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      10-04-2020, 07:54 PM   #1
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Do you learn more during ///M driving school or HPDEs?

I was looking up M driving school prices and they seem way too steep for a 2-day course. I know that we won’t be beating on our cars and we get to drive multiple M cars and all that.

Do we end up learning more driving skills/techniques for the track in the M driving schools or in HPDEs with an instructor? Are the M driving schools worth that much premium over HPDEs? (Factoring in wear/tear and consumables on our own cars when we take it to the track). My goal is to eventually get fast enough to run in the red/advanced run groups. (And not do pro racing/instructing)
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      10-05-2020, 02:37 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abenney View Post
I was looking up M driving school prices and they seem way too steep for a 2-day course. I know that we won't be beating on our cars and we get to drive multiple M cars and all that.

Do we end up learning more driving skills/techniques for the track in the M driving schools or in HPDEs with an instructor? Are the M driving schools worth that much premium over HPDEs? (Factoring in wear/tear and consumables on our own cars when we take it to the track). My goal is to eventually get fast enough to run in the red/advanced run groups. (And not do pro racing/instructing)
Spend the money on seat time with instructed HPDE organizations. Also worth asking yourself why or what it is about the red/advanced run group that's the goal?

Got out on the track. You'll love it! Be forewarned it'll ruin regular cruising...
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      10-05-2020, 01:09 PM   #3
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Everyone's perspective, appetite, and budget are different. Personally, I do both every year.

HPDE's are a great setting to get immediate right seat feedback (well, it used to be before COVID. The availability for right seat instruction varies between organizations.). The apparent up front cost is significantly lower. And you get familiar with your car. Things to consider, you are putting wear on your car and there is risk of damage. So, you need to factor in the cost of inspection, brake pads, brake fluid, tires, gas, etc. On top of that is insurance. This is again a personal choice and your mileage may vary, but for $300 to $400 you can get track insurance that greatly reduces your cost if an accident should happen. Finally, your instructor will be a great guy/gal who is a skilled driver, but most often they will not be a professional.

If you go the route of Performance Center M School, much of that description flips. You do not get right seat instruction, aside from skid pad exercises. The up front costs are significant, but they cover all of your consumables - primarily gas brakes, and tires. If the car breaks, not your problem, they give you another. They have people checking the vehicles between each exercise. As long as you listen to the instructors, there is no need to worry about insurance/liability for damage. Finally, every one of the instructors at the PC is a paid professional driver. Not only do they instruct at the PC, but they are race drivers, stunt drivers, etc and can flat out drive the wheels off the car and are trained to impart that knowledge to you.

As noted, I do both and highly recommend the same to everyone that I talk to on the subject. At the end of the day, the important part is seat time. I find value in splitting my seat time between the two options you are considering. Good luck with your decision and have fun on the track!
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      10-05-2020, 02:00 PM   #4
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I feel that HPDEs with clubs that have instructors are far better for beginners than M driving school. I think the M driving school is better once you have a solid grasp of the fundamentals and smooth driving because then you can explore a bit more.
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      10-19-2020, 02:05 AM   #5
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I have recently seen my driving get better with this formula:
Track often, just like anything else if you dont do it often enough it does not stick. Try learning a new language and only practicing every so often, not happening.
Find youtube videos of track analysis corner by corner, and also videos of other drivers laps, but make sure these are good drivers with good braking and lines.
Consider a sim setup and work on the tracks you will be visiting. I got a Next Level Challenger rig and a Thrustmaster T300, and hooked up my Ps4 with GT and Project Cars.
This strategy has increased my confidence in a major way!
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      10-19-2020, 09:42 AM   #6
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Short answer: HPDE

M driving school is a good introduction for beginners. Intermediate to advanced drivers wont get much out of it. The registration is more expensive because it includes the cost to run the car (you are using their vehicles).
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      10-19-2020, 11:36 AM   #7
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Another option is coming to a Porsche driving experience. I learned a lot as a complete beginner then doing HPDE's.
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      10-19-2020, 01:04 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gum2012 View Post
Another option is coming to a Porsche driving experience. I learned a lot as a complete beginner then doing HPDE's.
I'm gonna be doing a Porsche Driving Experience forever after seeing the G8x monstrosity
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      10-19-2020, 08:57 PM   #9
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I did the porsche driving experience and found it helpful as an intermediate driver. my coach asked me my level of experience (20-30 HPDEs), then asked me what i wanted to work on (various types of recovery). they have a kick plate thing that perturbs the car, and it was a good exercise at learning to catch a spin.

i got the feeling if i hadn't been specific about what i wanted, it would have been more of a sales pitch type thing...
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      10-20-2020, 12:11 AM   #10
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If you think you have zero intention of turning it into a hobby and just want to drive someone else's car to get a taste then do the m school.

If you think you really want to learn about how to properly track your car then go HPDE.
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      10-22-2020, 04:59 AM   #11
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There's one thing that you can do with someone else's car that you might not want to do in your own: push it to the limit. For a beginner, I think it's a great option. Even better if BMW gives you a voucher so you don't pay full price. Also, if you attend a free UDE you can get 20% off M School. Or you can get 15% off by being a BMWCCA member.
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      10-23-2020, 05:14 PM   #12
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HPDS for sure. M schools are for fun and test drive their cars, u wont learn much in 20 min random exercises. HPDS and go with BMW CCA events, best in terms of prorgresssion and learning/skills. and do skid pad. did i say do skid pad? yes yes yes
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      10-28-2020, 02:29 PM   #13
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HPDE by a gigantic margin.

///M School is a great way of opening the door to someone with zero experience in pushing a car beyond street driving demands in someone else's car. It's too limited, too short and not enough 1 on 1 time. The only nice thing is you get to spend time on a skid pad. You can find car control clinics from time to time but they are nowhere near as common or useful. Knowing the car's limits should be the foundation of this journey. Super fun but you'll only get a taste of what you'd get at a DE event with an instructor.
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