Days of Thunder
While most MSA students and teachers use spring break to slow down and relax, sophomore Cole Coradi and his father Bob Coradi decided to speed things up for a change.
The duo packed their bags and flew to Phoenix, Arizona for the Bob Bondurant Racing School. Founded by Hall of Fame race car driver Bob Bondurant, the school is the country’s premier driver-training for racing enthusiasts and professionals. Students learn the driving techniques used by professional race car drivers--while sitting behind the wheel of high-performance Dodge Challengers (muscle cars with with a standard manual transmission).
During the four-day training, Cole and his father learned drifting, heel-toe downshifting, high-speed cornering, breaking and evading techniques, as well as the handling skills needed when driving upwards of 120 MPH.
After three days of training, they donned racing helmets and four-point harnesses and headed to the race track, where they were able to apply their new skills and knowledge at full speed. They spent an hour on the track going as fast as possible while utilizing the safe-driving techniques they learned the previous three days.
For Cole and his father, going fast on this trip provided an opportunity for them to “slow down” and spend quality father-son time together. “Dad learned about Bondurant Driving School when he was my age and has always wanted to go, so when I got my driver’s license, we planned a trip to learn how to drive fast together,” said Cole.
While the trip provided bonding time, it also led to some old fashioned father-son rivalry on the track. “We went on the autocross track and did time trials. It was exciting to be put up against the clock as we were able to compare times after the time trial,” explained Cole.
The fastest time of the day went to the youngest driver on the track, and Bob Coradi couldn’t have been happier to see his son take the checkered flag ahead of him.
Cole knows that he can't try out his new driving skills in Albemarle County (at least not the speed part), but he's just waiting for anyone to ask him: "And how did you spend your spring break?"