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Last Post 22 Sep 2008 11:17 PM by  KBroeker
New Pax for SMS and Street tire Stock classes
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SpeedTeacher
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18 Sep 2008 05:34 PM
chriskrumnow wrote:

You guys might not realize this, but...this something like what Grayden used to do. I wish people would read an entire thread before posting a reply. I have already said I am not changing the SMS pax. I still intend to put in the street tire stock classes. There is no point in making up a class that has no chance of winning. Look at it this way. The national pax is created by driver and car alike. It is imposible to seperate them. Why are we using national cars and drivers to crown a regional driver of the year? Because it's the way we always did it? I've just informed you that it's not.

I am not giving everyone a ribbon. I am giving the class an equal chance at winning. The solo champion would not have changed with the new indexes and rules I have created. They just don't win by as much.

Thanks for not attacking me personallyl. I am trying to do something good for the club. I'm trying to equal out the finacial advantage. We are not preofessionals. I appreciate the passion you have. I am not doing this for myself. This is nothing personal. Do the math and then we can debate the rules that will allow SMS to compete. The challenge is to keep the SMS class pure. Keeping people from jumping into the pax with nationally competitive cars would destroy the pax is the really difficult part.

The debate of street tire in stock classes and beyond is an ongoing one. The regional entries benefit more by the regions controling the pax. I happen to agree with this philosophy. This gives the regions room to adjust the pax to their drivers. By the way Al Chan told me that. That is why I put so much time into figuring this out. I know the pax for SMS is a shock. Do you think it was easy going back through over 20 events and getting the one pax. Could anyone else have gone through the past 2 years of events to find the adjustment for the street tire pax, you have to know what tires each person is driving on. That pax as well would have only changed the outcome of one event. These classes will not change the overall champion. These indexes would only change 2 events out of the past 3 years. It is not handing anyone a victory. Do the math.

I can use the same method to every class if needed.

Chris,

As the leader of the solo program this year, its irresponsible to introduce new classes with two events less, even if you don't change SMS. You are potentially affecting the outcome of events, especially if you are going with the PAX indexes you suggested earlier. They are not accurate numbers. I understand you went and did a bunch of research, but what I see doesn't make sense. Believe me, when I was solo director, I did the same type of thing. Being gung ho for what you believe in is great. I just don't think the approach is something that is good for our club.

Based on my experience, new people who are frustrated, are frustrated because they aren't embraced and felt welcome by our members. When I was new, I raced for a good solid year before anyone really talked to me. It sucked. I loved the sport enough to stay, but I didn't feel welcome. During my tenure we focused on making new people feel welcome. Our numbers showed that we were successful.

The more we bastardize our relationship to the SCCA (by creating a ton of 'region-specific' rules) the more damage it will do. We are part of the SCCA, whether we like it or not. SMS is the perfect example of something well thought out (during the off-season) and then implemented. In fact, I will offer up a challenge... add these new classes and I will find a stock car on street tires and put myself at the top of the PAX for the last event. Could be a fun challenge...

You say this is an exercise to get people talking, but you are still swimming upstream against all this feedback to implement something in the next two weeks. Do the right thing and take the lead, after the season is over, to pick this topic up and drive it home (pun intended).

Todd J.

STSProbeGT
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18 Sep 2008 06:28 PM
I drove my first probe for over a year on street tires. I knew going in it was an uphill battle racing against people with race tires...but I didn't keep going to win. I think it wasn't till in my 3rd year before I knew what the PAX was and what it ment. Todd is 100% right that you might come for the racing but you stay for the friends. Maybe a peer group to buddy up drivers that have been around with new people. Just someone to talk to at the races and I was lucky to get to know Ron Conrad. Younger people that are there just to win IMO the wrong people to get involved....younger people that want to learn...now that's the people we need.
O6XRS
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18 Sep 2008 06:48 PM
wrheadle wrote:

O6XRS wrote:
Its spelled Melissa! 1 L!!!! Dangit![:@]

Sorry, missed that. How do you really feel Melissa 1 L?[H]

Gotta make sure you get it right on the list when I'm there "having fun" beating people on my race tires. (even tho I don't get to be there next event[:'(])

OneEyeMedia
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18 Sep 2008 07:17 PM

When I started 3 + years ago, this is what I saw when Todd was the Solo Director. He had implemented a team system where we would call our team mates up and or email them to make them aware of the next event we were going to locally or even our of town. I remember, I was Team Silver Captain...LMAO! Since then it has virtually gone away...other than they Teams that have started this year locally (TeamAwesomeSauce and Team RIDE) and this was created mostly for cost saving to out of town events and as well for competetion amoungst a group of 5 people per team. As if we do not have enough other figures to figure out...LOL :) But this is something that would help a lot. I am always a big believer in helping out others that fall behind. Coaching is something that is very enjoyable and rewarding at the same time. When you make a newb feel like one of the group, they will come back and bring one or two and or even a group back to were they were happy.

I know from HARDCORE experience that when I started, I am very happy there was a group looking out for me when I was driving. They gave me pointers and that channeled from the Solo Director all the way to the racers. I was driving the slowest car in STS class against spec civics and was getting my ass handed to me by 5-6 seconds; but I kept coming back becasue I felt welcome. We had group meetings of our own, we had trophy party's and we made each other faster. I agree with Jake on the PAX thing as well. I hardly even looked at it when I started. I saw where I was and then thought, "wow, that was cool" I really did not start looking at the PAX results until this year. I do fairly well in the slanted H; but I remeber one thing Warren commented on in a Solo School two years ago. (not word for word quote)"You will come to find yourself driving a car in class and realize that now matter how hard you try you will not win that class in that car. You have two options, one sell it and buy the car that wins the class and get fast in it and try to beat those winners and or two keep the car and enjoy racing it everyday you go out." I thought that was well put. This is one of the reasons like Kyle mentioned above that we have so many darn classes. I would rather it stay simple and fun. The more complicated it gets the less fun it becomes and the less time we have to even try to have fun. This is a hobby for about 90% of us. We work a 40-70 hour job and most of us are guys looking to just get away from all the BS in the copporate world and want to unleash our right foot into a gas peddal. We want to smell burning rubber and race fuels. We want to see the F-body's hang loose with mad body roll and spin out in the tight 180! We want to the the gti's and civics three wheel ever tight apex on the course. We want to just freaking hangout with some really AWESOME people and just enjoy the day. Your HARD CORE guys are the ones looking at PAX. Your National HARDCORE people are looking at every .001 of time they can get. The rest of us are out there becasue right now, as the vary moment, it is one of the cheapest entry levels of auto racing we can do with out get put in jail and or lossing every road driving right available.

If we could just get back to the grass roots of be a HARDCORE group and quit worry about all the crazy times and start making new people feel welcome, then they will stay and keep coming back for more. Lets put all this energy back to what matters. When is the last time we even talked or got a survey on our club as a whole? This would have answered some questions as well.

Well, I would keep going; but I would just be wasting time as this point because the dictator has decided what he wants and that is what we will be getting. At this point I just wish we could go back to having fun! :P

Respectfully,

Jason Massey

chriskrumnow
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18 Sep 2008 09:53 PM
I'm glad this thread is going in a better direction. I have pulled the plug on the new classes and indexes. I will not be backing down. I know there is a better way to do stock and street mod index classes.
KBower
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18 Sep 2008 10:47 PM

Chris,

I'm curious, do you know why the stock classes are allowed to run DOT slicks(race rubber)? If you don't. A long time ago there were very few high performance street tires. The tires that were available would only fit a few sports cars. So the argument then was tire availablity, then tread wear ratings. In short, it was decided to allow the DOT slicks because the performance tires were not available for all cars. I don't disagree with a street tire class for stock cars, but where does it end? Do you break it down to tread wear ratings 140-180 is a class 180-200 is a class......... One might be able to find a lower tread wear rating in only a few sizes, then what? I think you build the car to the class rules or you run what you have and have fun. I don't understand the big deal, but I autocrossed when there was a FTD (Fastest Time of the Day), and everyone was not a winner. To me if all this is about a trophy, I wouldn't be doing it.

Keith

KBroeker
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21 Sep 2008 11:09 AM
I'm gone for a week in the nether regions of the UP and all "H-E-Double Hockey Sticks" breaks loose...Dick Tater...LMAO
KBroeker
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21 Sep 2008 11:27 AM

On a more serious, personal and relevant slant...I was with the Indy Region before coming here. Before that (Fall 2001-Spring 2002), I was with the Detroit Region and ran a '97 Mustang Cobra in FST (or TFS whatever, on g-Force KDs) under the "98%" rule. While I was in Detroit, I also ran the Detroit Counsel of Sports Car Clubs which followed the Det Reg SCCA classing, although they ran their events a little differently. Once, while at at DCSSC event, I beat Al Chan (you might remember him in a copper colored Solstice in CS at the Coliseum Event). This had to be a T&S error as I only had about 3-4 events under my belt and I knew Al was strong (he ran in TFS in an auto Firebird), so I really never counted it as a win. When I was in the Indy region, they had class wins for the year based on best 5 of 8. My only serious competetor was a guy who was my friend, lived in Richmond like I did and I went to his brother and sister for chairopractic care. He was also in an F-Body, but he took the advice of people like Lee Miller and Warren LeVeque and ran street tires in "Stock" class as a learning experieince as he had maybe only a year more than experience than I did. Needless to say, I had a Regional Annual class win in my first full year at autocross. But, I did it against a guy who was on street rubber, while I was on race rubber (albeit older, out of stock BFG left overs). Once again, the "win" was bitter sweet. It is like getting the record for the fastest 100m hurdles, but the wind was blowing that day, so it always has that asterisk that means "wind aided".

What I am trying to say is that as a competetor, if I am not playing by the rules that were put down by a knowlegable ruling body and accepted by all (at least by consensus), then any win is tainted.

acrace
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22 Sep 2008 02:32 PM

Oops. My name came up. First of all, a disclaimer. I don't know and don't pretend to know all that's going on in Fort Wayne Region. I do have experience over a number of years being involved in leadership capacities in both Detroit Region SCCA and Detroit Council of Sports Car Clubs (a group of independent clubs, including Detroit Region SCCA). Philosophically, my leadership "platform" was to make sure that newbies as well as those who are content at running only regional events are well accommodated. They are the bedrock (regional only participants) and future growth (newbies) of this sport. Yet, on the other hand, there is always that group of folks that enjoy the Tours/Pros/Nationals, and helping them reach their full potential was something that I wanted to foster when I was Detroit Region's solo coordinator.

I know that I had some thoughts in a different post (different subforum) where Chris was active that may have spurred the street tire index adjustment. My bad . . . I should have given some background for FWR's consideration. Currently, both Detroit Region and also Detroit Council use an adjustment to the existing PAX index for street tires. A street tire is defined as a 140 or higher treadwear rating. Both organizations currently use a 0.98 multiplier (thus, if your PAX adjusted time is 50 seconds for, let's say, an H-Stock car, on street tires it would be 50 x 0.98 or 49 seconds). Detroit Region does not make up its own PAX numbers, but uses the existing index and applies just this 0.98 multiplier.

At one time, Detroit Council had additional prep limitations for their street tire classes. No front sway bar adjustment. Single adjustable shocks only. Now the prep allowances mirror the "regular" stock classes.

It was mentioned in one post that there are few people running the Stock classes on R-compounds. Maybe those need to be combined for trophy purposes and an index applied for scoring purposes. Detroit Region is doing that this year. With our PRO classes and the Street Tire Stock classes, the participation level of Stock class drivers on R-compounds dries up.

Items for your region's consideration . . . is 0.98 a good multiplier for street tires (Detroit Council started out at 0.95 many years ago, but as the 140 treadwear tires have improved, the gap has narrowed)? Do you want to put prep limited on the street tire stock classes (seems reasonable to me)? Would another street tire multiplier for 220+ treadwear rating tire be appropriate (administration-wise that is a hassle; explaining how come you have so many regional street tire multipliers is confusing; from a fairness viewpoint, I would suspect that the majority of the street tire stock participants do not run Azenis or RE-01Rs or those types of tires - they run OE equivalent tires)?

One other comment, to add to the length of this post. Back in the late '80s (yes, some of you were in diapers) when I was Detroit Region solo coordinator, I came up with our own indices. It was 2/3rds based on the Nationals index and 1/3rd based upon local/regional performance. It was a hassle to do and very time consuming. And when top drivers switched classes, they would destroy everyone else if they happened to move into a class that had a soft index.

I wish you luck as you formulate a plan for growth. It's not easy. But we're all here to have fun. And I hope to visit FWR next year to enjoy bench racing with my new friends!!!

KBroeker
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22 Sep 2008 07:53 PM

Thanks for the reply, Al, and help me out if what I am about to say is no longer true.

One of the other things I did not mention in my "serious" post was that the Detroit Region usually has a 250 entrants cap and usually fill it. For us (typically 70-100 for a local oriented event), adding more classes only makes for more single car classes. Once again, not the greatest for competition.

A few more memories from a middle aged guy who only found AutoX about 7 years ago...I remember my first SCCA autocross in Detroit. It was at GMs Milford proving grounds (in the lot, not on course or on a skidpad) and there was a guy there in exactly the same car, a '97 Mustang Cobra (though his was whitle while mine was black), still on the stock tires, like I was. Mike "Somebody, maybe Burke" (help me out here Al, older guy, was still driving one of the 80's Shelby Omni's at the time) did a novice walk, which I participated in. While I was running, he was watching me and gave me a few tips between runs. I was very proud to beat the other Cobra driver, who had again, about a year advantage on me. So, two observations. One, I could not have done it without the help of Mike, the Novice Cheif. Two, this sparked the competition bug in me. Speaking of competion, Mike and Amanda (the Chiropractor siblings of my competition in FS in Indy) seemed to relish in the fact that I always beat their brother in "the races".

acrace
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22 Sep 2008 10:44 PM

Kyle:

Good to see a post from you. It has certainly been a long time.

Yes, Mike Burke was very good at working with others. He gave the talk at the Detroit Region solo school for years. He's moved out of the Detroit area and not only autocrosses, but also has a Spec Racer. He also has qualified for Runoffs in a S2 a few years ago. Mike is a great guy.

Detroit Region usually has a 200 entry cap. Usual number of entries is somewhere between 130 and the cap.

I definitely agree that there can be too many classes. For Detroit Region, it was decided that the Street Tire Stock class should be offered, and there are parallel Street Tire classes for each Stock class. There also is a TSM (Street Mod on Street Tires) class. It is a very popular class as many folks who like to tinker with their cars and then find out about autocrossing tend to fall into this class. To promote competition and to combat the lower entries in the "normal" Stock classes, they are combined into two or three classes (I forget). This was decided prior to this competition year and is a regional "supplemental" rule, so people could plan. As I mentioned in my earlier post, most folks who run R-compound tires on Stock class cars tend to opt for the "Pro" class. Also of note is that Detroit Region does not offer novice classes.

I'm sure that with careful deliberation FWR can improve their program to offer a playground for the regional-only folks and for those who want to play at the highest possible level.

Sorry to have caused any trouble :)

OneEyeMedia
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22 Sep 2008 10:56 PM
acrace wrote:

Sorry to have caused any trouble :)

Dear SIR:

You did not cause any troubles with our thread here.

Mr. Krumnow had some issues in his delivery of the news he found out (in another thread) and did not take the time to present it in away we all could talk about the way that would be best for out region.

Instead: "These are taking effect immediately. I will be adding the classes to myautoevents.com soon! Thanks!" We got this...

I respect you open thoughts and many of the people that will help in making a new "playground" for the new guys/gals to play on will probably be in touch with you again.

It was all in the delivery - it was NOT YOU 8)

Cheers,

JPM

KBroeker
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22 Sep 2008 11:17 PM

Al-

Just a quick note...your TSM=our SMS...this was proposed by a Subie guy who had done a JDM swap to his GC Impreza and did not want to compete against R-compound guys as at the time it was his daily driver (he recently completed a USDM swap in his DD Outback that has been slammed)...it has been our largest class for the two years we have had it...the only down side is that it does tends to attract the more casual and young competetors (although there is some maturety within the class that are regulars), so often times we have the "drifters" in the class or those that feel they do not have to work their assigment as they have been embarased by their lack of driving skills and are not going to get a trophy anyway, etc. ...

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