iN VIDEO: Camaro Driving Academy in South Okanagan ideal for those with a need for speed | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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iN VIDEO: Camaro Driving Academy in South Okanagan ideal for those with a need for speed

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January 30, 2020 - 8:00 PM

Have you ever wanted to experience the thrill of driving a Camaro really, really fast without the risk of getting a speeding ticket? Area 27 Motorsports Park east of Oliver is offering an opportunity to do just that.

Area 27 general manager Felicity Johnson says a series of 16 Camaro Driving Academies are scheduled this year, although the April 29 to May 1 session is already sold out.

"The program is fully open to the public. Since it went up on our calendar a month ago, registration has been steady," Johnson says.

The academy will teach participants everything from the basics of high performance driving, to safely lapping on the full circuit track at Area 27.

The two-and-a-half day course involve some classroom time before moving to on-track exercises as drivers build their way up to full circuit lapping.

"The sessions consist of a maximum of 16 participants who will be instructed to drive one of the track’s 16 Camaros, which are equipped with manual transmission and four, six and eight cylinder engines," Johnson says.

She advises registrants to be familiar with manual shifting.

"All the cars except for one are standard. The V-8s do have rev-match, which in my opinion is the best thing since sliced bread. In racing, you have to do this little thing called "heel and toe" where you give it a little gas when downshifting to match the revs, but these cars do that for you," she says.

The program is instructed by Area 27 chief instructor Kees Nierop, who has 45 years driving and racing experience.

Nierop won the Sebring 12 hours of Endurance Race and was a Porsche Factory driver at the 1987 LeMans 24 hr and Daytona. He’s the only Canadian to have his name on a Porsche factory race car displayed in the new Porsche museum in Germany.

Other instructors include Stefan Rzadzinski, Scott Hargrove, Remo Ruscitti, Zac Zawisza, Cameron Cassels and Patrick Carpenter.

Registration takes place on the first day with a two-hour theory class starting at 5:30 p.m. The next two days begin at 9 a.m. and conclude around 4:30 p.m. with lunch provided both days and an instructor’s dinner social following the first day.

For more information on the 20 hour course, including costs, session dates and booking information, check out the Area 27 website here.

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