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Last Post 10 Dec 2015 09:16 PM by  Z3papa
Proposal combining STS and STC
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drdisque
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21 Nov 2013 04:57 PM

    In this months fasttrack I saw something I didn't quite expect to see:

    #12465 STS & STC Combining Proposal

    The STAC has provided the following proposal for member review and feedback:

    Effective 2015, all cars currently classed in STC will be re-classed to STS.

    I personally have no dog in this fight as I don't run STC or STS and don't plan to any time in the near future. However here are my feelings.

    On the surface this makes sense, the CRX Si which is pretty dominant in STS and the '89-'91 Civic Si which is pretty dominant in STC are, on the surface, basically the same car.

    I can see being upset if I was a local competitor running in STC and not in a nationally-prepped Civic (for example a 2.5RS or a Celica or newer Civic), now having to go against the much more nimble CRX's and non-torsen Miatas. However, then I remembered that in most regions STS isn't very heavily subscribed so it actually shouldn't upset the balance that much. STS faced a difficult future as virtually all the competitive cars in the class are over 20 years old.

    Additionally, I think that by making the combined STC/STS a stronger/faster class you can make a case for moving most of the FWD cars in STX to that class (like Cobalt SS S/C or Sentra Spec V, maybe even ITRs and SRT4s) without upsetting the competitive balance too much, maybe eventually making STX a RWD/AWD-only class. As it is now, STS, STC, and STX are all very similar in speed, so it makes sense to me to combine the slower cars in those classes into one class and maybe creep STX faster (as it seems they are intent to make STU even faster there is probably some headroom for STX).

    Any other thoughts?

    ron
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    21 Nov 2013 06:08 PM
    I think we should continue the current trend of letting everyone build a car then change everything the next year so we all have to do it again and again and again and again, am I being repetitive?. Enough changes leave everything alone for 3 years minimum. There is no reason to consolidate heavily attended classes, leave them alone. If anything let the civics move so some other groups of cars become competitive but leave the class otherwise the same. With the giant move towards street tires and virtually no-one actually knowing how that will change class numbers I think if you change anything in the st classes would be a huge mistake. Let the people filter to the new tire classes they want first, then if st starts to fall apart get rid of classes then.
    sjfehr
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    21 Nov 2013 10:06 PM
    For regional competition, the PAX/RTP difference between STC and STS this year is 0.3 seconds. DAX had them even closer, didn't it? Not sure about your regions, but it's been an extremely long time since I've seen any serious STC competitors at our local events; any STC competitors, for that matter. Not too many people excited about autocrossing 89 Civics I suppose. The classes are making numbers now at nats, but how long will they keep doing so?
    SteveEkstrand
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    21 Nov 2013 11:30 PM
    Huge successful class destroyed just by gossip of rules changes. Owning an STC Civic is like a game of musical chairs. Don't be caught owning the last one. That car goes from being one of the most appropriate and successful autocross platforms to done. People have been selling out for the last couple of years and attendance declining just on the constant attack and threats. Doesn't matter at this point if they do it or don't do it. The damage is done. I'll be parting my car out at some point.
    hklvette
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    22 Nov 2013 08:43 AM
    Posted By ron williams on 21 Nov 2013 06:08 PM
    I think we should continue the current trend of letting everyone build a car then change everything the next year so we all have to do it again and again and again and again, am I being repetitive?. Enough changes leave everything alone for 3 years minimum. There is no reason to consolidate heavily attended classes, leave them alone. If anything let the civics move so some other groups of cars become competitive but leave the class otherwise the same. With the giant move towards street tires and virtually no-one actually knowing how that will change class numbers I think if you change anything in the st classes would be a huge mistake. Let the people filter to the new tire classes they want first, then if st starts to fall apart get rid of classes then.

    Leave things alone for three years? Like leaving the MCS in GS for how long?  I agree with your point about leaving everything else be until the change to street tires in stock has time to settle in, but wanted to point out that sometimes waiting is just as bad as doing too much at once.

    I have no dog in this fight, but I'm curious about the specific rationale behind this proposal.  If its because the cars are getting older, so what?  People restore cars, and CRXs and Miatae are cheap, fun to drive, reliable, have huge aftermarket support, and are still readily available if you're willing to look.  The same argument was made for adding the C5 to STU, much to the chagrin of the AWD crowd.

    I'm writing a letter.

    The Nebulizer
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    22 Nov 2013 09:45 AM
    Posted By SteveEkstrand on 21 Nov 2013 11:30 PM
    Huge successful class destroyed just by gossip of rules changes. Owning an STC Civic is like a game of musical chairs. Don't be caught owning the last one. That car goes from being one of the most appropriate and successful autocross platforms to done. People have been selling out for the last couple of years and attendance declining just on the constant attack and threats. Doesn't matter at this point if they do it or don't do it. The damage is done. I'll be parting my car out at some point.
    I don't think this claim is supported by any of the big names that have left the class. On paper it makes little sense to have two separate classes for nearly identical cars. If the numbers still supported it, this wouldn't be coming up again. But, the reality is the numbers are declining. A kick in the butt might be what these classes need and combining might help return some of the glory to the classes by consolidating the competition. I'd welcome my class being combined with another class if it meant nearly identical performance and more competition. I'm not sure I see what the problem is? I've heard former STC champs suggest there is no clear winner between CRX and Civic. CRX is more nimble, but Civic is more stable.
    hklvette
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    22 Nov 2013 10:14 AM
    Posted By The Nebulizer on 22 Nov 2013 09:45 AM 
    I don't think this claim is supported by any of the big names that have left the class. On paper it makes little sense to have two separate classes for nearly identical cars. If the numbers still supported it, this wouldn't be coming up again. But, the reality is the numbers are declining. A kick in the butt might be what these classes need and combining might help return some of the glory to the classes by consolidating the competition. I'd welcome my class being combined with another class if it meant nearly identical performance and more competition. I'm not sure I see what the problem is? I've heard former STC champs suggest there is no clear winner between CRX and Civic. CRX is more nimble, but Civic is more stable.

    PAX suggests that STS is a bit faster (0.5 seconds on a 60-second course using 2013 STC and STS pax values).

    KyleMert
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    22 Nov 2013 10:40 AM
    The STC National Champion also beat the STS National Champion on Raw Time (barely) this year.
    The Nebulizer
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    22 Nov 2013 10:44 AM

    Quoting Bill Bounds (former STC national champion):

    "If I were still running in STC and it was merged with STS, even if money wasn't a factor I'd be choosing a Civic to run and not a CRX. Those classes are so closely fought that you need consistency from the car and the confidence to push in incremental ways that won't bite you in the ass if you go too far. That's the Civic. You get it on the edge for the entirety of the lap, and find those little places where just a bit more gains you an advantage. That's a stable and repeatable process with the Civic's extra wheelbase. I'd trade the slow speed agility for that consistency every time.

    "Agreed. The stability scare was mostly hot air. If you look at who was running ST 4-5 years ago, many of us had been in the class for a long time. It's natural to think that people would move on to other things. I certainly didn't leave because I feared the class was dying. I left because Tim bought an EP Civic and running on Avons sounded like a blast. I don't remember talking to anyone that has left out of fear either, they've left because they found something else that was exciting in new ways."

    ron
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    22 Nov 2013 12:32 PM
    I like what Bill had to say and it makes a lot of sense. I think that what most have to learn and maybe scca as well, is that there are about 1200 national level pariticipants and when you make these changes, the long term action is that people just  filter to other classes. We tend to see the same overall numbers show up and drive around the country to national level events. Is anything really getting changed? I think that stc started it all and the class should stay around. Should the civic get merged with st2? Most likely.
    Grintch
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    22 Nov 2013 01:47 PM
    Well as Street Touring has less classes than both Stock & Street Prepared, it doesn't really make sense to me to drop one.

    If the problem is the performance of STC & STS is too close (not an uncommon situation for S & SP) maybe we could move the fast STC cars to STS, and the slow STS cars to STC to make a new slower STC.
    Impala SS AutoXer
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    22 Nov 2013 05:58 PM
    Posted By Grintch on 22 Nov 2013 01:47 PM
    Well as Street Touring has less classes than both Stock & Street Prepared, it doesn't really make sense to me to drop one.

    If the problem is the performance of STC & STS is too close (not an uncommon situation for S & SP) maybe we could move the fast STC cars to STS, and the slow STS cars to STC to make a new slower STC.

    Just a guess, but thinking "bigger picture" this is to allow a new ST class down the road with a different performance envelope than what exists now (i.e. something beyond STU)...


    toeout
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    23 Nov 2013 12:56 PM

    Posted By SteveEkstrand on 21 Nov 2013 11:30 PM
    Huge successful class destroyed just by gossip of rules changes. Owning an STC Civic is like a game of musical chairs. Don't be caught owning the last one. That car goes from being one of the most appropriate and successful autocross platforms to done. People have been selling out for the last couple of years and attendance declining just on the constant attack and threats. Doesn't matter at this point if they do it or don't do it. The damage is done. I'll be parting my car out at some point.

    This.

    The numbers are low NOW, because it's been 3 years of "lets move the Civic to STS/ combine the classes". It's true that people move on to different classes, but this threat has kept the new blood out.

    Also, the Civic vs. CRX. Nobody will be buying Civic over CRX, for STS, unless Civic could be had for next to nothing. So yeah , way to kill off truly affordable, fun autocross car.  

      

     

     



    Fab
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    25 Nov 2013 02:10 AM
    Not sure what the fuss is about. STC/STS merge is hardly a surprise and looking at the Nationals results of the past 3 years, it looks to me like CRX, Civic & Miata are pretty even.

    I combined results from both class and kept the top 10 

    2013

    Frank Civic 133.575
    Whitener CRX 133.704
    Stoltz 1.6_Miata 134.219
    Baker CRX 134.295
    Canak 1.6_Miata 134.329
    Klippel 1.8_Miata 134.431
    Montgomery CRX 134.615
    Reindl Civic 134.63
    Wong Civic 135.161
    Terranova CRX 135.683



    2012

    Wong Civic 130.467
    Frank Civic 130.563
    Whitener CRX 131.78
    Stone Civic 131.87
    Kalman Civic 131.932
    Hahn CRX 131.952
    Reindl Civic 131.961
    Ogorman CRX 131.981
    Canak 1.6_Miata 132.216
    Wagstaff 1.6_Miata 132.219
    Klippel 1.8_Miata 132.254



    2011

    Canak 1.6_Miata 135.428
    Coughlin CRX 135.833
    Cone 1.6_Miata 136.445
    Hollis Civic 136.614
    Baker CRX 136.625
    Heinitz 1.8_Miata 136.867
    Hunter CRX 136.89
    Frank Civic 136.957
    Lugod Civic 137.148
    Smith Civic 137.215






    hklvette
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    25 Nov 2013 07:52 AM
    Posted By Fab on 25 Nov 2013 02:10 AM
    Not sure what the fuss is about. STC/STS merge is hardly a surprise and looking at the Nationals results of the past 3 years, it looks to me like CRX, Civic & Miata are pretty even.

    I combined results from both class and kept the top 10 

    *snip*






    I wasn't there so I don't know, but maybe there's some course-dependency there?  Seems a bit strange that they're generally lumped in their respective groups.

    OZMDD
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    25 Nov 2013 01:05 PM
    This sounds more like a situation where reclassing certain cars makes more sense than changing the classes themselves. Putting the Civic into STS seems pretty reasonable, and see if STC can flourish with a variety of modern FWD cars, along the same lines as the STF model. STX, STS and STR are healthy classes, STC and STU could use some tweaking/growth.
    jwharnish
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    21 Dec 2013 11:41 AM

    I would disagree with sticking with the Civic if the two were combined. Reason being, this proposal reminds me clearly of the old CSP days, where CRX's and Civics dominated that class. Majority of cars and drivers chose the CRX's, as I did, because when engine/tranny, wheels/tires, suspension all are basically the same, it boiled down to weight/driver. 

    The Civic is heavier, and the stability issue is not really an issue. You can set both of these cars up to be very stable when pushed to it's limits. Especially with the Toyo's, which remind me so much of the Hoosier Autocrosser's that was the tire of choice on the CSP Honda's.

    The weight difference is not hugh, but when you fighting for a tenth here and there, I'd want the lighter car. And that was the choice that most CSP's Honda drivers chose, all those years ago, and I believe would be the choice here.

    How many competitors still try to loose that extra 5 or 10 lbs before nationals. How many out there jump at the chance to put that 100lb driver in the car, instead of the 150lb driver. Let's use the 3lb lithium battery, instead of the 6lb AGM. Same deal.

    Jim Harnish

    STC Civic

     

    kjchristopher
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    21 Dec 2013 07:52 PM
    Posted By jwharnish on 21 Dec 2013 11:41 AM

    I would disagree with sticking with the Civic if the two were combined. Reason being, this proposal reminds me clearly of the old CSP days, where CRX's and Civics dominated that class. Majority of cars and drivers chose the CRX's, as I did, because when engine/tranny, wheels/tires, suspension all are basically the same, it boiled down to weight/driver. 

    The Civic is heavier, and the stability issue is not really an issue. You can set both of these cars up to be very stable when pushed to it's limits. Especially with the Toyo's, which remind me so much of the Hoosier Autocrosser's that was the tire of choice on the CSP Honda's.

    The weight difference is not hugh, but when you fighting for a tenth here and there, I'd want the lighter car. And that was the choice that most CSP's Honda drivers chose, all those years ago, and I believe would be the choice here.

    How many competitors still try to loose that extra 5 or 10 lbs before nationals. How many out there jump at the chance to put that 100lb driver in the car, instead of the 150lb driver. Let's use the 3lb lithium battery, instead of the 6lb AGM. Same deal.

    Jim Harnish

    STC Civic

     

    That must be why the Civic keeps straight timing the CRX.


    splash
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    26 Dec 2013 11:33 AM
    You also can't go by the STC/STS PAX...

    Let's face it, the ST PAX numbers have always been screwy. They eventually had to legislate the Civics from going over to STX and stealing their lunch money, even though STX's PAX was always higher.

    I had attributed much of the STS/STC decline in numbers to the fact that it's getting impossible to build a truly legal Civic since some of the engine internals are discontinued and I'm not sure how close aftermarket versions have to be to be legal. In some cases, I'd imagine it's just simpler to go to SMF.
    Mugenlude
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    30 Dec 2013 12:39 PM
    Posted By kjchristopher on 21 Dec 2013 07:52 PM

    That must be why the Civic keeps straight timing the CRX.

    Nationals is only one event a year.  Over the years, STS has shown to be faster, just look at a PAX over the years, STC has never been faster than STS.

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