The Revival of the Celebrity Class at Bondurant High Performance Driving School

 Chris Jacobs gave me some kudos for a fast lap… thankfully he didn’t scold me for the spin on the next one. Photo: Nick Lish

Like everyone else on the planet, Bonduarant High Performance Driving School is looking at 2021 as a fresh start with exciting new opportunities. They spent last summer pulverizing and resurfacing the 1.6-mile road course and making improvements to the event, classroom, and entrance facilities.

 Cristy Lee set the fastest autocross time out of the gate and set the tone for some fun competition. Photo: Nick Lish

Bondurant is also experimenting with new offerings on their roster of classes. One is reminiscent of the days when you could rub elbows with celebrities hitting the track while they were training for a movie role or simply looking to have fun. Tom Cruise, Clint Eastwood, Paul Newman, and many more made their way to Bondurant for seat time and valuable training over the years.

 Chris Jacobs and Cristy Lee added a fun new element to the class. Kinda bummed it was just one day. Photo: Nick Lish

Bondurant brought in TV personalities and auto celebrities Chris Jacobs and Cristy Lee for a one-day High Performance Driving class, and welcomed three-time NHRA Funny Car World Champion Matt Hagan to host their Dodge Demon Drag Racing class. They invited Vintage Motorsport to check out the experience and as much as I would have loved to do both, I opted for the HPD class with Chris and Cristy.

 The skid car portion of the class allows participants to feel an out-of-control car in a “controllable” environment and is a favorite among class members (myself included). Photo: Nick Lish

Having done a few of these classes at Bondurant before, I was mostly familiar with the content, but having Chris and Cristy around was a welcome change. I had the opportunity to catch up on their projects, talk about past experiences at Bondurant, and even feel a little competitive during the timed autocross portion of the day.

Chris Jacobs doing his best to up the competition during the timed autocross. Photo: Nick Lish

In all, I found the experience enjoyable. Sunny, 75-degree weather, a 500hp RWD car, and hanging with a few fellow gearheads is a recipe for a good time. Bondurant said there are plans to do more of these celebrity classes in the future, and I’m all for keeping that tradition going.

 The Dodge Hellcats are a lot to handle (even without the red keys) and they are a blast to play with. Photo: Nick Lish