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Jesse,

I posted the following comments last May:

"SCCA is a "65,000 member non-profit organization". I think everyone agrees that Performance Rally should be financially self-sufficient and that it should never be a financial burden to the larger "CLUB". However, a financially self-sufficient club is NOT the same thing as a profitable business enterprise. They are inherently different with enormously different operating implications.

To the extent SCCA's PRD & PRB operate as a financially self-sufficient branch of a non-profit club, they will be most responsive to the needs and aspirations of the General Membership.

To the extent PRD Operations are conducted as a business enterprise with profitability and growth as the primary goal and measure of success, it will be most responsive to the special needs of it's primary financial contributors. (real or perceived)

No organization can serve two masters. SCCA should serve the General Membership."

Rich Smith
 

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Separate the factory series from the existing series.

It's really simple--always has been.

If you want to have a professional, factory supported series, create one from whole cloth without pirating events from the current ProRally series. There are many problems with the way the New World Order has handled things, but the core problem for most of us is that they've imposed their policies and misguided marketing-driven changes on a completely amateur series.

I think that if the SCCA had created a completely new professional championship, like Trans Am, all of us amateurs would be cheering them on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
RE: Separate the factory series from the existing series.

So, what makes for a factory series? Subaru, Hyundai, Mistubishi and Mazda all have to run on their own, while rich privateers are free to buy the regular series?

Did no one care when Hyundai was winning before?
 

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RE: Separate the factory series from the existing series.

>So, what makes for a factory series? Subaru, Hyundai,
>Mistubishi and Mazda all have to run on their own, while
>rich privateers are free to buy the regular series?
>
>Did no one care when Hyundai was winning before?

The amount of money Hyundai gave Libra wasn't as much as you might think. Just enough to have a car just a bit better than the average competitor. That and road familiarity did generally lend itself to a win. But other competitors thought that they had a chance if libra had a problem or two during an event. Libra was probably going to win, but not 100% certainty.

But look how they did against Subaru last year trying to do the same thing. So they are now spending a ton of money, and so is Subaru. Top 6-7 cars are WAY faster than everyone else. If you don't have a million in your budget, and a European ability driver/co-driver you will have a difficult time scratching the top 5. Not impossible, just very difficult.

Its fun to watch the teams, but hard to spend enough to keep close enough to see their dust.

I personally don't have a problem with the Manufacturers, I do have a problem with spiriling costs, and the appearance that the Manufacterers are getting treated different than Joe average competitor.
 

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RE: Separate the factory series from the existing series.

I think I've said that before, though perhaps not very loudly. Trans Am survives just fine with a few factory teams, and a field of well funded privateers...

I don't like that funding, (whether it actually is or not) appears to be funneled away from the club level, and into the Pro Series...
I was just looking at my membership renewal, and they have little checkboxes for you to tell them what your primary interests are so they can allocate your money accordingly. I noticed there are separate boxes for Club and Pro Racing, but not for Club and Pro Rally. The way it is being promoted, one would think ProRally is its own proffessional series. However, at the moment its a bastardized version of an amature national series.

I'm all for creating a proffessional National rally series... but not at the expense of the club guy. And if we don't have a choice as to whether our membership dues go to Pro or Club...well, I see a problem. Not to be one who sits by and idly complains, I'm going to write the main office to voice my opinions on this oversight. I hope some of you do the same.


Nick Polimeni
'71 Volvo 142E (daily driver/RallyCross)
Editor, Blue Mountain Region, SCCA
[email protected]
 

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Rich privateers...

I don't think there's any "club" series in any form of motorsport where more money doesn't equal more speed. Rich guys with the latest cars would have to decide whether they wanted to duke it out with the big boys for real glory, or race with the amateurs for best-of-the-rest honors. I can't see excluding anyone from a real professional series, if they were committed to running all the events, paying huge entry fees and maintaining a competitive car.

On the non-professional side, I'd love to see a spec ClubRally class with cost-controlled Mk1 RX7s or A2 Golfs to address the cost issue. But realistically there will always be Open class and some rich guy in a fast car is likely to do well overall.
 

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RE:Right Idea just five years too soon.

I think what Kurt is trying to do is the right idea but just too soon. Our Pro Rally series is 75% amatuer; from organizers to competitors. The easy solution would be exactly what is bieng said here - a seperate Pro Series.The problem is 7-10 cars isn't enough. I recall Topi(and others) came on this site and said be careful what you wish for. The bright side of all the current turmoil is the Subaru Kids. They are crazy for Rally so perhaps in five years we will have a "Pro" series and the rest of us will be involved in some type of divisional series like WRRC.

Tom Grossmann LVR SCCA
 

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RE:Right Idea just five years too soon.

Trevor; You are giving way too much credit for these imported European "factory drivers". They get regulary beaten by young Finns in England, driving TWO WHEEL DRIVE CARS!
- The Polish champion who cleaned their clocks at Cherokee had an old GrN car...and he isn't a top 100 driver in Europe
- An Italian Alfredo who won Laugling was barely getting away before fast sweep in 2002 Rally Finland...he run near the end in GrN...and so on
- A proper privater WILL and CAN win overall in the US. It doesn't take " a million bucks", just a good car. However, to beat the Denver is an other thing...maybe with Johny Cochran?
 

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RE:Right Idea just five years too soon.

Actually Tom the idea is just wrong period.

The idea is in it's essence this:

Anything can be made into a marketable commodity and then sold, that the thing itself (in our case rally in the woods) is of secondary (or less) importance to the packaging and promotion, how it's pitched or hypped, in short : Presentation.

That word is taught those mediocre talents who have never built anything, raced anything, organised anything with their own effort or money, and these pitch men's stories of the riches and fame waiting to be made on "the next big thing" if only we trust them with things which they have no idea of the nuts and bolts of, the effort involved in just getting even a small rally working, or a club car to the first stage, or what motivates volonteers to at their own expense drive 300 miles to stand in the woods.

They don't care, they have had drilled into their empty skulls that what the series lacks is "an emphasis on presentation".

So they or should we say our beloved promo hype man sends some Resume it SCCA and with it's emphasis on presentation, gets hired, and with some unknown brief, sets about to steal for unknown persons the efforts of quite literally thousands of people, by the now familiar series of debacles and catastrophes.

There has been a lot of people saying that "you can't build something from the top down" and then geniuses who argue that you in fact must, but the real problem is that we have people in an incestuous relationship believing that THEY can build the Series at the editing room control panel.


There is a very interesting article
"TV racing Mantra: SHOW ME the MONEY" about the cost of Pay for airtime TV in a May 2002 I found in an Xratty when cleaning it out for the new happy owner NW rally man Scott Koch, it is worth reading.

I think long sections should be added to this forum.

The route of what Kurt "Einstein" Spitzner has in mind, the key to the grand plan _being to buy TV time_ is a world of lies and BS and manipulation of the same sort of that has seen the rise of Inter-net stocks from venture capitalists (often with no plan, no product, no revenue, no profits), and the now well known phony accounting practices, and the thereby phony stock valuations. They all have the common thread of enormous hype.
The other common thread is we all pay the cost of the bullsheeet which is hypped up in silly bidding wars.
In short however this article shows that we are not in the same league, and for sure the talents and skills of "our berümte und beliebte Leiter" and the cash we have available is pitiful.

Anybody seen the article?

The magazine
John Vanlandingham
Seattle, WA. 98168
 

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RE: Separate the factory series from the existing series.

>So, what makes for a factory series? Subaru, Hyundai,
>Mistubishi and Mazda all have to run on their own, while
>rich privateers are free to buy the regular series?
>
>Did no one care when Hyundai was winning before?

Yes, and some of us worked and discussed methods for mitigating the dominating influence of un restrained spending in ruining the sporting element in motorsport.

I suggested that we:

Cook up a title called "NATIONAL CHAMPION".

We currently have some un-managable mouthfull of something or another.

Then we state that points toward the drivers "National Champion" will be _awarded in only one class_ which at the time I called it Formula2000.

All other classes could continue for class championships and MFG championship BUT IF YOU WANT TO CALL YOURSELF "NATIONAL CHAMPION", you better be in that class.

Rules are simple:
2000cc
2000 lbs min weight
2 man crew
2 wheel drive

that's it.

It was an outgrowth of seeing guys with virtually no previous driving experience maybe 1 or 2 short events, buy complete GpA current cars and prep and 20 tires per event and INSTANTLY return top 5 national stage times.

Many of us did not really believe that these results were reflecting the drivers experience or skills.

At the time, when buying some used tires from John Buffum and this proposal came up, (and at the time Hyundai had a F2 car in British and Australian Championships) John asked me if I thought I could beat Paul if he was in an F2 front drive Hyundai and me in my old SAAB, and my honest answer was "I don't know...."

But I told him that I did know that Paul when he was older would look back at his rally results in a different light if he knew that on any Sunday he had beaten 60 guys with closly matched equipment.

And I know,because I have done it, that anybody can built a competitive car within those limits.

And THAT is what draws us and creates the excitement: The uncertainty of result, the "I don't know........."




John Vanlandingam
Seattle, WA. 98168
 

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RE: Here's the link to the article

yeah, Jon, that's it.
Chilling reading isn't it? Especially the stuff starting under "Enter the 'Time Buy',
This is the route "der spitzner" in SCCA imagines will lead to success and it's especially frightening to read the comments under the topic "Is Speedchannel Coverage Hurting ProRally?".

Can't say about that, but can say that the CHASING AFTER the coverage and the mentality of having TV coverage as the KEYSTONE of the whole system is obviously hurting the series.

No sane person could argue that.

John Vanlandingham
Seattle, WA. 98168

Vive le Prole-le-ralliat
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
RE: Here's the link to the article

Is this new information to you? How long have we been doing a time buy?
 

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RE: Here's the link to the article

Sure, we all knew that Pro Rally had to buy their way onto the tube, but I never would have suspected that theoretically "major league" series like CART would also be in the same boat.

Kent Gardam
 

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RE: Here's the link to the article

>How long have we been doing a time buy?

Were we doing a time buy with ESPN2? With Speedvision prior to the Fox takeover?
 

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RE: Here's the link to the article

>>How long have we been doing a time buy?
>
>Were we doing a time buy with ESPN2? With Speedvision prior
>to the Fox takeover?

Yes and yes. It's the way the vast majority of motorsports get on the tube.

BW
 

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RE: Here's the link to the article

Not to get too far off topic, but if we're buying the whole half hour slot, why do we see typical Speed Channel commercials like "TVMusic4U" during the coverage? Is SCCA selling the spots themselves?
 

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RE: Here's the link to the article

for some strange reason I can't believe that Lawnmower Nationals can afford what the SCCA is paying... Are they getting a deal? How about the sprint car coverage? it appears to be rather regional, though not in my region. I am always flipping through some small track event in the east... I figure Stihl has the jingle to pay for play, so i won't question the lumberjack stuff... :)
 

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I don't get it

>Yes and yes. It's the way the vast majority of motorsports
>get on the tube.

So I have to ask...

If time buys are the status quo in motorsports, why does the Rally Department make such a big deal out of it?

Why am I constantly told that I should be grateful there is TV coverage (which, BTW, I am) because nobody is willing to show the coverage unless the SCCA ponies up the money?

Why is this not considered a budgetary item?

Now Bruce, before you get all upset ;-) I understand the need for $$$ to get the TV coverage. I like the TV coverage. I'm grateful that the manufacturers have stepped up to support the TV coverage. My question is, if time buys are the norm, why is it being presented to us as the exception to the rule. And yes, that's a serious question.
 
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