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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well here it goes. I want to know how easy it would be for somebody from the USA to get into WRC. And if that is a far shot, how hard is it to get a manafactuer sponsor in ProRally. My plan is to get a 91 GSX and get into club rally then switch into Pro. And I'm wondering how hard it would be to get into a manafactuer spot. I am currently living in Hawaii. I do autocross every weekend, and I drift everyday. Is this going to help me in Rally or not.

Another thing how different is it being sponsored by a manafactuer for WRC versus SCCA Prorally. And I apologize if this question has been asked a million times. Thank You.



You must always push the limits because if you never fail you will never succeed.
 

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someone with more knowledge will come along and answer after me I assume.. but here is my plan. Crazy or not my goal is to be an international professional rally driver...

Spend no money other than rally. (I live with Mom's, have 2yr old pants, dont eat out too much anymore etc...)

This lets me afford maybe 10 events (www.mattjohnstonrally.com)

Then, go as fast and be as professional as possible, hopefully someone notices and helps with expenses. Then you can do more events, perhaps international events. (perhaps gpN, 206Cup, whatever)

Then you can go faster than everyone else, and hope someone internationally notices...

At some point move overseas...

and so on and so forth.

The biggest factor, at least in my opinion is money, get lots of it. My rally budget to do 9 events or so is something around 15k, which I would consider pretty small, especially if you plan on international events, training, flights, car rentals etc...

I'm half falling asleep, so I will cut it short, and what do I know anyway? :) S


o, basically I try to go as fast as possible, be as professional and dedicated as possible, and eventually hope someone who counts, notices.

There are plenty others with more info and better opinions I'm sure... Im always open to advice :)

Also: How old are you?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Well thanks for the reply. And to answer your question I am only 20 years old. And I'm in the Army. So my whole pay check goes to food and my car, which is a 1987 Rx7. I know it is not a Rally car however it is a great drift car, which will help me learn how to go sideways and control.
I am already pretty good at it. I'm currently trying to learn more techniques so that I can utilize drifting in my autocross style. I tryed it once in a race and it caused me to have my slowest lap. But on the dirt it will work because you will be able to carry more speed through the corner, and so on and so forth. Conclusion I'm still learning and everyday that goes by I get faster.
Anyway Iam rambling now and I am opento any and all suggestions. Thank You.

You must always push the limits because if you never fail you will never succeed.
 

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Chances are very slim, even if you had tons of $$$ of your own.

At the very least, you have to do European national events and learn. This will cost a lot of money.

There have only been a handful of US drivers who have ever competed at the WRC-Equivalent level and that was very sporadically--John Buffum and Rod Millen come to mind.

Keep the dream, however.
 

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As a newbie in rally who is to old to try for the "rally dream" I would say save some of the money you are spending on drifting and autocross and go to one or more high quality rally schools. You will learn alot quickly and maybe meet some people in the business. For schools I would go first to Tim O'neal's school in the NE then to a school in the UK (David Higgins school)? Then enter (AND FINISH) lots of events. Then win events.
 

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>
>There have only been a handful of US drivers who have ever
>competed at the WRC-Equivalent level and that was very
>sporadically--John Buffum and Rod Millen come to mind.
Rod Millen is a Kiwi (not that that's a bad thing!). Don't forget about Pat Richard, he's Canadian, but also a North American that has competed in WRC events (Group N.) and also in the 206 cup.

Bob Campbell
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BCR Rallysport
Colorado Springs, CO
 

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The best method: "Choose you parents carefully" ( a JVL quote).

For the rest of us non scandinavian mere mortals:

Go to rally school ( I recomment Team O'neil four day course)
Do a half dozen rallies in a G2 car
Do a half dozen rallies in a GrN or PGT car
Now, save all your money, sell a kidney, be a manwhore, or whatever it takes and go to Europe and do a credible one make series. The 206 cup that Pat Richard did seems like a good one. This is an all or nothing shot. If you win the cup, you're picked up for another season in a faster series for another all or nothing shot. Do this a couple more times until you either find an investor to cover your expenses, or catch the eye of a works team boss. At this point you better be no older than 27. Sound difficult? It is, that's why only the best make it.

Dennis Martin
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920-432-4845
 

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Didn't Ramana go to I think it was New Zealand with Subaru one year, I seem to remember reading a story about it. He didn't do too great but he finished respectably. Atleast thats what I think I remember, chemistry is frying my brain.
 

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Ok as someone once convinced ,weren't we all, they were going to Euprope to race motorcycles.
First; stop wasting money on your drift car and put it towards rally.
Second; Rally is not about driving sideways - you can actaully drive to far sideways and go slower , just as you found out at autocross.Go to a Rally school!! It is Ok to enter Autocross and and drift event for seat time but do not lose your focus and start pouring your spare cash into the car.
Third; your in the army , this is a bonus , get yourself stationed in Europe. The closer to a Scandenavian country the better. John Buffum was in Europe becasue of his military service.
Fourth; your life is no longer yours. Rally is everything , you will not be driving into Waikiki to go clubing with your buddies.You will not be buying cool $100 sungglasses or any other frivolous junk. If you have a girlfreind she better understand that Rally is your sworn goal.Racing serously is not good for relationships. Be prepared to whore yourself for sponsorship , you must sell yourself no one else will. Sponsors are NOT a free ride they expect something in return.500cc Motocross World Champion Brad Lackey lived in a shack so he could compete in Europe - Are you willing to this?
Fifth; Be prepared to be disapointed. You may spend ten years of your life trying to acheive this goal. Even with some internation succesess you could be left broke , 30 , alone and have no job skills other than drivng a rally car. Luck plays a big part in this even the ultra-rich kids have failed to make it. Some under funded drivers have made it simply by being in the right place at the right time.Even if you have no success you will have lived a life others could only dream about , I wish you well

Tom Grossmann

PS only three things kept me from being World Champion: Money , Talent and Dedication.
 

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- First, go to Rally Japan, Hokkaido island, in September or to Rally New Zealand. If the speed you'll see doesn't scare you, rent a car in New Zealand and try to beat locals.
- That's the cheapest way for you to get to the top. It's long way to any European rallies from Hawaii. New Zealand has excellent roads, plenty of rallies and stiff competition. It's also one of the few cheap countries left with "American pesos".
 
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Declaring a big adventure such as this is thrilling and the journey full of all sorts of ups and downs.

For me it's important to always remember a few things. One that comes to mind is the 'ol' "it's not weather you win or loose, it's how you play the game..."

Chasing my dream to be a rallying hero is, for me, just like working to be a millionaire, or a star singer, or ~insert yours here~. Even if you/I make the goal, get rich, get famous, etc..
_IT STILL WON'T GIVE THE QUALITY OF LIFE_

We all know examples of apparently successful people with no happiness or satisfaction. The quality of our lives is given by something else that each of us gets to find the source of for ourself.

You could say that to base a successful life and being happy on achieving a goal out in the future would be to squander the opportunity of what it is to LIVE in the first place.

Please keep chasing your dreams, it inspires others and breathes life into the world.

Matthew


Matthew Johnson
www.MatthewJohnson.us
 

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Wow Matt I feel better already - I quickly abandoned my "goal" of being 125cc World Road Racing Champion after meeting my wife. Like any good "pusher" she got me hooked on pasta and homemade suace. I couldn't see giving up a gourmet meal every night for some goal I might never achieve. The only troubling part of my life decision is that I cosider hanging around Rally Folk living.Of course last night we had curry for dinner, hmmmmmm cuuurry.

Tom

PS: did I mention her spicey stuffed squid rocks!!!
 

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> Fourth; your life is no longer yours. Rally is everything ,
>you will not be driving into Waikiki to go clubing with your
>buddies.You will not be buying cool $100 sungglasses or any
>other frivolous junk.

The money you save by not clubbing every Saturday will be insignificant to the kind of money you need to pursue the dream. So instead of penny-pinching, get a good business and sponsorship plan together and hope to find the very, very big bucks.

Being a world champion freestyle motocrosser may also help.

Neil.
Team SoCalRally Audi Quattro
 

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Clubing Every Saturday night = $50 x 52 = $2600 = tires or a Rally School. Fast Food $20 x 52 = $1040 + $2600 = $3640 = one rental at an event. I wouldn't call it penny pinching but you are correct it will take much bigger bucks and a Business plan would be very wise.

Tom
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks for the advice. First off I just want everybody to know that I am not putting all money in my drift car. And why I drift is so I can work on car control which i feel is important. I also already do dedicate my whole life to car racing any and all types, I would be all Rally but Hawaii has no rally spots, except the pineapple fields and that is pretty risky with all the cops.

Another question. Which rally schools are the best and what are there websites. Keep the comments coming, I really do appreciate the comments. And just so you guys know, I am going for this because I love driving especially rally style. I just would like to make it my career, instead of being an airline pilot. Thanks.


You must always push the limits because if you never fail you will never succeed.
 

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I forget when the thread came around, but Lurch had some good pointers on getting sponsorship. If you plan on making it into the pros, you have to sell yourself. What do you have to offer a potential big-bucks sponsor, and what do they get out of it?

It's not enough to have lots of talent. Someone has to see that talent and be willing to invest in it, and sometimes the only way to get that attention is to ask for it, with a good proposal and a professional demeanor to everything: From the car to the service crew, to the way you act and the way you drive. (this means that you have to be organized, no scrambling around in service trying to find tools that you just tossed down when you were done with it :) )

And, unfortunately, money attracts money. You'll have to spend some money to make your car and your team look good, so that the big-buck sponsors can see that they want to invest in you.

The only way to hone your skills is seat time and a good school! I can't think of Tim O'Niell's web site off the top of my head, but a simple search should bring it up.

Good luck! :)

Kristen
 

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You're 20. Unfortunately, its a bit late in the cycle to introduce karts. You need to get in rally cars and fast. Karts and dirt bikes would be good non-rally/cheaper activities. Keep your eyes on the prize, though. Budget your money AND your time. Set goals.

If you could be so lucky as to find a wealthy benefactor to invest in you, DON'T take ALL of that money and go racing. Get by in the cheapest thing that will teach you the driving skills. Take the rest and develop a marketing plan. A professional driver does so much more than drive. Your primary hat, believe it or not, will be that of salesman.

If you spend your benefactor's money on racing, you will have nothing to show for it and eventually he will stop funding you. Your money is a fixed amount and it will never grow. If you spend it on marketing, you will (hopefully) consistently grow a garden of corporate supporters that will continue to work with you and grow the funds needed for bigger and better equipment, support, etc., and they too will introduce you to more potential supporters.

If you don't have a benefactor (most of us don't) learn all you can about motorsports marketing, how to write proposals, how to solicit businesses, how to read the business section of the paper and scan for marketing programs that could use help in the motorsports arena, how to become your own private detective to find the VP of Marketing at different companies. The computer you are sitting behind right now is an incredible tool...more valuable than any in your toolbox out in the garage.

Become a professional racer. That means think of your rally career first. Just like the Hollywood producer who is just serving drinks at the bar. No, he's not a bartender, he's a Hollywood producer. This is just what he does for cash and "material." You are not a soldier. You are a rally car driver. You are just using the Army to get you to the places you need to be, to teach you some skills, and to put a bit of money in your pocket. Edit--I realize you can't just ignore your duties for racing...for some it may mean a slap on the wrist or getting fired. For you its AWOL. :)

The steps mentioned above this post about rally school, moving overseas, getting involved in a one-make series, etc. are all very relevant, but first you need to learn how to be a racer. And that means wearing a tie a lot more than a helmet.

If you REALLY want to make the sacrifice, share this dream with your family. Tell them you ARE going to do it...not that you're thinking about it. The next 6 years are going to be planned out for you as you set goals to be in the game and well developed by 27. Make an outline starting from top down showing the steps involved. Start with 2011...WRC. End with Feb. 2004...non-competitor. If you're serious, write down the date Feb. 12, 2004..."the last day I was a soldier. The first day of my rally career."

Good luck.
 

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Group N is not what I believe is "WRC-Equivalent". Current WRC, Group A between 87 and 98 as well as Group B, etc. before 87 is WRC equivalent. If you research those from the US who did it, it would be, principally, Buffum and Millen. Millen ran the Asia-Pacific series which included a couple "WRC" rounds--NZ and OZ.

Let's not count FIA events staged in North America (Olympia, POR, Criterium, Ridieu Lakes)as qualifiers.

Buffum drove Quattros and even a works TR8 in some rally GB(s); Millen ran a Rally GB too.

Pat is a great driver, but from the Great White North.

Millen may be a native KIWI, but he has resided in California for quite some time.

Cheers.
 
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