Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Base Performance Experience

I'd like to share an amazing experience I recently had at the Newly Open Base Performance Simulator in Tokyo.

A while ago I did a Driver Training School course with Sunako-san. Sunako-san has driven everything from Super GT to Super Taikyu with loads of experience and trophies to match. Today was a chance to get some more advice but basically experience something amazing.

After some basic familiarization with the controls of the GP style cockpit. I selected first gear and headed out onto Fuji. A track I have had a little experience with in my old FD3s. When you think SIM, you think game, but this is no game. GT5 and PC sims don't come anywhere near this experience.

Now the first time you drive a real GP car you are probably going to spin. I was feeling the throttle and braking points but the inevitable happens. Yes... they are my tyre marks. But you just want more and more. It's very addictive and feels amazing. Eventually times came down. The simulator can also change every parameter available for an engineer and driver to learn.

After a while I got a feel for the car. While the first half of FSW, I was way too cautious,  The feeling was real so I didn't want to crash my GP Car. I was glad when the 2nd half of my data log showed only a slight gap to the master. Sunako-san instantly recognizes places where you can improve and his advice is what you'd expect from a professional racing driver.

Soon it was time for him to show us a thing or two. 280kph in 6th gear down the Fuji straight sounds incredible. It's an aural experience and much as a tactile one. But really he wasn't showing off. He was demonstrating different methods of negotiating a single corner for us and the reality is that driving on the limit is difficult.

Another Sunako-Jyuku school student and regular Fuji attendee, Aki from was taking advice and applying it. The simulator has a GP bodyshell, but the feeling can be made to represent any kind of vehicle.

We were using this amazing machine in the beginning, but there's an array of cars to select from.

Another professional Akihiro Asai-san at work heading under the Suzuka tunnel. When professionals get out of the machine with a big smile... you know this is good! Actually, he didn't want to get out.

I was feeling a little homesick, so Sunako-san dialed in Surfers Paradise indy car track for me and I started to rub the walls on a track that I'd probably never get a chance to experience in real life. I was supplied a GT-2 spec machine "Aston", the feeling is very different and you find the lethargic weight transfer of a big bodied sedan quite the contrast to the GP cars. You really have to push hard on the pedals to pull these things up.

If you are in Tokyo and need some instruction (in English is OK) or would like to experience something special. Contact Base Performance Systems in the new year.

Contact information Email UK Main Site.


  1. Fantastic Russ!
    Would love to give this a go when i'm in Tokyo next!

  2. Wow, luck you :-)
    Would love to give something like this a try. Surfers Paradise must have been good fun - not sure how different the Indy car circuit is from the layout they use for V8 Supercars?

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