PDaPI working directory

Please do not publicly link to this page. This material is not ready for public release and is copyright 2003 Larry Colen.

"Performance Driving, a Practical Introduction" is the textbook that I wrote for the National Auto Sport Association . I've been working on the new revision since I finished the last one in 1995.

I am actively soliciting help to get this done. At one point I thought I had the text close to done, but was waiting on illustrations. Of course, as such things go, everything now needs more work as I've come up with more ideas over time. Plese see my comments on feedback at the bottom of this page.

I've set up a group on yahoo to discuss teaching performance driving. To join it go to: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/raceteachers and click "join this group" in the upprer right hand corner. You can also send mail to raceteachers-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

If you can help with copyediting, desktop publishing, artwork, html wrangling and the like, that would be awesome. Even if you just read the book and send me your feedback on what is good, and what could be better (and how it could be better) that would be helpful too.

I'm actively soliciting feedback on major structural issues:
What order the sections are in (though I'm pretty happy with the current order)
Topics which really need to be covered in more depth
Topics I blather on too long about
Words that need to be added to the glossary
Suggestions for drawings or other things that will help get the point across better.

Larry Colen


Notes, comments, critique, ideas etc.

This is the main text of the book. I will want to break it back up into the individual sections, but I combined them all for the sake of global search and replaces.

The html is really ugly, It was converted from Word Perfect. I'd love to have all the extraneous html formmatting stuff removed.

analyzing your driving
This will probably prove to be the most difficult driving related topic I've tried to write about. How to analyze your driving so that you can improve. Over the years I've gotten pretty good at getting a gut feel for what a student is doing wrong and how to fix that. Codifying it, however, is extremely challenging.


Back of the title page. copyright and liability disclaimer.

Old table of contents. How can this be redone to work with html?

Outline and goals for what to cover before going on track, and during the day. It should probably be broken down into: What needs to be covered before they go out on track What can be covered later.

A lot of this is covered in my notes on teaching

Glossary for the book. Could it be combined with a hyperlinked index? I tried to put in hyperlinks to all of the glossary terms as they were used.

Form for student to fill out for each turn on track. Use this for making a drivers journal.

Questionaire about how to improve book. Maybe an online form would work.

Back cover of the book.

Advertising flyer for the book. Track notes

I'd love to do something a lot better for track notes. First of all I'd like to have them online in such a way that people can add their own comments about each turn. Each person might even register with a profile describing which car they were driving, their experience and such. This would all be part of setting up an online motorsports community and may be too grandiose of a goal.

I'd like to have aerial photos of the tracks, with details of each of the turns. The tire marks will give some indication of the line.

I'd also like to have example laps for each track, both at school speeds, with narrative and at race speeds. I'd want clips for each turn to go along with the text.


Sears Point, old notes, circa 1995

Notes from driving Infineon (Sear Point) in Scott Neville's GTI cup Rabbit.

First pass at notes on Infineon in a Spec Miata.
And some commentary on those notes:

Hank Watts' notes for the PCA on driving Infineon


Notes for thunderhill.

More thunderhill.

Yet more thunderhill

Thunderhill in a Spec Miata
After riding with Barry Hartzel.

Thunderhill in my SM, down on Power
I was flat out more places, and turning slower laptimes. I'd exit turns gaining on the car ahead of me, and be several carlengths back by the end of the straight. The throttle and gear choices were reminiscent of the MGB.



Track description of Laguna Seca. Circa 1995. Directories

Jpeg versions of all the illustrations. These are mostly stick figures and sketches showing what I'd eventually like to do.

Brian Beckman's Physics of Racing series. It's an excellent series, with real math, explaining in detail the physics behind what is going on. Brian has graciously given me permission to use his material. I'd like to figure out how to link to the detailed explanations when appropriate.

Handy programs for dealing with this stuff.
Tidy, for cleaning up html (it was worse before)
A script for snagging Brians PhORS.

Old files.

Old files.

This seems to have something to do with cascading style sheets.


I have had a lot of people volunteer to read the book and give me their feedback. This is a very good thing. A lot of times what one person really likes about something is what someone else really hates. I've gotten both compliments and complaints about everything from my humor to my explanation of the physics behind why you should do various things.

One thing that would really help me make use of the comments is if they were tagged in such a way that I could easily find them, and track them back to who they came from.

If you are sending your comments, mixed in with the text of one of the files, they will be a lot easier for me to find and keep trak of if you start every line with a comment with your initials enclosed in curly braces. For example:
{LRC} Is how I would start any comments that I make inside a file.

At the beginning of the file, please have special comments with your initials, your name, your email address and the date of the comments, in the format of YYMMDD. Ideally, you would also include the name of the file and the "most recently modified" or "Time-stamp:" date of the file.
For example:
{LRC Larry Colen lrc@red4est.com 030715 body.html Fri Jul 04 16:58:33 PDT 2003}
{LRC Larry Colen lrc@red4est.com 030715 body.html}
{LRC Larry Colen lrc@red4est.com 030715}

would all be very helpful.

Less important, but still helpful would be to note the first comment in a section with the section number, so that if I extract the comments from the file, I can see where they go. For example:
{LRC 4.2.1 You use the word skid without explaining it first}

If you wanted to send me a file that just had comments in it, that weren't mixed in with any file, please make the first line have your Initials, name, email and the date:
{LRC Larry Colen lrc@red4est.com 030715}

If you could also include a short reminder for me about where you heard about my book, and your related experience and background, that would also be very helpful.

I realize that this sounds like a lot of busy work, but I've probably got 50 people so far who have volunteered to help with the book, and I'm not smart enough to keep everything straight on my own. I also may not be smart enough to be sure I understand exactly what you mean by various comments and will probably want to ask at least a couple people for further clarification.

Even so, I'd rather have your feedback without the clever formattting than not get your feedback at all.


Copyright (C) 2003 Larry Colen
Most recently modified by lrc at Sun Aug 03 18:32:40 PDT 2003