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    I'm so I'm an awful driver
    I've had 38 lessons and they're needed
    It has taken me so long to build my confidence up and only over the last 4 weeks or so have I felt like I can give this test my best shot, feeling ready

    And then on Wednesday 21st lesson my confidence hit rock bottom

    Along a dual carriageway I had a lorry right up close making me uneasy
    I then had red lights so changed down the gears and bought one up too quick and stalled
    lorry driver emergency stopped as did several cars behind
    I then panicked and was shaking meanwhile lorry driver sits there happily tooting away
    after 5 minutes or so I move off and go round a roundabout take a left turn and pull up
    cry my eyes out for a solid 10 minutes
    SO embarrassing in front of my instructor
    I try to carry on but I just can't and he takes me home with a mix of anger fear anxiety

    I'm now at Sunday and couldn't dread Wednesdays lesson more. My test is on the 5th February and I don't think I can do it
    I keep on having flash backs and feel like I'm starting all over again I am so nervous

    Some of you may say talk to your instructor
    he said its your decision
    but I don't know I need advice

    The local centre for tests has a 4 month wait which is June AKA exams
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    Brakes are for slowing, gears are for going. Changing down gears in response to a red light was catastrophic and you paid dearly. Only go near the gearstick when you've reached the minimum speed.

    It's like the toddler who burns herself on the oven for the first time. It's a horrible experience but it's something - that evolutionary instinct - that prevents you from making the same mistake again.

    No matter how bad you felt after the incident, or for how long, it's all over now. Chalk it up to experience and brush it off. Tomorrow is a new day. Your instinct should now keep you away from that gearstick until it's time to pick up speed.
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    Thanks for your reply

    So I won't touch the stick until I've really slowed down
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    B u m p
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    (Original post by Advisor)
    Brakes are for slowing, gears are for going.
    Are you serious? Ever heard of engine braking?

    Here's some better advice, only ever downshift sequentially, so if you're in 5th downshift to 4th to 3rd to 2nd to 1st. If you only ever do this then you can't possibly make that mistake again and it's good practice to not just rely on the brakes to stop the car.
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    (Original post by XZX)
    Are you serious? Ever heard of engine braking?
    Yes, I am serious, and yes I have heard of engine braking. Engine braking is very useful indeed, which is why coasting is discouraged. This engine assistance, however, should only be used in an existing gear.

    You certainly don't change down through every single gear every time you stop. Doing that means only one hand is on the gearstick for the majority of the braking, rather where it should be at that time; on the wheel. Sequential downshifting is something that was taught before the 1970s, before the days of brake servo assistance, and when drum brakes were prevalent on a lot of cars and were quite ineffective. Somebody of your grandad's generation were taught to shift down to assist the limited action brakes (which you virtually had to stand your whole weight on at times), but in modern vehicles this is totally unnecessary, and - in terms of steering control - counter-productive. Ask any driving instructor.

    Here's some better advice, only ever downshift sequentially, so if you're in 5th downshift to 4th to 3rd to 2nd to 1st. If you only ever do this then you can't possibly make that mistake again and it's good practice to not just rely on the brakes to stop the car.
    Drive like that, and you're going to cause a hell of a lot of wear to the clutch and transmission unnecessarily. Modern brakes are designed to cope with the brute force of stopping nowadays, and with very little muscle effort from the driver. Brake pads are very cheap to replace, compared with the cost of a replacement clutch.

    Besides, sequential changing won't necessarily help the OP. Although it's not quite clear what gear she actually selected, if she downshifts from 5th to 4th but fluffs it and hits 2nd, this will cause exactly the problem that scared her so much. Similarly if she goes from 4th to 3rd and hits 1st.

    Like any modern day driving instructor will teach you, brakes are for slowing, gears are for going.
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    Thanks for both your time but an instructor posted on my profile and said Advisor is right here
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    That lorry driver was a ******** and shouldn't be driving like that. Sitting on a learner's tail is always a stupid thing to do, never mind inconsiderate and cruel. Probably committing an offence too.

    I'm glad he had to do an emergency stop. Who can he tell? Nobody that'll give him any sympathy.

    To then blare his horn says more about him than you. If he had been driving properly and maintaining a safe distance, he would have been able to drive round you when you were stationary. And using the horn that way is an offence.

    No wonder you were in tears - a reasonable reaction to such unreasonable behaviour.

    You were just really unlucky getting that ratbag on that day.

    Keep practising to get your confidence up.
 
 
 
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