and momentum cars.

Buttonwillow while it is bumpy I like this track especially the cotton corners.

MrFancypants
MrFancypants Reader
1/17/21 10:30 p.m.

Road Atlanta

There are no words to describe just how terrifying it is to crest the hill at turn 11 to see the steep descent into turn 12 the first time you do it.  It feels like driving your car off a cliff in a semi-controlled way, because once you crest the hill you're committed and you're not left with many options to reduce your speed.  I imagine the Corkscrew at Laguna Seca has a similar feel to it, but there you can see down the cliff and through the corner before you get on the throttle...  at Road Atlanta your foot is on the floor long before you can see where you're going.

350z247
350z247 New Reader
1/18/21 7:13 a.m.

I'm a sucker for any track with big elevation changes. Flat tracks are still fun, but tracks like AMP and Road Atlanta just take it to another level. I can not wait to try Barber this year.

Banked ovals/infield tracks have never been my favorite from a road course perspective, but flying around the banked section like I'm Richard Petty always makes me feel like a little kid.

LopRacer
LopRacer Dork
1/18/21 8:22 a.m.

Road Atlanta is my favorite track followed by Barber probably because of the terrain.

akylekoz
akylekoz SuperDork
1/18/21 8:35 a.m.

Of the tracks I’ve driven or raced on.

Road America is probably my favorite, never raced there but driven a few cars there at speed.

Grattan, my home track.  I find it challenging and with the off camber, jump and toilet bowl features it’s a good suspension and brake workout.

Autobahn, our crapcar just works well here, we usually finish well.  Helps that it’s only a few hours away.   I would love to try an HPDE event there someday.

Gingerman, last on my short list but where I spend the most time.  Only an hour away, Lemons runs there and also great beginner track due to being flat with good sight lines.  

 

mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
1/18/21 8:52 a.m.

My favorite tracks are rolling natural terrain tracks. The one big exception to this is Sebring which I enjoyed for the history and for the layout itelf. It was cool to drive. 

Road Atlanta and Road America are fun but the proximity of walls makes them intimidating. Blackhawk is flat but it feels like a nice quick drive trough the woods which is neat. I put High Plains and NCM in a category together for me because I enjoy both but always come away feeling like I did poorly there. Hallet is great and spending the day there is always oddly relaxing. 

Having said all that, the track I enjoy most is the kart track that's 6 miles from my house that I get to ride bikes on over 100 days a year. Both of my kids that ride learned to ride there. I've won races there. I've broken bones there. I've got something like 10k laps around there now and I learned a new thing just this last weekend. My first real kart sessions were there. I helped a friend win a four hour kart endurance race solo against teams. I've become friends with the drifters who completely ruin the surface but are great guys. I'm friends with kart dads and help them lift karts off stands because 5 year olds are no help with that. It's a special place. 

wvumtnbkr
wvumtnbkr GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
1/18/21 9:06 a.m.

Favorite track:  High plains raceway!  ALL of the elevation change and so many different types of corners!

Tracks I have driven or raced: (no particular order, I may go back through and revise from most liked to least liked)

1) PittRace old short track - Raced

2) Pittrace current layout - Raced

3) NJMP Lightening - Raced

4) Summit Point Shenandoah - Raced

5) MSR Houston - Raced

6) Laguna Seca - Raced

7) VIR Grand - Raced

8) VIR Full - Raced

9) VIR North - Raced

10) VIR South - Raced

11) Sebring - Raced

12) Roebling Road - Open lapping sessions

13) Barber - Raced

14) Gingerman - Raced

15) Lime Rock - Raced

16) Nelson Ledges (great super fast track that has been repaved and is fairly smooth) - Raced

17) Pueblo Motorsports Park - Raced

18) Charlotte Roval - Raced

19) Monticello - I did not really like this track.  It MAY have been because our car was too pushy. - Raced

20) Indianapolis (roadcourse) - Raced

21) Autobahn - Raced

22) Road America - Raced

23) Mid Ohio. - Raced

24) High Plains Raceway - Raced - AWESOME track as stated above.

25) Watkins Glen

End of 2021 edit!

26) NCM - RACED

27)CMP - RACED

28) AMP -TRACK DAY

29) FORGOT ABOUT WINNING AT LAGUNA SECA!

 

Cedricn
Cedricn New Reader
1/18/21 9:57 a.m.

Well, Im surprised no one has mentioned the long green track in Germany yet :), its quite hard to beat in many ways, with the plethora of corner types, altitude changes, high speeds etc (though the latter is mostly alack we have here in sweden). Though I have to hold back a little due to my wish to survive or not get broke, so that takes away something that a safer track can provide. 

Duke
Duke MegaDork
1/18/21 10:04 a.m.

Never driven any track in real life, but based on watching races on TV and driving them in video games, Sears Point is my favorite track on the planet.

If I ever hit the Powerball I will drive there in real life.

 

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