Primitive Performance Driving Rally Schools

Next Schools (2014):     

Oregon/ SW Washington May 16-18th - POSTPONED (possibly July or Aug);   NORCAL Rally School May 23-25th in Santa Rosa;  NORCAL Sept 19-21 (tentative)


Updated 04/27/14

Rally School Gift Certificates ...
now available!
The Perfect gift for rally enthusiast!

$725  buys your loved one an entry into Primitive's exciting 2.5 day Rally School Portland Program INCLUDING a SEAT in an AWD Rally Car.  The school includes an information-packed classroom session, with discussion of driving lines, braking points, and the secrets of speed on dirt, then two action-packed days of instructional and rallycross driving. The next scheduled school is coming up .  Find further information for ordering below.  PORTLAND AREA schools only
Order your gift instruction today!!

  Frequently Asked Questions
See below -        

Pay for Basic Rally School Gift Certificate by PayPal ... just click on the logo on the left. INCLUDES RENTAL CAR.  The fee is $725, including the PayPal fee.  ($715 if you mail a check) PORTLAND AREA schools only
In your e-mail order, please include exact name to be written on the Certificate.  Good for 2 years


Pay for Basic Rally School Gift Certificate by PayPal ... just click on the logo on the left.
The fee is $396, including the PayPal fee.  ($385 if you mail a check)
PORTLAND AREA schools only
In your e-mail order, please include exact name to be written on the Certificate.  Good for 2 years
    Please inquire for RALLY SCHOOL gift certificates for CALIFORNIA, ALASKA or WASHINGTON schools....


Pay for OREGON Rally School  - DATES TBD (July or Aug)  Early Registration $325 (ends June 15th)     This will be a small, intimate school, so you will receive a lot of personal attention.  The location is still being woked out.  The Friday night groundschool session will likely be at the PRIMITIVE World Headquarters in Tigard 5pm sharp!  We would have the ROLLOVER simulator.   Email me for motel recommendations and any info.


Pay for NORCAL Rally School May 23-25th 2014 Santa Rosa, CA  Regular registration $495 (ends May 13th)   or $485 if you mail a check. Details: Headquarters hotel is TBD, likely BW Garden Inn.  School entry   FULLY REFUNDABLE  if your plans change (up to 3 weeks before the event and we work something out after that).   We have 5 entries and 2 rental car seats already.  Don't delay!


Pay for NORCAL Rally School Sept 19-21st 2014 Santa Rosa, CA  Super Early registration $450 (ends Aug 2nd)   or $440 if you mail a check. Details: HQ is the Courtyard Marriott  near Sonoma County Fairgrounds where the driving will take place. Use PRIMITIVE RALLY SCHOOL as the Group Rate.  FULLY REFUNDABLE  if your plans change (up to 6 weeks before the event and we work something out after that).   We have 1 entries and 1 rental car seats already. 


Pay for Any 2013 Co-Drivers School by PayPal ... just click on the logo on the left pay for Regular Registration. The fee is $98, including the PayPal fee.  ($93 if you mail a check)
In your e-mail order, please include your address and phone number.

Pay for DEPOSIT AWD RENTAL CAR  by PayPal ... just click on the logo on the left pay for seat in a 5-spd AWD Rental Car for any upcoming PORTLANDRallyySchoolSchool. $375 including the PayPal fee.  ($350 total if you mail a check)  In your e-mail order, please include your height/weight, which SCHOOL and phone number.  We will contact you immediately if rental cars are sold out (and make alternate arrangements)  Read FAQ below for a bit more info on our RENTAL CARS.

Pay for DEPOSIT FWD RENTAL CAR  by PayPal ... just click on the logo on the left pay for seat in a 5-spd FWD Rental Car for any upcoming Rally School. The rental is $295, including the PayPal fee.  ($280 total if you mail a check)  In your e-mail order, please include your height/weight, which SCHOOL and phone number.  We will contact you immediately if rental cars are sold out (and make alternate arrangements)  Read FAQ below for a bit more info on our Front Wheel Drive RENTAL CARS.
           Rent a rally school car -- see FAQ below!  


2013 Rally Driving Schools 

Click here for FULL MINI RALLY Results for the Ocotber NORCAL Rally School. Dustin/Grant/Craig were fastest ON STAGE, but racked up penalties on the transit sections dropping them to 11th of 12 cars.  Maya and Aaron won by checking into controls on time.  Click to see GRADUATION RUNS and SUNDAY RALLYCROSS

ss rank final car #
Total SS Final score SS1 SS2 Total RP service in RP serviceout RP ATC 2 RP

min sec min sec min sec min sec min sec sec sec
6 1 8 Maya / Aaron White Protege 02: 55 02: 55 01: 35 01: 20 0

8 2 5 Ulrika / Adam Green Landrover 03: 11 03: 11 01: 31 01: 40 0

9 3 7 Alejandro / Luis Green Firebird 03: 12 03: 12 01: 43 01: 29 0

7 4 9 Jake / Peter Blue Yaris 02: 58 03: 22 01: 38 01: 20 0.4 0 24
10 5 3 Cody / Tyler Gray STi 03: 51 03: 51 01: 28 02: 23 0

2 6 4 Dan / Joel White Impreza 02: 45 04: 33 01: 27 01: 18 1.8 72 24 12
5 7 6 Ryan / David Gray WRX Wag 02: 53 04: 53 01: 36 01: 17 2

11 8 10 Aaron / Joe Silver WRX 04: 09 05: 57 01: 45 02: 24 1.8 60 24 24
3 9 1 Carlos / Noah Red EVO 02: 48 06: 36 01: 23 01: 25 3.8
48 180
12 10 11 Bren / Jesse Red 240SX 05: 40 07: 28 01: 25 04: 15 1.8 96
1 11 12 Dustin/Grantr/Craig Blue WRX Wag 02: 44 12: 44 01: 30 01: 14 10 60 60 480
4 12 2 Dan/Tim/Jacob Blue Impreza OBS 02: 52 08: 28 01: 31 01: 21 5.6 300 36


Email us to be put on a mailing list to be contacted if/when a school materializes.  It would be on short notice and be near Mt Hood or Bend. OR if/when the snow hits....

 Contact me for the latest:

Driving Sports magazine article,
Learning those Primitive driving skills
by Ryan Douthit. posted July 6, 2005.

A students-eye view of the June Primitive Rally School, written by an experienced auto racing journalist.  Douthit is the publisher of SubieSport magazine, a sister publication of DrivingSports.  As explained in the article, he was one of the students in the June school.

DrivingSports has also made a video, so readers can view the school racing action from within the race car.  Viewing this exciting and informative video requires paid-up Driving Sport membership access. Click HERE to visit.


TYPICAL AGENDA --  Primitive BASIC Rally Driving School

Who:   Open to all licensed drivers, at all levels of rally and driving experience, with emphasis on BEGINNER to INTERMEDIATE  levels.  Personalized instruction is available

What:  Three days of instruction starting with about 5 hours of classroom training on Friday night     (approx 5pm-10:15pm)  with short breaks.  TSD (Time/Speed/Distance) and DRIVING exercises on Saturday with a full RallyCross  competition on Sunday.  All driving in a large, open, safe field.

When:  Friday          (4:45-10:15pm)  CLASSROOM GROUND SCHOOL (usually at my SHOP in Tigard)
                 Saturday     (7:45am-5:20pm) Driving School at  LARGE FIELD
                 Sunday        (8am-5pm)     RALLYCROSS Competition EVENT in same field

Where: Next schools are ALL over (Portland, Anchorage, Tucson, Santa Rosa)

Fee:  Early Registration is LESS if paid by check.  (MORE by paypal or CC) click links above or call

 Regular registration (typical price):    $495  

     Send checks to:  Primitive Enterprises
9460 SW Tigard ST Ste 104
Tigard, OR 97223
Phone: (503) 624-2139

Send PayPal payments to: Add $5 for PayPal/convenience fee 

Plan to bring:

  • Notebook and Pen and small CALCULATOR                    o  Old towels (feet, windshields, etc.)

  • Digital Watch or clock (TSD exercise)                              o  Helmet (Snell 2000 or later) if you have one, or we have loaners

  • Bottle of Water and a snack bar                                      o  Rain Slicker (depending on weather)

  • Shoes that can get muddy                                               o  Extra pair of socks if wet and T-shirt if hot

  • Sunscreen and sunglasses (weather permitting)          o  Some cash for lunch

  • Waterproof box or duffle to keep stuff dry while driving if raining  (tarp?)

  • Questions you have always had about driving, navigating, rally,  or car control

  • Willingness to listen and learn

Nearby hotels:
  • For TUCSON RALLY SCHOOL (TBA) likely no HQ hotel
  • For the Oct 11-13 2013 School at Sonoma County Fairgrounds there is:
  • BEST WESTERN Santa Rosa at 1500 Santa Rosa Ave  (707) 546-4031 and we will get GROUP RATE
  • or Marriot Courtyard, Santa Rosa on Railroad Ave (high end)
  • For the Spring 2014 School at Portland International Raceway (PIR)  or Gravel Quarry there is:
  • Oxford Suites -   and OTHER HQ TBA


Is there an ENTRY CAP?
Yes, we will be limiting the school to about 30 students to maintain a good student/teacher ratio and physical space limitations.  We will offer schools later in the year and ADVANCED schools when we can secure roads.

Can I bring my street car?
Yes, any safe car can be used. No raised trucks or raised SUVs please (small rollover possibility). Rally prepared cars are fine if not too loud -- we are in the city. Car will get  muddy, but not damaged. Lowered cars will probably scrape the front bumper or underside of engine bay as some ruts develop. Be warned. Flat tires most common car issue (only if too low of air pressure-keep above 25psi). We run in a large open field on GRASS, with no fixed obstacles.  It is a safe learning environment with low risk.

Can I SHARE a car?
Yes, we work with shared cars.   It works out very well.    Please let us know in advance that you will be sharing your car with another student.

I took your school before, do I get a discounted entry?
Yes, returning students now get a substantial discount off the class price.  Call or email me for details.  Registration should still be made early to guarantee a spot.

Do you offer a CO-DRIVER (navigator) School?
Yes, it is held in conjunction with the driving school and shares some of the exercises.  For a fee of $85, students sit for the Friday night classroom session and receive the comprehensive text book.  Then on Saturday they sit with 2 experienced co-drivers, and receive comprehensive navigating information and training.  They also participate in the infamous "lunch TSD" for some real-life experience.

Can I RENT a car?
Yes, there are a rental cars available for the  school:  (note you will likely be sharing this car with another student during the day)  The price is PER PERSON.

All-Wheel Drive Rental Cars - $365 (Includes Gas and Cleaning) DOES NOT INCLUDE SCHOOL FEE!

All-Wheel Drive Rental Cars -NORCAL - $400 (Includes Gas and Cleaning) DOES NOT INCLUDE SCHOOL FEE!

Front-Wheel Drive Rental Cars - $295 (Includes Gas and Cleaning) DOES NOT INCLUDE SCHOOL FEE!

Call Paul (503-624-2139) to reserve.  YOU MUST CALL EARLY TO RESERVE A RENTAL CAR!!   Our rentals are Great for those flying into town for the school. Please note: some cars are under subcontract with local racers and may have specific restrictions for use.  Price includes the one paid session for the Sunday competition, if you plan to run a "time only" extra session, arrangements must be made in advance with the car owner.  Cars are to remain at the school overnight and cannot be used for personal transportation.

If I bring my (driver/co-driver) do we get a discounted price?
Yes!    If you and your buddy (co-driver, etc) sign up for the full 3 day school you will get a $40 total discount to share between you both.  But those wishing to just attend the Friday classroom session and get the valuable manual and information and the sit through a comprehensive Co-driving class or simply watch during  the DRIVING day will get a $10 discount off the  Co-Driver school price.  We will also set you up with a seasoned co-driving instructor to answer navigator specific questions.  Friends and family are welcome to come WATCH  on the DRIVING DAY.  They must sign the insurance waiver though. 

I don't plan to do stage rally, is this still for me?
Yes, although we will go over a broad spectrum of rally topics, we will always get back to "controlling a car at speed on slippery surfaces."  I plan for this school to be enjoyed by driving enthusiasts, autocrossers, rally fanatics, new drivers, and Club Rallyists (new and experienced).  I can put in contact with former students if you want a customer opinion.  But everyone seems to leave with a BIG GRIN and increased driving skills.

Does this school help me towards a Rally License?
Yes, we get 2 coefficients from RA (you need 18 coefficient points for an unrestricted Rally America Stage Rally license.

Do I need to be a member of a car club to enter?
No, this school is open to anyone. Advanced schools may be limited to SCCA, RA, or NASA members in the future. We do hope to do an advanced school soon and private lessons are available on request.

I am only 16 years old, can I attend? 
Yes, but all students must have a valid driver's license, current car insurance, and those under the age of 18 must have a MINOR WAIVER signed by both parents (or guardians) in advance of the school.

Do I have to bring a helmet?
No, we will have loaner helmets available, but if you have your own (SA2000+ or M rated) helmet you are welcome to bring and use it.  We don't want you to lose any seat time waiting for a loaner helmet.  I offer a good deal for students wishing to ORDER their own  a helmet in advance. I can deliver a white or black, open face PYROTECT SA2010 helmet  for $178 to any student. (msrp is $199)   Order at least 2 weeks ahead of class to insure it arrives before the school.  Also available in Gloss Black or Flat Black if you order ahead.  Sizes = S, M, L, XL, XXL, and XXXL   Medium = 7 1/8" to 7 1/4" hat size.   Call if you have questions.  

I have rally experience, but am looking to get more, should I come?
It depends. Email me at: and we can discuss best alternatives, or call 503-624-2139. Primitive Performance Driving plans to put on Advanced schools later in the year, but that is still tentative.

Are there nearby hotels?
Yes, contact us for the list

IS there MASS TRANSIT to the Site and Hotel?

YES!  MAX light rail runs from the PDX Airport to PIR  when schools are there (1.4 hr ride for ~$2.50).  

Will lunch be provided?
No, you will be directed to a restaurant as part of the MINI RALLY Lunch exercise on Saturday, but you do not have to eat there. Several other places are within a .5 mile of that spot.

Friday night seems like a long time in the classroom (4:45pm- 10:15pm), will we get a break?
Yes, there will be 2 short breaks, but plan to bring a snack.  I will be offering a PIZZA DINNER option ($6) for Pizza, soft drinks and salad. (PDX school)   Other dinner options available from Marriott at Norcal School

Does my school entry cover my entry fee for the Sunday RallyCross event?
Yes. It covers your school, printed materials, goodie bag, personal instruction and seat time, and entry for Sunday's event. It does not include meals, snacks, or a car. 

What about tires, do I do anything special?
Make sure that your tires have 30-40psi and good tread.  Clean out loose items from inside your car and trunk, and be sure that your battery is securely held down into place.  Why not check the oil level and coolant while you are at it ...  Rally-type tires are not needed, nor even recommended.  You will learn the most on street tires.

What about refunds?     Your entry is completely refundable up until 3 weeks before the event and if the event gets cancelled or postponed.  Try to give us as much notice as possible and we will work to do the same.  If you do have to cancel within that last week, contact me to work out a refund plan (move to next event or refund less a processing fee, etc)  I will work with you.

What else should I bring?
Pen, small calculator, sense of adventure, extra shoes/socks, hat/sunscreen, rain slicker, snack, water bottle, sunglasses, digital watch, umbrella, rag or towel, possibly a clipboard, tarp or EZ up.  We will OFTEN have Black Sun Racing Services present to provide air for free and sell, tire services, minor repairs, car supplies and water, soda, snacks and all important hot coffee in the morning and cold Red Bull and Gatorade in the afternoon at...

Can I get a cool PRIMITIVE RALLY TEAM T-Shirt? 
 Sure!  We have T-Shirts available at registration for $15 or you can pre-order when you sign up.  We also have a special deal on the nice, Subaru EXTREME WEATHER emergency kit for your car.  $42 for students.

Agenda: Basic Rally School


Welcome and goal setting -  Terms and Glossary -  Why Navigating is Important- Car prep and safety basics -  Rally Driving Basics - 

Driver's Topics Navigator's Topics
Launches and Mental Preparation to RACE
Braking and Turning, LINES and APEX
Difficult Situations (downhill, too fast, etc)
Recovering the car
Crashing Gracefully
Control Operations
Route Book &  Notes
Controlling the Car/Driver
Calling Instructions
After a Crash

Driving Techniques -  Preparing to win -  Questions and Answers

Advanced Breakout (optional)  (10:15pm to whenever...) at a nearby pub (afterwards) Topics include BENCH RACING & 
IF the instructor is not dead tired:
Red Cross use          Advanced Setup  
Team Issues             Driving beyond the edge

Saturday Driving Exercises
Hand Positioning, is yours appropriate?
Finding an apex and the driving line, then FOLLOWING it
One-on-one rally driving instruction with seasoned instructors
Skidpad and finding limits of adhesion
Trail braking practice and performing the Scandinavian flick
Judging distance to objects and learning to turn early
Hard braking and humility of understeer, learning to UNSTEER the wheel.
Hitting an apex repeatedly and dealing with changing conditions
Graduation course runs (find out how you stack up against students and instructors)

Saturday TSD and STAGE RALLY Practice
Finding the route
Following the route
Basic calculations
What to do at a checkpoint
Teamwork under pressure (more important than you think)
Making ZEROS (i.e. a PERFECT SCORE at a checkpoint)

Sunday RallyCross Competition
Car preparation, Personal Preparation (and dealing with the jitters)
Planning for victory; and living with best efforts
Recovering from setbacks, and making improvements
Dealing with the Pressure
Dealing with Tire Pressures
Course Teardown and Helping Out

Driving Instructors:
Paul Eklund:  long-time rallyist and both Rally and AutoCross National Champion
Jamie "Subiegal" Thomas:  accomplished Subaru driver and enthusiast, recently featured in HotRod and SubieSport magazines
Gary Cavett:  Quick rally driver, rarely puts a wheel off-line.  Knows the pendulum turn and just won the Doo Wop Rallies
Todd Lengacher:  Audi pilot and long time rallyist in both RWD and AWD, not afraid to toss the car
Andy Howe:  Subaru owner, rallycross experience and teaches autocross--good technical driving knowledge
Derek Bottles: Front Wheel Drive expert and scary fast driver
Barrett Dash:  Solid AWD rallyist with good driving technique, easygoing and patient
Scott Kovalik:  The love of the sport shines in Scott and becoming top level RallyCross driver.
Ben Trujillo:  Natural driving talent and rally enthusiast, great for rally novices (Idaho)
Jeff Zurschmeide:
  Long-time motorsports enthusiast, participant and racing school instructor
Doug Heredos: Rear wheel drive instructor, great with new students
Steve Carper: Former Primitive student, now teaching what he has learned
Jon Burke: Northern California RallyCross enthusiast and organizer
Carl Jardevall: "the man" when it comes to rally driving and EVO's (nor cal)
Russ Baker: "quiet and thoughtful" but great teacher and drives the heck out of a car
Brent Blakely:  National Level competitor and keen to share his wealth of RallyCross knowledge.
Rebecca Ruston: Easy to work with, keen eye to helping student identify problem areas
Blake Lind: Quiet, but exacting and helps extract the maximum of speed, great technical knowledge
Steve Perret: Calm and patient, he can coax speed from all levels of drivers

Navigator Instructors and Observers:
Kathryn Hansen:
  hardest working navigator in the USA with HUGE amounts of experience
Ben Bradley:  the center of the rally universe.  He knows almost everything and everybody in rallying 
Scott Huhn:  a true co-driver, with great natural ability on course notes and keeping a team on the road, car prep too

We will also have a half dozen plus helpers working behind the scenes to make sure the day goes well:
 Jeff Price, Steve Greer, Steve Perret and Shadd Foster and more...