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Marketing through Motorsports
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Naturally we were disappointed that Cherokee Trails had been cancelled. We were really looking forward to it and Andy B had been working hard to get the car ready in time. (Man, it's *suh-weet!*)

Instead of being cancelled, we felt CT could have been shortened to just one day and we still would have run it, but we're not in the shoes of John and Kendall. My guess is that they stood to lose even more money than those of us with non-refundable tickets and all the other lost expenses. Each organizer, though part of a series, must still make sound financial decisions, even if it means that we, the competitors, incur signifanct losses as well.

Anyway, with the cancellation of Cherokee, Brian and I talked at length about our options. These options included switching to R-A for the remaining races, running just the "local" events or "favorite" events regardless of sanctioning body, or tackling the seven remaining USRC rallies.

Both sanctioning bodies offer outstanding events and outstanding competition and we will not presume to tell people what events they should pick. We'll say only that made our choice based on our own situation, goals, and geography.

After weighing the various factors including cost and travel time, we have therefore decided to stay with the USRC season.

Further, we felt it important to publicly state our support for the USRC despite the unfortunate loss of CT for '06.

We wanted to go public with our decision because we hope that people will not pull out of New York in a knee-jerk reaction to the CT problem.

It's too bad we lost CT. It's a real bummer that so many people were left holding non-refundable tickets, lost wages, and all the other expense associated with a canceled rally.

Still, let's not make matters worse. We encourage those of you who entered RNY to attend the event. If you were thinking about RNY without any possibility of Oregon, get your entry in soon. The reverse is true as well--get your entries in early to Oregon if you're thinking about attending.

We look forward to the competition.

Rally on!

[hr]

[p align=right]John Dillon
John @ WidgetRacing.com
[A href="http://www.WidgetRacing.com"]Widget Rally Team[/a]
[a href="http://www.Perforce.com/wrt"]Perforce Software[/a]
 

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Marketing through Motorsports
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Desert Storm Rally

By the way, with Cherokee canceled we'll be running the WRX instead of the Focus at the Desert Storm Rally, a local gig a week after the CT date.

[hr]

[p align=right]John Dillon
John @ WidgetRacing.com
[A href="http://www.WidgetRacing.com"]Widget Rally Team[/a]
[a href="http://www.Perforce.com/wrt"]Perforce Software[/a]
 

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...not to mention the fact that anyone who spent money on tickets and any other related expenses (hopefully) already budgeted that as 'expendable' income.

to ask John and Kendall to potentially lose tens of thousands of dollars is not reasonable, and would do nothing for the future of CT, a rally that, as far as roads available, has to rank top five in the US.

...and just think:

you might have crashed your car there... look at how much money you *saved* now!
 

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>
.
>
>to ask John and Kendall to potentially lose tens of thousands
>of dollars is not reasonable, and would do nothing for the
>future of CT, a rally that, as far as roads available, has to
>rank top five in the US.
>

Why is that so unreasonable? They stand to gain if things go well and 100 cars show up, why should they not assume the risk of an event that doesn't go off with a bang. If its business, its business, not just cover my own ass and to hell with everyone else. Risk and reward. Hell I might start promoting races if I can just cancel if it doesn't look like I'm going to make any money.

I agree it does nothing for the future of CT, but perhaps its an indicator of the future all together.
 

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>Why is that so unreasonable? They stand to gain if things go
>well and 100 cars show up, why should they not assume the risk
>of an event that doesn't go off with a bang. If its business,
>its business, not just cover my own ass and to hell with
>everyone else. Risk and reward. Hell I might start promoting
>races if I can just cancel if it doesn't look like I'm going
>to make any money.

I can't imagine all rallies come out ahead. I would guess most end up costing more money than they make. Those that DO make money, it probably ends up coming out to $.07/hr for all the work that goes into it.

Being in a National Forest, I would imagine Cherokee encounters bigger hurdles than other events.

Pete
 

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>Why is that so unreasonable? They stand to gain if things go
>well and 100 cars show up, why should they not assume the risk
>of an event that doesn't go off with a bang. If its business,
>its business, not just cover my own ass and to hell with
>everyone else.


Let's see. I get tickets for a Saturday night to see (insert you favorite band/singer/rock group) get a babysitter, get a limo into the City, get a Hotel so I can spend the night. Lead singer (gets a soar throat/is arreseted/gets pissed off at bands members/overdoses) concert is cancelled. Do you really think I'm going to get my babysitter money back?

Joint the real world... Often times you don't even get a refund; just a chance to go to a rescheduled concert on Tuesday night next January...

>Risk and reward. Hell I might start promoting
>races if I can just cancel if it doesn't look like I'm going
>to make any money.

Good luck. After the third day off work to meet with the County Supervisor/Engineer/insert Bureaucrat I think most people would/have given up. If you think the losses of a competitor are significant I can not begin to imagine what those of the Organizers are...
 

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>Why is that so unreasonable? They stand to gain if things go
>well and 100 cars show up, why should they not assume the risk
>of an event that doesn't go off with a bang. If its business,
>its business, not just cover my own ass and to hell with
>everyone else. Risk and reward. Hell I might start promoting
>races if I can just cancel if it doesn't look like I'm going
>to make any money.
>
>I agree it does nothing for the future of CT, but perhaps its
>an indicator of the future all together.

Where did this guy come from? When's the last time a rally had 100 entries? And when they did (or any number close to that) the "profit" was probably either used to recoup losses in previous years or to buy new equipment or replace well worn equipment. Get real! Of course, it's a free country and except for hollering fire in a crowded theater, he can say anything he wants.
 

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>
>Why is that so unreasonable? They stand to gain if things go
>well and 100 cars show up, why should they not assume the risk
>of an event that doesn't go off with a bang. If its business,
>its business, not just cover my own ass and to hell with
>everyone else. Risk and reward. Hell I might start promoting
>races if I can just cancel if it doesn't look like I'm going
>to make any money.
>
>I agree it does nothing for the future of CT, but perhaps its
>an indicator of the future all together.

Hi Corey,

Your argument about a busienss loss is OK. And even if it is a non-profit effort (like regional clubs), sometimes losses are taken. But any business has to draw a line over repeated losses. I don't have $$ numbers, but based on some of the entry levels for CT in the past, this is not the first time that the CT organizers have taken a loss. As far as I know, this comes from their own pockets. I have been concerned for the organizers over this, as no one can sustain this type of thing repeatedly. So, please give them credit for taking losses in the past, yet continuing on, and allow some latitude for them to say 'enough is enough'. I am grateful for Kendall's and John's perseverence plus what they have done for the rally community beyond CT, and certanly don't feel that they owe us anything beyond the efforts they have put in over 10+ years of stewarding and organizing.

And lest I appear solely focused on this group, let's all recognize that there are 20 or more organizations in this country alone, consiting of dozens of people who, year after year, put in MANY hundreds of hours to organize rallies, most of it totally unpaid. I think Pete K. hit the nail on the head; the return can't be much better than $0.07 per hour! For the most part, we remain a sport volunteer organizers and hobby competitors.

Regards,
Mark B.

And PS: John Dillon, thanks for your usual well considered, well written, and always polite editorial.
 

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yeroc40 said
>Why is that so unreasonable? They stand to gain if things go
>well and 100 cars show up, why should they not assume the risk
>of an event that doesn't go off with a bang.

The degree to which you don't understand organizing rallies, and event organizers, is, to say it politely, large.

>If its business, its business, not just cover my own
>ass and to hell with everyone else. Risk and reward.

Your last sentence betrays your misunderstanding. "Risk and reward" is not the equation that governs organizing as an activity. A closer approximation might be "Risk and personal financial disaster averted." That is the 'reward' for a sucessful rally, i.e. "I didn't lose ten grand."

>Hell I might start promoting races if I can just
>cancel if it doesn't look like I'm going to make any money.

If you start promoting rallies as a way to make money, I will only advise you that your hourly wage will be greater if you take a job at Burger King. And that is only for the 'sucessful' rallies. Plus, if you're making burgers, people won't get upset at you on the internet when you don't feel like losing ten grand. *grin*

Let me know when your supps regs are posted. ;)

Cheers,
Anders
 

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As an organizer (100AW), and attempted chairman (Old Miner's Days 2003 - cancelled) I can say I'm amazed everytime I hear there's going to be a Cherokee Trails. I would have given up fighting that National Forest district years ago. We couldn't afford their bill.

The roads we use are county roads through the Mark Twain National Forest. When the "roadless" initative went through, our forest roads got turned over to the counties, and "National Forest" road mileage disappeared. I'd be looking at north Georgia and western North Carolina for something similar.

If Cherokee National Forest (or whatever, I was hungover the whole time I was there) doesn't want the rally, maybe they can find someone who does.

Everyone in Salem assumed we were making money this year, and free stuff in past years (like a dedicated air ambulance) were going to cost us the same as any other business. Anyone organizing a rally in the US assuming they're going to make any money doing it is a fool, and a soon-to-be broke fool.

Mark
 

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> we hope that
>people will not pull out of New York in a knee-jerk reaction
>to the CT problem.
>
>>Rally on!
>
>[hr]
>
>[p align=right]John Dillon
>John @ WidgetRacing.com
>[A href="http://www.WidgetRacing.com"]Widget Rally Team[/a]
>[a href="http://www.Perforce.com/wrt"]Perforce Software[/a]

From the looks of the entry list posted at rallynewyork.com (40 as of today, with almost a month to go), it seems your fears for RNY shrinkage aren't well founded. Whew.

Dave G
www.lastditchracing.net


"...Embrace loose gravel, beware big trees..."
 

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>> we hope that
>>people will not pull out of New York in a knee-jerk reaction
>>to the CT problem.
>>
>>>Rally on!
>>
Having looked at the schedule for the cancelled CT, I can now see one major issue. As much as I like John and Kendall, why did they schedule 8 hours of rallying spread out over 2 days requiring an extra vacation day (and associated costs)? Start at noon Friday and run till 4 PM. Then start again at noon on Saturday and run till 4 PM? I understand the limit on not running night stages but it's light till 6 or 6:30 PM. Start at 8 AM Saturday morning and run till 5 PM (scheduled, if you're a little late it goes til 6 PM). No brainer to me which is more user friendly. Remember the old "endurance" part of rallying. Running from 8 AM till 6 PM isn't even close to endurance IMHO.
 

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stupid hat on here

John-

I'm missing something.

Why would one pull out of RNY in reaction to CT?

>We wanted to go public with our decision because we hope that
>people will not pull out of New York in a knee-jerk reaction
>to the CT problem.

press on,
 

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Don Kennedy said
>why did they schedule 8 hours of rallying spread out over 2 days
>requiring an extra vacation day (and associated costs)?

I think the idea was that all USRC events would have recce.

Cheers,
Anders
 

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Yes, well, I didn't consider that. The old days didn't have stage notes, much less recee. I'd vote for the good old days with endurance, stage notes and no recee. Many people don't have the time for recee (as is somewhat obvious from CT). Recee works well for some people, particularily like in rally NY where many of the entrants are relatively close to the event and don't have to tow great distances that require alot of vacation time. I get 2 weeks vacation. 4 events that would require 2 days vacation and leaving and driving thru the night to get there would chew up 8 of those 10 days and at a certain point it becomes no fun.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
RE: stupid hat on here

>Why would one pull out of RNY in reaction to CT?

There was some discussion about a) the viability of the series (we saw several angry posts and wondered whether competitors would abandon the USRC series) and b) Making the long tow east for one event wouldn't be cost effective for left-coasters.

Sounds like our fears were unfounded.

See you in Oregon!

John
 
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