Students at Fast Track High Performance Driving School don't need to prove that they can parallel park—they're more concerned about taking a turn at more than 100 miles per hour. Most of them have never even felt the rumble of a 600-horsepower engine before. After plenty of safety debriefing from expert instructors, however, they usually are no longer intimidated by its purr. They'll then hop into the vibrant shell of an ARCA-style stock car, a former racing vehicle that's still capable of rocketing down the track at a blur-inducing speed of 165 miles per hour.
Since 1989, the school has been fulfilling speed-demon fantasies with its courses and ride alongs at racetracks throughout the country. The staff meets with everyday fans and aspiring competitors alike to cover racing protocol, safety, and appropriate postrace dance moves. Depending on the depth of their lesson, pupils might take the wheel during a four-car passing exercise or simply sit back in the passenger seat as a professional flies through three–five laps.
The NASCAR Racing Experience's team of driving instructors specializes in NASCAR-themed Cinderella stories: at whichever world-famous speedway they're visiting, they give civilians the chance to drive real NASCAR race cars that have actually been raced by NASCAR superstars for a few hours. That means getting behind the wheel of a real NASCAR race car that's been driven by Dale Jr, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and other NASCAR favorites and putting the pedal to the medal. Unlike other racing experiences, there’s no lead car to follow here, you're driving by yourself and yes, passing is allowed! The instructors still offer guidance though, coaching those driving solo over a two-way car radio, and speed-chauffeuring racing enthusiasts around the track on ride-alongs.
For more than 45 years, Little Britain Stables has taught aspiring equestrians the fundamentals of horsemanship on its 90 acres of paddocks and trails set on Kentucky’s rolling hills. This 60-minute lesson teaches riders of any age the basics in a supportive setting, with a savvy instructor who’s certified by the American Riding Instructors Association. Specializing in beginners, these equestrian educators teach riding for show or for fun, emphasizing safety at every level. The indoor and outdoor arenas at Little Britain Stables provide an ideal setting to learn a variety of different disciplines, including dressage, hunt seat, saddleseat, and western-style riding. The stables feature as many as 20 different breeds of horses and ponies, suitable for riders of any size or skill level, whether they’re a high-school student who has never ridden on a horse or a judge who rides into court on a majestic bronco. Instructor Stephanie England-Grey has received much acclaim for her charitable efforts—in January 2010, she rode a horse for 24 hours to raise money to benefit Red Cross relief efforts in Haiti.
A NASCAR racing experience lets racers and passengers feel the rush of flying around the 1.5-mile Kentucky Speedway. During the three-hour solo racing experience, racers meet with the crew chief for comprehensive safety training and instruction before suiting up, warming up, and ground-flying for five clocked minutes around the track. Via two-way in-car radio communication, drivers will be able to stay in touch with their personal racing instructors, who give advice on the best time to pass other cars and how to convert kilometers per hour into jiggowatts. Participants will then be able to commemorate the experience with a souvenir racing license, a graduate certificate, and a 6"x8" photo.
Dearborn Country Club traces its roots to 1926, when a group of area businessmen purchased the sprawling Wymond Estate in Aurora, Indiana, and used its setting, overlooking the Wilson Creek Valley, to design a nine-hole golf course. Today, the original course still offers a timeless test of pin-hunting prowess, though it has expanded into an 18-hole, 6,314-yard layout after a 1993 renovation and a steady diet of protein-rich mini-golf courses. Characterized by undulating terrain that gives way to sprawling views of the valley below, the layout showcases hole designs that demand creative shotmaking, including any shot from the double-dogleg fairway at the par 5 fifth.
Once the centerpiece of the club, the original Wymond Estate mansion burned down in 2003 and was replaced by a 25,000-square-foot, ivory clubhouse. Inside the stately clubhouse, the aromas of sizzling steaks emanate from Woody's on the Hill Bar and Grille, where a menu of grill fare and seafood and a full-service bar help golfers unwind after a long day at the links or mourn the loss of a sand wedge lost at sea.
Course at a Glance: