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Speed Secrets Podcast

The Speed Secrets Podcast is all about high performance and race driving. In it, Ross Bentley has conversations with guests, resulting in tips, advice and inspiration you can take to the track. Digging into topics such as trail braking, cornering lines, race track specific advice, data acquisition and video analysis, upshifting and downshifting, handling and car setup, steering techniques, and the skill of using the throttle - all while driving on track - the goal is to not just entertain you, but also help you learn. Along the way, these conversations will get into why we drive on race tracks, igniting your passion for the sport. Each episode is 30 to 45 minutes in length – just right for listening to while on your way to work, to the track, or while you're working out. Oh, and in each episode - posted weekly on Thursdays - Ross will share one of his quick and effective Speed Secret tips.
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Now displaying: 2019
Sep 12, 2019

Dave Peters joins me to talk about the world of HPDE, driving Miatas, and where driving confidence comes from.

Dave founded and runs HPDEjunkie.com, a website devoted to listing HPDE events in the U.S. (and Canada soon). It’s a great resource – and it’s free to event organizers. They just need to contact Dave and let them know of their events. So if you know of an event, or an organizer who needs more participants, make sure it’s listed on HPDEjunkie.com. 

Dave’s Speed Secret: Build confidence in yourself and your car.

For more info on HPDEjunkie.com, go to www.HPDEjunkie.com, or @HPDEjunkie on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Sep 5, 2019

Travis Okulski joins me to talk about where Road & Track is headed, his racing experience and how that’s contributed to where he is today, what makes drivers like Marco Andretti, Graham Rahal, and Colin Braun so great, and the future of motorsport – including Formula E.

Travis is the Editor-in-Chief for Road & Track magazine. He started racing karts when he was 12, but realized that a career in motorsport – something he was committed to – was best achieved from behind the keyboard rather than the steering wheel. His job is one that most every gearhead would kill to have. 

Travis’ Speed Secret: Eyes up. Work hard.

Road & Track:

Web: www.roadandtrack.com
Instagram: @roadandtrack
Twitter: @roadandtrack
Facebook: RoadandTrack
YouTube: RoadandTrack

Aug 29, 2019

Jim Kearney joins me to talk about what it takes to win more races, and we discuss the importance of car prep, mental prep, having triggers to get you in the right state of mind/mood, and track notes.

Jim is a super-successful driver coach who raced Formula Vee himself for years before turning his attention to helping other drivers. His drivers have won multiple SCCA Runoffs championships, so he definitely knows how to help drivers win more.

Jim’s Speed Secret: It’s all about self-belief. Trust the process.

You can reach Jim by email at jim@kearneykdd.com, and learn more at his website at https://kearneykdd.com.

 

Aug 22, 2019

Ryan Yard joins me to talk about everything from using motorsport to motivate you in other areas of your life to the creative puzzle that is driving faster. In our conversation, we talk about getting in flow, car setup, using music to trigger performance, dealing with problems, focus, discipline, and the benefits of journaling and note-taking.

Ryan started in HPDE, quickly moved to wheel-to-wheel racing, and currently competes in SCCA and PCA events. He also leads a national championship. He’s taken his tech background and put it to good use with his racing, but most importantly, he’s used racing to motivate him to improve his health – including losing 150 pounds.

Ryan’s Speed Secret: focus on the process of what you do to prepare. 

Follow Ryan on his blog at www.ryracing.com

 

Aug 15, 2019

CJ Wilson joins me to talk about his transition from pro baseball player to race driver. We talk about the superstitions & routines baseball players rely on and how they apply to motorsport; what he learned from being a Major League Baseball pitcher that he uses in racing; how to practice with intensity; the different techniques required for an aero downforce car versus one without aero; and the overall mindset one needs to succeed. You’ll love this episode – especially his description of feeling the tires when you’re driving at the limit.

CJ pitched in Major League Baseball for the Texas Rangers from 2005 to 2011 and the Los Angeles Angels from 2012 to 2015. He is the founder and owner of CJ Wilson Racing, which has competed in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge and WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. His ultimate racing goal is to win Le Mans – and based on what you hear from him in this podcast, you can’t help but believe he’s going to do it.

Follow CJ…
Podcast: The Throttle Dogs - https://thethrottledogs.libsyn.com
Instagram: @supercar_cj, or @cjwilsonphoto

 

Aug 8, 2019

Ryan Staub is back, and we’re talking about the stuff many drivers don’t want to talk about. You know, the stuff about risk, responsibility, waivers, liability, insurance and so on – for both drivers and instructors. But since Ryan is a racer and chief instructor for his BMW CCA chapter, we also talk about driving.

Ryan is serious car/driving geek first, but also an insurance expert, as he runs the Lockton Motorsports insurance program. So, he understands the risks and legal issues associated with what we do, but then goes out on the track and drives fast! As the chief instructor for the Kansas City BMW CCA club, he also knows how to help other drivers go fast, safely. Ryan was my guest on episode #31 on July 20, 2017.

Ryan’s Speed Secret: Know your limits, but expand them – get outside your limits.

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Aug 1, 2019

Garth Stein joins me to talk about his wildly successful bestselling book, The Art of Racing in the Rain – and how it’s now a major motion picture (premiers August 9th). You’ll love Garth’s stories, and the behind-the-scene look at why the book has become so popular, as well as how he was able to describe so accurately what racing is really like (hint: Garth raced Spec Miata).

In addition to The Art of Racing in the Rain, Garth has authored three other novels—A Sudden Light, How Evan Broke His Head and Other Secrets, and Raven Stole the Moon—as well as a full-length play, Brother Jones, which had its premiere in Los Angeles and was described as “brimming with intensity” by The Los Angeles Weekly.

In case you missed it (where have you been?!), The Art of Racing in the Rain is the story of a beloved philosopher dog named Enzo who teaches us everything we need to know about being human. A major motion picture starring Kevin Costner, Milo Ventimiglia, and Amanda Seyfried was filmed during real IMSA race events at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, as well as Pacific Raceway in Seattle (where the story began). The Art of Racing in the Rain book has sold more than 6 million copies world-wide, been translated into 36 languages, and spent more than three years on the New York Times bestseller list. The novel inspired a Young Reader edition as well as four children’s picture books, and a stage adaptation by Book-It Repertory Theatre in Seattle.

Garth’s Speed Secret: visualize where you want to be. 

Garth’s website: http://www.garthstein.com
Twitter: @garthstein
Instagram: @garthstein
Facebook: www.facebook.com/garthsteinauthor

Jul 25, 2019

Preston Lerner joins me to talk about what he’s noticed that the best drivers – such as Colin Braun – do that make them so great. As a journalist, that’s what he does – observe things that most people miss. We also talk about his own racing in a Spec Miata (and what you can learn from his strengths and weaknesses), the Ford GTs at Le Mans, and the dreaded Driver Ratings system that is used sports car racing.

Preston writes for Road & Track magazine, amongst others, and has written a number of books, including Ford GT, Winning: Paul Newman, Speed Read Ferrari, Scarab, and History’s Greatest Automotive Mysteries, Myths, and Rumors Revealed. When he’s not writing, Preston is driving – often racing a Spec Miata in California.

Jul 18, 2019

Dr. Barry Seiller and Ryan Warkins join me to talk all about a huge topic - vision. We all know that how we use our eyes is critical in performance and race driving, and yet, we mostly take it for granted – we either have it or not. But it can be trained – it can be improved. I’ve been testing and using the Vizual Edge app that Doc Barry developed, and he, Ryan, and I talk about what “vision” is, and how best to train your vision skills.

If you’re interested in using the Vizual Edge training app, go to https://vizualedge.com/speedsecrets/

Follow:
www.vizualedge.com
https://vizualedge.com/speedsecrets/

Jul 11, 2019

Brian Bonner joins me to talk about motorsport sponsorship. Specifically, we talk about new trends in how motorsport marketing deals are put together, even if you’re not a big pro racing team. Brian shares a couple of great examples, in James Chartres and Kanga Motorsport, and Steve Smith and Big Mission Motorsport, and then gives tips that you can use to land a sponsor.

Brian is a former Indy car and IMSA driver who specializes in motorsport marketing. He’s done it all, from prospecting potential sponsors, selling them, servicing them, writing PR, and managing drivers. But his sweet spot is putting sponsorship deals together – providing value for sponsor and driver/team.

You can email Brian at bonner@brmrace.com; or learn more at his (admittedly outdated) website at www.brmrace.com.

Jul 4, 2019

Dr. Steve Olsen joins me to talk about the Corvette Challenge Club, the importance of managing one’s state of mind – particularly being calm – and the NuCalm system (www.nucalm.com).

Steve purchased a Corvette when he turned 50 (the first time that ever happened!), and has been tracking ever since. In fact, he has more open track day laps at High Plains Raceway in Denver than anyone else. Recently, he and a partner founded the Corvette Challenge Club, and as a dentist he worked with using NuCalm to help his patients – and found that it helps drivers perform better.

If you’re interested in purchasing a NuCalm system, use Steve’s discount code of “steve500.”

Steve’s Speed Secret: Learn to be calm. Respond, not react.

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Jun 27, 2019

My friend, fellow coach, and co-conspirator in the Virtual Track Walk videos, Peter Krause and I take time after a couple of days of coaching at VIR to catch up and talk about driving (what else?!). We share thoughts on the “accelerate to” and “EoB” points, the differences between “fast” and “slow” corners, what the “racing line” truly is, what the “best execution of fundamentals” really means, and how to use your data systems “g-Sum,” as well as “references and indexes.” Ultimately, it’s a fun discussion about keeping an open mind to all things driving.

Besides being my partner in creating the Virtual Track Walk videos, Peter is a sought-after coach. He also sells and services data systems (AiM, Motec, APEX Pro, Race Logic VBOX, RaceVoice, Autosport Labs). Learn more and contact him through PeterKrause.net, and follow him on Twitter and Instagram at @vintageprocoach, as well as on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/peter.krause.

Peter’s Speed Secret: make sure your right foot is all the way down!

 

Jun 20, 2019

After driving the Dallara simulator at their Indy facility, I talk with sim engineer Davide Tarsitano, and Bryce Moore about how you can use it. We talk about the differences between the typical home sim rig and this multimillion-dollar driver- and car-development tool, as well as how it’s not as expensive as one would think when compared to what you can accomplish with no chance of damaging one’s car. Easily, this is the most realistic sim I’ve ever driven, and I’ve had the chance to drive a lot of them. The information Davide shares regarding driving in the rain is very interesting!

Contact Bryce Moore at Dallara at B.Moore@dallara.us, and check out their GT Simulator Program at here. And follow Dallara @dallaragroup.

 

Jun 13, 2019

Andy Hollis joins me to talk about everything to do with the One Lap of America. It’s an event that I’m dying to do, so I pick his brain to learn as much as I can. If it’s not on your list of motorsport events to do yet, it will be after listening to Andy. As he says, it’s “the ultimate motorsport vacation of a lifetime,” or “summer camp for gearheads.”

Andy is a 13-time SCCA national autocross champ, 20-year SCCA rules-maker, track day junkie, 35 years autocross and track day instructor, Race Engineer for 2-time factory-backed championship-winning PWC touring car driver Tom O’Gorman, Crew Chief for Team Honda Research 24/25H enduros at COTA and Thunderhill, and regular contributor to Grassroots Motorsports magazine (especially for tire testing). 

Andy’s Speed Secret: minimize risk and sleep.

Follow:
OneLapMcLaren Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/OneLapMcLaren/
One Lap of America website: http://www.onelapofamerica.com

 

Jun 6, 2019

Kostas Sidiras & Serxio Veiga join me to talk about… well, anything they want. These guys are so much fun – and we even learn something from them! We talk about driving the Nurburgring, Spa, Mosport, Ring Bananas, Fiat Multiplas, and Porsche GT3s. More importantly, we talk about why we do what we do, and what car people are really like (hint: they might not be normal).

Kostas and Serxio (and friends) have a fun YouTube channel called One Lap Heroes, and both work at RSRNurburg and RSRSpa as instructors. Not surprisingly, they are hardcore car people – who love to have fun! You absolutely must watch their One Lap Heroes YouTube videos.

Kostas’ Speed Secret: don’t be afraid to be slow and make mistakes. Learn from it.

Serxio’s Speed Secret: never stop learning. 

If you’re interested in joining our trip to the Nurburging in August, check out the info at https://SpeedSecrets.com/Ring.

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May 30, 2019

Lawrence Loshak joins me to talk about all sorts of really interesting & helpful topics, such as how to prepare for an event, simulators, adapting to your car, trail braking, left-foot-braking, being proactive with your driving, “taking a set,” comparing front-wheel to rear-wheel & open-wheel to closed-wheel, and transmissions. And he shares 3 Speed Secrets with you! You won’t want to miss this show.

Lawrence is currently leading the Trans-Am championship, and has won five SCCA championships, as well as receiving the Mark Donohue Award. 

Lawrence’s three Speed Secrets:

  1. Brake early. (Advice passed on by PD Cunningham)
  2. Don’t build your first race car out of a car you love.
  3. You have to have a plan of attack.

Follow Lawrence at…

May 23, 2019

James Colborn joins me to talk about making his comeback to racing after taking more than a year off from it. Not only has he made a comeback, but he’s done it in an open-wheel car – not something he’s driven before – and on tracks he’s never seen before. So, it’s been a bit like starting all over again, but with a solid foundation to start from. And that’s provided a very interesting learning experience.

James is, as his website suggests, a “gentleman driver.” He started with HPDE events, then club racing, some pro racing in production-based race cars, and now is racing a Formula Ford in the UK. All for fun. He’s also a bit of an AIM data guru – mostly self-taught – and freely shares his knowledge and experience with others. 

James’ Speed Secret: Don’t be frightened of data.

 Follow and learn more about James – and especially, check out his AIM data videos – at www.JamesColborn.com.

 

 

May 16, 2019

Kevin Boehm, who’s won the SCCA Runoff three times, shares what he’s learned so you can win the Runoffs. Yes, he’s sharing his secrets - from driving and car prep to his overall strategy towards the event, you’ll hear how Kevin has won three out of the four of the Runoffs he’s raced.

Kevin is an engineer for Honda R&D, working at the Marysville, Ohio facility, and has raced in SCCA as well as IMSA. In 2019, he’ll be heading to VIR, looking to gather his fourth win at the Runoffs – so look out!

Kevin’s Speed Secret: do your homework.

Follow Kevin at:

May 9, 2019

Jim Mero joins me to talk about the Corvette, his contributions to its development over the past decade-plus, life as a development test driver, lapping the Nurburgring as part of one’s job, and what’s ahead for Corvette. Two things that came out of our conversation that I found especially fascinating was his explanation of “linear versus non-linear driving,” and how test drivers rely on their subconscious to drive the car while the conscious mind is focused on developing the car. 

Jim spent 34 years at General Motors, with the last 15 as a Ride & Handling Engineer focused on the Corvette. No doubt, today’s Vette is a direct result of Jim’s engineering and test driving. He retired from GM in September of 2018, and now has his own consulting business, Jim Mero Vehicle Dynamics LLC.

Jim’s Speed Secret(s): “Get a go-kart. Driving is a process. Your best friend is your instructor and the laps you drive. Data will set you free.” 

For more info about Jim…

I also mentioned the online Chalktalk I’m doing on May 14, 2019. Yes, it’s free, but to reserve your spot or join in, go to TrackAttack.io/SSChalktalk.

May 2, 2019

Bill Thomas joins me to talk about… well, lots! All of the various things he does, including his William Thomas Roadsters, Drakan Cars, Performance Garage Club, and importing the CAV GT40. Bill shares his experiences with Ferrari, Lotus, GT40s, and Hellcats. Oh, and we talk about his own track driving experience - specifically, about when and how to experiment with your driving, and why you should do that.

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Bill is the/a owner of:

  • William Thomas Roadsters,LLC
  • Drakan Cars East, LLC
  • Performance Garage Club, LLC
  • GT International, LLC (US Importer for the CAV GT40)

He can be reached at:

Phone: 908-313-4482

 

Apr 25, 2019

Steve Spano joins me to talk about how we can use technology to drive faster, and specifically, the RaceVoice device he helped develop. This device plugs into your existing ECU and data system, and then provides auditory information to you – everything from corner entry and minimum speeds to when to upshift or whether your engine is overheating. I used the RaceVoice recently and absolutely love it, so I wanted you to learn about it.

After this podcast was recorded, I asked Steve for a discount for listeners, and got a “yes.” So, to get a 10% discount on a RaceVoice unit, use the code “speedsecrets” at www.RaceVoice.com.

Steve’s Speed Secret: “Imagine doing what you’re working on with great detail, then go do it.”

For more information about RaceVoice, go to www.RaceVoice.com.

Apr 18, 2019

Ingrid Steffensen is on the show today, and we talk about expanding our comfort zone, getting into flow, what we learn about ourselves from track driving, writing, learning, and her book Fast Girl: Don’t Brake Until You See the Face of God. Which, by the way, is an absolutely great read!

Ingrid started in the HPDE world in a Mini Cooper S, graduated to a Lotus Elise, and is now about to upgrade to an Exige Cup car. She also instructs, both in-car and in the classroom. When she’s not at the track, she’s probably writing her next book – or even another article for Speed Secrets Weekly.

Ingrid’s Speed Secret: Look further ahead.

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Apr 11, 2019

Johannes van Overbeek and I reminisce about the time we spent together at ESM Patron Racing, and he gives away all of his secrets about winning endurance races. We then compare right-foot with left-foot-braking, how a driver can be a nice laid back guy out of the car and yet be a killer behind the wheel, and why he recently retired from regular race driving.

Johannes has won the Rolex 24 at Daytona, the Sebring 12-hour, Petit Le Mans, raced at Le Mans, and won the Thunderhill 25-hour race six times! He knows how to win endurance races...actually, just about any type of racing. He’s driven for ESM Patron Racing, the Flying Lizards, and factory Porsche and BMW teams.

Johannes’ Speed Secret: Unclutter your brain.

Follow Johannes:

Apr 11, 2019

Johannes van Overbeek and I reminisce about the time we spent together at ESM Patron Racing, and he gives away all of his secrets about winning endurance races. We then compare right-foot with left-foot-braking, how a driver can be a nice laid back guy out of the car and yet be a killer behind the wheel, and why he recently retired from regular race driving.

Johannes has won the Rolex 24 at Daytona, the Sebring 12-hour, Petit Le Mans, raced at Le Mans, and won the Thunderhill 25-hour race six times! He knows how to win endurance races...actually, just about any type of racing. He’s driven for ESM Patron Racing, the Flying Lizards, and factory Porsche and BMW teams.

Johannes’ Speed Secret: Unclutter your brain.

Follow Johannes:

 

Apr 4, 2019

Trevor Ashline joins me to talk about the latest in head and neck restraint devices, as well as all sorts of other safety related topics. As VP of Engineering and Product Development for Simpson Performance Products, and a motorsport enthusiast himself, he knows his stuff – and shares it with you in this show. Should a HANS or Hybrid-S device be used with airbags? With standard OEM Seatbelts? How long do these devices stay safe? How do they interact with seats and roll cages? These are just some of the topics we talk about.

Ever since Dale Earnhardt’s death back in 2001, the use of head and neck restraint devices has increased, and in some events they’re mandatory. But what if you track a stock production car with standard OEM Seatbelts where a HANS device doesn’t work for you? There is one device that is FIA certified to work with OEM belts – the Hybrid-S - invented by Trevor.

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