How Did You Research Your Racing Safety Gear?

Illustration for article titled How Did You Research Your Racing Safety Gear?

Photo: Brian Lawdermilk (Getty Images)

My husband and I were cruising through a part of town we haven’t been to in over a year to check out the new developments out there, and I have to say—I was stunned. Right there, after weeks of me hemming and hawing over where I’m going to go shopping for a helmet, was a Simpson retailer.

I thought about stopping in, but my husband had quite literally just received his second vaccine and wasn’t in the mood for browsing, so we left it as is. And that’s probably for the best, because I have no idea what I want to buy.

See, I’ve been meaning to buy my own helmet for ages. I don’t do any hardcore racing, so I don’t need anything intense, but it would be nice to have something for track days, press trips, and karting events because this whole pandemic thing has only exacerbated my disdain for using publicly-shared helmets and head socks.

And, if I’m honest, I’ve been dying to actually race something at an amateur event. My husband and I have a friend who’s fairly competitive at his local short track, and he keeps offering to serve as our mechanic for a race, if only we were to get out there to, y’know, compete. I just need to get my shit in line first and get the whole firesuit and gloves thing sorted out.

I just have no idea where to start—and I’m sure there are quite a few of you fine folks at Jalopnik who do. When you started buying race gear, what research did you do? How did you decide on brands? How did you comparison shop? What did you look for, and what did you realize you got wrong only after having bought something? I want to know all your tips and tricks!

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