Originally Posted by sc_tr0jan_m3
I would disagree with this comment. I've been with NASA for nearly 3 years and grew up in the system. If you take advantage of the different instructors and be open for comments and feedback, you can learn a lot.
I appreciate how NASA runs their events, especially the fact that you can get to know the other drivers pretty well in each group. The download sessions are helpful to make sure everyone is on the same page and also to get to know the other drivers you're with. I've been to NASA, NCRC, and CFRA in NorCal and the one thing I wasn't a fan of for NCRC and CFRA is that you have no clue who the other drivers are. If I were to be picky about NASA, it's that they're very much a racing organization. You won't get as much HPDE time as other groups.
Firstly, I want to emphasize that my comments are towards "NorCal" NASA in particular and NOT towards NASA in general, as I have no idea on how NASA in other regions runs things.
In any case, way~ too many cars on the track (granted, this observation is based on just one event with NorCal NASA). With that many drivers, how is it possible to get to know all other drivers? The # of drivers present is evidenced by the sheer # of staff & instructors present (must've been over 50 of them on that day).
And the apparent lack of timely administrative oversight on new attendees. On the day before the Jun 16th Infineon event, a bunch of us from SoCal were tracking at Thunderhill and we started getting calls & emails from someone at NorCal NASA (we later found out it was one of their big wigs) questioning our qualifications. It was odd to us that their online registration system (1) allowed drivers who've not tracked with them before to register into certain run groups, (2) allowed drivers who've not tracked at Infineon to also register into certain run groups, and (3) then get these phone calls the day before the event. And then, when I tried to change the run group in the morning of the event, holy sh*t, trying to talk to the right person after the initial drivers meeting is over is like trying to wade through the governmental, bureaucratic maze - got bounced around by 4 different staff members, then was told to go up to the 4th floor office at the grand stand, etc, etc, which lead to my missing the first session of the day. So, between missing out on a session and subsequent sessions being filled with LOTS of cars, I didn't get a chance to get a feel for this track, and hence my lukewarm first impression.
As for the "If you take advantage of the different instructors and be open for comments and feedback, you can learn a lot" bit, how is this different from any other event organizers?
The download sessions you mentioned is fraught with staffs (who, for the most part, are retired folks with too much time on their hands) arguing with each other & drivers --> "I have been tracking since 1961, blah blah blah," "Do you know how long I have been here?!," "You were doing it wrong! I have been racing here for 30 years and I saw some accidents happen at that turn, you shouldn't pass there!"
By the way, which other organizers have you run with, and how many events with each of these other organizers?