Hurrah to local motorsports! Hot after the DriveRite Tarmac Rally-X was held at the Malacca International Motorsports Circuit (MIMC) on 23 October 2016, came news of a autocross event on local soil.
Called the DriveRite Tarmac Auto-X, it was a rare opportunity to enjoy some autocrossing fun at the former Queenstown Golf Driving Range. Participants were challenged in navigating a tight mini driving circuit with a series of challenging direction-changing manoeuvres. Registration opened on 4 November and it saw a flurry of registrations from the local motorsports enthusiasts. As a testament about the motorsports community, the DriveRite event saw another full house entry list by night.
Despite the venue’s rules on controlling noise pollution, this basic grassroot motorsport event is key for the improvement of driving skills. Plus, even non-participants were keen to meet with other like-minded enthusiasts and make new friends. While there was an early downpour, the heavy clouds spared the event just before it began at 8am, with the sun taking over and drying up the proving ground real quick. The participants were rolling in to make their final adjustments, removal of loose items in their cars as well as placing stickers from the event sponsors, Whiteline, ACMA Engineering Works & Trading, F Tuned Racing, TheBrakeShop SG and MPM Oil Singapore.
The day was split into two parts, with the morning practice segment dedicated for a duo run of the circuit. After the buffet lunch, the two circuits were combined to form one big “track” for the time attack. For MIMC regulars, there would be plenty of familiar faces present that day. From the classic Toyota Starlet, ranging all the way to the latest Honda Civic Type R, all the drivers could test their machines to the limit with the autocrossing (Auto-X) format.
Auto-X or autocross is basically a scaled-down time attack/track circuit. Unlike gymkhana, the course design for Auto-X are much wider than those used for gymkhana. Complex maneuvers such as handbrake turns, donuts or drifting skills are not required to execute the direction-changing manoeuvres in an Auto-X.
DriveRite Tarmac Auto-X course designs were planned to be flowing, intuitive yet interesting. With only a basic memory of the course needed, this event was suited for both novice and experienced drivers. With a low barrier to entry, this event saw a fair share of novice drivers who could discover their car and driving skills in a safe, friendly and controlled environment. For experienced drivers, the event provided a new venue where they could challenged their car control skills.
DriveRite also organizes the Tarmac Rally-X series. Despite having announced their final event in 2016, the Tarmac Rally-X will indeed be back in 2017 due to popular demand and new developments on the availability of MIMC circuit. Visit www.driverite.sg for more information!