Audi Sportscar Experience at Sonoma Raceway
The instructors call the 12 turns and 2.5 miles of Sonoma raceway a real driver’s track – it’s 2.5 miles of undulating pavement with major elevation changes, blind corners, and tricky sequences that mean you’re always busy behind the wheel. With just one long straightaway, the instructors also point out that it’s a track where a car has no place to hide, where a vehicle’s dynamic issues are exposed almost instantaneously as you work your way around its 12 corners.
When a handful of us from Pfaff Audi Vaughan and H.J. Pfaff Audi Newmarket descend on Sonoma, the track is also in the throes of preparing for drag races and drifting competitions that evening, as well as a major NASCAR race on the weekend. It’s a busy place, but the highly technical road course is also the perfect west coast home for Audi’s Sportscar experience. The program, which lets you experience a variety of its high-performance models, in Sonoma’s paddock and on its big road circuit, runs for almost 135 days a year and offers a number of packages, from an introductory autocross program starting at under $250 through to a full-on advanced R8 program that offers one-on-one coaching that runs $3,000.
We were enrolled in the Audi Sport program, which provides a taste of the TTS, S4 and S5, and used both the paddock and racetrack to hone our skills. Costing just under $1,000, it’s the perfect place to start if you enjoy high-performance driving, but don’t consider yourself a track master.