mcsinc wrote: Any other comments from other "seasoned" racers?
Well, I'm a seasoned 'stock class' racer for nearly 9 seasons, and 'stock' is where to start and maybe where to stay now.
The best way to learn? Ask questions of the veterans like I did, ask after driving a course, ask about specific sections realizing where you went wrong. Where the racers brake, their lines through the cones, where to gear, where to accelerate. Read some Auto Slalom info like Solo II Novice Handbook (http://www.tirerack.com/features/solo2/handbook.htm).
Go for a few rides with See23 or Brain or many other very awesome drivers in the Club, have them ride with you, get some 'seat time' on all season V-rated tires with treadwear 320+, then feel your car shift, pitch, break free, oversteer, listen to the tires squeal as you brake late, or 4 wheel drift in a corner losing tire grip, or miss a section of the course, or hit a cone, and eventually you'll learn to drive to the limit of the tires. THEN upgrade to better tires and lighter wheels (remaining 'stock' class) and soon you will learn to drive to the limit of your 'stock' car. Don't get frustrated. And before you know it, you'll have a 'target' on your back like I did... "Just kidding" [ Maybe this should be put under "Rants in your Pants", but my dumb questions got answered without holding my pizza, I greased my squeaky wheel, it wasn't a picnic being in 'stock class' as a Novice, I wasn't 'right' because 'Wise One' always knows something the competition doesn't...Brain is the 'Wise One' on everything SCCA Solo!] By the way, I'm still learning the art of Autox Racing and have a long way to go!
Foremost, have fun racing. It's addicting, and soon you'll feel competetive with yourself as you learn and progress. It's all friendly competition in a great Club with a bunch of great drivers.