A guide to your first track day
If you’ve made it to this page, you’ve decided to make the excellent decision to attend your first track day!
Our track days place a huge emphasis on having fun and pushing your vehicle to the limit in a friendly and welcoming environment regardless of your experience level or the type of car you own. If this doesn’t sound like something you’re into, kindly refrain from entering our events as this is not the series for you.
We’ve compiled some frequently asked questions to help guide you through your first Nugget Nationals event.
Note: The below list only intended as a guide to Nugget Nationals events. If you attend other track days, please ensure you read their requirements.
What kind of Motorsport licence do I need to attend?
The two main competition licences that are recognised in Victoria are a CAMS or an AASA licence.
The simplest licence to obtain is an AASA club race licence which can be purchased online. Whilst an AASA licence will allow you to attend any of the Nugget Nationals track days, you might like to consider a CAMS licence which will allow you to attend other circuits (such as Phillip Island).
Australia Auto-Sport Alliance (AASA) licence
An AASA licence can be purchased as a daily or annual licence.
A day licence is $35 and is valid for a single day event.
It can be purchased online here: https://aasa.com.au/licences/day-licences/
An annual club race licence is $95 and valid for 12 months and can be used for an unlimited amount of events.
If can be purchased here: https://aasa.com.au/licences/general-speed-event-licence/
Top tip: If you plan on entering many events within the 12 month period, an annual licence will be more cost effective.
Motorsport Australia (MA) licence – Formerly known as CAMS
An MA licence can be purchased as an annual licence.
To obtain a MA licence, you will need to first join an MA affiliated club.
A list of affiliated clubs can be found by following the instructions here: https://motorsport.org.au/clubs
Once you have paid your membership to a club (costs may vary), you are then eligible to apply for a “Speed Licence” by filling out this form or using the MA portal.
What do I need to do before a track day?
Ensure your car is in track worthy condition –
This generally just means that the car is not leaking oil or fluids, you have sufficient tread left on your tyres and enough meat on your brake pads and discs/drums.
Top Tip: A non modified standard car is a great way to start out before spending money on ‘track mods.’
Install a fire extinguisher
The fire extinguisher must be fitted in a metal bracket (usually anything slated for automotive use will have one of these in the box with the extinguisher). It will then be up to you to securely mount this to your car in an easy to access position.
A common way of doing this (depending on the type of car you have) is to use the two existing bolts in your passenger seat.
The below photos of the Honed Fire Extinguisher mount are a great depiction of how this is achieved using some sheet metal.
Top tip: Having an extinguisher cable tied or taped to your car will not be deemed as ‘securely mounted’ by our scrutineers. Self tapping screws are also not an acceptable method of mounting the bracket, as they can pull out of thin sheet metal in a crash.
Purchase an approved helmet that fits you
Helmet prices vary wildly depending on the shape, style and material you’re after. Our only requirement is for it to meet at least Australian Standard 1698, European ECE R22 regulation or one of the higher standards for auto racing helmets.
Top Tip: AS and ECE helmets are designed for motorbike use on road, and provide a good basic level of safety but often aren’t ideal for comfort or safety in a car. Motorsport Australia Schedule D is a great guide for different helmet standards, and how you can improve your safety with different apparel: Schedule D
Whilst on the track you will need to ensure you are wearing a long sleeve (up to your wrists) top, long pants (covering your ankles) and closed toed shoes. No racing shoes or race suits are required, just make sure you select a non flammable material.
Top tip: Active wear is highly flammable – no leggings please.
Pack a Track Day Survival kit
There are a few things you can pack to bring with you which will make your track day more comfortable and enjoyable.
⦁ A tyre pressure gauge
⦁ Extra engine oil and/or coolant
⦁ A wheel chock
⦁ Cloth tape
⦁ Sunscreen and a hat
⦁ A folding chair
Read the supplementary regulations and ask questions
The supplementary regulations will tell you specifically what you need to know for each event you are attending. If anything is unclear, please drop us an email or PM us on Facebook and we’ll be more than happy to answer your questions.
What do I do when I arrive at the track?
Be on time.
As you will have already read the supplementary regulations, you’ll know what time you need to be at the track. Aim to be there early. The earlier our attendees are there, the faster we can get you on track to maximise track time.
Find a parking spot to set up for the day
Depending on the event, this will either be in an undercover pit bay or in a designated parking area.
Prepare for scrutineering
The scrutineers will come and look at your car whilst it is parked in the bay, there is no need for you to move your car anywhere.
As soon as you arrive, start to remove any loose objects (including the spare wheel, floor mats, tools, hectic car audio as well as anything out of the glovebox and other compartments.)
They will check to see if your battery and fire extinguishers are securely mounted, your brake lights work, your car is empty and helmet is to an appropriate standard.
Tow points must be accessible by a recovery vehicle. If you have a factory tow point this is more than sufficient. If you have a screw in type tow point, please ensure this is attached to your vehicle.
Provided you pass scrutineering, a sticker will be placed on your car and your car number will be marked on to your window by one of our friendly scrutineers.
Sign in as a driver
Bring your AASA or MA licence with you to the driver sign in office. As a driver you will need to sign the (usually green) form and present your Motorsport licence to us for inspection.
Pick up your timing device and attach it to your car
Your timing device will provide you with accurate and official lap times for the day. This is included in the price of all our track days and we will provide instructions after sign in to advise you where to collect this from and where to attach it to your vehicle.
Top Tip: Bring cable ties and cloth tape – it’s usually the easiest way to secure this to your vehicle.
Attend the drivers briefing
We will advise all attendees over the PA (or by shouting really loudly) to give you notice of the start time for the drivers briefing. It is compulsory for all drivers to attend the briefing to be allowed on track. We will provide specific safety information about the circuit and it’s also a great opportunity to ask any questions you may still have.
Let us know if its your first time on track
Nugget Nationals highly encourages drivers with no previous experience on track. The focus is about having fun and learning how to drive on a race track in a safe environment. We are also able to provide you with an experienced driver for your first session to help show you the lines and provide you with some tips if you like!
Before your first session
Go to the toilet for a nervous pee and come back and check over your car. Make sure your bonnet and wheels are secure, your sleeves are pulled down, your helmet is done up tight and take a deep breath.
Your first session will not be a hot lap. You should take this opportunity to familiarise yourself with the direction of the circuit, where the corners are and taking some mental notes of the braking points.
Enjoy the day and the atmosphere
The majority of the people at the track will be there for the exact same reason you are, which is to achieve their personal best. It’s not a door to door race for position, but a race against yourself and the clock to improve at your own pace and set the best lap time you can for yourself on the day.
Talk to those around you. It may be their first time too, or they may have already caught the track bug and attended a few events already. You’ll trade some great stories and potentially even make some life long friends!