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Discussion Starter #1
Got another question for you all.

RA requires the novices run Prod or G2 until they accumulate enough points. I have found nothing similar in other rules (USRC-ECRC). NASA even allow one rally without a license. In looking for a car to buy it makes a differnce in whats available to me and what races I will drive.

Can NASA novice drivers run in any class?
 

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Real issue is... if you run a NASA event in your car, and don't accumulate points on the RA series, will you ever be able to get a license and run that car right away, or will you have to get the license, score points with RA using a prod/G2 car, then go to the car you've currently got.
 

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Basically, the intent of the RA novice rule is to keep someone from buying an open class STI or Lancer, and showing up at an event with no experience. Before you scoff, it has happened. I would not be surprised if NASA follows suit soon, and even if they don't, I bet if you ask any NASA official they would vehomently agree with the spirit of the rule.

That being said, RA periodically grants waivers for novices to start in other cars. For example, it is not uncommon to see drivers granted a waiver for PGT cars, only with a smaller restrictor. Ditto for some older low spec open class cars, like DSM's or Audi's. Also, a lot of older Group 5 cars are okay (RX-7's, Merkurs, Omnis). These waivers are granted on a case by case basis, and are based on things like your experience, background, and the specific vehicle. The person to talk to on this is JB Niday of RA. He's extremely busy at the moment with MFR and Xgames, but if you find a specific car you really like, give him the details and he'll find the time to work with you.

Finally, last I checked NASA experience was transferable to RA coefficients and allowable for use in increasing seed. But remember, just because NASA will let you run a rocket ship at your first event, that doesn't mean you should. Most of the top drivers started out in low hp, low spec cars. It forces you to learn proper technique, maintain momentum, and pick good lines. It's also cheaper, so you can spend more money on running events. Experience is worth more than ANYTHING in rally. My normal ride is an open class evo, but last summer I drove two different 120hp, 2wd terds, and let me tell you, those cars were a hell of a lot of fun!

I think I read elsewhere that Don Kennedy is near your area? Hook up with him...like this weekend.

DEM
 

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Waivers were granted the first year due to people already being invlolved in builds. Now that the rule has been in place awhile, I would expect to see less exemption waivers granted by RA. Otherwise, what good is the rule?

I would go right to the source with all Q's- JB NIday for licensing Q's & Mike HUrst for Tech Q's for RA stuff on the RA website.
http://www.rally-america.com

ALthough with Maine this weekend & X games directly after, I wouldnt expect a quick response...

Totally agree with Dennis regarding starting in a lo HP FWD car & getting seat time. That's the thing I am missing this year due to moving up quicker than my finances really could handle. No one's fault but my own tho...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks DEM. A very good breakdown.

I know that I am not "ready" to run with the big boys, and would gladly accept something like a smaller restrictor. On a limited budget I would like the opportunity to have the car grow with me rather than be stuck trying to sell and build a new car when the time comes.

My TDI New Beetle is one example. I can squeeze it into Production Class, the 1.9L turbo and deisel just makes the cut in adjusted displacement. But if I want to start removing some of the OEM inconviences it would jump to G5 and I couldn't run it without a waiver. I really like my NB, but I not sure I am ready to use my daily driver as a racer, the mpg is to good for my 120mile commute.

I am going to keep my eyes open for a used car. It nice to know that I have a few more options.

Rick
 

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Dadrick said:
Thanks DEM. A very good breakdown.

I know that I am not "ready" to run with the big boys, and would gladly accept something like a smaller restrictor. On a limited budget I would like the opportunity to have the car grow with me rather than be stuck trying to sell and build a new car when the time comes.

My TDI New Beetle is one example. I can squeeze it into Production Class, the 1.9L turbo and deisel just makes the cut in adjusted displacement. But if I want to start removing some of the OEM inconviences it would jump to G5 and I couldn't run it without a waiver. I really like my NB, but I not sure I am ready to use my daily driver as a racer, the mpg is to good for my 120mile commute.

I am going to keep my eyes open for a used car. It nice to know that I have a few more options.

Rick
I won't speak for JB, but I doubt you'd have trouble getting a waiver for a TDI Beetle. That being said, it's probably not the best choice for a rally car. They are REALLY heavy. Mad Mike Halley knows everything there is to know about new beetle rally cars. He posts here all the time. Look him up and contact him.

If you are looking for a car to grow with you, consider an older naturally aspirated Subaru. Relatively inexpensive, tough, good rally pedigree, and fun to drive. Again, you'd need a novice waiver, but probably not an issue if you leave the motor stock. Then, as you gain experience and feel the need for speed, it's pretty simple to drop in a turbo WRX drivetrain, or import an STI drivetrain from Japan. Four door cars offer more room. Talk to Randy Zimmer for everything you need to know about these cars.

On the 2wd side, the Focus is a pretty upgradeable car. Some of the new Cosworth Duratec motors put out well over 200hp. There are lotsa other go fast parts from Europe (dog boxes, big brake kits, etc..) that are rally specific. Plus, with US Ford Racing hopping on the Spec Focus bandwagon with NASA, many quality Focus rally parts will be available here at good prices.

DEM
 

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Flyboy said:
.

If you are looking for a car to grow with you, consider an older naturally aspirated Subaru. Relatively inexpensive, tough, good rally pedigree, and fun to drive. Again, you'd need a novice waiver, but probably not an issue if you leave the motor stock. Then, as you gain experience and feel the need for speed, it's pretty simple to drop in a turbo WRX drivetrain, or import an STI drivetrain from Japan. Four door cars offer more room. Talk to Randy Zimmer for everything you need to know about these cars.

you can also take a AWD NA subaru and put a FWD trans in it as well and run it in G2 then put AWD back in and run in PGT or Open. and eventually drop a turbo motor in it if you havent wadded it up into a little ball by then.

another thing to consider is that because of this rule it may be easier to sell a nice G2 in the future. so it wouldnt be a total loss to buy a good used G2 car first.
 

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The posts are correct: NASA does not limit what car you can start in. And like DEM, said, as far as things stand, the experience can transfer to R-A. (I would personally doubt that this will change; why would R-A want to turn away entries with even some experience, and also turn off people?) I'll second all that he said in regards to the intent of the rule, and the upside of starting with limited HP.

NASA does now require you to attend novice competitor classes for your 1st 3 events. for those totally new to rallying. These usually start early in the registration/tech process, so you will have to get to the events on the early side of the schedule. (And if you fail to show, you can lose your entry fee!) There is a process to apply for exemptions to this if you feel you merit an exemption; contact John Shirley at NASA Rallysport.

Regards, and see all of you out there soon!
Mark B.
 

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If you are looking for a car to grow with you, consider an older naturally aspirated Subaru. Relatively inexpensive, tough, good rally pedigree, and fun to drive. Again, you'd need a novice waiver, but probably not an issue if you leave the motor stock. Then, as you gain experience and feel the need for speed, it's pretty simple to drop in a turbo WRX drivetrain, or import an STI drivetrain from Japan. Four door cars offer more room. Talk to Randy Zimmer for everything you need to know about these cars.
Bumping an old thread, but anyone have newer thoughts on this.

I currently own an '02 WRX wagon but I am considering selling it for something like a 1.8L AWD Impreza OBS to run in Production class.

If it's still possible for novices to get a waiver to run PGT, I would consider buying a stock or prepped 00 or 01 2.5RS instead.

I'm still a few years away from stage rally, but I'm trying to make the right decisions now to set myself up for it.
 

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I also have a question, an easier question...

What's the classes that a newbie in rally can join. I know G2 but what else. If I buy a 1997 Audi A4 what class is that? Production what?

I've looked into it but I'm not sure still, I have read the rulebook and maybe I need to read it again, but I'm unsure on this. I know I can't run Open, G5, and PGT.
 

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if you are really years away, I wouldn't buy or sell *anything*

Rent a G2 car, get your coefficients, and then run the car you want.

The cost to rent a car for a few events isn't substantially more than running your own. Depending on where the car is located, and where the driver is located, it's possible that renting may be cheaper than owning and towing to events.

There are a handful of people that can cite their experiences which will contradict this, but by and large, for a person that has decided they are going to commit to getting started, it's a very viable plan.

For the person who may only be looking at 1, 2 or 3 events a year, I'd argue the total cost of renting is more affordable than owning, especially for those of us that live in areas where owning a garage is a financial burden.
 

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I actually looked into renting and some of them have some really nice deals. Some you don't have to worry about getting a car or service vehicle there, just yourself. Some offer there own crew, usually a rally teams spare car. And as long as everything goes well and you don't push it too far, you should come out spending less to rent than to own.
But some require you to give a $5,000 down payment....that's where I get turned off but it's understandable.
 

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if you are really years away, I wouldn't buy or sell *anything*

Rent a G2 car, get your coefficients, and then run the car you want.

The cost to rent a car for a few events isn't substantially more than running your own. Depending on where the car is located, and where the driver is located, it's possible that renting may be cheaper than owning and towing to events.

There are a handful of people that can cite their experiences which will contradict this, but by and large, for a person that has decided they are going to commit to getting started, it's a very viable plan.

For the person who may only be looking at 1, 2 or 3 events a year, I'd argue the total cost of renting is more affordable than owning, especially for those of us that live in areas where owning a garage is a financial burden.
Who would you talk to on the east coast about renting?
 

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I'm not in any way suggesting that you do as I've done, or what I say for that matter but here's the route we took...

Couple years rallycross and autocross although rallycross is far more fun! We ran PA class in SCCA events. During that time we ran several TSDs (mainly to get my lovely wife co-driver used to reading a route book and not feeling sick). Find a co-driver and learn not to get lost.

Then we rented a G2 car from a friend for two stage events in 2007. They went well = we finished and didnt break the car, even won a trophy along the way! Then this year we built an SS/PGT class WRX, the same one we'd used for the last 3 years for rallycross/TSD. It had its first outing in Tennessee last month, a NASA tarmac event and the 2nd of 4 events in the Atlantic Rally Cup. Great event, great people, some folk just forget there's another option to RA (don't forget CARS!). Don't get me wrong, RA have great events and people and some stiff competition but for us the whole co-eff points thing was a turn off. We just weren't willing to jump through hoops or do more events in a G2 car to rack up the points required to drive a more powerful car. I'm more familiar with AWD than 2WD but I totally understand that their co-eff system makes huge sense for the younger, less experienced driver and quite honestly I recommend starting in a 2WD car. In rallying, nothing but seat time counts and speeds are far more brisk than most newbies think. It really isnt the same as on the Playstation dispite what you might hear! It would be easy to throw any car let alone a powerful car into the trees on your first outing...

In terms of renting, either search online or get out and work some events, network and find someone who is willing to rent. It's often a situation of who you know...

Anyway...that's just the route I took and I'm glad I'm here competing in the US. It's only taken me 17 years to achieve my dream of rally driving and I still have a lot to learn. Hope this helps.
 

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R-A seems to be more in my region (Chicago)...I love Canada and I do plan to run CARS. I'm not to sure on the NASA schedule but I don't remember too many events close to here, Raly Tennessee is probably the closest. Where I have Sno* Drift, Ojibwe, Gravity Park. I think I can have nine points by running these events right. 2 Regionals at 3 = 6....one at 3 and 2 = 11...i'm already there? is this right..?
 

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R-A seems to be more in my region (Chicago)...I love Canada and I do plan to run CARS. I'm not to sure on the NASA schedule but I don't remember too many events close to here, Raly Tennessee is probably the closest. Where I have Sno* Drift, Ojibwe, Gravity Park. I think I can have nine points by running these events right. 2 Regionals at 3 = 6....one at 3 and 2 = 11...i'm already there? is this right..?
Your math is correct, but remember, you have to FINISH those coefficients :) Gravity Park is two C1s. The Nemadji Trail rallies are C1...not as far as Ojibwe and not as close as GP if you need a coefficient or two.

Bruce
 

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I have to finish the rally to get the coefficients....didn't know that. I see it as, one round trip to ojibwe for 3 is cheaper that a round trip to GP and a round trip to Nemadji Trail...I just want to be able to run a car of my liking, probably some Mopar car or a Audi. 2 favorite brands but it will ultimately come up to whats affordable and reasonable.

And yes it would be an AWD Audi 1.8T
 
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