Solo/autocross news topics

NCR Has Two New 2016 Solo National Champions

A record setting 1306 competitors took to the Lincoln Air Park September 6th – 9th for the 2016 Tire Rack Solo Nationals Presented by Garmin VIRB, and 23 of them traveled all the way to Nebraska from the North Carolina Region!

2016 saw NCR drivers bringing home 8 trophies, including National Championships for Maria Mayorga in G Street Ladies, and Andrew Pallotta in G Street! (That’s Maria at the wheel in the photo above. Photo: Jeff Eng)

Congratulations to all that experienced Nationals, to those who won trophies and to Maria and Andrew on their championships!

2016 North Carolina Region Drivers

B Street Justin Barbry
Mike Jones
Justin Arnette
6th  (Trophy)
27th
46th
BS Ladies Abby Smith
Nikki Edwards
Tara Arnette
6th
11th
12th
C Street Matt McGrain 19th
CS Ladies Jennifer Vance 3rd  (Trophy)
E Street Eric Peterson
Mark Miller
13th  (Trophy)
45th
ES Ladies Jennifer Bedell
Chris Peterson
2nd  (Trophy)
3rd  (Trophy
F Street Michael Feeney
Dick Rasmussen
19th
30th
G Street Andrew Pallotta National Champion
GS Ladies Maria Mayorga National Champion
H Street David Spratte 14th
HS Ladies Gwen Habenicht 2nd  (Trophy)
STX Aaron Buckley 30th
CSP Adrian Willis
Bryce Willis
13th
19th
SMF Ladies Shelby Turbeville 4th

Below: New National Champions Andrew Pallotta & Maria Mayorga

Additionally, some NCR drivers went out to Lincoln extra early for the 2016 Tire Rack ProSolo Finale, September 2-4.  Congratulations to all that participated and those who took home trophies!

B Street Justin Barbry 2nd  (Trophy)
E Street Eric Peterson 2nd  (Trophy)
F Street Michael Feeney
Dick Rasmussen
8th
12th
H Street David Spratte 3rd
Ladies 2 Jennifer Bedell
Gwen Habenicht
5th  (Trophy)
15th

 

The following is an account from Team .:RAWRRR, about their experience competing in BS/BSL driving a 2016 VW Golf R at the 2016 Tire Rack Solo Nationals Presented by Garmin VIRB.

40 Hours of Driving for 6 Minutes of Racing

Attending the Solo Nationals for the first time was an amazing experience, one which is difficult to even put into words.  The largest event most of us have ever been a part of up to this point was one-tenth as large as Nationals.  There were a record 1306 competitors at the 2016 Solo Nationals, or in other words, Team .:RAWRRR and 1302 other racers.

Tara Arnette, Abby Smith, Justin Arnette and Mike Jones worked throughout the year toward their goal of attending the 2016 Tire Rack Solo Nationals Presented by Garmin VIRB.  These four friends and competitors became Team .:RAWRRR, based on their car, a 2016 Volkswagen Golf R.  Team .:RAWRRR knew they would be an underdog in the BS/BSL class but felt that if there was rain their chances would improve, though the primary goal was to simply experience Solo Nationals and all that it had to offer.

Team .:RAWRRR arrived in Lincoln, Nebraska from eastern North Carolina on Sunday, September 4th after spending the previous 2 days on the road towing for approximately 20 hours.  Along the way Team .:RAWRRR played “Snap Crap,” a game conceived to help make the, often, long haul to Lincoln a little more entertaining.  Competitors from around the country are given a list of items to find and take photos of on their way both to and from Lincoln.  The list is open to interpretation which makes it quite fun and a good way to help pass time during the long tow to Lincoln, Nebraska from North Carolina.

Once on site, Team .:RAWRRR established base camp along with several other competitors from the NCR and neighboring regions such as SCR, CCR, etc.  The paddock area is where most shenanigans take place and is a great place to spend time.  Not only do you see plenty of car prep, but also “site improvements” such as tents, couches purchased from Craigslist, large inflatable rubber duckies, etc., and plenty of competitors who are friends that only get to see one another one or twice a year getting reacquainted.  NCR’s site at Cherry Point is one of the larger sites on the east coast, yet the paddock area alone at the Lincoln Air Park is larger than all of the Cherry Point site.  As such, it is hard describe what it looks like as 1300 autocrossers showed up and slowly filled the space in their own unique way.

Once settled, Team .:RAWRRR got registered and passed tech and then spent some time watching the Pro Solo Finale.  Monday was spent recovering from the two day tow, making car prep changes and completing several course walks on both the East and West course.  Team .:RAWRRR was scheduled to run the East Course Thursday and West Course Friday.  Tuesday and Wednesday were spent watching other competitors run and getting in additional course walks as often as possible between run groups.  Plus, Team .:RAWRRR had two time slots scheduled on the test course, which was used for final tuning and scrubbing in a new set of tires.

Thursday.  Race day.  After an early arrival for one last course walk on the East Course, Justin and Mike worked the first run group followed by Abby and Tara working the second.   The guys ran in Group 3 and the ladies in Group 5.  All four members of Team .:RAWRRR laid down their best runs of the day on their very first run.  All team members thought they had underperformed for the day and looked forward to day two, as rain was in the forecast and the all-wheel drive of the Golf R looked promising against a horde of Corvettes and S2000s.

Friday.  Race day, take 2.  Groups 1 and 2 saw cool and windy conditions, and just as Group 2 was finishing the sun came out and temperatures quickly increased.  There would be no rain to help Justin and Mike in Group 3.  The guys laid down solid runs that they deemed, “pretty good, but not great,” and concluded that in the dry the Golf R is simply outclassed in BS by the Corvette and S2000.  After lunch the ladies ran in Group 5, as the clouds quickly rolled in.  A push was made to get in dry runs before the rain came, but only the first drivers got in dry runs.  After a 2 hour delay due to lightning, racing resumed in the rain.  Finally, the Golf R and Team .:RAWRRR lived up to its potential as Abby and Tara drove very well, with Abby even laying down BSL’s fastest time of the day in the wet and Tara the fourth fastest.  After Group 5 finished and Team .:RAWRRR’s Nationals were complete, a protest arose in the run group regarding whether the dry runs were to count, or not.  Team .:RAWRRR concluded that either way the protest went they would unfortunately not be leaving Lincoln with a trophy so they decided to pack up and begin the long haul back to North Carolina.

Team .:RAWRRR worked together to make it to this event and would not have made it to Lincoln individually and certainly would not have had such an amazing experience.  Team .:RAWRRR recommends that EVERY autocrosser make it to Nationals at least once; to find some true friends and go as a team.  Tara concluded, “I didn’t walk away with a jacket, I wasn’t even close, but the experience and energy of being around 1,300 other racers was worth the 40 hour drive.”  On the way home Team .:RAWRRR even began discussing next year….

ATTENTION DRIVERS!

Beware of counterfeit Driver Gear!

Some of you may have received this info from SCCA, but it bears repeating:

We were notified by SFI about counterfeit drivers gear.
For more information, please follow this link: Racing Memo RM 16-07

 

Got Friends You Want to Involve?

Sure you do. We all know the best way to hook someone is to bring them to an event. When they get there they’ll say, “Wow! I never knew something like this existed.” You’ll say, “Wow! I’ve been telling you about it for years.”

Well now you can bring events to them. We’ve made some movies you can show them. The most recent is Opie Goes Racing, a story of a boy whose racing dreams come true. The Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point was the Solo Season Opener from Cherry Point. Click the links.

Everyone is so busy these days that we need quick and easy ways to share the fun. Share a video with a friend and note their interest. If they seem interested, offer to show them more. Maybe they’ll try a ride around the solo course or a guest pass for a day at VIR. Bring them in slowly, at their pace or slower.

Let them chase the bait. If you want to hook them, it’s best if they want more.

Maybe bring them to an event is too much at first. A Chapter Meeting might be the thing. At Chapter meetings they can meet a bunch of car enthusiasts who actually get to play in a safe way.

Chapter Meetings are always more fun when guests join.

Check out our videos: Opie Goes Racing and The Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point and share the FUN!

Eric Danielsen
Marketing Chair

NCR has 2 National Champions in Solo II

NCR congratulates Christina Peterson, champion in E Street Ladies, and Brittany “Nikki” Edwards, champion in F Street Prepared Ladies, for their achievement in the Solo National Championships at Lincoln, Nebraska, September 7-11, 2015. These two well-known competitors in our Region took top honors in those classes. But perhaps what’s even more amazing is that their two rivals, the runners-up who finished right behind them, are also Region members. Congratulations also to Jennifer Bedell in ESL and Jennifer Vance in FSPL for their fine showing as well. Details of their achievement can be found in the November issue of SportsCar (Vol. 73. No. 11) which should have been delivered to all members by this time.

Chris Peterson ready to do battle

Nikki Edwards and Jennifer Vance with their trophies

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Peterson and Bedell co-drive the Spyder

 

 

Nikki Edwards on track

 

                                 

 

Isn’t it time you tried an Autocross?

What an event! What a venue! Ever consider trying out autocross? Well, you should! The pair just put on by the Cape Fear Chapter at Marine Corps Air Station at Cherry Point is a good example why. It’s been 30 years since I, the Membership Chair, ran an autocross, so I should have registered as a novice, but there were so many Novice Class entrants, that I thought I’d have an easier time if I ran my box-stock Miata in E Street. Wrong! Those Cape Fear folks know how to treat novices right.

There was a special walk-through for Novice Class entrants led by an experienced volunteer. Then every novice who wanted one got an instructor to ride second seat for as long as he or she preferred. They could also ask for a taxi run, where an instructor drove the novice entrant’s car while the novice observed from the passenger seat; and those runs did not count against the five runs total that we got each day. And many experienced participants, some even from out-of-region, cheerfully let novices ride with them too, despite the fact that they were competing for points. Talk about a friendly atmosphere in which to learn, this was it! I was unknown to all except for a few of the Cape Fear officers and the Triangle Chapter competitors I ran across, so I got no special treatment. And that was just the point. Random folks I’d never met would walk up to me and ask me how it was going and offer advice. And then about 60 of us all gathered at the same restaurant for dinner. It had to have been the most welcoming autocross for newbies I have ever attended. Had a great time. So why don’t you come out and try it too? You won’t be disappointed. You can compete in just about anything — just ask the novice Marine who brought his Police Interceptor Crown Vic – the most unlikely autocross car ever! Hats off to Solo Chair John Byers and all the crew of the Cape Fear Chapter pulling this off and showing the world how SCCA events are supposed to be run.

And did I mention the venue? Foxtrot taxiway at Cherry Point is HUGE! It’s one of the best autocross venues on the East Coast, I was told, and I believe it. The first day course was tight and tricky — a national level design they said — with lots of changes of direction, where you go back over the same ground more than once and pick up a different set of pointers to find your way. I had trouble and DNF’d a few times, as did many other more experienced competitors. But the novices caught on quick, thanks to their in-car instruction. And other competitors caught on faster than I did – you can ask Triangle Chapter members Justin Deffenbaugh, who co-drove a hot Miata with his buddy Phil, and Bob Stearns, who drove his real ’65 Shelby 427 Cobra at these events for the first time. Bob ran as a novice, Justin did not. And they both did quite well. Good for you guys! Hey, even 5-year-old Adam Miller from Garner in junior kart class got the course figured out and posted a good time (better than me!). Way to go, Adam!

Then on Sunday, they changed the course, opening it up until it was more like a tiny race track, and we flew down it. What a hoot! Since I hadn’t done so well the day before, Chris Severt and John Byers both made it a point to ride with me and give me some pointers. Chris even gave me a taxi ride in my own car, like he did for so many of the novices. In truth I should have been smarter and realized that Novice Class is where I belonged from the start, and it was amazing for me to find that the organizers had realized that and volunteered to help me out the next day. Can’t say enough good things about those people and their events! Many, many thanks to the Cape Fear Chapter, the Single Marine program, which sponsors our events at Cherry Point, and of course, to the United States Marine Corps. Semper Fi!

So what are you waiting for? There’s another novice school coming at the smaller Blackwater site in April, plus another one in June, and in-between yet another go at Foxtrot taxiway in May. See the full schedule here. Come on out! You’ll be glad you did! More photos here.

James Shanks
NCR Membership Chair

Solo Champion, James Feinberg Passes

The Turn @ MCAS Cherry Point, June 22, 2014 — The SCCA Solo community and NC Region lost one of its most beloved members this morning as James Feinberg passed, surrounded by Solo friends. James succumbed to an undetermined condition while hospitalized after collapsing at this event on Sunday.

Feinberg, seen below after winning the Super Challenge at the DC Pro, claimed a Solo National Championship in 2011. More than a fierce competitor behind the wheel, however, James was known nationwide as a magnetic personality within our sport. Jim always met our community and approached competition with a smile.

Thanks to SoloMatters.com

Help NCR’s Solo Program by Filling Out This Survey

Please help out the SOLO program by filling out this survey.  Answer any and all questions you want, none are required. Your feedback will help improve the SOLO program. Thanks a lot!

http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/WWNDVRQ

John Byers
NCR Solo Chair
 

Big changes for 2014 season!

TOPEKA, Kan. (October 11, 2013) – The Sports Car Club of America Board of Directors unanimously approved a proposal by the Solo® Events Board for Street Category cars in the Tire Rack National Solo program, beginning in 2014.

The Street Category will feature cars that are essentially off the showroom floor, with specified modifications. Tires in the class must be designed for highway use on passenger cars.

Tires in the Street Category must fit the following specifications:

1. Effective 1/1/14 – Minimum UTQG tread wear rating of 140
2. Effective 1/1/15 – Minimum UTQG tread wear rating of 200
3. Molded tread depth of 7/32” or greater as specified by the manufacturer
4. Listed in a current year of prior two years of the “Tire Guide” and/or “Tread Design Guide”
5. Department of Transportation (DOT) approved

The class will allow sway bars on the front or rear, and have a wheel diameter allowance of plus or minus one inch. Despite earlier proposals, there will be no camber allowances via camber plates, bolts or slotting.

“Participation in the current Stock Category is declining at a rapid rate, and data and feedback shows that the vast majority of the membership that would participate in this class would like to switch to ‘road tires,’” Lisa Noble, Chairman of the SCCA Board of Directors, said. “Classes with road tires have the largest participation numbers in regional competition, and since this potential rules change came to light, those who participate in the class have voted with their attendance. We anticipate that trend will continue as the Street category classes earn National Championship status in 2014.”

In addition to the new Street Category, for 2014, the current Stock Category will remain in place and be renamed the Street-R category. All 2013 Stock classes will become Street-R (SR) classes and follow the rules which were in place for Stock at the end of 2013. For 2015, the Street-R category will be reduced to a single class, Super Street R, for high horsepower machines.

“This has been a long process for the Solo community,” Howard Duncan, SCCA Vice President, Rally/Solo, said. “The SEB believes, and we agree, that this change does not alter the game, but will encourage more participants, as 72 percent of the letters the SEB received on the matter were in favor of the change. We’re looking forward to welcoming back members that we haven’t seen in several years, and introducing new members to the sport without requiring a major investment to the cars they already own.”

A more complete list of rules, along with the classifications of cars for the new Street Category, will be available in the October Fastrack® News.

More information on the Tire Rack SCCA Solo program is available at www.SCCA.com/Solo.

SCCA announces new program for 2013 – The Starting Line

Topeka, KS (SCCA) – The Starting Line School is a partnership between The Tire Rack, the Sports Car Club of America and The Evolution Performance Driving School to give automotive enthusiast a professional, all-inclusive entry into the sport of autocross.

The Starting Line is…

  • a one day Evolution Performance Driving School, for the newest autocrossers, and the never haves.
  • the ultimate motorsports starter package.
  • the place on the web to send your co-workers, your family, your friends, anyone who wants to know more about our sport and how to get started.
  • It is the link you need to know to grow the sport.

The School

The Starting Line School is a partnership between The Tire Rack, the Sports Car Club of America, and The Evolution Performance Driving School to give automotive enthusiast a professional, all-inclusive entry into the sport of autocross.  The full day school will introduce key concepts applicable to all forms of motorsports and allow students to develop these skills while working with professional performance driving instructors.

The Package

In addition to a full day of instruction participants will receive an SCCA membership, entries for future events, subscriptions to SportsCar and Grassroots Motorsports Magazines, and a Snell approved motorsports helmet from Solo Performance Specialties.

The Website

The Starting Line is not just a school, Within SCCAStartingline.com is The Ultimate Autocross Guide, featuring an FAQ, Glossary, Video Library and helpful links to get started. It is the place to send those interested in autocross to give them all the information they need to get started.

The Purpose

To create a pathway to motorsports for automotive enthusiasts that grows community, builds our club and strengthens our sport.

 

For more inofmration visit http://www.sccastartingline.com/

Solo rule changes for 2012

TOPEKA, KS (SCCA) — A number of changes will take place for next year. Here are some of highlights:

  • Street Touring ECU rules updated; piggyback controllers allowed as long as they use the factory sensors and wiring.
  • More lenient catalytic converter rules from STX/STU apply to all of Street Touring.
  • STX/STU big brake allowance applies to all of street touring.
  • Street Touring will now be classified on performance potential – no more class hopping.
  • Street Touring FWD added for modern B and C class econoboxes which are burdened by modern safety requirements – expect to see Honda Fit, Toyota Yaris, Mazda2, and Ford Fiesta in their own class.
  • ASP becomes Super Street Prepared
  • Turbocharged, AWD cars become ASP and can run big boost
  • BSP retains NA 2WD cars like the M3, S2000, C4 Corvette and Boxster/944 S2
  • 2008-2009 Dodge Viper and 2012 911 GT3 are now eligible for Super Stock
  • Stock cars may now modify EITHER front OR rear swaybar, not just front sway bar – but only ONE
  • Divisionals are going away, replaced by National Tours; regions are encouraged to come up with their own local-flavor divisional championships.
  • In order to receive a trophy at Nationals, there must be a minimum of 3 competitors in the class

For more information visit SCCA Fasttrack News – December 2011