Race car experiences – racing in its rawest form! Drive with the competitive spirit all F1 drivers have in bucket loads as you drive a racing car to try and post the best lap times you possibly can out on the race circuit. Our collection of race car driving experiences includes everything from single seaters to saloon cars, with a little sideways digression for F1 simulators too. Time to drive an open-wheeler racing thoroughbred!
Race car experiences FAQs...
• Racing car driving at Knockhill race circuit Fife • Coaching laps, demo laps and solo driving laps • Drive a single seater just inches off the ground • Excellent on-site facilities at this pro circuit
• A hyper realistic F1 Grand Prix race simulator • Ten linked race pods in each of these race centres • Sit in full race seat with immersion graphics • Drive practice, qualifiers & heats to gain points
• Drive a Porsche Boxster S in Martini racing colours • Choose between a 3 or 6 mile driving experience • Available at a selection of circuits around the UK • Rear wheel drive, open-top Porsche driving fun!
• Ride in a two-seater version of a single seater car • A high speed passenger ride at full throttle • You will be driven by an ex-Euroboss F1 driver • Experiences hosted by a competing motorsport team
• A fun packed day of driving events in Scotland • Race, rally and kart at Knockhill's famous circuit • In-car teaching in fully race prepped vehicles • Spectators can watch from pit lane or race control
Its all about the sheer speed and acceleration in these racing cars. Forget comfort and exotic styling, this is raw, pared down motorsport at its very best. If that sends shivers down your spine, then these racing car experience are most definitely for you.
Who it's not for
If you really don’t fancy being out there on your own in a single seater car that’s a bit of a handful to drive and requires unwavering concentration, these race car days may not be for you. We’ve got lots of other driving experiences that are just as exciting, yet a little less demanding, with an instructor in the front passenger seat next to you.
Will I be driving an actual Formula One racing car?
Not on the race track, no. We do have F1 simulatorslisted in this section that give you an incredibly realistic feel of what driving an actual Formula One car is like. On the track experiences you’ll be driving single seaters such as F1000, Formula Ford and Formula Renault.
Are these what you call ‘open-wheel’ racing cars?
Yes. Open wheel race cars are ones that have the wheels on the outside of the car body. It’s a bit of an Americanism, as we tend to call them single seaters over here in the UK.
What sort of racing cars can I drive?
We have a whole host of venues offering single seater race experiences in purpose-built racing cars. We also have race-prepped saloon cars and even extreme banger cars listed in this racing car experience category.
Are genuine racing cars used for these experiences?
Many of the racing schools we work with use single seaters that compete or have competed in racing series, so you could be driving a car that has clocked up podium finishes at celebrated circuits around the country. Other schools are run by professional motor racing teams and they build single seater cars specifically for these experiences. The saloon cars used are race ready and again, many well have been driven in saloon car championship races.
If it’s a single seater does that mean I’m on my own out there?
Yep! There’s no room for an instructor in these open wheelers! Many race schools use helmets with integrated headsets and intercoms so they can communicate with you at all times.
Will I be in a race?
No. You’ll be racing against the clock to post the best lap times you can, but you won’t be physically racing against any other cars out there.
Is a racing car easy to drive?
A single seater is very different to a normal car or even a sports car. There are no doors or roof for a start! It’s very much back to basics driving, so don’t expect any modern driver aids like ABS or EPS. They are incredibly sensitive to control, with the just the slightest touch on the steering wheel to turn and very light pedals. Many of these racing cars have, just like their big brother F1 counterparts, paddle shift semi automatic gearboxes too. And don’t forget, you will literally be just a couple of centimetres off the ground.
Will I be on a proper racing car circuit?
Several of our operators run these racing car driving days at professional motor racing circuits. Others have purpose-built tracks at former airfields. In all cases, you’ll be driving on smooth tarmac or concrete surfaces, which provide optimal running conditions for these racing cars.
Do I need a driving licence for these experiences?
Yes. You’ll need to present your valid manual driving licence at check-in. Some may ask that you’ve held your licence for at least two years. If you don’t have a UK-issued licence, you will need to take photographic ID with your as well as your licence. Any other details regarding licence/driving requirements will be mentioned on each individual experience page.
How fast do these race cars go?
Fast! You can easily reach speeds of over 100mph in well under five seconds, even as a novice driver. And of course, being open cockpit and so close to the ground makes it all feel even faster when you drive.
They’re only 1.6l engines. How come they’re so fast?
It’s all about the build. Single seat racing cars are pared down to the absolute basics and built with weight-saving materials, such as a monocoque chassis with carbon. These things come in at less than 500kg (compared to a normal family car that’s near 1500kg) and being so lightweight means they perform really, really well. A 1.0l, 1.6l or 2.0l engine in an open wheel race car way outperforms a standard hatchback with the same capacity engine under the bonnet.
What’s it like inside the cockpit?
Tight. We have to admit, it is a bit of squeeze to get in there, as you are so low to the ground and you have to kind of tuck your shoulders and arms in.It’s very different to the normal driving position, but once you’re all harnessed in you’ll totally get into the zone and you’ll be raring to go.
Are these racing car experiences dangerous?
Safety is number one priority for all driving day providers. All the necessary precautions are taken to ensure your safety in the cars. Of course, as with any form of motorsport, there is an inherent risk, but schools monitor closely all current safety criteria regarding the cars and the track.
What should I wear for these race car days?
Some schools provide one-piece race suits, others require casual clothing with shoulders covered (for the multi-point seat harnesses). Footwear is really important for driving these cars. You’ll need narrow-fitting, flat-soled pumps or trainers. Some schools may have plimsolls for hire.
They look like F1 cars - are they?
No. With their wings, spoilers, open-wheel style and aerodynamic body, the single seater cars we feature do indeed look like F1 cars (they follow the same ethos on lightweight builds and aerodynamics) but there are not as powerful or expensive as actual Formula One cars. Having said that, many an F1 driver started out racing in series like Formula Ford and Formula Renault, so it’s a definite stepping stone to F1.
Are the laps paced?
Some schools get a group of single seaters out on the track at once, with an instructor-driven pace car leading the pack. This facilitates getting the racing line and braking points just right, so you can really feel like you’re making progress on the track.
Do I just go straight out in the car?
No. All drivers sign in and then attend a classroom briefing session where performance driving techniques and race track etiquette are covered. In most cases you will then go out as a passenger in a high-performance saloon for sighting laps with an instructor driving. You may also then get a few driving laps in a saloon to get used to the lay of the track. Then it’s over to you to go out for the drive of your life in the race car!
Are there height or weight restrictions for driving a racing car?
Yes and, due to the nature of the car, they can be stricter than usual. Minimum heights range from 5ft to 5ft 2” and maximum heights from 6ft 1” to 6ft 6”. In terms of weight, the maximum is usually around 16 to 19 stone. Please check each individual page for all the restrictions and details, or contact us using the on-page chat function, by ‘phone or by email and we’ll help.
Are helmets provided?
Yes. Helmets suitable for motorsport will be provided for you. Some schools have full face helmets with an integrated communication system.
Where can I drive a racing car near me?
Single seater and racing car driving experiences are hugely popular and not every motorsport supplier offers them, so you may have to travel bit to realise your racing driver dreams and book well in advance. It’ll SO be worth it though as you go screeching around the circuit in locations such as: