How would you like to experience the thrill and horsepower of a real V8 race car without the 2-5 year prison sentence that usually accompanies a grand theft auto conviction? Whether you’re a race driver or not, you can have this mind-blowingly thrilling experience in Australia, on Australia’s best known race tracks. Here’s how you do it, best times to do it, the costs involved, insider tips, and more!
Your V8 race car experience will begin with a briefing by an experienced race driver. You’ll then accompany the driver as he takes several laps around the circuit, demonstrating the proper techniques to exit, cut corners, accelerate and brake, steer and do swift gear changes. Your driver will also instruct you on safety and track awareness. As much as you’ll want to update all your friends on how you just took your first corner at 100mph, don’t ask your instructor if it’s okay to Facebook when doing your laps—save that for your everday driving.
The powerful 450hp V8 race car has 6-pot brakes, Bilstein suspension, Carrera Cup slicks and racing gearbox. This car handles hurdles the way a real V8 Supercar would, and you’ll find no difference to the experience. Different models are available, such as the Chevrolet and Ford. Choose your V8 racing car company based on the car model you want to race.
The V8 Race Car experience you get depends on the theme you sign up for. Some themes involve driving for 6 laps and riding passenger next to a driving instructor for 3 laps. Other themes will give you 10 adrenalin-boosting laps around the track. If you opt to just ride passenger, be assured that you’ll be accompanied by a real race car driver or a racing instructor in the car with you. Be also prepared to have your friends never let you live down the fact that you were too scared to take the wheel.
When you’re ready to go, you’re all set for your six laps in your V8 race car. After you cower through these laps, the professional driver will take over and take you through some seriously quick V8 hot laps that will leave you holding on to your seat.
Here’s a really dramatic video of what you’ll be doing:
Where to Go
Several racing tracks in Australia offer the V8 race car driving experience. The following is a partial list of the places you can go to for this experience:
- Western Australia: Perth Airport
- South Australia: The Mallala Motorsport Park, Adelaide
- Victoria: Calder Park, Melbourne
- New South Wales: Eastern Creek, Sydney and Wakefield Park
- Queensland: Queensland Raceway, Brisbane
Best Time to Go
Late November sees heavy V8 Supercar racing action at Eastern Creek Raceway, Sydney. This race is the crowning glory of the year’s Supercar races. For V8 race car laps, best times are when the tracks are not being used for the actual racing. Look up a sports company that offers V8 car racing laps on a race track and ask for their racing calendar. Most races are conducted during the best weather conditions, mostly during the summer months. There are convenient weekend packages that you can explore as well.
Nascar Wife – Although you will be able to take the wheel, you will at all times be accompanied by a professional driver, who will be much, much more macho than you.
The cost of the V8 race car experience depends on the track, location, and your driving theme. On average, 5 laps around a professional track along with 3 hot laps will cost you around AUD $339. 10 laps on a total of 22kms will cost around $249 (in Wakefield Park – NSW), and $299 for 6 laps (Melbourne). After you race a few laps, you can even obtain future laps at a discount at some tracks.
- Before you start on your V8 race car experience, you will need to sign an indemnity bond absolving the company of any responsibility were you to suffer injuries. If you have any issues with this, it’s best to consult a lawyer beforehand.
- You will have to conform to certain height and weight standards; ordinarily, you’re eligible if you can fit into a XXXL race suit.
- If you want to drive a manual transmission V8 race car, you need to have a P-Plate License at a minimum. For automatic race cars, your regular drivers’ license will do.
- Do not drink the night before you’re scheduled for your driving experience. The racing company will check your blood alcohol reading and it should be 0.00% on that day.
- Be prepared for the heat, dust and extreme G’s on the drive. Wear comfortable clothes, enclosed shoes, sunglasses and sunscreen. Your racing attire will be provided by the company.