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Detailed Course Guide

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Before Takeoff

This step is just as important as all of the others, so don’t forget it! If you do, you are bound to fail. Take this time to calm yourself and mentally prepare.

  • Check the front of the car and underneath.
  • Walk around to the back and check it and underneath.
  • Stop and look both ways before going to the door to check for traffic.
  • Check again for cars before opening the door.
  • Open the door and sit down inside the car.
  • Slowly close the door till it is about 10cm to shutting. Then give it a good tug closed.
  • Hand your paperwork and the yellow receipt that you got from paying the course use fee to your proctor. You should be polite and say something along the following lines:
    • DOUZO YOROSHIKU ONEGAISHIMASU – どうぞよろしくお願いします
    • DOUZO YOROSHIKU ONEGAIITASHIMASU – どうぞよろしくお願いいたします
  • Put your left hand on the wheel and use the adjustor under the seat to find a comfortable position. You may also use the lever on the side if the back is not comfortable. Check to see that your foot is at a comfortable position on the break and gas. Your left foot should be on the plastic rest to the left of the pedals.
  • Put the seatbelt on, ensuring there are no twists, and then pull it tight.
  • Check and adjust the mirror.
  • Check to make sure the car is in park and the break is on.
  • Turn on the vehicle.
  • Look in the rearview mirror and turn on the right blinker.
  • Check the rearview again and put the car in drive then release the hand brake.
  • Do the MAKIKOMI check—look in the rearview mirror, left side-mirror, over the left shoulder, the right side-mirror, and over the right shoulder.
  • Once it becomes clear you may begin.


The Beginning

Each course is the same till after the first turn. This section outlines that and then the following sections will go over the differences in the A, B, and C courses.

  • Pull slowly out of the parking area, slow down and look in your right mirror and over your right shoulder. Then slowly merge onto the course making in a nice curve without going into the inside lane.
  • Drive at a relatively slow speed around the corner and then approach the speed limit in the straightaway.
  • Just before the crosswalk pump your breaks and check for pedestrians on either side of the crossing.
  • Go 25km or less around the curve—DO NOT BRAKE DURING ANY OF THE CURVES.
  • Once out of the curve immediately speed up to 50km with one stroke of the gas pedal.
  • Once you pass the second lamppost pump your breaks 3 times to return to the speed limit. Counting 1, 2, 3 out loud.
    • First a strong hit to get the car to start slowing down.
    • Second a gentler slow pump to get the car close to the speed limit.
    • Third an easy pump to return to the limit.
  • Check your rear view mirror and turn on your right blinker.
  • Pass through the curve without breaking or going too fast.
  • As you straighten out from the curve check your right mirror and over your shoulder. You should have a perfect view of both lanes when you check them. Be sure you switch lanes after the diamonds! Use the top left side of the second diamond to guide your car to the inside lane.
  • After you switch lanes be sure to move as close to the right side as possible.
  • After your blinker switches off from the lane turn immediately turn it back on, looking into the rearview mirror first.
  • Make sure to check and proceed slowly through the crosswalk.
  • This is a blind corner so approach slowly, checking for oncoming traffic from ahead and turning traffic from the right.
  • Use the first line gap in the center of the road to guide the vehicle through the right turn.


Course A

CourseA.jpg

  • When making the turn be sure to leave enough room for a cyclist on your left side.
  • Look in rearview mirror and signal left.
  • Look in left mirror and over left shoulder and move closer to the white line on your left. There should be very little space.
  • At the second S-curve brake and look in mirror and out window again (2nd check). Then slowly proceed into the S-curve. You should basically coast into it.
  • At about the midway point of the S-curve turn on your left blinker.
  • There is not a stop sign at the end of this curve, so a complete 3-second stop is unnecessary and can hurt your score. Coast toward the intersection, a quick stop is fine, and check it. Then proceed with the left turn if it is safe.
  • Turning on your left signal check your rearview mirror, left side-mirror, the left window, and the exit of the first S-curve. If they are all clear move to the left.
  • Come to a complete stop at the stop sign for 3-seconds. 1-1,000; 2-1,000; 3-1,000
  • Before turning do the 4-point check—look in left mirror, left shoulder/window right mirror and then the street. Slowly turn hugging the curve on the left.
  • Accelerate and drive straight. Slow down just before the crosswalk, being sure to pump your brakes a bit and check the crosswalk.
  • After the curve speed up a little, look in rearview mirror and put on your left blinker. Check the roads between the curve and your turn for oncoming traffic.
  • Look in left mirror and over left shoulder and then move over to the left. Check for oncoming traffic that is turning.
  • Just before the intersection check again by looking in the left mirror and out your left window.
  • Turning left, getting into the right lane as close to the center as you can.
  • Wait for the light to turn and then look right, left, right.
  • Turn onto the street staying on the left side and immediately look in rearview and turn on the left blinker.
  • Look in left mirror and over left shoulder, and then slowly turn into the crank.
  • Take the crank slowly keeping to the left, then right side. Do not hit the poles. After completing your first turn put on the right blinker signal.
  • Pull straight out and right after your wheels hit the line in the farthest lane cut them and complete the turn.
  • Drive for about 2 seconds and then look in your rearview mirror and turn on your right blinker.
  • Check in your right mirror and over your right shoulder and then switch lanes. You should check over your shoulder when you have a good view out of the window of the entire 2 lanes.
  • Go slowly around the curve staying to the right side.
  • Turn on your right blinker, slowing down; check the road on your right and ahead for oncoming traffic. Again use the first gap in the centerline to guide your car through the turn.
  • Drive through the intersection, slowly braking if you need to stop at the light. If not keep going and begin braking when you approach the turn lane.
  • Before reaching the turn lane, look in the rearview mirror and switch on your blinker
  • Look in right mirror, over the shoulder, and to the S-curves then slowly move into the turn lane, staying to the right side.
  • At this point, VERY SLOWLY coast forward checking right, left, right then inching ahead. To your left, the farthest diamond should become visible once you get the car’s nose into the intersection. If you can see that and there is no oncoming traffic, you are good to pull out.
  • Pull out into the road using the rightmost gap in the centerline to guide your car into the leftmost lane. Stay to the left once you enter.

Course B

CourseB.jpg

  • When making the turn be sure to leave enough room for a cyclist on your left side.
  • Look in rearview mirror and signal left.
  • Look in left mirror and over left shoulder and move closer to the white line on your left. There should be very little space.
  • At the second S-curve brake and look in mirror and out window again (2nd check). Then slowly proceed into the S-curve. You should basically coast into it.
  • At about the midway point of the S-curve turn on your left blinker.
  • There is not a stop sign at the end of this curve, so a complete 3-second stop is unnecessary and can hurt your score. Coast toward the intersection, a quick stop is fine, and check it. Then proceed with your left turn if it is safe.
  • Turning on your left signal check your rearview mirror, left side-mirror, over the shoulder, and the exit of the first S-curve. If they are all clear move to the left.
  • Come to a complete stop at the stop sign for 3-seconds. 1-1,000; 2-1,000; 3-1,000
  • Before turning do the 4-point check—look in left mirror, left shoulder/window right mirror and then the street. Slowly turn hugging the curve on the left.
  • Accelerate and drive straight. Slow down just before the crosswalk and keep the speed through the curve.
  • After the curve speed up a little, look in rearview mirror and put on your left blinker just as you pass the darker patch of asphalt/#9 sign after the large intersection. All the while, you should be checking for turning traffic from the oncoming lanes to your right and for turning traffic on your left.
  • Look in left mirror and over left shoulder and then move over to the left before the next curve.
  • Slow down a lot before taking this curve and then slowly go around it WITHOUT BRAKING. There is a crosswalk before the turn that you must check.
  • Immediately switch on your left blinker and be sure to stay close to the left
  • At the intersection, check in front of you, in your left mirror, over your left shoulder, and along the road. Then slowly turn onto the street, keeping left.
  • Drive straight, slowing down and putting on your right blinker as you approach the turn lane for the crank.
  • Look in your right mirror and over your right shoulder and then move into the right turn lane, keeping close to the right.
  • Look in your right mirror and over your right shoulder and then slowly pull into the crank.
  • Take the crank slowly keeping to the left, then right side. Do not hit the poles. After completing your first turn put on the left blinker. As you finish the crank straighten up your wheel and then check right, left, right and then make a VERY tight left turn
  • Immediately put on your left blinker, checking the left mirror, left window and street ahead of you. Drive straight and cut your wheels at the last minute to turn into the right lane.
  • Check right, left, right, and proceed through the intersection, stopping if necessary.
  • Before reaching the turn lane, look in the rearview mirror and switch on your blinker
  • Look in right mirror, over the shoulder, and to the S-curves then slowly move into the turn lane, staying to the right side.
  • At this point, VERY SLOWLY coast forward checking right, left, right then inching forward. To your left the farthest diamond should be visible once you get the car’s nose into the intersection. If you can see that and there is no oncoming traffic, you are good to pull out.
  • Pull out into the road using the rightmost gap in the centerline to guide your car into the left lane. Stay to the left once you enter.


Course C

CourseC.jpg

  • When making the turn be sure to pull in to the left side as close as you can to begin. (Unlike the other courses) Keep your signal on.
  • Look in left mirror and over left shoulder and proceed into the first S-curve.
  • Turn on your right signal midway through the curve and then when you get to the end, without pulling out too far or coming to a complete 3-second stop, check right, left, right.
  • Pull out onto the road, turning right, staying close to the inside of the left lane.
  • Proceed to the stop sign.
  • Stop for three full seconds and then check right, left, right.
  • Drive straight and make a very sharp right turn into the far left lane landing as close and straight to the solid left line as possible. Stop at the light if necessary.
  • Immediately look in rearview mirror and signal left. Do a right, left, right check, followed by a check of the rearview, left side-mirror, and left window before making the left turn.
  • Slowly turn left, hugging the curve.
  • Look in the rearview mirror and put the left blinker back on.
  • Look in the left side-mirror and over the left shoulder and pull into the crank.
  • Take the crank slowly keeping to the left, then right side. Do not hit the poles. After completing your first turn put on the right blinker signal.
  • Pull straight out and right after your wheels hit the line in the farthest lane cut them and complete the turn.
  • Drive for about 2 seconds and then look in your rearview mirror and turn on your right blinker.
  • Check in your right mirror and over your right shoulder and then switch lanes. You should check over your shoulder when you have a good view of the entire 2 lanes.
  • Turn on your right blinker, slowing down; check the road on your right and ahead for oncoming traffic. Again use the first gap in the centerline to guide your car through the turn.
  • Switch on the left blinker, look in left mirror and over left shoulder and move left when you reach the #10 road sign.
  • At the light check right, left, right. Then your rearview mirror, left side-mirror, and left window should be checked. After slowly make the left turn cutting the wheel when you get closer to the centerline.
  • Driving straight, check rearview mirror and signal right, continuing until you get to the end of the road and then slow down and check right, left, right. Then turn right into the outer circle road’s leftmost lane.
  • Slow down a little before the curve and then drive straight. Checking the crosswalk, slow down again before the last curve.


The End

This details the part from the last curve to pulling into the parking place and exiting the car.

  • Go slowly through the last curve, without braking, then when you reach the disabled-vehicle look in your rearview mirror and put on your left blinker.
  • Check your left mirror and left shoulder and move to the left.
  • Drive until just before the turn for the parking area and then check your left mirror and out your left window again.
  • Make the curve steering clear of the white line and put on your left blinker.
  • Be sure to keep close to the white line as you drive into the parking spot (~10cm).
  • Park the car close to the white line and stop right at the pole. The pole should be between the end of the passenger-side wiper blade and the frame of the vehicle.
  • Put the car into park and put on the emergency brake.
  • Turn off the blinker.
  • Turn off the car.
  • Thank your instructor and give a deep bow.
  • Slowly take off your seatbelt.
  • Check the mirror before you open the door. Then open it a little while looking behind the car and if it is safe you can exit.
  • Get out and slowly close the door, shutting it when it is about 10cm from being closed.

Mistakes

These are some common things that are going to cost you points.

  • Not using a blinker signal
  • Not properly checking your mirrors
  • Not stopping properly at a stop sign
  • Making a proper stop where there isn’t a stop sign
  • Blowing through crosswalks
  • Hitting the poles through the crank (Max. 3)
  • Falling off the course
    • This won’t automatically disqualify you, but you must immediately correct the issue. If your tire loses contact with the edge of the course then you will be disqualified.
  • Breaking through the curves
  • Checking your mirrors too much (AKA Not paying attention to the road)
  • Going too fast
  • Going too slow