Hooniverse Asks: Do You Have a Racetrack Bucket List?

I’ve run around the old Riverside International Raceway, The big oval at the defunct Ontario raceway and its Fontana replacement, both Willow Springs’ tracks, Indianapolis, Irwindale, Button Willow, and Laguna Seca. Yeah I know, that’s both a pretty meager and mostly geographically-constrained list, but hey I don’t get out much.
You don’t have to be a racer to drive on a race track and even tooling around at freeway speeds in the comfort of your air conditioned daily driver can be a thrill. Is that a trill that you have put on your to-do list? If so, what is your bucket list of tracks to try?
Image: Dream Wallpapers

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  1. crank_case Avatar

    1. Get the MX5 track ready
    2. Get to Mondello as many times as possible
    3. Kirkistown
    4. Anglesea circuit in Wales.
    I’d be more than happy if I acchieved 1 and 2

    1. nanoop Avatar

      Sounds like a plan! I’m still stuck at
      0. Get project car reliable enough to make it to the track in the first place.

      1. crank_case Avatar

        In fairness, my 1 and your 0 are roughly equivalent at the moment.

      2. engineerd Avatar

        Reliable?! Ha!

        1. nanoop Avatar

          The only realistic scenario is a P-club track day track at the Arctic Circle Raceway (the most northern tarmac circuit… in the world). That’s 7hrs driving there, 2 track days with quite a lot of rounds if I want and the 944 can, and 7hrs back.
          At the current rate problems pop up, I’d face three minor and one big problem on that weekend. This is my humble goal, maybe in 2017…

  2. caltemus Avatar

    1. Drive a caged car on a closed course at speed
    Anything past that is just icing

    1. Roody Avatar

      Caged car on closed course at slow speed is still fun!

  3. JayP Avatar


  4. engineerd Avatar

    1. Nurburgring
    2. Spa Francorchamps
    3. Laguna Seca
    4. Sebring
    5. Grattan
    I’ll be checking #5 off the list next spring when I do an HPDE with the BMW club.

    1. Andrew_theS2kBore Avatar

      Nice, I’ve heard nothing but good things about Grattan. You’ll have to write something up for the rest of us.

    2. onrails Avatar

      Grattan is one of the tracks I hit most since it’s only about a 2 hour drive from home. Got hundreds of laps around there in multiple cars and on the bike plus even a few on my feet. It really is a well kept secret. Lots of elevation, camber changes, a hump/jump, a few blind turns, a few places that still dare me to go a little faster and try new things, plus a nice long straightaway to give you a few seconds to relax. With the bikes, they also occasionally run the track backwards which makes it an entirely different animal.
      If you want some turn by turn notes around the track, let me know. Nothing beats the experience of being there, but it’s nice to know what to expect going in.
      Off the track, there’s lots of good places to watch, the bathrooms are (finally!) re-done, if you’re there for 2 days you can camp overnight in the infield for free in a quiet country setting, there’s a couple ponds you can fish (both of my daughters have gotten their first fish there), and Lowell (about 20 minutes south) has a few decent restaurants and an ice cream shop. Plus a parts store and a Meijer. If you get in a pinch and need a dealer, Grand Rapids is not far either.

      1. engineerd Avatar

        I’m really looking forward to this one. The Motor City BMWCCA HPDE is supposed to be one of the best in the midwest, and a good friend is an instructor. It should be a blast.

        1. onrails Avatar

          Ran with them years ago when I still had my Mini. Back then I found it a very freindly, well organized group. Hopefully that’s still the case and you’ll have a great experience. Have fun!

  5. Andrew_theS2kBore Avatar

    1. Spa
    2. Mugello
    3. Cadwell Park
    4. Atlanta Motorsports Park
    5. Buttonwillow (Aiming low, but I live ~4h away and yet somehow have never been there)
    Unfortunately I missed #4 while I was living in the vicinity, but someday there will be a rental car reckoning. I’ve already been to VIR, Carolina Motorsports Park, Willow Springs, Chuckwalla, and Fontana, so even if I never make it to the top 3 I’m a pretty lucky guy.

    1. mdharrell Avatar

      I’ve been snubbed by the people who run Chuckwalla. That must count for something.

      1. Andrew_theS2kBore Avatar

        Yeah, Chuckwalla has the least friendly track management I’ve ever run into. Unfortunately they also laid out one heck of a track so they end up getting my money anyway…

        1. mdharrell Avatar

          They got my money once, too, but afterwards never followed through on their offer of a track patch despite my polite (and utterly ignored) reminders. I’m still looking for one if you’ve got any leads.

          1. Andrew_theS2kBore Avatar

            I have stickers but no patches, if you’d like one I’ll mail it.

          2. mdharrell Avatar

            That’s a generous offer but I’m hoping to add their patch to my increasingly stylish paddock jacket. I’ve got all the other tracks at which I’ve, um, “raced” featured on the sleeves.

    2. XX-Rich Avatar

      Love AMP. It has a carousel and sweeper modeled off of eau rouge… if you can get out to that area, visit us when we’re in town. We’ll be there 2 times in 2016, check out all events here – http://bit.ly/xx-events

  6. mdharrell Avatar

    “You don’t have to be a racer to drive on a race track…”
    …for which I am grateful, I assure you.
    “…and even tooling around at freeway speeds…”
    Reaching freeway speeds while on track is still on my list.

    1. engineerd Avatar

      Reaching freeway speeds on track is still on my list.
      There. I fixed that for you. 😉

  7. Greg Kachadurian Avatar
    Greg Kachadurian

    I could die happy after driving a Ford GT-40 around Le Mans. I know it would never happen, not least because I wouldn’t fit.
    My more realistic goal would be to drive a BMW M3 (E92 and earlier) around the ‘Ring.

    1. Fuhrman16 Avatar

      “Normal road speeds”
      So that would be what, like 150mph? (The Isle of Man doesn’t have speed limits, at least parts of it anyways.)

      1. crank_case Avatar

        You can’t get done for speeding outside towns, though you can, apparently, get done for “Furious Driving”.

  8. bigredcavetroll Avatar

    I would like to some day participate in the Baja 1000, even if I don’t get to drive. Also, while not a racetrack, I’d love to visit the Isle of Man and drive on its roads.

  9. salguod Avatar

    Hmm, your “meager” list seems pretty impressive to me. So far I’ve driven for about 40 minutes at Mid Ohio. Oh, and I’ve seen a NASCAR race at MIS twice and races at Mid Ohio 3 times. Yeah, that’s it.

  10. Roody Avatar

    1. Lime Rock
    2. Watkins Glen
    3. COTA
    4. Laguna Seca
    5. Monticello Motor Club
    6. Road America
    If I can knock off half of them in the next five years I’ll be happy.

  11. SteveL Avatar

    My bucket list would be so long! Many of the choices just come from tracks my heroes raced at…
    In no particular order:
    Laguna Seca (done)
    Phoenix (done)
    Watkins Glen
    Daytona (r/c and oval)
    Long Beach
    Knockhill (what can I say, it looks fun!)
    Mt. Panorama
    Phillip Island
    Symmons Plains
    but ask me next week and it might change 🙂

  12. mve Avatar

    When I make it big, I’m going straight to Mt. Panorama, buying a Ford Falcon Ute, and running through about a dozen set of tires. Before lunch.

  13. XX-Rich Avatar

    You can travel the country with us! We visit a several tracks mentioned below.

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