Autocross Preperation Checklist

Written By Tony "Mario" Crea

(This applies mostly to all NNJR events)

The day before an event:

The day of the event, before the Drivers Meeting:

      Arrive as early as possible. Approximately 8:00 ~ 8:30 is suggested for novices. This will allow ample time to get settled, unpack, and "hook-up" with a more experienced autocrosser. All you have to do is ASK

      Do not be afraid to ask questions, we were all "rookies" at one time or another. The more experienced racers will be happy to educate and guide any novice.

      Sign the release/waiver form. This is REQUIRED by anybody in the paddock area, even non-competitors.

      Register yourself and the car; pay entry fee and pick out you car number and class. Then receive your worker assignment, this is a requirement at all events.

      Receive course map (If applicable)

      Inflate "street" tires to at least 5-8 psi above what you use on the street. This dramatically stiffens the tire sidewall, a must for crisp, responsive handling. The pressures can be raised or lowered during the event, this is merely a general benchmark for FWD & RWD.

      Bring car to REQUIRED technical inspection. Have car all empty of all loose items and race ready with numbers on the car, otherwise we will use window chalk. The following will be checked...

      Seatbelt condition. (Factory or aftermarket) Not to be torn, excessively worn.

      Tires and lug nuts. (As mentioned earlier)

      Nothing loose under the hood.

      Throttle return.

      Brake pedal feel.

      "Cleanliness" of the cars interior. (As mentioned earlier)

      Helmet – Snell or M 2005 or newer.

Drivers Meeting:

      A brief introduction by the Solo (The formal name for autocrossing) Chairperson.

      An explanation of the safety rules of the event, and the consequences for not following them.

      A discussion of the general rules of autocrossing, including the guidelines for scoring and penalties.

Once competition begins:

      Cars are lined up according to classification...

      Clubs do not run in number order, however you run within your class.

      Paddock speeds are limited to 5mph or less. Strive for less in this case, things get pretty hectic in the paddock.

      No burn-outs to heat tires are allowed in the paddock area or surrounding roads.

      Competitors are to acknowledge any red flags issued to them by a course worker. We understand concentration and adrenaline levels are high, but, safety is our number one priority.

      Should a competitor be issued a red flag for any reason, he/she is to come to a quick, controlled stop and slowly completiting the course at 50% and return to the grid area.

      The same rule applies once a competitor completes a lap and crosses the finish line.

      Work the course when your run group has completed a heat. Working is required by all competitors. As a novice, request working a station with an experienced autocrosser.

Once competition ends:

      See if the event coordinators need any assistance cleaning up.

      Gather around for the presentation of the trophies.

      Head on home...unpack, clean up, relax, and tell everyone about your first autocross!!