Nicole Drought gives us tips in advance of this week's expected Beast from the East
Here are Tipperary race driver Nicole Drought's ten tips for driving on snow or ice.
1. If you know there is bad weather coming, check your tyre conditions and make sure the pressures are correct - most tyre centres will do this free of charge. Also ensure you have enough windscreen washer fluid and have an additive too to stop it freezing.
2. Unless you need to drive- don't. This might sound simple, but too often these days we take our cars for granted and just jump in.
3. Leave more time than you usually would for your trip. Allow time for warming the car, de icing, windows clearing etc. Added to this you will be driving more slowly than normal, so leave in plenty of time.
4. Do not turn on your wipers on until your windscreen has defrosted. This can damage wiper blades, requiring them to be replaced immediately.
5. Use the pedals as if you are treading on eggshells - no hard application of power or brakes.
6. Use low revs and change up as early as possible.
7. Increase the distance between you and the car in front as much as possible - at least three times the gap and preferably more.
8. Try to anticipate hills by leaving a large gap when climbing and avoid charging gear while doing do.
9. When coming downhill, use a low gear to slow the car and avoid using the brakes unless you have to.
10. Brake before a corner - not during - you can only ask so much of your front tyres. If the car does begin to skid, steer into the skid. This means keep steering in the direction you want to you travel.
About Nicole Drought:
Nicole Drought, 23, from Roscrea in Tipperary, is Ireland's top female racing driver. In 2016, she became the first woman to win in the Irish Touring Car Championship, taking victory in the Production Class in her Honda Integra. She has subsequently raced in Global GT Lights, Stryker Sportscars, Fiesta Zetecs and Formula Vee. Nicole is a Nissan Generation Next Ambassador, and also the only Irish Ambassador for the International Sean Edwards Foundation, with whom she tested a Porsche GT3 Supercup in Le Castellet in 2016. Nicole is also a member of the Murphy Prototypes Young Driver programme and regularly visits their Dublin base for simulator work.
In 2017 graduated from the University of Limerick with an Honours degree in Business and Accounting.