FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
We follow the CDC’s latest guidelines. Should you test positive for Covid within 5 days of your scheduled program, please do not attend class. Call us and we will work to reschedule you. Please find our cancellation/rescheduling policy here, and call us with any additional questions. The health of our staff and students is our absolute priority, so thank you for doing your part in keeping us all safe and healthy!
Absolutely! While we often coach professional drivers of every conceivable background, we love working with drivers with limited experience just as much. Our professional instructors adapt their teaching to the needs of each student, so each person receives just the right amount of encouragement and support to get the most from our cars in their program.
In short, as fast as possible… But honestly, the biggest factor that determines speed is the amount of traction that’s available (you can only go as fast as physics will allow…). It’s our goal to teach the tools that will allow you to get the most out of a rally car; the rest is usually up to the weather.
Our instructors are well-trained to help you stay at a level that is comfortable (without being too comfortable!), and you will never be pushed beyond what’s safe for you and the others in the class. In fact, we like to say that you’ll get “comfortable being slightly uncomfortable.” If you’re ever too uncomfortable doing something the instructors are asking you to do, just say so. Besides, they’re riding with you- that’s motivation enough not to push beyond your limits!
You will always have an instructor in the car with you. Depending on the program, you may work with multiple instructors, allowing you to learn from different teachers with different voices. Having an instructor ride with you is critical because they can see and feel what you’re doing, and give instant guidance and feedback in real-time.
First of all, lots of driving! Our courses are designed to familiarize students of every driving background with the awesome experience of driving a proper rally car on gravel. We’ll start with a short classroom session before putting you in the car, then you’ll start the driving day with basic exercises and quickly progress from there. The longer the program, the more we can teach you! Each class provides a final course where all of your newly-learned driving tools can be put to the test. Our Half Day program even includes a Hot Lap with your instructor driving to show what’s possible with the car on a more challenging course.
We’re firm believers in learning by doing, so our primary classroom takes place behind the wheel. However, there is a lot to learn in this environment, so an understanding of what the car is going to do before trying it is invaluable. Expect to attend a brief classroom session before each driving block in which an instructor will explain the techniques and schedule for the driving portion to follow. And don’t worry; while we pride ourselves on our technical knowledge, it won’t be a dry speech about friction coefficients and dirt molecules. It is practical information with the goal of developing a better understanding of what is happening when you’re behind the wheel.
Perfect! Rally is all about adapting to varying conditions, and our facility is set up to handle them all – from hot and sunny to cold and raining, and can even handle snow. In fact, because the conditions will change how you drive, some drivers will want to experience a course in the summer, and then again in the winter.
We cap our standard programs at 10 students, with one instructor in every car and one instructor outside of the cars at all times. We can adjust this number depending on corporate and special program needs.
Your car will be shared with another student, allowing for time outside the car to take a breath, talk about what you just did, plan your next session, and most importantly, watch rally cars slide around. Nothing cooler than that! You will also be able to compare notes and learn from the other students. All standard programs have a 2 to 1 ratio – two students share one vehicle.
Damage to our vehicles does occasionally happen, however our instructors work hard to keep that to a minimum. All of our standard programs come with crash damage insurance included, so you will not be liable for any crash damage, unless we deem your actions to be outside the realm of normal training.
Yes, but it must be a competition-prepared car and you must be registered for a private class. Our cars are specially prepared for what you’ll be doing, so there’s no need to bring your own. Exceptions can be made, but again, only during a privately instructed course. Please call with any additional questions.
We provide lunch as part of our 1-Day, 2-Day, 3-Day and private Programs, and snacks and refreshments are available during all of our Experiences. You will be able to pick your meal from a menu created by our local partner, Infusion Bar & Grill. However, feel free to bring your own snacks and drinks if you’d like. If you have any special dietary requirements, please inform us well in advance of your scheduled class. We can also provide lunch for family members staying with you during your multi-day course at $15.00 each. Just let the representative at the front desk know on the morning of your class!
Students must be at least 16 years old or have a valid license. For any students under the age of 18, we require a minor waiver be signed on site by the parent or guardian of the student before being allowed to take part in the program.
Not particularly! You must be in good physical health and have a valid license. Other than that, there are no other prerequisites. Please see above for requirements for minors.
We are typically open 7 days a week with a variety of classes being offered during the week. Please take a look at our Driving Programs page for class dates and availability.
Absolutely! Just give us a call or purchase here. Gift certificates can be purchased for the value of a class or for a specific monetary value.
We always suggest wearing clothes that you’re okay with getting dirty. Other than that, wear clothes that are comfortable for both driving and standing in all sorts of weather– layers, sunglasses, warm jacket, boots… we never know what the weather will do! We also recommend wearing a shoe that is good for driving, such as a tennis shoe or better yet, driving shoes (something sturdy for wet weather but not too clunky to fit on the pedals). We provide a helmet for you to wear, and there won’t be a need for any additional racing safety equipment. We also have changing rooms with lockers and showers should you need to refresh before your next destination.
Our Half Day course begins with approximately 30 minutes in the classroom and around 3.5 hours down on the course. Up to 10 students are split into 5 vehicles. Our One Day Rally Fundamentals and Three Day Programs are formatted similarly; we schedule less than an hour for classroom time per day (split into a morning and afternoon session) and one hour for lunch (provided) per day. The rest of the time is behind the wheel or debriefing with the instructors!
We have one automatic BRZ available for customers with disabilities. Other than that all DirtFish cars are manual.
Yes! DirtFish allows one guest per student for One Day Programs and beyond. Unfortunately we do not allow spectators during Half Day Programs due to time restraints. This may change due to certain restrictions. They will be required to sign a Waiver/Release, and are able to watch from our designated spectator areas. Please give us a call for optimal arrival times.
Yes we do! We can provide new product launches, employee incentive events and more! Give our Sales Director, Adam, a call at 1-866-285-1332 to create the perfect experience for your crew. We offer five-star catering, co-branded retail, a fully prepared PlaySeat Simulator Lounge – even a landing pad for helicopters that could be included in your package!
We have partnered with several hotels and AirBnb’s that kindly offer a discount to participants in our program! Check out our “Lodging Partners” tab. Upon registration, we will also send you a confirmation package that includes that list, as well as our cancellation and reschedule policy, restaurant recommendations and even a rental car discount! Click here to view our recommended accommodations.
Lots! We’re fortunate to be only 40 minutes from downtown Seattle, where you can visit the Space Needle, Pike Place Market, and everything else our amazing city has to offer. We’re about 20 minutes from Bellevue Square’s world-class shopping, 35 minutes from Pacific Raceways (where you can make your trip here the ultimate driving experience by driving a car on a road racing circuit), 20 minutes from Snoqualmie Pass ski resorts, 10 minutes from all sorts of hiking trails, 5 minutes from the Snoqualmie Casino, minutes from numerous PGA golf courses, and just 5 minutes from being pampered at the Salish Lodge Resort. If none of those activities suit your style, give us a call and we’ll be happy to help find what you’re looking for.
It’s no secret that rally is a male-dominated sport, but we’re working hard to change that. In an average mixed-gender class, one student in ten is female. In our effort to even this gap, we run All-Women’s classes throughout the year, which you can learn more about here, and will host our annual DirtFish Women’s Month each March. We encourage everyone to get behind the wheel, and are committed to making the sport as accessible and equal as possible.
All-Wheel Drive cars have more traction (naturally) and can therefore attain higher speeds in a shorter space, but require very precise driving to extract the most potential from them. Rear-Wheel Drive is an equally fun challenge, requiring a lot of throttle control and very smooth inputs. It’s incredibly exhilarating, and the ability to successfully handle a Rear-Wheel Drive car through slippery rally conditions is quite rewarding. Both are inexplicably fun, and will increase your driving ability and car control beyond what’s possible on a track.