Popping My Silverstone Cherry

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I went on my first trackday at Silverstone last week. In a typically 'Summer 2016’ affair, I religiously checked up on the forecast for clouds - right up until it started to rain a perilously greasy rain on the sighting laps. FFS.

A quick weather dance and the rain stayed at bay from the second session until I was halfway home.

You should try it. Works almost every time.

Track time

This being my first time at Silverstone, I whipped my notes out first thing. Granted they make you look like a bit of a knob at first. But honestly, throughout the day they'll pass through many hands. In fact, off the back of reading my notes, I know of at least two people who have started writing their own.

I, like many in inters, struggled to go fast: you don't get many laps in each session to learn the place, it's hard to find and use markers and, finally, every corner seems to lure you into apexing waaayyyy too early. It feels like the track is constantly laughing at your pathetic entry, mid corner and exit speeds.

I worked on my lines in the morning but gave up on chasing lap times pretty quickly - with a best of 2:38.848.

Analysis

As usual, I’ve found a few areas to improve next time out by reviewing videos and photos from the day.

Fitness

As I'm getting stronger under brakes, I'm struggling with my upper body strength. My lower body is holding up fine from cycling - I just need to bring my twiglets arms up to par.

Body position

Sticking with issues with my upper body - I need to work on its position by: lowering my head, chest and shoulders; draping my outside arm over the tank; dropping my inside elbow and maybe holding the inside grip like a screwdriver.

Tip in

I still have a lazy tip in. It takes me too long to get from straight up to full lean, which, makes the corners unnecessarily long. I just need to grow a pair and commit to the corner and get the thing cranked over quickly.

Quick action throttle

I've held off buying a quick action throttle for a while. I liked that the stock 'long throw’ throttle buys you a bit of insurance against poor throttle control.

Now though, the double twist thing you have to do to get it open to the stop is really starting to annoy me. Especially when driving hard for short periods between corners.

I’m also hoping that it’ll help with my throttle blipping under brakes. Having to move my hand less for the same result will surely help?

I think I'll be buying a quick action throttle before my next outing - another first timer - at Donington Park in a few weeks.