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Submitted A Couple Of Rule Changes get GT1 back to amateur status
Posted 28 February 2012 - 10:50 AM
I'm trying to get GT1 back to what it should be, a amateur class within SCCA, not another group for the TransAm guys to run and push out the older GT1 cars. I was all for supporting the new TransAm investment group, but sad thing I found out, I talked with a SCCA insider close to the CRB, they have been told in the past to cater to the TransAm group and who do you think SCCA has been listening too the last few years, not to it's amateur members but the businessmen, Wheeler on belts, sponsors on selling more equipment, TransAm owners who have SCCA's ear and getting GT1 changes, thereby pushing out the amateurs and older GT1 cars. Yet what these snobby businessmen missed was by getting rules changed for themselves, they driven off the amateur and driven off business, also by SCCA listening to them, SCCA has lost membership, cancelled races and lost a lot of revenue, pretty good for a bunch college educated guys. So I'm trying to get this back in the amateur GT1 racers hands and the TransAm guys are welcome with their "tricked-out" race cars, but it's going to closer a even playing field, now we just need to see if SCCA will stand up to the Derhagg's and give us back our racing group, because what these guys and scca are missing, if a lot of GT1 race cars weight between 2900#-3000#, who wants to spend over $1000 for a weekend to run way behind a couple of TransAm cars in Nationals and about a dozen of them at the Runoffs. so here's what I purposed:
Iím going to submit 3 separate rule change recommendations, but am going to explain most of them in this briefing; in hopes of GT1 regaining the amateur group standing that is has been for years until lately and to make it fairer for this group competing against the ďtricked-outĒ TransAm cars and teams that have taken over GT1.
1st, the weight rules need to revert back to 2010, a change was suggested in 2010, SCCA after getting members input stated in Oct. Fastrack that no change to the weights for GT1 would occur, then in Dec. 2010 Fastrack, Richard Grant suggested the change and SCCA approved it. He didnít race TransAm but for some reason he thought the weights should be changed, several of us believe that one or two TransAm owners have SCCA ear, one rent cars out, that having the same weight as TransAm would be easier for the TransAm teams, but all this did was push the amateur guys and older GT1 cars out.
Most of Gt1 cars that most of the guys can afford are the heavier tube frame chassisís from the 90ís and 2000ís, they are .125Ē thick square tubing, most of the cars are fiberglass bodies, they weigh approx. 3000 lbs. and they can not get them lighter without spending more money then they have. The TransAm cars are .090Ē sq. tubing chassisís with carbonfiber bodies, they weigh approx. 2750 lbs. Ė 2800 lbs. Thatís why 2011 saw a decrease in GT1 cars (some of it was the economy) in the National events and for the Runoffs, if youíre a amateur racing club events, why spend the money to race when thereís no chance of finishing in a decent place, because the TransAm cars will be outrunning everyone.
So then the question is, why is TransAm guys running GT1 so much, itís simple, in the 80ís and 90ís TransAm was big, teams and sponsors, drivers were hired to drive for owners and most of the races were held with CART races, then CART went away and TransAm had to hold races on their own. So there are fewer races, yet the guys want to race, so they come into GT1, then they start bending SCCAís ear to change rules to make it easier to go between both groups, what happen, the amateur guys never had a chance and TransAm made GT1 their sandbox not caring that amateur guys and older cars got pushed out.
So can we get the amateurs back into racing, maybe, some of us think with the economy and the mandatory rule of the Hans Device might have killed off amateur racing, maybe SCCA wants to become like the ALMS group, a racing club for businessmen and the elites. I do think with some common sense thinking and rule changes, we might just be able to get some of the amateurs back into GT1, but the TransAm guys will not be happy but it will even out the playing field and besides, were members and itís our field. Let me make this brief point, with the Hans Devices you might have chased away more racers, losing more revenue, same with the TransAm teams talking SCCA into changing GT1 more towards TransAm, you may have satisfy a hand full of TransAm guys, but lost more GT1 cars then there are TransAm cars and therefore losing more revenue.
(also something the TransAm owners didnít foresee with chasing out amateurís and older cars, you chased away potential business, now for the ones selling cars, you might get a couple of businessmen buying that want to try racing, but you lost the amateur that thought about buying a better car).
I will list the other two and will also submit them,
2nd change would be a 50 lb additional weight for cars with adjustable sway bars.
(This came about in TransAm brought over from the CART race cars, look at any sports car today, there are no adjustable sway bars, but if the TransAm guys want them, fine, there a Pro Division just like Formula One, but should not be use in the amateur class).
3rd change would be a 50 lb. additional weight for a top third link adjustable system that comes into the driverís compartment, even though it is encase.
(Another trick setup, but something a lot of the older GT1 cars do not have and owners are not going to spend the money to redo).
So letís now look how we made this a fairer playing field with the TransAm cars coming into GT1, Gt1 weight for a 355 cu. in. motor would be 2880 lbs., another 50 lbs for adjustable sway bars, and another 50 lbs. for the adjustable third link thru the bulkhead, total weight of car is 2980lbs. making it even with most of the GT1 cars at around 3000 lbs. The TransAm guys are still going to win more because they have the money for the best engines and they are always retuning their cars and rescaling them. Now GT1 amateurs see that at least the cars are on an even playing field with the only difference being the engines and driver skill.
So SCCA needs to stand up to the TransAm teams and let it be known the GT1 is a amateur group, Pro teams are welcome but must race to club rules, if they donít like it, go schedule more Pro races, but I think more amateur GT1 guys would come back in. Letís say 10 more cars come back in at 6 races per year with a revenue pickup of approx. $500 (entry fees, etc.), thatís $30,000.
SCCA, you mentioned about looking at rules to make sure a group stays pretty even, is GT1 even with TransAm cars? No, TransAm has the big advantage and Gt1 has been sent home because they can not come close to competing with the ďtricked-outĒ TransAm cars. Any SCCA Committee looking at keeping groups fair, must also look at their changes and see if it will cost racers more, making them think about leaving racing which then causes lost revenue for SCCA.
Posted 28 February 2012 - 09:27 PM
550-600 hp, 2200-2400 lb. cars could be very interesting indeed.
There are quite a few weight reducing rule combo's that could be applied here...that would be cheaper, creative and competitive.
Posted 28 February 2012 - 11:55 PM
CARS AND GET A CONSENSUS OF WHAT IS REALLY NEEDED TO MAKE IT A VIABLE CLASS AGAIN. DOES ANYONE REMEMBER THAT TRANS AM CARS WERE 310 C.I? WHAT ABOUT 310 C.I. FOR GT1 -NO 358'S-EVERYBODY WILL SCREAM ABOUT THAT ONE-WHAT THE HECK 50 LBS FOR ADJUSTABLE SWAY BAR SOLVES NOTHING SAME WITH UPPER 3RD LINK-ALSO I'M NOT DEFENDING THEM BUT LEAVE THE TRANS AM GUYS ALONE THEY ARE JUST TRYING TO MAKE A LIVING AND THEY DON'T ALWAYS FINISH-IT ALSO SEEMS THAT THERE IS A LOT OF RESENTMENT ABOUT THE HANS DEVICE-ANYONE WITH ANY SENSE WOULD NOT DARE CRAWL IN A CAR CAPABLE OF 180+ MPH AND GOD FORBID CRASH HEAD ON INTO A BARRIER AND NOT UNDERSTAND THAT THIS THING CAN KEEP YOUR "BOWLING BALL" SIZE HEAD FROM SEPERATING FROM YOUR SPINAL COLUMN-ITS NOT WORTH THE RISK OF NOT USING ONE-YOU'LL SPEND $2000.OO ON TIRES OR $1000.00 ON A DRIVERS SUIT BUT CAN'T SPEND $600.00 ONE TIME-IF YOU DON'T THINK ITS WORTH IT YOU DON'T NEED TO BE DRIVING-GT1.
THATS JUST MY OPINION-THANKS AND GOOD RACING
Posted 29 February 2012 - 10:17 AM
As to your comment about leaving the TransAm guys alone, they have to make a living, are you for real, racing is their playground, these businessmen have made it outside of racing, but think about it, if a couple of these do making a living off racing, to change the rules more towards TransAm makes the other GT1 cars obsolete in way and a lot of GT1 guys don't make $200,000 to buy new cars every few years, also look at all the GT cars up for sale on different boards, part of the economy but also part they can't keep spending money for changes every year and not be somewhat competitive and don't go off again with, if they can't afford it they shouldn't race GT1. Let me point out another fact to you, the TransAm cars have mandatory right side driver's net, they are not really affective because they are not up against the driver's head, but now with the Hans Device mandatory, no reason for the right side driver's net, because the Hans Device holds the head from snapping over and the belts hold the driver in, but it's being kept in, why? so more product can be sold. You know I'll say it out loud and I don't care if you hate me, but damn it, I have a right, Crony Capitalism has hit racing were a few businessmen are changing the rules to sell products, wasn't like that in the 80's and 90's, a sponsor got their name out to get people interested in their products, but not change rules to do it.
I'M GOING TO STIR THE POT BECAUSE EVEN THOUGH YOU WON'T BELIEVE IT, I HAVE THE WHOLE GT1 GROUP IN MIND. I've been in and out of GT1 since I've been a member for 29 years, I haven't raced as much because I have tried my hand at a couple of businesses, to pay for my racing and hasn't worked out, but still trying and still want to be a part of the amateur club I started with, that's why I'm building a new car. It's just common sense when people see what's going on, so go ahead and hate me, tell me to get out of GT1, tell me not to talk with other GT1 guys, not to put forth suggestions or even get the rules back to what made this amateur group one of the best.
But don't worry Racer14, with Derhagg having SCCA's ear, a TransAm guy on the board and a Trans-Am guy on the GT Advisory Committee, the rules are not going to get changed, but I want everyone to notice, it's alright if TransAm guys have SCCA's ear and was involved getting the weights to be like TransAm, but us regular amateur's should shut-up or leave GT1. Again Racer14, don't worry, between the weight changes, the mandatory equipment and cost and the economy, some have left and TransAm guys have GT1 mostly for themselves, look at 2011, but hey, the couple of guys renting cars and selling them, they still will have some business from other businessmen that want in the sport. So no concern for other GT1 guys, the TransAm guys have the money and the crew make the changes, so changes to benefit them is no problem. guys like me, were suppose to leave GT1 because we dare to try to discuss a change or rule and the main rule is put the GT1 weights back to what they were in 2010.
This post has been edited by prt1983: 29 February 2012 - 01:24 PM
Posted 29 February 2012 - 03:22 PM
potential of not wearing a "restraint device" is too great-I'm passionate and love Gt1 and have been involved for 35 years and have seen the results and know of several guys who say they would not race without a"device"
there other options available and no i don't sell or endorse any restraint system.
Rising cost and the expense of racing is due partly to the economic situation of our country granted but you are not going to change the businessmen who run both Gt1 and Trans Am unless you want to try for a rule with the
CRB that says Trans Am cars currently running as a TA or TA1/2 car cannot enter or a least acrue National
points. Now that should really stir the pot and don't lose your passion or desire to see this great group
of guys and cars go away-be COMMITED TO SUCEED
Posted 29 February 2012 - 08:34 PM
As to, the 358 Nascar engines, have probably reduced cost, not raised it. You can buy them cheaper than building a 310. Secondly adjustable sway bars isn't where the TA guys are beating the club racer, its track time. They never run the same setup in practice. They are always trying something new, and they get more time on the track. Many club racers, (I speak from my own experience) put a setup on the car and never change it. If they do, its just a guess. Thirdly, the cost of parts to put in a third link as has been described is about 200.00, I know we did it very recently. You can't legislate away the knowledge those guys have. And as far as pocket books, some club racers are very well heeled. But maybe its a hobby not a livelihood with them.
If you really want to reduce costs, go to a spec 18" tire and wheel combo, put in an rpm limit, and run pump gas.
But these are only my opinions I could be wrong.
Posted 01 March 2012 - 06:16 PM
If you submitted a request through the proper channels simply get enough GT1 racers to write in to the CRB supporting a return to 2010 weights and, as GT1 AdHoc member, I will support it. Jim Derhaag and I never asked for it to be reduced in the first place, I didn't even know about it until we showed up at a race. Obviously somebody thought it was the right thing to do. If it wasn't, we'll change it.
As to adjustable sway bars, I personally won't support such as idea, mainly because since I don't use them on my car, and I have been winning the most poles and races, I don't see them as an advantage. (They were an advantage for some until we got the tires we use now).
The thirdlink has been allowable in the rules forever, way to late to legislate against it now, what about everybody that built them that way originally?
The GT1 rules actually allow for a much more expensive car to be built than Trans Am does, its just that its easier for people to buy older Trans Am equipment to be competitive.
The 358 engines cost about 25% what it would cost for comparable 310's, over a 20 to 30 race period. I know because I've done it both ways.
Finally, rather than make general comments about "so many" that have been run out of GT1 by the "evil Trans Am guys", why not send me an email, or post here, about who these people are? Because I say you are wrong, we have not run anyone off, in fact I am selling cars to individuals who are paying entry fees, and running races that had NOT been running in GT1 previously. So, to counter your accusation that the "Trans Am" teams are ruining GT1, I say we are in fact it's biggest supporters.
Posted 02 March 2012 - 08:28 PM
The real cost in running GT-1 is not the car or equipment, but the cost to run the car (travel, fuel, tires, motor, broken parts, and wear and tear). Therfore, the cost for an adjustable sway bar, adjustable third link, or hans is minnor, and less than a set of tires. Changing the rules regarding these items will have little effect on participation. As mentioned previously, the adjustable sway bar or 3rd link only improves speed marginally. Maybe for the cost of a hans is a big deal for IT car owners.
National racing has always been for the folks with the best cars and budgets. If you don't have the budget to run national, whats wrong with running an older GT-1 car regional only. In may opinion, the regional races here in the SE are more fun anyway, and I would rather go to the SARRC and/or ARRC at the end of the year.
Lastly, it seems to me that GTA is the current low cost solution for guys how want to go fast in a big bore car. They are safe, tube frame cars with removable fiberglass bodies, and 500HP motors. The speeds that they are currently running at RA are just as fast as many older GT-1 cars. You can put a camaro body on one, and even run trans am.
In summary, Even if we slow down the newer generation lite weight trans am cars they are still going to be superior to the older cars, however there are currently other options for folks that can't afford to run high buck car.
Posted 03 March 2012 - 11:59 PM
In all fairness, considering I am a light driver, I would support the return of the 2010 weights with some documented car weights from other drivers. Maybe the car weight should be based on a 200 lb. driver.
I can not support the additional weights for the adjustable sway bars and/or third link. I don’t see them as an advantage in club racing 30 minute sprint races. The sway bars may provide an advantage in a 100 mile TransAm race because they carry 33 gallons of fuel at the start of the race. In addition, learning Tony Ave does not use them in TransAmÖmakes my position firm against adding the weight.
I would like to see the additional 60 lbs. of weight removed from the SB2 and canted valve heads. E-mail me at email@example.com if you support this rule change so we can work towards this rule change.
I do support the current additional 75 lbs. for sequential shifting transmissions.
Head and neck restraints - that ship has sailed and I support the decision to make them mandatory. They are now considered basic safety equipment in many forms of racing. From personal experience, I smacked the wall at about 80 mph and a 45 degree impact on an asphalt circle track last year without my head and neck restraint...in a hurry and did not wear it. I was lucky to only have neck pain for a few weeks. I will NEVER get in any racecar without my head and neck restraint again. Quality SFI head and neck restraints can be bought for around $500 today. It's well spent money in my opinion.
Old vs. new racecars - The SCCA is constantly balancing production based racecars to keep them competitive. It’s a never ending battle of fairness, self-serving interest, and engineering formulas of power to weight and aerodynamics. There is always the car of the year. I hope we don’t ever see that in GT-1. The rules are stable and there is no need to make 30 year old GT1 technology competitive with a recently constructed car. However, if TransAm rules continue to creep away from the SCCA GT-1 rules....then there is no need for the GT1 rules to follow in my opinion.
To submit a rule change request to the SCCA, go to crbscca.com and fill out the form then click submit.
P.S. We are lucky to have Tony Ave on the CRB. His knowledge and fairness will be a great asset to the GT-1 community.
This post has been edited by BaileyOFD: 04 March 2012 - 12:08 AM