Ready for winter driving?

We hear a lot about winter tires and their importance and nothing could be more important at this time of year.

However, there is more to winter driving than just tires. The important aspect of winter tires is that because your tires are round, the tiniest portion (contact patch) is in touch with the ground and we put a lot of faith in that. Here is a little more to focus on.

First, check out this video of rally driving in the winter: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Onyg-rEWHI

Our belief is that we cannot drive quickly in the winter because there is very little traction. I guess you now know that is not true. So what can be the big difference?

It is almost one word, concentration. Given that we understand there is no such thing as an automobile accident, they are more fairly understood as unintentional crashes, largely because of a lapse in concentration. 

Whether someone swings into your line, you have a blow out or lose traction on the ice, there are ways to manage the corresponding results.

For these drivers to drive at this speed on lose traction surfaces, it requires the utmost in concentration.

Now, if you stick a coffee in one hand, a cell phone in the other, the radio on full blast with some passengers talking to you about a myriad number of topics unrelated to driving safely, do you consider yourself to be concentrating? 

Of course, the answer can only be no. In our driver-training courses that we run this can be easily demonstrated with a test called a distracted slalom. 

The immense concentration can even compensate for something going wrong on the car. But to be fair, the reason rally drivers are going so fast is because of a very well setup suspension and steering system and they have thoroughly learned to understand vehicle dynamics. 

To get through the winter safely, I would certainly visit a local BigO tire store, get your tires and wheel alignment checked out and make sure your car is in the best possible condition for winter driving — it’s days away.

If you want to see some fast winter driving locally, check out bigwhiterally.com and mark your calendar for the first weekend of December.

Stay safe.


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About the Author

Mark has been an entrepreneur for over forty years. His experience spans many commercial sectors and aspects of business. He was one of the youngest people to be appointed as a Fellow of the prestigious Institute of Sales and Marketing Management before he left the UK in 1988.

His column focuses on ways we can improve on success in our lives. Whether it is business, relationships, or health, Mark has a well-rounded perspective on how to stay focused for growth and development.

His influences come from the various travels he undertakes as an adventurer, philanthropist and keynote speaker. More information can be found on Mark at his website www.markjenningsbates.com

He is a Venture Partner with www.DutchOracle.com a global Alternative Investment company.

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