Hello, my name is WRXforScience and I’m a track addict. It’s been 9 days since I last went to the track and 19 days before I head back (I’m already getting antsy but there’s an autox in between which should help with the withdrawals).
For the last couple of years I’ve averaged going to the track every other weekend and I’m scheduled for 40 days this year (and 10 autocrosses just for good measure). My neighbors and the UPS guy know me as “the guy with all the tires”. I have 4 sets of wheels and tires and a spare set of unmounted tires for emergencies (2 sets of mounted track tires, 1 set of mounted autox tires, the oem wheels and tires, and a set of unmounted track tires). A full third (nearly 4k) of the miles I drove last year were either on the track or to and from the track.
My addiction started about 11 years ago when I got hooked on autocross. A friend convinced me to try it with him, neither of us had much experience with the seedy world of motorsports aside from its overly glamorous depiction on tv and in movies. I was hooked from the start. The rush I got from driving at the limit and pushing myself to continuously improve and get faster is a high that I’ve been chasing since the start. The costs of my addiction have been high; all my friends are car friends, my family has to endure tales from the track that they have little interest in, and I spend hundreds of dollars and countless hours at the track and planning, theory crafting, and preparing myself and car for the track.
And all for what? Hundreds of hours of youtube videos, dozens of t-shirts, a few jackets, and a handful of trophies in exchange for countless hours and thousands of dollars. I know I cannot or at least will not change, but maybe my cautionary tale can dissuade the youths from following my line and reaching the apex of addiction. I might be a lost cause but don’t forget the loved ones you lose on the weekends to the track, keep them in your thoughts, and don’t just ignore the smell of brake dust and rubber baked into their very skin. Brake pads aren’t the only thing that can help someone to stop.