SCCA Race 5 - Why is racing important to me?


I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t upset about my results but looking back, it’s okay. I was kind of hungover and did not get the best amount of sleep LOL. It’s all for fun and I’m not in the competitive zone, yet.

What’s the point of racing? Competition.

  • Racing won’t put food on the table.
  • Racing won’t cure people of illness
  • Racing won’t solve world conflict and struggle

So what gives, who the hell cares about being faster than someone else? Everyone wants to be better than everyone else, it’s normal.

Growing up, there was always an opportunity to give it your best shot: to get to the tree first, to have the newest shoes, to get the newest phone, competition is at the heart of all of it. Everyone (rightfully) believes that they are special in their own way, whether by talent or materialistic. We should find ways to be proud of ourselves, whether it’s impressive or not, just don’t overdo it.

Competition is a flex contest and we all want to be on top

I would bet that everyone wants that achievement. Doing something that we’re decently good at and going just a little bit further, it’s a flex contest. And everyone wants to flex, modest or verbose. Even if you’re not having the greatest time of your life, there’s probably a time in your life where you’ve said “I have it worse than you.” A competition not about who is the best, but who is worse off.

Most of the goals that we can achieve are just within reach. We can visualize our success and see that it’s possible, it’s just a matter of executing. And competition can’t exist without competitors.

Civic friends

Race 5 Comparison

Bryce (8th gen) and Christian (11th gen) are fellow Civic Si owners and I’ve come to enjoy the platform as it is. With light modifications, the car is an excellent daily driver and a beginner-friendly racecar. The nice thing is that this car is competitive. It’s not totally out of the running against other powerhouses like the Focus ST, GTI, and other similar cars in the class. I would think that it’s always the car that isn’t performing well enough when I score low, but it’s the driver. They can drive their cars and I can drive mine.

Bryce's 8th Gen

These guys are also running in Rookie class and aren’t people to sleep on. Bryce is an excellent driver within the class where he pulled a P1 last race weekend (race 4)! Whereas Christian and I are always battling for position from weekend to weekend. It’s a good fight to be in!

Christian's 11th gen

At first, I was frustrated with not being able to keep up with other guys on a similar platform. But after a few days of looking at my race footage, feedback from others, and reflecting on my performance, I reminded myself that racing is hard and that it’s a process. This isn’t an admission to say “Welp, I’m just a rookie, can’t do any better!”, because it’s a limiting mindset. Progress and talent are accomplished by putting in the hours of work and training, I simply haven’t tried long enough to get where I want to go. I’ll keep pushing and results will come in time.

Images courtesy of SCCA Hawaii

Self-Analysis with Racing

Rain, missing cones and over-slowing

Race 5 in the rain

After driving around the track with fun run laps, I figured out where I was slow. First, I SUCK AT RAIN DRIVING. This was the first race where we had a straight downpour on the track and it made me drive slower haha. I hit a couple of cones here and there and realized I was over-slowing the car. But it took me a while to figure out what was going on! Reviewing the race footage from TrackAddict, that’s when I figured out what was wrong.

I was frustrated with my first couple of laps during the timed session because I couldn’t figure out what I was doing wrong. Then the rain came down. Then the grip came down. Frustration is up. You get the cycle.

Driving Improvements

  • Better turn-in point on hairpins
  • Closing the gap on cones, just barely clipping some!
  • Did not get lost on the course

Driving Errors

  • Hitting the SAME cone over and over and not noticing
  • Over-slowing on corner entry, I should not go below 17MPH on the hairpin
  • Understeer in the wet
  • Too much speed on the straight with a chicane
  • Too much brake, not enough speed management

Logistical issues

  • Some of my camera angles sucked. I want to get a second GoPro dedicated to my footwork OR
  • Instead of a second camera, I can get a GPS module to track my progress better. Looking at an XGPS 160 for Track Addict
  • Ride-alongs! I want to ride along with another driver to see/feel what other drivers are doing differently, preferably faster drivers

Conclusion - Take a mental break and come back to racing later

Since SCCA races are on break until after Summer, taking a mental break from racing and will be focusing on other things. Logistically, race weekends aren’t too packed but there’s a lot on my mind beyond racing. Specifically, job searching, IT work, and skateboarding has taken up my priorities. A few exciting life updates are coming up too so I’m excited about that! Anyways, cheers to another race weekend.

We’re still not first, but we’re not last, haha.