thanks for the heads up Bob,
Sol_man and I plan on coming out to see what it's all about .... no racing for me but I love to watch. Hope to see you at the B'ham Race Course on the 25th
Whether I come out or not depends largely on my son's soccer. This is right at the beginning of Spring season and they are sort of winging their schedule right now. I know there is a tryout next weekend but I dont know which days he has to be there yet.
I havent raced at Birmingham yet and I am looking forward to trying it. If I do come out, I will be happy to give you shotgun rides before your turns come up. But most autocross folk are happy to take Novices around a few times (here in Huntsville it is actually one of the duties for the old hands). Definitely ride with someone before your first run - knowing how hard to attack the course the first time is a big problem for First Timers, and it will help you to not get lost on the course if you ride it with someone experienced. Some of the more experienced drivers will give you plenty of tips.
Even if you decide not to drive, ask for rides! Even as a passenger, it can be a whole lot of fun! About as close to a rollercoaster experience as you are going find on flat ground. There was a 20-something guy at the event yesterday in an STI with a big posse of friends watching and I think he went around quite a few times with a whole car load of passengers (all wearing helmets of course). I had a guy come up who was curious about the Solstice and trying to decide whether to buy one or get a Miata. I had him grab a helmet and took him around 3 times and he said getting a Miata was definitely out.
If you have some motorcycle helmets, check them to see if they are Snell 2000 or 2005 rated. If they are, you can use 'em at the event. The club should have loaners for you to use, but it is kind of a hassle if they have more loanees than loaners and folk are having to switch between runs. Here in Huntsville we rarely run out, I think we have something like 20 or 30 helmets but up in Chattanooga they only had something like 8. There is a guy named Ken Gaines from RFR Race Parts who comes to a lot of area events and sells a nice open face Snell 2005 helmet for about $65.
I would strongly advise reading this document: Solo II Novice Handbook
It is a fairly accurate description of all the goings on at Autocross events, and giving it a read will tell you what to expect and what is expected from you. Different groups differ in the details, but you wont have many surprises.