Track days attract guys and gals from different walks of life, and not everyone there is driving the meanest track-tuned sports car. For many, simply experiencing speed in a safe environment is enough—the fact that they brought their Volvo 850 doesn’t really concern them much. As long as they keep an eye on their mirrors and permit the faster traffic to pass them safely, there’s never a problem—and what are the chances of a man tracking a Volvo thinking he’s a prima donna racing star?
Egos ought to be checked at the door when there are no rewards on the line. In my opinion as an HPDE coach, sportsmanlike conduct and a little bit of courtesy are things which go a long way in a (supposedly) relaxed environment.
The worst problems of this type arise when powerful cars are driven by inexperienced drivers who don’t quite understand that they ought to let the train of cars filling their mirrors by. Of course, they’re able to win any drag race, but come a braking zone or a corner and the train of swearing cars accordions behind them again.
When you’ve got a twin-turbo V12 like the offender in the SL65 here, it’s child’s play outgunning a Ginetta G20 or a Caterham—especially at a quick track like Silverstone. Clearly, the man doesn’t get the message and feels he’s in the middle of a battle with two guys trying to improve their lines and braking points.
It’s easy to find fault in Mr. Benz’s technique—but it’s his lack of consideration that’s most glaring, and what warrants the angry finger from the Ginetta’s driver at the end of the clip. Unwilling to accept he’d been beaten, he used the power from the small nuclear reactor under his hood to stay in touch and, unaware he’d been passed, nearly caused a nasty wreck through Copse. Unaware, inconsiderate, and looking to win an imaginary drag race aren’t great traits to have if track day popularity is what you’re after.