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bmwboy88
07-10-2004, 08:45 AM
Hi,
I'm going on BMW Driver training level 1 course in August. Just want to know if anyone here been on that course and what's your opinion of it.
Please post your comments and your experience from that course.

:cool:

audiophilia
07-10-2004, 09:05 AM
I really enjoyed it.

Good instruction, good food, nice people.

Cars are fantastic...best 500 'mod' you can buy (mine was a gift*wiggle* )

Should be mandatory for every crap driver in this province! There are a few out there...*mumble*

rost12
07-10-2004, 09:11 AM
It was a pretty fun day. Best advice is to go in with a open mind and turned off ego, that way you'll get the most out of it.

I'm doing level 3 in 11 days *giggle*

STALKER
07-10-2004, 12:44 PM
How much are the coarses, last time I checked they were really $$$.

BMW_7
07-10-2004, 01:33 PM
I heard that BMWCC driving school is a much better bang for buck?

But then I think BMW driving school offers preventive driving only.

rost12
07-10-2004, 03:11 PM
Yup, BMW's driver training levels 1 and 2 are more focused on "safety", although on level 2 you do get to run around a small auto-x course in an M3 :) Level 3 is a 2 day track event.

They are pretty expensive, like everything BMW, but let's not forget that you drive around in THEIR 330s and M3s and you get taught by fun guys who are ex. prof. racing drivers. For me they're worth it.

BMWF1
07-10-2004, 03:14 PM
Originally posted by rost12
Yup, BMW's driver training levels 1 and 2 are more focused on "safety", although on level 2 you do get to run around a small auto-x course in an M3 :) Level 3 is a 2 day track event.

They are pretty expensive, like everything BMW, but let's not forget that you drive around in THEIR 330s and M3s and you get taught by fun guys who are ex. prof. racing drivers. For me they're worth it.

So do they focus on driving or are they like any bmw employee and more or less trying to sell you a new bmw??

330DTM
07-10-2004, 03:17 PM
I've done the Level one and although I did have fun, the BMWCC Driver Training at Mosport is a much better investment if you're willing to use your own car.

If you scared to track your own car, you shouldn't cause you won't crash and spin out. It's a very controlled event and you're usually in-car with an instructor to help you around.

suicide
07-10-2004, 03:37 PM
i am going to be going to do it soon

bmwboy88
07-10-2004, 04:05 PM
I got this as a gift as well. Maybe after this, I will do level 2 and 3.

I take it that level 1 course objective is on safety driving?

For those who took level 1, what percentage of day is spent on the track and in class? Do you get much driving time or is it all theories in class and than a couple hours in the car?

STALKER
07-10-2004, 04:17 PM
Any driver education is a good investment. I take my car to the track and can honestly say that I feel so much more comfortable with it now that I have some good track time with it.

Paul540/m3
07-10-2004, 04:30 PM
I personally went to the bridgestone driving academy at mosport. It was absolutely awesome. The first year that i went we drove camaros and firebirds arounf the small track and it was eye opening. The next year i went we drove Formula 2000's. Now these are the most fun and best handling cars I have ever driven. Fast as hell and handle like a dream. Definitely a good investment.

BMWF1
07-10-2004, 04:56 PM
anyone answer my question?

DINAN 3
07-10-2004, 05:44 PM
The BMWCC (BMW Trillium Chapter) Driver Training at Mosport is MUCH better than the BMW Driver Training Level 1 course.
I would rate it at par with the BMW Level 3 course, except that it's only for one day.

Since the BMW Club runs non-profit, their course is dirt cheap (+/- C $350) compared to the official BMW one.
I agree.....Driver Training is the best Mod one can get.
Most of us only have the skill to drive our high performance cars to 40-50% of their ability.
Upon completing the course this number should rise by at least 20%.
Calculate that as a percentage of your horsepower and you'll understand what I mean.....On 2nd thought...No, you'll have take the course first and THEN you'll understand what I mean.

Hope you have a strong stomach.
On the day I attended the Cayuga session it was raining and I faced the rear end of a new Corvette Z06 in the starting lineup in front of me. My 70 yr young (!) instructor made me chase this thing through the turns with a vengeance.....he was GREAT.
Sounded like he hated Vettes.....kept on screaming at me in my helmet "Stay on his ass ! STAY on his ass ! Keep up the pressure !".
At some points, my front bumper must have been no more than a meter away from the Vette's :moon:
It wasn't until the track's straitaway that he dusted me, but I did a great job catching back up to the old geezer (60 yr old driver of the vette) through the turns.
Almost lost it once, but had a BLAST !!!
Be prepared to feel slightly :puke: by the end of the day !

rost12
07-10-2004, 06:02 PM
Originally posted by BMWF1
So do they focus on driving or are they like any bmw employee and more or less trying to sell you a new bmw??

They focus on understanding of theory, proper seating position and understanding of BMWs safety features like DSC and ABS and how the car acts with and without them on a wet skidpad. They also teach you to "watch ahead" and do some accidance avoidance excersises. No, I did not get the impression that they were selling me the car, more like showing what a car (any car, pretty much) can and cannot do.

There were lots of people who didn't actually own bmws taking level 1 with me, by the way.

rost12
07-10-2004, 06:06 PM
Originally posted by bmwboy88
I take it that level 1 course objective is on safety driving?

For those who took level 1, what percentage of day is spent on the track and in class? Do you get much driving time or is it all theories in class and than a couple hours in the car?

Safety, yes. They reserve level 3 for "exciting" driving. And there's no "track" in level 1, there's a wet skidpad that's lots of fun :) And they don't bore you with theories, stuff they told me was actually useful. It's basic, but it's nice to be reminded of it once in a while :)

bmwboy88
07-10-2004, 08:15 PM
Thanks Guys for the inputs. I am so looking forward to the class in August.

audiophilia
07-11-2004, 08:33 AM
Originally posted by BMWF1
So do they focus on driving or are they like any bmw employee and more or less trying to sell you a new bmw??

Absolutely not.

By implication, they are promoting BMWs. The cars, however, sell themselves. The tires, too!

audiophilia
07-11-2004, 08:42 AM
Originally posted by DINAN 3
The BMWCC (BMW Trillium Chapter) Driver Training at Mosport is MUCH better than the BMW Driver Training Level 1 course.

Totally different courses. 'Much better'? This is subjective. Apples and Oranges.

Originally posted by DINAN 3
.....kept on screaming at me in my helmet "Stay on his ass ! STAY on his ass ! Keep up the pressure !".


I think the above shows the difference. The BMW first course is about preventative measures. The instructors are superb!

The BMW course is a real investment in your daily driving. The 30 odd oversteer spins and the fun auto X will add to the fun.

For me, I cannot tell you how much I appreciated using their cars.

DINAN 3
07-12-2004, 02:40 PM
The BMW club course still dedicates about a 25% of the day to car controll theory and accident avoidance techniques, but one can only do so many excersizes in a parking lot B4 you get bored out of your scull. *sleep*
Most of us usually got them right after 2-3 tries and were looking forward to just getting on the track.
If cost is a factor, the BMW club course is MUCH cheaper, while offering no less than the official BMW driving school.

BTW: I'm in no way affiliated with the BMW Club.....in fact...my membership just recently expired.

alexm520
07-13-2004, 10:10 AM
Originally posted by audiophilia
Totally different courses. 'Much better'? This is subjective. Apples and Oranges.
I think the above shows the difference. The BMW first course is about preventative measures. The instructors are superb!
The BMW course is a real investment in your daily driving. The 30 odd oversteer spins and the fun auto X will add to the fun.
For me, I cannot tell you how much I appreciated using their cars.
quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by DINAN 3
.....kept on screaming at me in my helmet "Stay on his ass ! STAY on his ass ! Keep up the pressure !".

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Yes, it is subjective. But lets see what you learn & spend your time in both courses (since I haven't attended BMW Canada Level I/II courses I will be going buy what's been posted here and other forums)

BMW Club of Canada (BMWCC): 2 days in total (16 hrs incld lunches and breaks) = $400 + $50 (membership) + $50 tech insp
BMW Canada (parking lot): 1 day (8 hrs guessing) = $500


BMWCC
Classroom sessions = 3 hrs (in Beginners "C" group; 2hrs in Intermediate "B"group)
Parking lot exercise = 4 hrs (in Beginners "C" group, 3 hrs in "B"); manuovering, accident avoidence, etc. including wet parking lot exercises)
TRACK Time with instructor = 4 hrs (approx)
Saturday BBQ dinner and drinks

BMW Canada (Level I / II)
Parking lot exercise = several hours (probably under 3 hrs for sure)
Classroom session/instructions = a couple of hours (under 2hrs ... someone said they don't spend too much time on theories)

I cannot speak for "DINAN 3", but it is EXTREMELY unlikely that an instructor would "screem" (or say) to a beginner student "C" who is attending this school for the 1st or 2nd time.... "to stay on his ass" (ie the car in front).

In my first BMWCC school, the instructor KEPT slowing me down.... all the time.

AFTER you been through SEVERAL BMWCC schools, an instructor MAY teach/encourage you that one way to PASS a faster car in front, IS TO STAY CLOSE BEHIND HIM (typically through a corner since a faser car typically pulls away on a straight away) in order TO GET A PASSING SIGNAL from a faster car in front.

2 IMPORTANT THINGS You drive at your comfort level, regardless even if your instructor encourages you to go faster (instructor will make his own evaluation of the student and decide accordingly if the student is capable of going faster BASED on several laps or just take it easy)

Second, because BMWCC is safety oriented, you CANNOT pass the car in front UNLESS it (the faster car) gives you a passing singal.
So, IF YOU WANT to pass the car in front, there are different techniques you can use; BUT you don't need or have to pass it .... you can just as easily and enjoyably drive behind it ..... chances are it will PULL AWAY from you on a straight section.

BUT you get a huge GRIN ON YOUR FACE, when you (in a lowly 328/330 start passing M3s (E36 ro E46), 911s/other Porsches, Corvettes and other much faster cars than yours...... BECAUSE you are a "FASTER driver in a slower car" on the track than they other "SLOWER driver in a faster car".


AlexM520

DINAN 3
07-14-2004, 12:33 PM
That's exactly how it goes down, except that I must have majorly lucked out with my instructor.
He was this 70 yr old guy with an English accent (wearing a funny hat) and he really fired me up.
If you ever go.....try to request him.
At first when he approached me, some of my fellow students grinned that I got pared up with the old guy, but looks sure were deceiving. In fact when I hesitantly, approaching the end of the long strait-away (Cayuga), let off the gas to early.....the next time around he would push down on my leg until it was time to let up.
I must say, I learned a ton and build up much greater confidence in my driving abilities that day.
Lesson learned = Better to invest in your driving skills first and then go out and throw 500 bucks towards some stupid Mod.

I guess it's all about how you bond with your instructor and the confidence he has in your abilities. I still remember the grin on his face, as we were passing cars occupied by fellow instructors he was buddies with. I agree.....it's quit the rush to pass a higher HP car, knowing that your new found skills are the culprit for that.

Hope all of you make it to a performance driver school one day !
When you do.....post your experience and encourage others to do the same.

Best,

Marv.

bmwboy88
07-14-2004, 08:35 PM
In the BMW Driving Training Level 1 course, what is the ratio of instructor to students?
is it 1:1?

rost12
07-14-2004, 11:22 PM
Originally posted by bmwboy88
In the BMW Driving Training Level 1 course, what is the ratio of instructor to students?
is it 1:1?

1 instructor per 5-6 cars. they don't really need to ride with ya, you all will have walkies in the car and they'll be directing you and giving comments as you go.

alexm520
07-14-2004, 11:46 PM
Originally posted by rost12
1 instructor per 5-6 cars. they don't really need to ride with ya, you all will have walkies in the car and they'll be directing you and giving comments as you go.

OPPS :D Another big "minus" for the BMW Driver Training I/II .... you don't even get your dedicated instructor for $500 for one day.

PEOPLE ! Go and make donuts on a large empty parking lot of some big plaza (Like Yorkdale or Fairview) after it closes... FOR FREE.
Want to do "excercises in wet" .... no problem ... wait until it rains and go crazy on the same plazas' parking lot ... FOR FREE.

And for ONLY $15 (as long as you joined BWM Club of Canada - only $58/year) you can test your skills and car at SOLO2/autocrosses (also on parking lot). And guess what, other members AND instructors will give you their feedback ... FOR FREE.

http://www.trillium-bmwclub.ca/trillium/site/page.jsp?Autocross

>>>> Not feeling ripped off by BMW Driver Training parking lot courses .... PRICELESS

DINAN 3
07-15-2004, 12:24 AM
I was holding back, but you said it like it is.
BMW Driver Training = Big Ripe-Off

rost12
07-15-2004, 08:03 AM
Lmao. Don't like it, don't go, geez. Go to the parking lot and trash your car without learning what's actually happening to it and why, wtf do we care :)

And no offense to you BMWCCA guys, but your instructors are just regular guys who think they can drive, for the most part... BMW hires professionals who are also good "teachers". Big diff. in my opinion.

Once again, though, I don't work for BMW driver training, I'm not trying to sell it to anyone. For me, it was worth my 500, as level 3 is going to be worth my 3000.

Cheers.

audiophilia
07-15-2004, 08:18 AM
Yeah, looks like this has become a pissing contest...

*sleep*

I've only done the BMW school. I enjoyed it. I'm sure the BMW Club courses are fine, too...both gotta be better than basic driver training.

fitz318is
07-15-2004, 08:36 AM
Originally posted by alexm520
quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by DINAN 3
.....kept on screaming at me in my helmet "Stay on his ass ! STAY on his ass ! Keep up the pressure !".


BUT you get a huge GRIN ON YOUR FACE, when you (in a lowly 328/330 start passing M3s (E36 ro E46), 911s/other Porsches, Corvettes and other much faster cars than yours...... BECAUSE you are a "FASTER driver in a slower car" on the track than they other "SLOWER driver in a faster car".

AlexM520

Think it feels good in a 328? Try it in a 318!
The last time I was there, the fastest person in our group was a 1987ish Golf with 130hp, he was very quick.

BMW Club Advance driver training is worth every penny.

DINAN 3
07-15-2004, 03:47 PM
Originally posted by rost12
And no offense to you BMWCCA guys, but your instructors are just regular guys who think they can drive, for the most part... BMW hires professionals who are also good "teachers". Big diff. in my opinion.

Once again, though, I don't work for BMW driver training, I'm not trying to sell it to anyone. For me, it was worth my 500, as level 3 is going to be worth my 3000.

Cheers.

The choice is personal, but in my case.....I don't need no "Schumacher" to teach me how to drive and if I did...you would have seen me live at the Indy last weekend.

Whether Professionals or Amateur Racers are instructing us, I don't believe that either school is setup to make any of us Pro racers. For us to even reach the skill level of the lets assume lower qualified club instructor, I'm guessing we would need to amass a couple more hundred track hours under our belts.

All we are trying to say is that we find Level 1 & 2 rather pricey, considering there is barely any track time and no 1/1 Student/Instructor Ratio like the club offers. For that kind of coin, I don't want no instructions over a walkie-talkie !

In terms of Level 3.....@ 3000 bucks...you would probably be better off at the "Skip Barber" Racing School.
All and all, I can personaly vouch for the teaching abilities of the club staff.
Again, I'm in no way affiliated with the BMW club and as mentioned before, I even let my membership expire a short while ago.

In conclusion, if the club didn't offer the quality program at the dirt cheap price they do, I would be right there with you at the official BMW Driver Training Courses.

bmwboy88
07-15-2004, 09:58 PM
This has become a pissing contest between BMW Training and BMWCC. I am sure both are good and offer same quality service to the people who decide participate.

I look forward to my class.