Q: “What are the keys to learning a new track and getting up to speed quickly like the pro-drivers do?”
A: First, use the eBook and webinar that I have on my website for starters (https://speedsecrets.com). I’ve also answered similar questions to yours on these Ask Ross pages, so take a look around.
What are the “keys”? Preparation is THE key. Pros don’t just show up at a track and go out and learn the track. They’ve done a ton of prep. Also, pros have driven so many different tracks that they can relate a corner from a new track to some other corner they’ve driven in the past. The more tracks a driver drives, the easier it is to learn another new one.
Competing in autocross can teach you how to figure out how to get around a corner or series of corners quickly. But guess what? The best autocrossers prepare better than most others (course walks, mental imagery, course/track notes, etc.), so that brings us back to THE KEY – preparation.
Finally, many drivers focus too much on learning and driving the “ideal line,” and not enough on just driving the car to its limit (or as close as you’d like to drive to the limit). That’s why I say, “Drive the car, not the track.” When you drive your car to, or close to the limit, it will tell you where you should be on the track.