Skip Barber Mazda Driving School - Autocross
Changing lanes and U-course
When you're put into an emergency situation and must make a last-minute lane change, vehicle dynamics get thrown out of whack. The car's weight shifts and the balance is upset. During the emergency lane change exercise, a cone course teaches how to steer through those circumstances. You barrel down a straight at full throttle and then slam on the brakes at the last minute, attempting to change lanes. At first it's a single lane change, but as you get the hang of the car's dynamics, the exercise moves up to a double lane change. As you would imagine, this upsets the car's dynamics even more dramatically. By the end the participants may not be comfortable performing an emergency lane change, but they certainly know how to. Instructors say you'll never be comfortable when put into a situation like this, and you shouldn't be. But knowing how to handle the situation is what's important.