With winter around the corner, the Vancouver Island Motorsport Circuit IVIMC) is firing up its winter driving course.
The course provides students with a multitude of different driving scenarios, all designed to simulate driving when road conditions are far from optimal.
“A lot of people don’t get to practice what it’s like to drive in the snow or on the ice,” says head instructor Bradlei Borjeau. “So that’s the idea of our program is give people a chance to understand both theoretically and practically what they can do to be a safer driver in winter conditions.”
The course is open to anyone that wants to brush up on their driving skills. It doesn’t matter if they drive a Mini or a Porsche.
“They’re going to be driving in what they normally drive so that they are used to doing evasive maneuvers in the vehicle that they’re going to be using for work,” says VIMC representative Karl Rhynas.
“Especially for newer drivers, but really anyone even that’s had their license for many many years is going to benefit from this,” adds Borjeau.
The circuit even offers some of its own vehicles to practice driving in slick conditions, allowing each pupil to find the limits of grip.
“Most people have never driven their cars to the limit of their traction,” says Rhynas. “We’re going to push you over that limit and you’re going to have your vehicle doing things that it normally wouldn’t do, but in a safe manner.”
The closed-circuit environment also allows students to gauge just how good of a driver they really are.
“Everybody thinks they’re a good driver, but when that animal or that child or whatever happens in front of you, what are you really going to do,” asks Rhynas.
“I loved how some of the courses that we’ve done we’re very realistic in terms of what we would experience in real life and there’s a few courses that I’ve done that I could relate to incidents that I might’ve had before,” says course participant Moe Metawea.
It’s all about building confidence behind the wheel.
It’s kind of interesting to watch the transition through the day as people go,” says Rhynas.
“Their eyes open up, it’s like you have blinders and then suddenly it’s, ‘Oh, I can actually see now and I feel more confident.'”