What You Should Do Before Getting to the Track:
Take your car to be inspected and bring your tech form with you to the at-track registration. The tech form is located on the documents page
Review track terms and flag colors (below)
Make sure you have filled your car's fuel tank full and ensure you have at least ½ a tank of gas before your second driving session if scheduled. Do not go out for a driving session with less than ½ a tank, your car can fuel starve around the corners as your tank gets closer to ¼.
What to Bring to the Track:
Water, Gatorade, snacks
A bag for your personal contents removed from the car
Helmet (unless you are renting)
Closed toe shoes
What to Wear:
Long-sleeved shirt and pants (made of cotton are preferred), but not required. Shorts and t-shirts are allowed in street cars. Driving suits are required in race cars.
Closed-toe shoes (thin soles are best)
When You Should Arrive at the Track:
The event schedule along with your session times will be emailed the week before the event. All Edge Addicts activities originate from the paddock. COTA arrival time is approximately 6:30 am.
To access the COTA paddock, you will enter via COTA Blvd. Drive past lot “A” until you see a guard shack (between turns 11 and 12). You will have been sent a link to sign the COTA waiver electronically. You must have this complete prior to arrival at the track. Sign the waiver there, then proceed through tunnel “2”. You will drive approximately a mile and will make a right-hand turn into the paddock. If you go through Tunnel “1” you have gone too far. Park in the paddock, making sure not to take another driver’s spot, and please do not block any trailers.
Registration Packets & Where to Find Them:
Once parked in the paddock, proceed to the designated registration location, at COTA this is usually a higher-numbered garage flanked with Edge Addicts banners. Here you will pick up your driver's wristband and helmet (if you need to rent one).
At registration, you will receive a colored wristband, please place it on your left arm. You will show it to the grid marshal every time you enter the track.
All cars that drive on track need to have identifying numbers on each side. The numbers should be 10 to 12 inches tall. You can use blue painter's tape, or have vinyl numbers cut prior to the event. You can select any 2-3 digit number, as long as it is not 11, 17, 71, 77, 111, 777.
Once you have your run group wristband, proceed to the driver’s meeting. This is usually in loft 204 (the exact room location, and time, will be noted on the schedule). Normal driver's meeting times begin at 7:15 am. The lofts are directly above the garages. You can use any stairwell to access the lofts.
What to Expect at the Driver's Meeting:
This is a fast-paced meeting, and attendance is mandatory. We will discuss important safety topics and go over the foundational aspects of performance driving, exit strategies, mental capacity, passing protocol, how to get onto the grid, and the meanings of each flag (as they are our primary means of communication between drivers/instructors and the track marshals).
Once you are released from the driver’s meeting, you are free until it is time to line up on the grid for your driving session. This is a good time to remove all loose items from your car including the floor mats.
Afternoon meetings/classroom sessions are held to discuss foundational skills, and advanced techniques, or address issues in specific run groups. These meetings are mandatory, class times will be announced over the PA system.
Time to Drive!
Please be on the grid with your car and helmet 10 minutes before your scheduled session. All first-time, novice drivers will have assigned instructors. Under no circumstances are you allowed to enter the track without your instructor.
The instructor will find you on the grid. At COTA, (trackside) of the garages outside of the registration garage. There will be Edge Addicts staff helping to facilitate. Your instructor has been pre-assigned and will be looking for you.
If you are an Edge Addicts solo-approved driver, you will be allowed to run without an instructor in the car with you. Our instructor team is still available, and we expect you to take advantage of them if you need additional instruction. In this sport, you will never outgrow the need for instruction and coaching. We will place an instructor in the car with you (at no charge) if you have not been on track within the last 6 months, or have not had an instructor in the last 6 months.
Once on track, we will use a flag system to communicate information to you and your instructor. Flag marshals are located at key spots around the track, it is important that you have a general understanding of the flag colors prior to your driving event.
When passing other cars on the track, it is important to do so in a controlled manner. The driver of the leading car should use a pointed finger and extend their arm out of the window to signal that they have seen the approaching car, and should maintain a predictable path while the car passes. Once you signal a car to pass, it is very important that you stay on your line. Be sure to not make any sudden movements. Additionally, you will need to feather off the throttle slightly to make sure the car is able to get around you easily.
Proper helmets are required for all on track sessions. Helmets need to be Snell rated 2015 or newer. Rentals are available at the registration desk.
No Speed Limit
Although there are no speed limits on the track, it's important to keep in mind that this is a high-performance driving school on a road course. Here, the focus is on mastering the corners, as they hold greater significance than achieving top speeds. During the event, you will focus on developing vital skills such as mastering weight transfer, enhancing peripheral vision, improving situational awareness, practicing threshold braking, and achieving smooth throttle application, among other skills. Maintaining focus is crucial in performance driving, as it can become dangerous without it, and mistakes can have significant financial consequences. Your main goal should not be to see how fast you can go down the straightaways. If top speed is your goal, registering for an event at a drag strip may be better suited for you where there are no sharp corners at the end.
Mastering performance driving on a racetrack involves improving skills that are similar to those needed when driving on the highway. Focus on smoothly transitioning between acceleration, braking, turning in, and tracking out.
Yellow Flag (standing or motionless) - Reduce your speed, and drive with caution. No passing is allowed. A car may be stopped or have spun off of the track.
Yellow Flag (waved) – Great Danger - This calls for dramatic reduction of your speed. The course may be blocked; be prepared to alter your path. No passing is allowed. A car may be stopped or have spun on the track.
Black Flag (Held, then pointed) – You have been observed driving in an unsafe or improper manner; proceed to the designated black flag area for a consultation. The driver is required to acknowledge the flag.
Black at All Stations – The session has been halted. Cars should cautiously head to the pits. No passing is allowed.
Black with orange circle - There is something mechanically wrong with your car. Proceed to the pit lane or designated black flag area.
Red Flag – An incident has occurred requiring the dispatch of emergency vehicles. Check your mirrors, then slowly proceed to the pit. No passing is allowed.
Green Flag – The course is clear, and the track is hot (this may also be thrown during the last lap of a session)
Blue w/ yellow stripe – Be aware of the cars behind you and let them pass in the next passing zone.
Yellow w/ vertical red stripes - Drive with caution; debris or slippery conditions exist on the track. This will only be shown for two laps, even if the condition remains.
White – Caution – You are approaching a slow-moving vehicle on track such as an ambulance or other emergency vehicle. This may also be thrown during the first lap of the session to show where the corner worker stations are.
Checkered - End of the driving session. Reduce your speed and proceed to the pit. No passing is allowed.
Refunds are not permitted due to the expenses associated with facility rental and event organization. This policy aligns with the practices of other industries such as airlines, concerts, and sporting events. If the event sells out, and we are able to sell your spot in time, we will allow a credit toward a future event (a processing fee may apply). Please prepare your car properly, and have the tech inspection completed with plenty of time to correct any issues you may encounter. There will be no credit for car-related issues prior to, or during the event. Our events run rain or shine.
Your guests are allowed to come to watch the event. Children are allowed but must be under adult supervision at all times. No bicycles or scooters are allowed to be driven by anyone under the age of 18. Pets are required to be on a leash at all times per COTA's rules.
Food at Track
The COTA café (or food truck) will be open for lunch from 11:00 to 1:30. Bring snacks and plenty of water for you and your guests.
Glossary of track terms
APEX ~ The point on the track where the car is closest to the inside edge of the roadway between turn-in and track-out.
Brake Point ~ The reference point on the track where the driver begins applying the brakes in order to slow the car enough to negotiate a turn. In racing, drivers want to brake as late as possible so as to "outbrake" competitors and pass them as they are braking.
Corner Entry ~ The portion of the driving line through a turn where deceleration takes place and steering input begins. The corner exit begins where there is a transition back to acceleration.
Exit Speed ~ At the moment of completion of a turn, as the wheels come straight, the speed of the car is called the exit speed. This is the speed the car carries into the straight. The goal is to achieve the highest exit speed possible in order to travel the straight faster.
Feather the throttle ~ A slight lift of the throttle.
Lift ~ An abrupt reduction of pressure on the gas pedal (never lift in a corner).
Line ~ The intended path around the racetrack. "Classic" or "school line" refers to the path that is considered optimal for speed on normal, dry track conditions. "Rain line" refers to any alternative to the school line that offers better traction and better lap times in wet conditions.
Looking Ahead or Through the Turns ~ Look far ahead, use your peripheral vision. Do not focus on what is right in front of you.
Reference Point ~ Any distinctive feature that the driver uses to position the car or discern where to apply brakes, turn in or track out.
Steering Input ~ The degree to which the steering wheel is turned.
Straight-line Braking ~ Completing all of the braking with the wheels straight before entering a turn.
Smoothness ~ The avoidance of rebound caused by overly abrupt changes in gas, brake, or steering. Smoothness does not equate with slowness. Generally, smoothness is the result of practicing control of quick, decisive movements so that they are only a little slower than the rebound response of the suspension.
Threshold Braking ~ The level of brake pedal pressure which if increased would lock one or more of the wheels. With ABS, the level of braking that activates the ABS system.
Track Out ~ The exit of the turn where the driver has completed the turn and has positioned the steering wheel to direct the car down the straight or into the next turn.
Trail Braking ~ The practice of maintaining pressure on the brake pedal as the driver enters a turn as distinct from straight-line braking.
Turn In ~ The point on the track where a turn begins, where the driver turns the steering wheel to execute the turn.