Special Stage Forums banner

1 - 20 of 38 Posts
G

·
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Confus-ed Newbie:

I've been reading my little heart out for the last month or so since Sawmill and I am troubled. I'm starting to feel like I got overexcited about something new, (to me) went into debt and put blood sweat and tears into building a car for something that might implode soon before I have the chance to get anything out of it. What is it exactly that SCCA is doing to hack everybody (here)off? Seriously, what actual things are SCCA HQ/PRB doing that is wrong? Don't blast me for asking, I just honestly want to get up to speed with facts, not just griping cause things aren't perfect for everyone.
The clubrally shut-down was mandatory as per the insurance carrier, was it not? If that is in fact correct, then that's not SCCA's fault is it? The PRB had no choice right? If thier hands are tied by insurance mandates, what are they supposed to do, say screw it, we don't need insurance? I am new to the rally world, and don't go too far back in SCCA period, but I was under the impression when I joined that SCCA is a club, not a business. They are not serving a product and trying to sell it, they are members of a club that are helping organize events for other members of that club to enjoy. Is that wrong? did I miss something? did I miss a lot? if so, tell me. I am aware that there is SCCA Pro Racing Inc. or whatever to sell specracer stuff, but the main club is just that, a club. By paying your dues you have a vote. By not being around long and not knowing much, I have no choice but to put faith in the guidance of this new sport I like by those that have been elected, appointed, or are crazy enough to take the heat. If I ever feel that my knowledge is enough to be of benefit to others and rally in general, then I will serve in a greater capacity and be ready to take the criticism. From an outsiders view, many of you here paint a really bleak picture of fun and good times of the masses being trampled by the lords in the tower. I can't be the only newbie thinking "what the fudge have I stepped in here?" Actions are always debatable, but I have a hard time believing that anybody "serving" the rally community wishes for anything else than for rally to grow, prosper, and be fun. I admit the amount of info you get from fastrack is limited, so what other info is being withheld? Spell it out for me. I want to know. I know from other organizations that I have been associated with that there will always be a pecking order, and everybody can't know everything for things to work, but what is the "SCCA" specifically doing wrong? Don't want to go any further with money or time to become a griping old crab . I won't be able to ever talk about the good 'ol days if I don't ever have any.

Well, I guess I do have a very over-prepped Rallycross car anyway.

I DO have faith in the future, I sent my ClubRally renewal in today. Heck, license money is nothing compared to what I've already spent so far. I feel like I'm trying to do off-shore powerboating, on minimum wage, in Nebraska. ug.









shepard to lost sheep, you got yer ears on?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
583 Posts
John,

Keep the faith. Use this time to continue preparing your Rally Car and making your organizational and rule preferences known. All the nonsense you've been reading about will pass; one way or another. But, rallying will continue. Probably with SCCA, but if not then with some other sanctioning body. There are simply too many people that love performance rallying.

There have been perpetual National issues and Regional differences. Don't let them get you down. Stay close to other rallyists in your area, make your own judgements and stay actively involved.

Rich Smith

Vive le "Pro-le-Ralliat"
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,013 Posts
My understanding was not that the insurance carrier shut down Club Rally. An insurance carrier could suspend further converage, although not under just any circumstances but under a prescribed set. If they were to so suspend the coverage then it is a subseqent (if logical) decision for the SCCA to freeze Club Rally.

ACP
Flirting with the laws of physics.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
122 Posts
>Confus-ed Newbie:
>I am
>new to the rally world, and don't go too far back in SCCA
>period, but I was under the impression when I joined that
>SCCA is a club, not a business. They are not serving a
>product and trying to sell it, they are members of a club
>that are helping organize events for other members of that
>club to enjoy. Is that wrong? did I miss something? did I
>miss a lot? if so, tell me.

Based on the SCCA's actions, they are trying to be both a club and a business. Why else would they promote the TransAm Series, and of course ProRally?

You hit the nail on the head of the problem of the SCCA. What is SCCA's purpose? Help organize events so people can have simply fun? Develop events so people may become professional? Or promote events for professionals?

Many of the complaints are the SCCA, and ProRally Dept, is more focused on trying to develop a professional series at the expense of the club members wanting to have fun. The cancellation of club events, implementation of year limits on cars, the different implementation of the rules between manufacturer and non-manufacturer entrants are all adding to the argument the rally department is focused on selling a professional series rather than helping organize events for their members.

There you have it.

Trying to accommodate both parties (pros and club) is a very difficult and possibly an impossible task.

Paul Nelson
Navie
 

·
don't cut
Joined
·
4,075 Posts
>
>My understanding was not that the insurance carrier shut
>down Club Rally. An insurance carrier could suspend further
>converage, although not under just any circumstances but
>under a prescribed set. If they were to so suspend the
>coverage then it is a subseqent (if logical) decision for
>the SCCA to freeze Club Rally.
>
>ACP
>Flirting with the laws of physics.
I have through rather strange means come to the conclusion that the insurance company did in fact make the statement to shut down ClubRally or else. The exact words were closer to: The losses in the ClubRally are out of line with the rest of your programs. Bring it to a stop until improved safety procedures can be determined and implemented.

It would have greatly reduced the wailing and gnashing of teeth if this simple statement had been released.
Richard Miller
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
408 Posts
That's called a "cooling off period" and is pretty standard when there is a significant loss to an insurance carrier.

Basically the insured and insurer agree to suspend the "dangerous" activity until it can be investigated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,146 Posts
Paul got the root of the problem right on. The SCCA is both a club and a business with a long history of political battles, and secrecy.

The number one thing SCCA could do is open up, for instance why do we not know exactly why club rally is suspended? What possible harm could come from saying "The insurance company asked us to review the safty stanaderds of club rallys"? Or "The CEO has directed the rally department to suspend club rally until new safty standards are in place"?

If a person can not stand up and take responsibility for making a dessision then they should not be in the posision to make desisions in the first place.

Derek Bottles
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
245 Posts
Simple. The discontented always wail louder than those that are happy, or at leat not overly upset.

I have a good bit of experiance with both Club Racing and ClubRally segments of the SCCA, and there actually IS a differance in the way the two programs are run.

For one, you don't have the problem of club people feeling neglected, because ProRacing is its own department with nothing to do with Club. If the SCCA truely wants a "Pro" rally series, then I think everyone would be happier if they separated the two, and had separte organizing bodies for both within the club.

I don't pretend to know why the rally department is so secretive. It's not generally that way in the club racing community. Perhaps there are more people involved that are in it merely for the power trip? I'm not talking about the PRB necassarily, but Spitzner and company. I don't think anyone would volunteer for that kind of responsability unless they really wanted to see events being run.

I do however have confidence in the SCCA to pull through this sticky situation. They have been putting on events for over 50 years after all. One should hope they know what they're doing. My dad's raced/volunteer with the SCCA for over 35 years, and I have for nearly 5. I don't plan on jumping ship to another organization. I prefer to work with and chage the organization from within.

Forming a "Rally Only" organization seems slightly silly to me. After all, Rally and Racing are merely two facets of the same sport. Not two unrelated sports as some seem to think. They both grew from the same beginnings. Why not have one club to sanction all the events?

I also have a problem with splitting up the rally community with 2 or more sanctioning bodies. We already have that in road racing. As per GARRA, ALMS, Trans Am, and hasn't the IMSA acromnym been brought back by somebody? I'm sure there are others as well. I mean really, who can follow all those series's and who really cares? If you're going for a large number of spectators it doesn't make sense to make them choose from a several differant organisations. Everybody looses out because each group has fewer spactators.

Anyway, sorry for rambling, but the airconditioning is nice, and I didn't feel like going back out to my hot shop and being productive...


Nick Polimeni
www.odysseyhouseonline.com
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
339 Posts
In Canada there is one organizing group, CARS. All they do is rally. The President of CARS is at every rally, as are many of the elected officials. They are all involved in the sport and are involved with each event to ensure that everything runs consistently and smoothly.

- Great TV coverage at every event of the factory cars and of all other classes.

- Much lower entry fees

- Generally a much friendlier environment.

A US version of CARS would not be a bad thing.

Brian
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
583 Posts
>I also have a problem with splitting up the rally community
>with 2 or more sanctioning bodies. We already have that in
>road racing. As per GARRA, ALMS, Trans Am, and hasn't the
>IMSA acromnym been brought back by somebody? I'm sure there
>are others as well. I mean really, who can follow all those
>series's and who really cares? If you're going for a large
>number of spectators it doesn't make sense to make them
>choose from a several differant organisations. Everybody
>looses out because each group has fewer spactators.

Nick,

The "Rally Community" is already split. There already are non-SCCA events in the USA that do not seek SCCA sanction and are separatly insured. Plus, there are Candadian and Mexican events close by that Americans participate in even more frequently now.

Further, SCCA can take full responsibility for "splitting" the rally community into two camps. Pro and Club. It wasn't always that way and SCCA can take full responsibility for devoting the lion's share of organizational energy to ProRally, while neglecting ClubRally.

Another split is among those that want "large numbers of spectators", and those who don't. Many people now see the problems of time, energy and cost that are involved. At the ClubRally level a lot of us see "promoting" spectators as a liability and a hindrance.

Perhaps it's time to acknowlege what has already taken place. Then move on. I personally think multiple Clubs united by common interest in a National Federation has the best chance. SCCA should welcome and be a part of it. It would remove the obviously overwhelming burden of trying to become all things to all interest groups.

Rich Smith

Vive le "Pro-le-Ralliat"
 

·
don't cut
Joined
·
4,075 Posts
>
>Perhaps it's time to acknowlege what has already taken
>place. Then move on. I personally think multiple Clubs
>united by common interest in a National Federation has the
>best chance. SCCA should welcome and be a part of it. It
>would remove the obviously overwhelming burden of trying to
>become all things to all interest groups.
>
>Rich Smith
>
>Vive le "Pro-le-Ralliat"
Each local SCCA region is a separate corporation or club with its own by-laws and governing authorities. In turn, each SCCA region is a part of another organization called a "Division". Each division elects a member to the national SCCA board of directors who in turn
set policy for the club as a whole. So we already have multiple clubs with a national federation. By the way, there is another grouping above SCCA that SCCA is also a member of. I forget the exact name of that group, but it consists of NASCAR, IMSA, NHRA, SCCA, USAC and other large national organizations. In turn, this group belongs to FIA.
Richard
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
583 Posts
Richard,

I know. You'd think a non-profit organizational structure like that ought to work. Particularly since nobody thinks there are serious problems at the Regional Level. The consistant problems appear to come from the top-down responsibilities and dictates of SCCA National that also has broad non-rally considerations.

Then exacerbate all the inherent difficulties by neglecting ClubRally in favor of a professional Manufacturers Series (Pro-Rally) in a combined structure and you have serious disfunction. I wish it wasn't so.

Local and Regional Clubs are the way to go. But tying them together in a unified program through SCCA National has not worked well. It appears to me that a greater autonomy for Clubs joined together in a purpose built National Federation for Stage Rally would be more appropriate.

Rich Smith

Vive le "Pro-le-Ralliat"
 

·
don't cut
Joined
·
4,075 Posts
Rich,
I think what you are asking for is called ClubRally. There is a wide variety of formats available within this structure. What is missing is a national championship that requires you to travel from coast to coast multiple times. Instead of having to tow from Oregon to Maine and to California and to Michigan etc. to win a national championship in ClubRally, all you have to do is tow once to Missiouri. I know it is one heck of tow though. The format is similar to Club Racing.
Richard
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
245 Posts
>Local and Regional Clubs are the way to go.

Not if all the clubs have differant class rules structures. The local dirt oval tracks all have their own sets of rules to keep thier competitors from going to other tracks during concurant events. Keeps things lively for the show the track owners are putting on. Its good for spectators to see the same cars week in and week out. Of course as a competitor, it means your choices are severely limited.

As a sanctioning body, the SCCA has a lot of clout. Something a fledgeling organization doesn't have. A few years ago an independant group tried to start a european style touring car series here. It failed because all the manufactures wanted to wait and see if it took off. It didn't take off because very few manufactures were taking part in it. Today the SCCA has its SPEED World Challenge or whatever its called, and it seems to be doing just fine.

Yes, I aggree that the current combined Pro and Club structure is a bad thing. But it is simply a matter of working to change the way things are organised, not to give up and start over. Why re-invent the wheel?

Get involved, volunteer. Tell National "I know a better way to do things, and here's how." If it makes more sense than the current way things are done, then I think they will change it.

Nick Polimeni
www.odysseyhouseonline.com
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,146 Posts
> Posted shortly following the Sawmill incident.
>
>http://www.scca.org/news/tech/prorally/PROB051303ClubSuspension.pdf
>
>Posted not long afterward.
>
>http://www.scca.org/news/tech/prorally/PRCB052103progbulletinA.pdf

I did read the above at the time of their posting, I was only using this current issue as an example, my gripes go back a lot farther than the suspention of club rally. In regards to these relases; I do not find them satisfactory in depth or detail. I would also like bi-weekly updates...

DKB
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
583 Posts
>I think what you are asking for is called ClubRally.


Richard,

No. I want a ClubRally type of program based on Local/Regional groups that don't get perpetually jacked around by a national organization with other things on it's mind.

Rich Smith

Vive le "Pro-le-Ralliat"
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
583 Posts
>As a sanctioning body, the SCCA has a lot of clout.<
Answer: This is counter productive when ClubRally doesn't benefit.

>Why re-invent the wheel?<
Answer: Because the National Wheel doesn't roll for the ClubRally membership. It's busy with the Manufacturers ProRally Series.

>Get involved, volunteer. Tell National "I know a better way
>to do things, and here's how." If it makes more sense than
>the current way things are done, then I think they will
>change it.<
Answer: Did that and have been patient. So have many others. It hasn't worked for ClubRally at the National level. National is focused and preoccupied with other non-rally concerns and their Manufacturers ProRally Series. Besides, we need fewer National edicts and interventions. Not more.

Nick,

It's time to unhook the National dead weight from the ClubRally horses and let them run. They know where the barn is and it 'aint in Topeka. It's closer to home and served by their friendly, independant, local Rally organizers.

Rich Smith

Vive le "Pro-le-Ralliat"
 

·
don't cut
Joined
·
4,075 Posts
>>I think what you are asking for is called ClubRally.
>
>
>Richard,
>
>No. I want a ClubRally type of program based on
>Local/Regional groups that don't get perpetually jacked
>around by a national organization with other things on it's
>mind.
>
>Rich Smith
>
>Vive le "Pro-le-Ralliat"
I can't think of one thing beyond the suspension of ClubRally which would have happened under any organization where the insurance is obtained thru the top group that is direly affecting ClubRally. Most of the restrictions on cars are aimed at the manufacturers. FIA cars are for ProRally only in that Group N is required to run open in a club event. What do you want at a club event that you can't get beyond there not being enough of us club organizers?
Richard
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
142 Posts
Yellowhammer, if you wish to get a feel for what is going on, take a look at the August Fastrack. A lot. I like the description there "Big elephant to eat, need lots of spoons". And a lot of "spoons" are digging in on the problem. I don't have my Sportscar yet, but it is on www.scca.org.
If you would like to talk it over give me a call.
 
1 - 20 of 38 Posts
Top