The BMW Drivers Club of Melbourne has been given the green light to run its Driver Training and Come & Try Day this weekend at the Broadford Motorcycle Complex.
While it has been a fortnight of uncertainty surrounding whether the event will go ahead due to Victoria’s lockdown, the recent easing of the state’s restrictions has allowed the club to push on with its plans.
Around 35 participants are locked in for the event, which aims at helping individuals get involved in the sport behind the wheel for the first time, as well as build the confidence of those who have already completed a number of come and try days.
The day will see drivers split into multiple groups based on their experience and each group will enjoy multiple sessions on the complex’s short circuit, with the rookies to run with instructors.
Club President Graeme Bell was thrilled the event could continue this weekend.
“We’re really excited to be able to go ahead this weekend, especially since we had been planning on running it. It’s great to be able to put that hard work to use now,” Bell said.
“These events are really good at bringing new people into motorsport and teaching them the fundamentals in a controlled environment where they drive safely at a speed that’s not too fast.
“They also get the opportunity to go for a few laps with the instructors so they can get a real taste on racing lines, breaking points and other skills required to race.
“We love doing these sorts of days because they have proven quite successful in the past and generally result in people joining the club to get into motorsport either as an official or as a competitor.
The day isn’t just focused on drivers. It’s also used as an opportunity to train officials who are looking to join the sport on the other side of the fence.
Throughout the event, individuals will get an insight into many of the different roles required at race meetings, for which they use as a foundation in building a pathway through the sport.
It isn’t just first-timers who utilise the club’s come and try day with the Victorian Flagmarshalling Team often sending members to continue development and get necessary training in a stress-free environment.
With 25 officials already part of the event, Bell was confident that events like this were instrumental in helping grassroots motorsport grow.
“We use this day to train officials and give people a chance to taste life as an official,” Bell added.
“Because it’s not timed or there isn’t anything riding on it, we can spend a little bit more time on all the areas of officiating and really help the participants. We quite often get people who loved it and come back again to be flaggies or scrutineers.
“Events like this are really important for both sides of motorsport because at a meeting, it’s fairly hard to train officials as it’s always a busy environment, so if you can start them off in a more relaxed setting, then it gives them a taste without lots of pressure.
“It’s fantastic that the Victorian Flag Association believes in these days and has trust in us to train their new members. It gives us plenty of confidence that we’re doing a good job.
“The club has also had a focus on inviting junior drivers and women to these events. Earlier this year, we ran it in conjunction with International Women’s Day and a lot of those same women will be coming back again this weekend.”
The event will run in line with current COVID restrictions and Motorsport Australia’s Return to Race Document.
The BMW Drivers Club of Melbourne’s Driver Training and Come & Try Day takes place at the Broadford Motorcycle Complex on Saturday 31 July.