Advanced Driving Schools

The BMW Auto Club of Quebec organizes a variety of events, ranging from social to on track driving.  Our events are characterized by camaraderie and fuelled by our passion for the automobile.  They allow you to experience firsthand some of the best driving experiences available in our area.

 

Without proper knowledge, training and support, the thought of taking your car out on a track seems very intimidating. So, we hope that our organization and our “Ground School” will encourage you to follow your passion and become a regular attendee at our events. 

 

Some questions we often get are:

  • What is an advanced driving school?

  • Who is eligible to attend?

  • Which cars are allowed?

  • Is my car is fit for track use?

  • What safety equipment do I need?

 

We hope the following answers demystify it all and encourage you to attend.

 

What is an advanced driving school?

 

An advanced driving school is a driver-training event held on a closed course where students learn and practice advanced driving techniques in a safe, controlled environment, governed by strict rules.  The program includes a mix of classroom sessions, track sessions and special exercise sessions.  Experienced instructors, carefully selected for their knowledge as well as the ability and willingness to share it, deliver these sessions.   An instructor accompanies students during all sessions on and off track.

 

Participants are generally grouped into four run groups: “Beginner”, “Intermediate”, “Advanced” and “Instructor”.    This ensures that the run groups are homogenous and provides a safe environment in which the students can develop their abilities. 

 

Passing is only permitted in specified areas where it can be safely executed with the knowledge and consent of both drivers.   For this to happen, the driver of the slower vehicle must acknowledge the presence of the faster vehicle and allow the pass by giving a “point-by” which is a “permission” to pass.   This means that the slower vehicle has absolute discretion about when and where to give a point-by and the faster vehicle must wait until the signal is given before initiating a pass.

 

Once the signal is given, the vehicle being passed maintains the standard driving line and lifts slightly off the throttle to facilitate the pass.   The vehicle executing the pass drives off-line to come out and make the pass and comes back onto the driving line.   The passing vehicle must make every effort to complete the pass safely and quickly within the specified zone.  Late passes at corner entry are not tolerated.

 

Our advanced driving schools are strictly non-competitive events and as such, no timing devices are allowed or tolerated under any circumstances.   Volunteer club members organize and manage our events and ensure that we have qualified professional medical staff and flaggers on duty for your safety.  

 

Who is eligible to attend?

 

The BMW Auto Club of Quebec organizes these events for the benefit of its members.  Participants must hold a current driving license and have a recommended minimum of two years’ driving experience.  Our events are also open to members in good standing from the BMW Club of Canada (BMWCC) and the BMW Car Club of America (BMWCCA) as well as other recognized car clubs such as Porsche Club of America (PCA), Audi Club of North America (ACNA), VIRAGE and others. 

 

All family members and friends are welcome to come and support you.  To do so, they must sign a waiver of liability and release form and comply with club rules, which are there to ensure everyone’s safety.  These include but are not limited to:  All minors must be accompanied by an adult at all times; All pets must be restrained with a leash at all times; Alcohol and drugs are strictly forbidden at all times; Timing and timing devices are strictly forbidden at all times.

 

Which cars are allowed?

 

We welcome all makes and models of any age as long as they pass the required technical inspections.  That being said, with the variety of cars on the market, the creativity of their owners and the harshness of our environment, we have to draw the line somewhere.  

 

All cars must have two seats of the same type, a dashboard, and equivalent seatbelts/harnesses for driver and passenger.  All safety equipment should be used in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions and recommendations.  Convertibles with original, structural, factory fixed hoops may be accepted, provided they comply with the “broomstick” rule. Convertibles with original factory pop-ups and articulated hardtop convertibles will be accepted. Convertibles without approved factory rollover protection systems must be equipped with reinforced roll bars that comply with the “broomstick” rule and be equipped with 5 or 6-point racing harnesses.  All convertibles must run with the top up.   For further clarification concerning convertibles, please contact the event registrar.

 

The BMW Club of Quebec reserves the right to refuse access to any car deemed unfit for track use.  If you have doubts, contact the registrar in advance of the event. DO NOT bring your car to an event and try to plead your case.

 

Is my car fit for track use?

 

All participants must have a technical inspection performed on their vehicles within 3 weeks of the event date. Based on this inspection, they must complete and submit a technical inspection form declaring their vehicle fit for track use. It is highly recommended that the inspection be performed (and the tech form completed) by a certified mechanic.

 

On the day of the event, the club will perform a technical inspection of all the vehicles at the event.  All cars must pass technical inspection to be allowed on track.  The chief instructor makes the final decision regarding admissibility based on the recommendation of the tech stewards and these decisions are irrevocable.

 

What safety equipment do I need?

 

There is a wide variety of safety equipment on the market today.   Participants are required to wear a suitable helmet at all times when on the track. Since January 2016, the minimum requirement is SNELL SA-2010 or SNELL M-2010 certification.  The sticker proving SNELL standard compliance must be inside the helmet.  For cars with gutted or stripped interiors, the minimum requirement is SNELL SA-2010.

 

Helmets are checked during technical inspection at the track and are considered an integral part of the safety check.  If you have doubts, contact the registrar in advance of the event. DO NOT bring an unsuitable helmet to the track and try to plead your case.

 

The club has a limited number of helmets available for rental.  If you need to rent a helmet, make your arrangements with the event registrar ahead of time.   If you are renting a helmet, you will be required to use a balaclava and these are available for purchase through the event registrar.

 

If you have any other questions, do not hesitate to reach out to our event organizers or other members.

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