Organised and run by one of our instructors Roger Baker, Surrey Driving Force is now in a position to offer a unique ‘Advanced Driving Day’.
A Little Background Information
Roger was a Metropolitan Police officer for 30 years and a class 1 police advanced driver advanced-driving-dayfor 25 of those. He was trained at the famous Hendon police driving school which has an unrivalled reputation as the best police driving school in the world.
Roger spent his career in South and West London and in the later years of his career was responsible for the security of the royal family as an inspector with the elite royalty protection department.
In 2012 Roger qualified as an approved driving instructor and has been working with Surrey Driving Force ever since.
“I get loads of my students asking what is advanced driving, what’s the difference? Will it make me a better driver? Is it about driving fast?
Following Police Training Guidelines
Advanced driving is based on the publication Road Craft which was written by the police, for the police in an effort to train police drivers to a consistent high standard.
Learning how to conduct advanced observations is critical in advanced driving. For example, seeing things that other drivers would not necessarily be aware of, quickly analysing and grading them.
This is where you begin to learn ‘the system of car control’, a simple and repetitive process that provides a systematic, smooth and safe approach to any hazard. By following this system, you will always be driving at the right speed with the right gear engaged and in the right position on the road.
Varying vehicle position within the carriageway, learning about vehicle stability and how to use gear ratios to increase vehicle control adds important factors to the mix. Steering methods, braking, hazard awareness and something called ‘acceleration sense’ helps ensure the safe use of a motor car on the road.
Will it Make a Big Difference?
Advanced driving is a whole new ball game and involves looking at driving in a completely different way. Once you have mastered it you will wonder how you managed before.
Nothing in driving happens suddenly, the clues are there you just need to spot them. Once you have improved your observation and put in place the Road Craft system, driving will once again become a pleasure and not a daily chore.
Will it Make me a Better Driver?
I have no hesitation in saying yes. By using the techniques described in Road Craft you will not only improve your driving, but you will reduce the number of accidents and start to enjoy the challenge that advanced driving brings.
Is it About Driving Fast?
One of the great quotes from one of the best driving instructors at Hendon is delivered to all new students on advanced driving courses. It goes something like this:
“No matter how good you think you are, or hope you will be, you will never impress me with speed”
By using advanced driving techniques you will always be in the correct position, doing the correct speed in the correct gear. The added benefit is you will be able to make progress on urban and rural roads in a much quicker and more efficient manner.
Can any Driving Instructor Teach Advanced Driving?
In my view the very best people to teach advanced driving on public roads are current or ex-police class 1 advanced drivers, who combine this with the experience and knowledge of instructing.
What is a Driving Day?
The advanced driving day is very much tailored to your own individual needs. You may have only just passed your driving test or you may already be an experienced driver, every day is designed to meet your specific requirements.
The driving day will last approx. 8 hours and involves a number of short breaks for refreshment and discussion.
A half day is also available and this will last approx. 4 hours
Instruction is on a 1-1 basis although it’s worth considering sharing this experience with a friend or relative. This is a very effective way of learning, watching, listening and then rotating. It a technique used in all police driver training.
Where will the Training Take Place?
The driving day will leave the busy roads of Surrey behind and use the routes around Berkshire, Wiltshire and Gloucestershire. These areas offer a number of delightful and challenging roads ideally suited to advanced driver training and are favoured by police driving schools.
The driving day will generally take place in your own vehicle which must be roadworthy, insured, taxed and if required, have an MOT. It is possible to use the instructor’s vehicle if necessary at an additional cost.
Subjects covered will include
- Advanced observations
- Implementing the system of car control
- Commentary driving
- Driving plans
- Taking bends
- Urban and Rural driving
- Motorway driving
- Half Day £160 £210 (With instructors vehicle)
- Full Day £275 £375 (With instructors vehicle)
We recently received a wonderfully detailed review of the difference that our advanced driving day can make to a driver. Please read on to see what was said.
“Having been selected for a response driving course with the Metropolitan Police I wanted to ensure that even after having a full UK driving licence for the last 15 years that I would be the right side of the 55-60% pass rate. Different from most students, I was looking to find one of only a hand full of instructors that exist in this country that not only understood the specific course requirements but also had the relative experience and advanced qualifications to teach at this level.”
“After spending many hours trawling the internet unsuccessfully I was absolutely delighted to find Surrey Driving Force and in particular Roger Baker. After making the initial phone call all my concerns of undertaking advanced driver training and being scrutinised for the first time in years were completely laid to rest.”
“Initially I booked a half day four hour session to try an adapt my driving style to the advanced system of car control – my thinking was if I could spend the time getting the basics right with Roger then I would stand a much better chance at passing the (very intensive) response driving course which was booked for a few months later.”
“The results of the first session were nothing short of remarkable – for all the advanced driving books you can read and all the YouTube videos you can watch nothing can actually replace physical driving instruction. Roger at all times was approachable, informative and clearly a very skilled advanced driver. Those attributes combined with his personality made going back to driving school an absolute pleasure. Despite realising just how many bad habits I’d picked up over the years, Roger had a number of methods to combat these and put me well back on track to driving as per the “system”. Being so delighted with my progress in the first session I immediately booked a second one a month later just to prove to myself (and Roger) that I’d learnt and more importantly retained the new driving skills needed to pass.”
“Having recently attended the response course I cannot stress enough how valuable the hours I spent with Roger were. It was evident to my colleagues and my instructors that I’d done my homework with ‘system’ driving and this made a rather stressful course far more pleasant. Two weeks later I’m please to say that I’ve passed the course. To anyone considering any form of advanced driving I can’t recommend Roger enough!”
James Ryan, 24th February 2017
Please Note – The day is based on the publication Road Craft so it would be useful although not essential if you had some prior knowledge of this book which can be purchased at any good book stores or from HM Stationary.