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I am not here anymore
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Discussion Starter #1
I have been spending too much time looking at the SOVREN rules. SOVREN is the local sanction body for the vintage racing events that I will likely be running my vintage Formula Ford at. This has given me some ideas. I have also been thinking about some of the discussion of the nature of vintage racing that happened after the big crash at Road America in July. And then I tried to apply it to H class rally.

Aside from the lack of entries, I think the big problem with H class is what direction that the class should be taking is not clear. Is it a competitive class or an exhibition class?

In my opinion, it should be an exhibition class. As is the goal in many vintage groups, it should about the cars, not the drivers. If you want to compete in an old car, you should running in one of the "competitive" classes (Open, G2, G5, P, PGT), prepared to current rules.

In SOVREN, points are awarded for starts and laps completed. Maybe H class could go to something like that.

What I was thinking was points for starts, stages completed plus ranked points for how well the car is prepared or something like that. That put the emphasis on the reliability and preparation of the car, not how fast the driver completes the stage. Another idea would be for scoring not to include H class stage times in the results.

Another thing is eligibility. Should H class be just for historic cars (old cars that were rallied "back in the day) or allow vintage recreations as well (old cars that were never rallied in the period around when they were built, but have been built to be replicas of cars from "back in the day")? Maybe there should be a H class steward who determines eligibility based on documentation from his own sources or the competitor.

One last thing is safety equipment requirements. In SOVREN, we are required to sign a waiver acknowledging that we are using old equipment that does not meet current safety standards. It would be very hard to convince the owner of the Lotus 33 that Jim Clark used to win at Watkins Glen in 65 that he should install rollover protection updates. Also, I guess there is theoretically less risk because of the price that you have to pay for wrecking the car is very high (in terms of dollars and getting your license pulled).

Should H class argue for a lower level of safety equipment (if I had Buffum's TR8, say, I would want to keep it as it originally ran) in exchange for things like "no newbie drivers in H class" and "any offs without a good excuse will result in your license being pulled"? Should new vintage recreations have period or current safety equipment?

Just a bunch of ideas that have been running through my head.

alan
 

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just another old phart
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>
>One last thing is safety equipment requirements. In SOVREN,
>we are required to sign a waiver acknowledging that we are
>using old equipment that does not meet current safety
>standards. It would be very hard to convince the owner of the
>Lotus 33 that Jim Clark used to win at Watkins Glen in 65 that
>he should install rollover protection updates. Also, I guess
>there is theoretically less risk because of the price that you
>have to pay for wrecking the car is very high (in terms of
>dollars and getting your license pulled).
>
>Should H class argue for a lower level of safety equipment (if
>I had Buffum's TR8, say, I would want to keep it as it
>originally ran) in exchange for things like "no newbie drivers
>in H class" and "any offs without a good excuse will result in
>your license being pulled"? Should new vintage recreations
>have period or current safety equipment?
>

I don't often find myself on the side of organizers/sanctioning bodies that mandate ever increasing levels of safety equipment/preparation. HOWEVER, given the marginal status of rallying as an accepted/insurable sport as it is, I don't really think that a good case can be made for allowing a "lower level of safety equipment" in stage rallying as it exists today. I wouldn't want to be the organizer/sanctioning body trying to make the case to the insurer and/or surviving family members that Competitor X was competing in my event to thirty year old safety standards (think rollbars, Snell 1970 helmets, jeans and sweatshirts, etc.) when everyone else in the event was held to a much higher standard. I wouldn't guess that the fact that Competitor X had signed a waiver would hold a lot of water in a court case. I'm no lawyer but that sounds like a case could be made for negligence (and/or whatever the appropriate legal term might be) on the part of the organizers when it was obvious that the required standards had evolved past that point. I would think that separate events for only historic cars might be the avenue to permitting a different standard than what is currently utilized, not mixing them in the mainstream of performance rallyists.

Kent Gardam
 

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400 flat to crest
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Alan, if you already have venue to essentially just motor around and wink at each other about just how "authentic" all the cars are, then why do you want to make rally into a version of that?

If you aren't interested in pushing, or competeing at rallies, then just motor along, nothing is stopping you.

Personally after being asked to think about some motor work and a few other things on several "vintage" things and hearing about the utter and complete BS of the cheating, and lying and general BS involved, I turned down the work.
I don't want to be involved in something which as soon as you get near it, obviously stinks of cheating, and is full of slimey posuers.


Keep rally simple and open, it WAS back then, and should be today.




John Vanlandingham
Seattle, WA. 98168

janvanvurpa (at) f4 (dot) ca

Vive le Prole-le-ralliat!
Vive Le Groupe F!
 

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Dirt surfer
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there have been some exceedingly cool old rally cars, prepped more or less to standards of the day, that have come out to play recently at East-coast events.

Mk 1 Escort
Saab 96


these cars didn't race, they ran as course opening. Perfect outlet for the cars to be seen AND heard, but not cheated/schemed/lied/slimed about. The key ingredient is driver and spectators all grinning like idiots.

Our team has a dirt-tough, dirt-simple (and LOUD) old Volvo Amazon that's been rallyXed extensively, and is currently sitting in the crew chief's shop alongside of a pile of mild steel pipe, waiting forlornly to be caged...sad fate. "Xena" the Amazon could go out and play as course opening at a stage rally next weekend if the opportunity was there.

Why isn't this the perfect chance to see old style rally cars run in the dress of the day?


Dave G

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

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1973 WRC POR
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Over the past few years, there has been considerable debate on SpecialStage about rules for historic rally cars. Basically, nothing has happened in terms of historic cars being prepared and rallied. A car here or a car there, but essentially no demonstrated interest or support for the class.

I think that we are barking up the wrong tree. Instead of an historic class for cars, we should be thinking about an historic class for drivers and co-drivers.

I am serious.

Think about the interest that could be generated by having Buffum, Perusse, Boyce, Heinonen, Millen, Harvey, Skowronnek, Black, Walker, Smiskol, Jones, Kreibich, Kammer, Samida, Vanier, etc. all competing on a regular basis. Even better if they were all in the same spec car. Not a bad idea to pitch to a car manufacturer: a rally legends class with everyone driving your car.

Maybe two driver subclasses: ages 55 to 65 and 65 and over. All co-drivers would have to be 55 or older.

To me, it would be much more interesting to see these guys out on the stages than the odd old rally car. And I guarantee it would be competitive.

Doug Woods
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I was really only half serious about my ideas. I just wanted to start some conversation on the topic. Not much has been said about H class in a while, so I figured that I would try to get someone to talk about something!

The fact is that H class is going nowhere.

alan
 

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Discussion Starter #9
>
>>In my opinion, it should be an exhibition class.
>
>Ewwwwwww. It's a race car. Race it.

But it is not a race car; it is a rally car. And rallies range from tours to gimmick rallies to TSDs to stage rallies.

If you want to race it, then you should bring everything up to modern specs and race it.

If you have something like Toivonen's Talbot Sunbeam, it has already been through a tough enough life and really doesn't need to be run through the wringer again.

alan
 

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I am not here anymore
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Discussion Starter #10
>I wouldn't want to be the
>organizer/sanctioning body trying to make the case to the
>insurer and/or surviving family members that Competitor X was
>competing in my event to thirty year old safety standards
>(think rollbars, Snell 1970 helmets, jeans and sweatshirts,
>etc.) when everyone else in the event was held to a much
>higher standard.

I was definitely not proposing reducing the personal safety equipment requirements. I was primarily thinking of cages. I don't have a good proposal for this aspect. Maybe just use FIA Appendix K Historic rally requirements. Maybe allow true Historics to run to their original rules (or Appendix K rules) and require Art 253 cages in re-created cars.

>I wouldn't guess that the fact that
>Competitor X had signed a waiver would hold a lot of water in
>a court case. I'm no lawyer but that sounds like a case could
>be made for negligence (and/or whatever the appropriate legal
>term might be) on the part of the organizers when it was
>obvious that the required standards had evolved past that
>point.

I know that I have to sign the waiver to run with SOVREN. SOVREN has money and hosts a major NW spectator event. It would be an attractive target in case of lawsuit. They still allow period correct rollover protection.

>I would think that separate events for only historic
>cars might be the avenue to permitting a different standard
>than what is currently utilized, not mixing them in the
>mainstream of performance rallyists.

Maybe run them after. I don't know.

Maybe if we throw enough ideas around, we might come up with a good one.

alan
 

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I am not here anymore
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Discussion Starter #12
>Alan, if you already have venue to essentially just motor
>around and wink at each other about just how "authentic" all
>the cars are, then why do you want to make rally into a
>version of that?

a) I am just trying to get some discussion going in this forum

b) This wouldn't be for me. I bought a (historic eligible) rally car, fixed it up a bit and then had no desire to actually drive it.

>If you aren't interested in pushing, or competeing at rallies,
>then just motor along, nothing is stopping you.

As I said, I am not talking about what I want. I am asking the question "what should H class rally be?" Is it somewhere that old, uncompetitive cars should go for one last shot at glory before being smacked into a tree? Is it a place to show off your Historic (or re-created) car in its natural setting with risking it too much? Is it something in between?

And what happens next year when the Audi Quattro (introduced in 1981) turns 25 and is vintage eligible?

I say if you want to race an old car, prep it to one of the other classes and run in that class. Mr. Tennis has shown that you can do well with that.

>Personally after being asked to think about some motor work
>and a few other things on several "vintage" things and hearing
>about the utter and complete BS of the cheating, and lying and
>general BS involved, I turned down the work.
>I don't want to be involved in something which as soon as you
>get near it, obviously stinks of cheating, and is full of
>slimey posuers.

Everyone in vintage racing cheats? Have you done a comprehensive survey of the SOVREN paddock or is this just your opinion based on limited experience? There are definitely vintage organizations where cheating is more prevalent than others, but to paint the entire sport with such a broad brush seems a bit unfair.

>Keep rally simple and open, it WAS back then, and should be
>today.

If only because of current road permission issues, rally will never be simple like it used to be (supposedly, don't know - wasn't there).

alan
 

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Dirt surfer
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>That {course opening} is a good idea. However, there is, at most, three slots
>for such vehicles.
>
>alan
>

3 slots = better than NO slots!

so far, 3 spaces for potential course openers leaves plenty of room for available old cars.

now how about D Woods idea about class for Historic pilotes?!! Great idea, now they just have to set age entry limit at...um, how about 52? }(

Then again, several of the vintage pilotes he spoke about are actually running Tall PInes next weekend (Buffum, Perusse) but not in vintage hardware...those guys are gonna be FLYING in Hyundabishis and Evos...

Dave G

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

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just another old phart
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>now how about D Woods idea about class for Historic pilotes?!!
>Great idea, now they just have to set age entry limit at...um,
>how about 52? }(
>
>Dave G

Patience, grasshopper, your time will come...

Kent Gardam
 

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There are some issues with H cars due to rust, trees, gravel damage and obsolete suspension parts. I think most old road race cars end up in a barn or some such. Most old rally cars are in the crusher. Our sport isn't very friendly on sheet metal.

Historic with a rolling 25 year limit adds a bunch of current cars, RX7, Nissan 210 and 510, Volvo 240 many of which are still running in G2 and G5. They are definitely old but don't really seem historic yet ( I feel that way in the mornings..) . Historic needs blended into "classic" somehow. Escorts, Cortinas, Minis, S1s,B18s, Lancias. These are historic and classic. The cars need to be pristine,replicas are fine, like Glenn's Cortina or Victor's Audi, not just 25 years old and painted with Krylon. There is a place for true Historic, not 3 clapped out old rally cars at the back of the pack. Set the bar high and honor them properly. Gene
 

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Don't start with me...
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>Think about the interest that could be generated by having
>Buffum, Perusse, Boyce, Heinonen, Millen, Harvey, Skowronnek,
>Black, Walker, Smiskol, Jones, Kreibich, Kammer, Samida,
>Vanier, etc. all competing on a regular basis.

Don't forget Dan Thiel, Tom Tolles, Wayne Baldwin, all Volvo partisans. We could have a Volvo 142 class.

>All co-drivers would have to be 55 or older.

Yep, they'll need old co-drivers.
:)

Phil Barnes
Cortland, NY
 

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don't cut
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>>All co-drivers would have to be 55 or older.
>
>Yep, they'll need old co-drivers.
>:)
>
>Phil Barnes
>Cortland, NY
Or seeing eye dogs.:D
 

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>
>>In my opinion, it should be an exhibition class.
>
>Ewwwwwww. It's a race car. Race it.

(I think) Alan's point is what is the intent, not how do you go about it.

Should we spend time arguing about eligibility, subdividing the class, making it a semi-level playing field etc.?

I consider my drives to be for exhibition - so people can enjoy seeing the car rallied. If I wanted to "compete" I'd buy a Subaru or a Focus or something.

I hope it doesn't look like I'm driving at 5/10, every now and then we post a decent time, though nothing startling. It is pretty important to me that there is lots of sideways, as well as a lot of noise. I probably drive at 8-9/10 ish, I'm not all that good with RWD, although I did get some nice style comments at OT before gearbox broke.

I don't think much about damage to the car when I drive it - it is a rally car!!!!!

The spectator reaction to our car on the stages is usually quite positive.

Let me tell you another story. I know the guy that owns arguably the most famous rally car in the world, Roger Clark's 1972 RAC winning Escort LVX942J aka "Esso Blue". The car is completely period perfect, down to period fire system and Lucas mechanical fuel injection. (bit of a risk by Ford on the RAC!) He built it from a half decent genuine shell (one of many used for LVX942J) and using a lot of geuine bits from the car; rally shells don't usually survive all that well, it required extensive work.

But to quote him "where can I drive it? Can't really rally it." (it is worth probably $100k ish)

So, his "genuine restoration " is really too good to rally, even though it is utterly period correct and ready to rally.

My car is merely an "authentic recreation" (somewhat like Roger Clark's 67 Scottish Rally winner, but without the side stripe and Twin Cam engine).

Definitely is fun to drive!!

As for safety equipment, the FIA guy tech guy seemed to think my 6pt bolt in cage was fine. In period they would have used a roll over hoop, or nothing.

Being at Goodwood recently I saw Sir Stirling Moss driving around the track wearing a leather cap. He is given special dispensation because he's Stirling Moss (it took a bit of convincing....)

But most of the cars there are driven at 11/10th (really) and they don't even use lap belts in some of the older cars. A driver was thrown from his car when it rolled, and then it drove over him (broke a leg or two). They're really right on the edge safety wise at Goodwood.

My only safety concern driving my car is the solid 1 piece steering column shaft.

Glenn
 

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Comments about period safety vs modern safety are at the core of a rule developed for Targa Newfoundland.

If a classic (vintage) car is a pedigree car that ran during that era, and can prove it with log book, it can run with a period roll cage (for closed car) or roll-bar (for open car). The entrant of the car must be able to demonstrate that it complies with the rules of the period of its first competition. If it is a recreation -- a classic car built in the modern era -- it must comply with the modern roll-over protection regs for the event.

This permits the real classics to come out of their garages and be run with minimum changes to those important details that make them cherished as authentic. So far, there haven't been a lot of these cars, but we're hopeful.

Other modern safety equipment regulations like 5-point belts, current helmets, fire protection, etc. still apply.

Doug Mepham

(clip)
"I was definitely not proposing reducing the personal safety equipment requirements. I was primarily thinking of cages. I don't have a good proposal for this aspect. Maybe just use FIA Appendix K Historic rally requirements. Maybe allow true Historics to run to their original rules (or Appendix K rules) and require Art 253 cages in re-created cars."
 
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