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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
While insurance companies make money and TV production companies and marketing companies do so only because the sanctioning body decides to hire them, clearly the biggest winners in the rally benefit sweepstakes are Mitsubishi and Subaru.

Like a dying man on life support, Mitsubishi has huge problems and probably has no idea the US rally community is doing them a favor.

We have built a rally system that is designed to support one car company. If I was the boss at Subaru USA I would tell my guys not to spend a dime in rally. Why should they? They already dominate the series and win almost all of the races. Why should they invest? Charity? Business doesn't work that way. As long as the classes stay the same they will dominate the sport regardless of their input.

Look at what they spent with Prodrive when they were fighting it out with Mitsubishi and Hyundai. Look at what they are spending now. There is no reason to invest once the competition left.

One thing I learned working in World Challenge. Car companies will get involved to some degree if they feel they can compete for overall wins. If they can't they won't show up. We have effectively barred 12 or 13 car companies from competing in our series because we continue to focus our attention on 4wd cars and one company.

Look at Mazda and Dodge. They were brave enough to stick a foot in the water but really carried it no farther. Why? I don't know, but I am willing to bet that if Doug or Eric had been able to score some overall wins they would have been much more excited.

I have heard the answer to this. "Let's build a 2wd class and give it the same focus as the 4wd." Unfortunately, it won't work in this country. Just because we emphasize it doesn't mean the press will care. They won't. It's hard enough for us to publicize the overall winner of an event let alone the guy who won some sub class. If you run multiple classes of cars at the same time the press will only care about the overall winner. That's the way it was in IMSA, Grand Am, and with every other series that has tried it.

Who won the 24 hours of Daytona last year? Suntrust, Taylor and Max.

Who won the GT class? Uh........

Hell the only reason I know who won the GT class THIS year (1 month ago) is because I happen to be a Randy Pobst fan.

There are two solutions to this. Either run completely separate events for the two types of cars or get rid of the 4wd cars completely.

Now just because you get rid of 4wd doesn't mean you have to get rid of the Subarus and Mitsubishis. I have asked the question to people who know. I have been told that they can be converted to 2wd (rwd) for a couple of thousand bucks. Let them run as 2wd cars.

2wd cars offer a number of advantages in terms of cost, insurability, and maintaining a level playing field. It would become much more of a driver's championship than it is now. (I can go into much more detail here but most of these points have been rehashed over and over)

There is no disputing it. Look at what works in other forms of motorsport. A 2wd, PGT based, single class of car is the model that is best suited for the US automotive economic system. At least it gives a dozen car companies the chance (and a reason) to participate at some level. Plus, the media will have variety and conflict. They love that.

I am not saying that it isn't a big step. The factories won't come flooding back as done when it's done. It will take a couple of years but it will happen and 5 years from now the series would be stronger. This, in conjunction with spec tires, spec fuel (low octane), spec dampers, and a regionally based season with a single national championship round (the SCCA club racing model) will reduce costs to the point where people who are already interested in the sport can participate (again). Will it result in great TV? No. But I believe that it will greatly increase car counts 2-3 years from now and result in much more income for the organizers.

When you have 40 or 50 equal cars in the top class with 3, 4, 5 or 6 different models of car represented then you will have something to market. At that point it may be time to call a marketing firm.

If everyone is happy with the current system than don't change it. But I don't think there can be any serious dispute that our emphasis on 4wd, IN THIS COUNTRY, is severely handicapping our ability to grow.

Insanity is when you do the same thing over and over and expect different results.

I don’t think that RA or NASA will do it but the first sanctioning body to dump 4wd will dominate the sport of rally in this country in 5-7 years or less if they put serious effort into selling it once they do it and don’t just put out a press release.

Laugh at me if I’m wrong. I can handle it.


Greg

P.S. There are only two professional motorsport sanctioning bodies making serious money in the US. NASCAR and the NHRA. Both of them started in the 1940s and have shown slow, steady growth for 60 years. That’s why they are where they are today. This is a very long term project and it needs to be planned as such.
 

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Holy Cow. I was just suggesting equal press for 2wd to make the class "matter" to all the real manufacturers. You are ready to go and get rid of 4wd. Very progressive!


>Look at Mazda and Dodge. They were brave enough to stick a
>foot in the water but really carried it no farther. Why? I
>don't know, but I am willing to bet that if Doug or Eric had
>been able to score some overall wins they would have been much
>more excited.


And Ford, and GM, and Toyota, and... They've all taken a look. They've all shook their head and left.


>I am not saying that it isn't a big step. The factories won't
>come flooding back as done when it's done. It will take a
>couple of years but it will happen and 5 years from now the
>series would be stronger.


Well, THIS won't work, Greg. The whole HISTORY of American Rallying is based on "what sugardaddy company will pull it from the fire at the last minute THIS year?"

If we have proven anything, it is that we do NOT have the foresight required to build a healthy series that is viable for the LONG TERM.


Will it result in great TV? No. But I believe that
>it will greatly increase car counts 2-3 years from now and
>result in much more income for the organizers.


Again, not good enough fast enough.


>When you have 40 or 50 equal cars in the top class with 3, 4,
>5 or 6 different models of car represented
then you will have
>something to market. At that point it may be time to call a
>marketing firm.


AGREED! But you must realize that they call the marketing firm now to sell Subarus, not American rally. You'll see.


>If everyone is happy with the current system than don't change
>it.

Everyone isn't happy, but the ones writing the checks and receiving the checks are happy. They are a very small community, but they are in control of the boat. Until the writers stop writing. Then we're left wondering why no one wants to play in our series. Ugh.


>I don’t think that RA or NASA will do it but the first
>sanctioning body to dump 4wd will dominate the sport of rally
>in this country in 5-7 years or less if they put serious
>effort into selling it once they do it and don’t just put out
>a press release.

That requires sooooo much forethought. We are not capable of that.


>Laugh at me if I’m wrong. I can handle it.

You are NOT WRONG. I have HAD THE CONVERSATIONS WITH THE MANUFACTURERS TO PROVE IT.

But no one listens to me. Mazda doesn't write big enough checks for me to be heard. People just think I'm a loud mouth whiner. I see your future, Greg. I share your enthusiasm. I'm not trying to be a Negative Nancy. Believe it or not, I CARE ABOUT THIS SPORT more than my personal future in it, my sponsorship, etc.
 

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So let's take this one step further. Let's assume we can't talk NASA into doing this (RA would never). How hard (and I'm just asking, I've never done anything like this) would it be to start a third, yes a third sanctioning body, and build it around the SCCA model (without the BS) of regional competition with a three-day championship rally for the top seeds (as Greg suggested)? And yes, 2wd only.

I'm a fence sitter. I've been interested in rally for years (POR in the early 80's) but have a hard time justifying the expense. If there was a way that I could take care of the car costs (except tires), but find a way to cover at least half of the season costs (travel, entry, tires, ect) then I think I could make it work.

JD
 
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<....regional competition with a three-day championship rally for
<the top seeds (as Greg suggested)? And yes, 2wd only.

You could have noticed that we already have all that:

Eastern States Rally Championship (ESRC) in the East

and

California Rally Series (CRS) and Western States Rally Championship
in the West

and

the United States Rally Championship.

Ivan Orisek
 

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><....regional competition with a three-day championship rally
>for
><the top seeds (as Greg suggested)? And yes, 2wd only.
>
>You could have noticed that we already have all that:
>
>Eastern States Rally Championship (ESRC) in the East
>
>and
>
>California Rally Series (CRS) and Western States Rally
>Championship
>in the West
>
>and
>
>the United States Rally Championship.
>
>Ivan Orisek
>

2wd only?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
My opinion is starting a third body would be a waste of time. We need one sanctioning body. There has to be a merger at some point or again growth will be stunted.

I know Ray and I know Doug. Both are good guys who put a ton into our sport. They just disagree on how to run a rally program.

Hopefully, they will be able to sit down at some point and see the true value in working together. Ray is a great promoter and Doug and JB have built an awesome support organization. They complement each other very well. If Kevin Kalkovian and Tony George can sit down, like they supposedly are now, maybe there is hope.

One of the things that bothers me the most about this sport is the amount of bad blood that exists between lots of different people. People are still holding grudges over what happened on the third stage of POR in 1968! Organizers, participants, sanctioning bodies, everyone. Why can't people get past it?

This is not 1970. There are new sports being developed every day and they all have their hands out for sponsorship and media. There are 400 TV channels now and people get most of their info off the web. The available audience is shrinking as the media pie gets cut thinner and thinner. The Olympics were down 16% this year. "So what," said the President of NBC Sports, "all major sporting events are down, our loss isn't any greater than the others." If that isn't a warning to us than I don't know what is. Growing a sport in the environment is not going to be easy.

We are a small community. Everyone HAS to work together or it's just not going to happen. They more we fight each other the less the competition has to do to bury us.

Other sports and race series have lost millions of dollars through mistakes and mis-management. Why can't we study what they did to prevent the same thing happening to us? There are hundreds of examples out there of what works and what doesn't IN THIS COUNTRY. Can't we make decisions based on history?

One thing about NASCAR. They are always bitching and complaining internally but when it come to the outside they are all pulling in the same direction. Owners, sponsors, drivers, TV partners, sanctioning body - everyone. We can learn something from that.

We don't need a third body. Economics being what they are the situation will fix itself one way or another in the next few years. It always does.


Greg
 

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"Economics being what they are the situation will fix itself one way or another in the next few years. It always does."

The problem with waiting for this to solve itself is the loss of money, effort and dedicated people that we can't afford to lose. Please find a way to get this together, Robin in Canada Forum asks the same questions there.
rz
 

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Today you want TV...

>This is not 1970. There are new sports being developed every
>day and they all have their hands out for sponsorship and
>media. There are 400 TV channels now and people get most of
>their info off the web. The available audience is shrinking....


Yesterday you said you didn't want TV:
http://www.specialstage.com/dc/dcbo...43757&sub_topic_id=43758&mesg_id=&page=#43763
"The question becomes is it better to spend money on marketing(including TV production) or to put that money into prize money, tow funds, and reduced entry fees?

I would vote for the latter. I think you would have a stronger series - it just wouldn't be as "cool"."


>Other sports and race series have lost millions of dollars
>through mistakes and mis-management. Why can't we study what
>they did to prevent the same thing happening to us. There are
>hundreds of examples out there of what works and what doesn't
>IN THIS COUNTRY. Can't we make decisions based on history?

>One thing about NASCAR......

Screw the NASCAR model! SCCA rally wanting to be like NASCAR is what buried SCCA rally. That IS history. Learn from it.


>We don't need a third body.

If given a choice between RA, NASA, and an unsanctioned, uninsured, underground rally with only 10 entries, and no BS, I would take the underground rally in a heartbeat.
 

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2wd class only? BORING! People go to wrc events to see awd beasts with huge turbochargers. If someone actually ran a wrc car in the US I bet the attendance for that race would triple. If you want a cheap way to have a awd class just go the super2000 route. I hear they are going to run in pwrc with the group N cars next season. or make a top class based on something similar "turbo's ect". Super2000 lets almost anyone win.

Am I the only one who thinks that having a good purse is the only way to make rally grow? A professional team normally spends around 20k per event....... Make each event pay out 30k for 1st per event 20k2nd 15k 3rd 10k4th 7k5 4k6th .... about 88k per event....792,000 total for the season .. A million dollar title sponsor could take care of that ... Include a one make 2wd class with the rest.... It would bring great competition and exciting racing= sponsors would flow in after=it worked in nascar. Only way a US rally team will get a sponsor is if A. they own the company B. Know the owner and by luck he will fund you. I know a couple manufacture teams in other racing series having a hard time find sponsors.... If they cant find funding in strong series what makes you think a privateer rally team will?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Jens

Pay attention. Your first quote said nothing about me wanting or not wanting TV. It was an illustration of the fractured nature of the sports marketing environment today and how difficult it is to build a sport.

TV should not be a priority now. If the series grows in the next x years it may become economically feasible at some point. I am not anti-TV although I think rally is extremely difficult to televise properly without F1 type money behind the production. I am anti-TV for the near future.

Your other quote has nothing to do with us being "like NASCAR" It was a comment on how every member of the NASCAR unit sticks together to support their sport to the point where it sometimes becomes silly.

Greg
 

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>2wd class only? BORING! People go to wrc events to see awd
>beasts with huge turbochargers.

This isn't the WRC. Thank God. The manufacturers are finding it too expensive to play there, too.

If someone actually ran a wrc
>car in the US I bet the attendance for that race would triple.

Done. Wasn't tripled.

>If you want a cheap way to have a awd class just go the
>super2000 route. I hear they are going to run in pwrc with
>the group N cars next season. or make a top class based on
>something similar "turbo's ect". Super2000 lets almost anyone
>win.

So who can run? Subarus? Mitsus? Both of these cars would need work to de-spec them. Seems stupid. Nobody else will play cuz they don't have a 4wd car on the showroom to sell.

>Am I the only one who thinks that having a good purse is the
>only way to make rally grow? A professional team normally
>spends around 20k per event....... Make each event pay out 30k
>for 1st per event 20k2nd 15k 3rd 10k4th 7k5 4k6th .... about
>88k per event....792,000 total for the season .. A million
>dollar title sponsor could take care of that ... Include a one
>make 2wd class with the rest.... It would bring great
>competition and exciting racing= sponsors would flow in
>after=it worked in nascar. Only way a US rally team will get a
>sponsor is if A. they own the company B. Know the owner and by
>luck he will fund you. I know a couple manufacture teams in
>other racing series having a hard time find sponsors.... If
>they cant find funding in strong series what makes you think a
>privateer rally team will?

Just what is a "title" sponsor going to get for their money? A bunch of cars that look the same? Good luck finding your million dollar sponsor.

If anything should be a "one-make" series, it should be 4wd. It already is. So now you want to stifle any new business development from VW, Honda, Kia, Hyundai, Ford, Chevy, Pontiac, Dodge, Toyota, etc.?

Smart. Real smart.
 

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Greg,

Removing AWD cars from the championships is a nice sentiment and all, but I don't it would ever work. For one, all the AWD competitors would be justifiably upset and would probably leave in disgust. Like someone else said, we can't afford to lose many people from US rallying. For another, doing this would also reduce the attraction of the series to the general public. What would happen to the Daytona race that you mentioned if the top class was eliminated and they just left GT? Would that make that series healthier or would it kill it. Isn't there a saying about killing the patient to cure the disease?

Let's not put the AWD teams, fans, and manufacturers under attack. I think the kind of thing the USRC has done can have great impact if executed properly (and it looks like they will). If the regular press doesn't pay attention to 2wd and we want them to (which I think is difficult anyhow - how much attention does the regular press pay to any form of racing?), then we can try some other things.

If just separating AWD and 2WD in the press releases/coverage didn't do the trick, we could do this: on combined national/regional events, instead of having separate results sheets for regional/national rallies (which I think is a stupid idea because it dilutes competition within classes), use that effort toward making separate AWD and 2WD results sheets. Apply championship points according to regional/national championships. I don't think I will ever understand or agree with the reason(s) to score regional and national separately at the same rally, while I could see some rationale for scoring AWD and 2WD separately.
 

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>2wd class only? BORING! People go to wrc events to see awd
>beasts with huge turbochargers. If someone actually ran a wrc
>car in the US I bet the attendance for that race would triple.
>If you want a cheap way to have a awd class just go the
>super2000 route. I hear they are going to run in pwrc with
>the group N cars next season. or make a top class based on
>something similar "turbo's ect". Super2000 lets almost anyone
>win.

Subaru brought ran a WRC here a couple of years ago and I don't think it had any major impact on event attendance. S2000 cheap? Hehehe... on another rally forum, I'm seeing figures for S2000 cars floating in the 180,000 to 250,000 Euro range. :)

>Am I the only one who thinks that having a good purse is the
>only way to make rally grow? A professional team normally
>spends around 20k per event....... Make each event pay out 30k
>for 1st per event 20k2nd 15k 3rd 10k4th 7k5 4k6th .... about
>88k per event....792,000 total for the season .. A million
>dollar title sponsor could take care of that ... Include a one
>make 2wd class with the rest....

No - everyone would love that. But who would cough up that kind of money for rallying? In the US or anywhere else? No one. Not any organization or individual. Look at any country where rallying is a popular sport. The grass roots competitors are what sustain the sport, raise the competition levels, and consequently make the sport more popular.
 

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>Pay attention.

I am paying attention. Okay...so I played a little loose and fast with your words. Let me get a bit more serious. You scare me more than Spitzner did in 1998. You present a reasonable approach to rally growth.

The problem is: rally growth in the United States WILL (not might) spell its demise (sooner or later).
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Shenan

I have nothing but respect for people involved with any sort of rally cars. I am not attacking the people who like and run AWD cars. I am trying to look at the big picture and find the best way to fill the fields up so that they organizers can make a profit on the rallies, to design a system which fits best with what has proven to work in the past and one that aligns with the automotive-industrial complex in the United States. I love watching awd cars. I am looking at this strictly from and economic, competition, and media perspective

I remember reading Autoweek columns by John Buffum when I was a kid and he was driving the Audi. I guess that was the beginning of the AWD age in the United States. It's been over 20 years since then that AWD has been the focus of US rally. It has never lead to a period of sustained growth here. They are exciting cars. The support for them, however, is lacking from the media, the fans, and the factories to the point where it doesn't make financial sense anymore.

A PGT 2wd car would be much cheaper to build and maintain. With a hard compound spec tire and spec low octane fuel it would be useless for teams to try and build a screamer motor as they would 1. Probably blow it up on the low octane gas and 2. Not be able to get the power down through the tires anyway. Spec dampers would control some of the suspension costs. (BTW, when I make a technical statement it isn't really coming from me. I check out everything I think about with people who actually know what they are doing to make sure I am not off base.)

Teams would be limited to six tires per event so that everyone has the same rubber and it doesn't turn into a contest of who can buy the most new sticky tires. It would become much more of a driver's championship with a number of different makes in competition with each other. That makes for good marketing because that formula has worked time and time again in the US.

Yes this would slow the cars and make for lousy TV. It will also make for much closer and more exciting rallies. You probably would have four or five cars within seconds at the end. It would be exciting to read about. It would also have an effect on the insurance costs which go directly into the pockets of the organizers, sanctioning bodies, and entrant’s pockets and which is a real concern in this sport.

Right now there are about 5 people in the US who have the desire and resources to build a car to the limit of the rules. Building a top car and competing in the full championship costs about 250k to do it right. Is that where this sport should be? Right now in RA one team has the only major sponsor and factory support. Is that a successful model?

It is interesting to note that England did a similar thing this year. They eliminated WRC cars from the British Championship and made Group N the top class. For a rally mad country with a lot of sponsors, media coverage, and participants this was a step akin to what I am proposing here. 4wd still works in Europe/Britain, it was just too expensive so they made a radical change to their structure. Even the WRC has instituted cost cutting measures of the scale that I am proposing here. We have one of the weakest rally economies in the world yet we haven't done so.

I said in my original post that current 4wd cars could be converted to run as rwd 2wd drive cars so the owners would not be forced to sell them.

Now, I don't think that anyone will actually do what I propose no matter how good my argument. But let's say it happened. I think a few 4wd people would quit. I think a few would convert their cars and run because it would be a better more challenging and more competitive series. I also think there are lot of 2wd cars in barns, garages, and shops that would come out to try and run again. I think the level of entries will soon be getting low enough where I am not sure you would have an overall drop in entries if you made the switch. You probably would for a year or two but I feel that it would rebound fairly quickly and the program will be on a path for years of slow sustained growth

Factory support is an important element as well. For all the yelling and screaming concerning factory involvement they do bring some benefits to a racing series. Not high dollar factory teams although that is what everyone points at first. They bring contingency money, parts support, some advertising, and OEM suppliers. Some will produce bodies in white to make car builds easier and cheaper as Ford did with the Mustang this year. The more competitive the series the more they bring. These are little things but they ass up to a person who is trying to run the series just as they always have in SCCA club road racing.

They also bring media. Auto factories spend a fortune in print advertising. Magazines want to keep this business so they tend to show a lot of attention to the things the factories are involved in. However, they are not going to come to the race and talk about the G2 winner who finished 15th overall

Factories are not going to show any interest in putting money into a program to get beaten by Mitsu or Subaru. They know the overall winner is going to get whatever little attention there is so why bother. The only other way I can see it working is to run completely separate events, on different days, for the two groups. But I still think everyone into one class would make for very close rallies and exciting battles.

Again, I don't think anyone has the nerve to do it. But I stand by my statement that the first one who does, while they may take a beating for a year or two, will dominate the sport of rally in the next 5-7 years.

Thanks for you thoughts

Greg
 

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>>2wd class only? BORING! People go to wrc events to see awd
>>beasts with huge turbochargers.
>
>This isn't the WRC. Thank God. The manufacturers are finding
>it too expensive to play there, too.

WRC isnt that expensive in the motorsport world... especially for the exposure value! IF it was you wouldnt see new manufactures joing aka suzuki. Mitsubishi was in finacial trouble and Skoda becons to whatever the VW group wants them to do.


>If someone actually ran a wrc
>>car in the US I bet the attendance for that race would
>triple.
>
>Done. Wasn't tripled.

My numbers are off, but thats what spectators want to see

>>If you want a cheap way to have a awd class just go the
>>super2000 route. I hear they are going to run in pwrc with
>>the group N cars next season. or make a top class based on
>>something similar "turbo's ect". Super2000 lets almost
>anyone
>>win.
>
>So who can run? Subarus? Mitsus? Both of these cars would
>need work to de-spec them. Seems stupid. Nobody else will
>play cuz they don't have a 4wd car on the showroom to
>sell.

The whole point of super2000 is to let manufactures have standard awd platforms for cars that dont come with awd! Who says they are going to despec the N cars?


>>Am I the only one who thinks that having a good purse is the
>>only way to make rally grow? A professional team normally
>>spends around 20k per event....... Make each event pay out
>30k
>>for 1st per event 20k2nd 15k 3rd 10k4th 7k5 4k6th .... about
>>88k per event....792,000 total for the season .. A million
>>dollar title sponsor could take care of that ... Include a
>one
>>make 2wd class with the rest.... It would bring great
>>competition and exciting racing= sponsors would flow in
>>after=it worked in nascar. Only way a US rally team will get
>a
>>sponsor is if A. they own the company B. Know the owner and
>by
>>luck he will fund you. I know a couple manufacture teams in
>>other racing series having a hard time find sponsors.... If
>>they cant find funding in strong series what makes you think
>a
>>privateer rally team will?
>
>Just what is a "title" sponsor going to get for their money?
>A bunch of cars that look the same? Good luck finding your
>million dollar sponsor.

Finding a title sponsor for a championship is alot easier to find then a team sponsor. Espeically if there is a TV deal. 1million is normally the min for most professional teams in other forms of motorsport.

>If anything should be a "one-make" series, it should be 4wd.
>It already is. So now you want to stifle any new business
>development from VW, Honda, Kia, Hyundai, Ford, Chevy,
>Pontiac, Dodge, Toyota, etc.?
>
>Smart. Real smart.

New business developments? lol!

VW- Anti racing in the US good luck at getting them involved.

Kia- All their racing is in europe & asia... good luck at trying to convince their US marketing department to rally.

Hyundai- Last time I heard they dumped US rally? and doing nothing new

Ford- They are the people who almost killed the WRC program. Ford US is run by Neanderthals who cant wake up to reality.

Chevy- too busy going bankrupt

Pontiac- road racing

Dodge- Only thing they actually fully sponsor is their nascar dealership team

Toyota- Nascar 2007

All these manufactures would love to build a spec car, but non of them would want to fund racing programs
 

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>>>2wd class only? BORING! People go to wrc events to see awd
>>>beasts with huge turbochargers.
>>
>>This isn't the WRC. Thank God. The manufacturers are
>finding
>>it too expensive to play there, too.
>
>WRC isnt that expensive in the motorsport world... especially
>for the exposure value!

What??!! Ford, Citroen, Pug...none of 'em are happy with the cost. Confused by your "knowledge" of the subject.


>My numbers are off, but thats what spectators want to see

Nope. They wanna see fast cars driven well. Or screwing up royally. Ask 'em at the next spectator area you find yourself in.

>
>The whole point of super2000 is to let manufactures have
>standard awd platforms for cars that dont come with awd! Who
>says they are going to despec the N cars?

NOBODY WANTS TO BUILD A 4WD CAR WHO DOESN'T HAVE ONE TO SELL. Even Hyundai saw the light and went drag racing and drifting instead.

>Finding a title sponsor for a championship is alot easier to
>find then a team sponsor.

And you know this how? I'd love to hear of your exploits and meetings with potential sponsors as both, a sanctioning body and as a team owner.

Espeically if there is a TV deal.
>1million is normally the min for most professional teams in
>other forms of motorsport.

Other forms of motorsport have more than 4 potential winners on the entry list in more than 1 brand of car.

>
>>If anything should be a "one-make" series, it should be 4wd.
>
>>It already is. So now you want to stifle any new business
>>development from VW, Honda, Kia, Hyundai, Ford, Chevy,
>>Pontiac, Dodge, Toyota, etc.?
>>
>>Smart. Real smart.
>
>New business developments? lol!
>
>VW- Anti racing in the US good luck at getting them involved.

You know this how? You've spoken with VW marketing? I'd love to compare notes!

>Kia- All their racing is in europe & asia... good luck at
>trying to convince their US marketing department to rally.

Ditto.

>Hyundai- Last time I heard they dumped US rally? and doing
>nothing new

No, they are reaching their target demos with show cars, drag cars...much better return on investment.

>Ford- They are the people who almost killed the WRC program.
>Ford US is run by Neanderthals who cant wake up to reality.

I refuse to comment as they are my employer.

>Chevy- too busy going bankrupt

...or rather, looking for venues for the Cobalt. My dad is making ARB kits for GM Racing Cobalts as we speak.

>Pontiac- road racing


>Dodge- Only thing they actually fully sponsor is their nascar
>dealership team

I'd expect a new turbo Caliber coming out of Pete's garage (Skytek) sometime soon.

>Toyota- Nascar 2007
>
>All these manufactures would love to build a spec car, but non
>of them would want to fund racing programs

Wanna bet? They could have a manufacturer support team for a fraction of the cost of engineering a 4WD special out of a FWD shitbox.

Anyway, glad to hear we have an expert in the house. Everybody talk to Chris for the inside scoop on who's doing what in the motorsports world. Thanks for the service.
 

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Much of what you are saying sounds like you've been reading and pretty-ing up stuff I've been saying siince the mid 90s, and writing since the late 90s.

But Lurche-pooo is right: the whole history of rallying all the way back into the 70s was one big sucession of "who will be the next "Saviour", and that has see-sawed between panaceas of 'the big sponsor', or 'getting WRC will fix everything' to 'high profile celebrities will bring prestige, and with it rally nirvana...'

Culturally we've just seen how good we are at planning in the longer term with the whole fiasco in New Orleans.

But some of us who grew into adulthood in other cultures where rally is the grass-roots sport know that the only long term solution is more entries, and more entries and more till, just as you suggest, Organisers can know they will survive on entries alone.

I help lay out Enduros just before I started rally in 1984 and the way we had $25 entry fees was by having 350 man entry fields. It is the closest thing re timing crews and layout and results calulation and more more taxing in terms of route sinage.

So ever since my first event, organised by many of the same folks as the event I just did this last weekend, I've been trying to find ways to increase entries, keep cost reasonable, and above all increase the "dollar spent to fun return" ratio.

So I suggested way back in the week the shipment arrived with my Cossie 4x4 powerplant in 1998 "Ban turbo 4wd".
These days I say rather "how can we make incentives so folks WANT TO built 2wd?"

So you see we're nearly on the same page.

Just drop the "Pee Gee Tee" spec type stuff, since it seems that the class has become so full of conflicting desires and to quote a National Honcho "It's clear nobody wants to build cars to these rule" otherwise they wouldn't be cheating as much as they do (See Sno Drift)

The Gp2 rules, as ammended after years of lobbying/harrangue to incorporate one of the salient features from the hugely successful and vary popular Finnish National GpF classes, offers a flexible enough scope to accomodate both higher dollar set ups like Lurchie's Mazda deal and club guys like my brave driver Adam Crane.

No need to artificially restrict the range of cars entered.
And if an old 20 year old Golf shames the modern cars, then so be it.
It DOES creat interest, it encourages participation.

But whatever else, its clear that currently there is no reason for 3 classes just for blue Subarus.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
John

I agree. There should be no limit on age as long as the cars look presentable. G2 makes me a little nervous as you could build some very high dollar stuff there but perhaps the low octane fuel and hard tires would negate most of the advantages you can add. For example, should there be sequential boxes? More expensive to buy but more durable when it comes to the cost of maintaining them. I would not want a situation where we could get to the same place we are now within a new 2wd class.

Greg
 
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