Driving with safety, precision, and awareness
Atlanta. What began 40 years at the Hockenheimring race track in Germany accompanied by the sound of boxer engines and squealing tires, and the smell of rubber, oil, and gasoline laid the foundation for today's Porsche Sport Driving School. This workshop, geared towards performance oriented drivers, provided the skills needed to drive Porsche vehicles to the fullest potential through an enjoyable learning process.
The idea turned into a great success. Today, Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG offers a large range of courses worldwide, teaching the precise control of sports cars in all driving conditions. Highly-skilled Porsche instructors place a specific focus on improving students' driving prowess and developing them into calm, commanding, and conducted drivers. While learning and knowing the theoretical basics of vehicle dynamics is important, all Porsche driving courses put an emphasis on spending plenty of time behind the wheel, helping the participants to practice and master the necessary skills.
Understandably, the scope of the courses has changed over the last 40 years. ABS, Porsche Stability Management (PSM), and other electronic systems which enhance driving dynamics influence the behavior of modern Porsche vehicles at their limits. Drivers are taught how to make the best use of these systems, and how they work in supporting the driver. In addition to on-road and off-road training courses, Porsche offers special winter programs that teach students how to drive safely in snow and ice conditions.
In the United States, the Porsche has been fostering the improvement of driver skills and awareness for over 20 years. The first courses, known then as Porsche Owners Driving School, were offered in 1990 by Porsche factory driver and racing legend Vic Elford. The Porsche Sport Driving School in North America is currently based at Barber Motorsports Park in Leeds, Alabama. Since establishing a permanent home in early 2003, over 35,000 participants have improved their driving skills thanks to the experience and supervision of head instructor Hurley Haywood and his 50 colleagues. The Porsche Sport Driving School fleet at Barber Motorsports Park consists of over 45 new Porsche vehicles which are provided for the participants. Classes range from the "Precision One Day High Performance Driving Course", aimed at teaching drivers the essentials about high-performance driving, all the way to the three-day "Masters-Plus Course", whose graduates are eligible for the SCCA regional racing license.
In March 2015, the new Porsche Experience Center, located near Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, will offer advanced driver training courses on a brand-new test track with six cutting-edge driving modules. A second Porsche Experience Center in Los Angeles serving Porsche drivers on the west coast is scheduled to open later that year.
History: Milestones from 40 years at the Porsche Sport Driving School
1974: The Porsche Sport Driving School is launched with its first event held on the Hockenheimring
1977: First international courses (Belgium, France, Austria)
1986: Special driving events for women are added to the program
1990: Porsche driving courses enter the U.S. market
1990: The first safety courses on snow and ice are held in Austria
1996: Porsche now offers winter courses in Finland
2002: The test and practice track at Porsche Leipzig is added to the program
2004: Launch of special courses (for example, the "g-force" drift)
2005: Students may now use rented Porsche cars at the Sport Driving School
2007: International activities are standardized, and the "Porsche Sport Driving School" name is now official
2010: The first courses are offered specifically for classic cars
2012: Exclusive courses with personal instructors for small groups are now available
2014: The Porsche Sport Driving School celebrates its 40th anniversary
For additional information or to make a reservation for a course, please visit www.porschedriving.com.
Photos: Porsche Sport Driving School
About Porsche Cars North America
Porsche Cars North America, Inc. (PCNA), based in Atlanta, Ga. is the exclusive U.S. importer of Porsche 918 Spyder, 911, Boxster and Cayman sports cars, the Macan and Cayenne SUVs and Panamera sports sedan. Established in 1984, it is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Porsche AG, which is headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany. PCNA employs approximately 270 people who provide parts, service, marketing and training for 189 dealers. They, in turn, work to provide Porsche customers with a best-in-class experience that is in keeping with the brand's 66-year history and leadership in the advancement of vehicle performance, safety and efficiency.
At the core of this success is Porsche's proud racing heritage that boasts some 30,000 motorsport wins to date.
For Porsche apps: http://www.porsche.com/usa/entertainment/apps/
Note: Photos and video footage are available to accredited journalists on the Porsche Press Database at http://press.porsche.com/