Every year I promise myself I will book a track day, then before I know it the year is almost over and yet another year goes past not having done a track day.
With the nights drawing in this year was looking to be condemned to the same fate as the previous years. Mid October I find myself perusing PistonHeads TVR forum and I spot a post for an Autumn track day at Snetterton. A number of fellow TVR owners had already booked up so it seemed like the perfect opportunity to make good on the promise of a track day.
Snetterton is famous for hosting the British Touring Car Championship and is currently the UK’s newest circuit having recently undergone a multi-million pound redevelopment. The circuit for the track day was the full 3mile ‘300’ circuit which includes 2 fast straights and a number of more technical areas.
The noise limit for the day was 105dB static. I purchased a couple of track day bolt on silencers from ACT as I know mine is louder having measured it at North Weald a couple of weeks previously. The ACT silencers arrived the day after I ordered them, thanks Tim. The silencers fit over the 2.5″ exhaust pipes and are held in place by U bolt clamps. A clever design and the usual good quality product I have come to expect from ACT.
Upon arriving at the track I attended the briefing and then went to have the Griff noise tested. I thought I would give the test a go without the silencers. I was expecting to be laughed at and told I was far too noisy but much to my surprise the gentleman told me I was right on the limit and told me the car had passed (just). I wasn’t expecting that but I wasn’t going to argue!
Onto the track for the compulsory sighting laps, which seemed to be quite fast on what was a damp track.
Once the track was open everyone piled on and the track was quite busy. I gave it 30 minutes to allow the track to dry out and for the initial rush to settle down. I went out on track for a few laps taking it very easy to familairse myself with the track and the pace. The etiquette on track was very good and despite there being a wide range of machinery on track, some very serious everyone for abided by the rules of no overtaking on corners and keeping to the right on the straights to let the faster cars through.
When I booked the track day I also booked the optional tuition, it turns out that the instructor was also a TVR Griffith owner. The instruction was very worthwhile and gave me a lot more confidence in the car and how to carry more speed through the corners by taking the right lines. By the afternoon I was actually overtaking other cars!
Snetterton is a fast circuit and I was reaching an indicated 125MPH on Bentley staight and 115MPH on Senna straight. Unfortunately my standard brakes were not fairing too well and were overheating after about 5 or so laps, not that this spoilt my enjoyment as I enjoyed a nice blend of driving my own car and also having passenger rides in others. If I decide I want to do a number of track days a year I may need to consider at changing the pads or perhaps a full brake upgrade.
The track day is one of the best events I have done in the Griff and I really should have got the on the track years ago. Being able to share the experience with some of my TVR friends really made the day, also a great opportunity to meet a few new faces who I have spoken to on forums but never actually met face to face.
Anyone who is considering getting their Tiv out on track but has not made it yet, I thoroughly recommend it.