PDA

View Full Version : Mustang in STU



titanium
01-05-2011, 08:17 PM
This was brought up on the SCCA forums and I wanted to get your take on it.


From the GCR:


B. Eligibility
Vehicles meeting one of the following criteria may compete in the Super
Touring category:
1985 and newer cars built specifically under these ST rules
GCR listed IT cars, 1985 and newer, under their current IT
specifications shall compete in STU.
Note: While IT cars may not be competitive in the ST category,
their inclusion in the category will allow regional competitors to
participate in national events.


So here it says that any IT-legal car can compete in STU.
What about the ITR cars?
What about the ITR V8 Mustangs in particular?


Your thoughts?

JoshS
01-05-2011, 08:51 PM
I replied in the SCCAForums thread, but no ITR car is going to be any faster than any other ITR car, and no ITR car is going to beat an STU car (once there are real STU cars out there.)

So I think yes, the V8 Mustangs in ITR-legal trim can race in STU, there's no doubt about it. But no, it won't run at the front.

Greg Amy
01-05-2011, 08:58 PM
All 1985+ ITR-spec vehicles are legal in STU.

Matt93SE
01-06-2011, 01:11 AM
I don't think they're arguing the FACT it's legal, I think the issue is whether it should be legal or not.

adoyle
01-06-2011, 01:15 AM
While I agree that ITR cars are not going to beat "real" STU cars, I wonder why they have gone away from the philosophy of the class. It seemed pretty simple...ex world challenge type cars and under 3 liter it wold be in STU and over 3 liter it would be in STO. Now they have thrown out that and allowed 3.2 BMWs in STU and 4ltr v6s and v8s in STU with IT prep. I know people say that the 3.2 bmw motor will not be any better than the 2.8 bmw motors in ITR, then why do it and why do I hear everybody running to that motor for the class. Why have an ST class then water it down with "Field Fillers" for numbers. I know event parcipatation is down and this would bring up numbers, but why go through this and not just make Improved Touring a national class in the first place. It seems this will just be a more expensive IT. You will have a few "real" STU cars at events, then filled with many IT preped cars. I thought the intent of STL or "Super Touring Miata" was to increase parcipatation.

Chip42
01-06-2011, 09:23 AM
STU could be a could class once it gets sorted and subscribed. STL seems popular but I think it needs some work to be "good".

but the addition of the list of vehicle builds outside of the normal STU rules has really added to the fog that surrounds all new classes. WTF is the intention? mixed prep as in prod 1 prod 2 (full and limited prep) is simply confusing to the participants. even IT is too hard for some of our dear membership to keep up with. In 2 trips to the track last year, I ran into a guy still runing an AE86 corolla in ITA, a JDM 1.5L VTEC CRX in ITB, and a B16 in a 92-95 civic Si in ITA. seriously - we already have a problem with competitors reading ALL of the rules for the class before spending their money. why the wild cards?

Dano77
01-06-2011, 10:06 AM
Its not watering anything down. It clearly states that if you own an IT car and you want to run a national or ten nationals,here is where you can with out spending the cash for a full on build. And oh yeah,we dont think youll win with that level of prep in this class.

There is no one who believes that an ITR mustang will compete with a Real Time Acura or a Champion Audi.

Dan

Matt93SE
01-06-2011, 10:51 AM
Its not watering anything down. It clearly states that if you own an IT car and you want to run a national or ten nationals,here is where you can with out spending the cash for a full on build. And oh yeah,we dont think youll win with that level of prep in this class.

There is no one who believes that an ITR mustang will compete with a Real Time Acura or a Champion Audi.

Dan

... and those cars are just about out of the class with all of the rule changes. I'd have to look at the actual build on those cars, but have a feeling they're no longer legal for STU now that they've taken away the WC-Touring = STU clause.

Hoof Hearted
01-06-2011, 12:48 PM
This was brought up on the SCCA forums and I wanted to get your take on it.


From the GCR:


B. Eligibility
Vehicles meeting one of the following criteria may compete in the Super
Touring category:
1985 and newer cars built specifically under these ST rules
GCR listed IT cars, 1985 and newer, under their current IT
specifications shall compete in STU.
Note: While IT cars may not be competitive in the ST category,
their inclusion in the category will allow regional competitors to
participate in national events.


I find it confusing regarding using a "regional" only car for a national race when the GCR on page 79 states:

Note 3: Classes such as Improved Touring, Super Production, A Sports
Racing, and Formula S (Regional and Optional Regional Classes) have
been developed for competitors to race at a Regional level. These classes
will not be eligible for National races since they were created with
the express understanding that they remain Regional Classes only. There
may be other classes added to this philosophy, as we identify classes
for our members to race cars that do not fit within our National racing
program.

Also, the 1985 date is further muddied by this GCR statement on page 441:

No model years older than 1985 will be eligible, except that cars
from model runs began before 1985 are eligible (e.g., if a model was
produced in 1983-1988, the 1983 and 1984 cars are eligible).

So my "regional only" 1984 turd Scirocco is eligible to run (and thoroughly get spanked) in the National STU class...

Let's muddy this pond just tad more...

23racer
01-06-2011, 12:54 PM
Man, this is all getting really confusing to me. In less than a year STU goes from a class for ex-WC Touring class cars, to a class where V8 Mustangs are allowed to run? I thought 4.6 L motors were an STO car and if you can't afford a full prep level of a front running STO then you will be at the back of the pack in STO. Now it seems like you can run a whole bunch of cars in STU.

Can anybody tell me what the basic philosophy of the class is? I see everything from a Spec Miata with some mods being allowed to ITR V8 Mustangs. When are T1 Vettes going to be allowed. I just don't see a class philosophy that makes sense other than as a catch all National class with a bunch of cars that sorta do the same laptimes. This really doesn't make sense to me when a 4.6L car is allowed and my ex WC-2.5L Cougar isn't.

Eric

Chip42
01-06-2011, 02:07 PM
I'll take a stab at clarifying it: (largely my own impressions, not known facts)
"prepared" classed D and B were founded to provide a place fo rex WC touring and GT cars to play in the club.
the prepared name was dropped for Super Touring.

IT cars have always or at least for most of this time been allowed to run in prepared or ST, but have to use the IT specline and rules.

used WC cars haven't come out of the woodwork as expected, so the class was modified to make it one with more firmly expressed rules so as to allow the building of cars to within some sort of understood prep level. from there, theoretically, you can balance the speed of various cars over time.

STL was invented in large paert to give a place for the bulk of IT cars to join in and not get crushed by the few ex WC cars or cars built to the STU rules. a ruleset was developed for it that allowed further mods than allowed in IT should you want to "advance" your car to that point.

I think that the IT in ST rules used to break the over 3L / under 3L car sinto STU and STO - apparently now it's all legal in U over 2L, and L at or under 2L

right now this all seems pretty clear.

then the STU rules were modified to allow a list of cars that otherwise don't fit the rules, or cars that do at alternate weights ans/or prep allowances. thus large V6 mustangs can be built to run along "proper" STU cars and oddballs like TRD supercharges Scon tCs.

add to that mix large displacemnt ITR cars being legal, and the class can have everything from turbo 1.6L, SMs, SMX5s, MX5 cup, VW TDi cup, ex WC (with or without VTS is now a ?) and ITA/B/S/R cars up to and including 4.6L V8 mustangs.

so it's like a nationally recognized and codifed version of super production.

it seems to have lost its way before it found it. supposedly philosophy is in the works now...

Matt93SE
01-06-2011, 02:12 PM
I just hope they figure something out and do it soon. I'm half tempted to go to EP or GT3 just so I have a firm ruleset.

23racer
01-06-2011, 02:31 PM
WOW, :blink:, what a rapid progression and thanks for setting it down for me. It seems that calling it a lower power Super Prod class makes the most sense. It seems like the class is really eally fluid right now. I just don't philosophically understand where in that large mix of cars, my actual ex-WC 2.5L Cougar is not allowed to run with it's 2009 VTS. To run in the class I have to add 150 lbs, reduce the aero, run smaller tires, get rid of the in-car adjustable bars and drop .5 of a point of compression, all versus my approved 2009 VTS.

I understood the original discussions where my car didn't meet the intent of the class and you could drive a truck through the opening my VTS gave me, but that seems a bit moot when you allow ITR V8 Mustangs/ Turbo cars/ AWD in to the STU class. What is the class philosophy? It seems all over the place. I really don't want to have to build 2 new motors just to run a few races south of the border and slow the car down a ton.

Where are all the STU cars from last year going to run? It seems like the class rules are extremely fluid but if you actually have an ex-WC Car you have to turn it back to almost a super-IT car to run. Thats not very fun. Anybody know of a class where I would be allowed to run my car at the prep level it is in? I am not asking for the world to change just for me, but I would like to experience a few races, for the heck of it, at Mid Ohio, Watkins Glen, Beaverrun etc..... and not having to worry about getting DQ'd if I happen to win.

Eric

Chip42
01-06-2011, 02:59 PM
I believe the current theory is that cars built to the class rules (generic or from the table) are suppsoed to be at the pointy end, and the other cars from IT etc.. are just "allowed" in , and not expected to run competitively. ex WC TC cars are really lost in the mix. with the changes in WC last year (GTS being old TC, new TC being much more like T/IT and some of them, like the SC tC, showing up in STU) I think this will only get worse before it gets better. GT->STO still seems like a clear transition. at least a lot of the allowances of TC, like moving the pickup inboard pickup pints of the suspension, are still present in STU. having to make soem motor mods doesn't seem like a deal breaker, but major chassis changes could completely remove the option of running the car.

I think the idea of building an equitable rule set for club racing is at odds with building a manufacturer pleasing rule set for the WC pro series. if WC settles on a long term rule set, then maybe ST will start to mirror it? still, I feel for all of you who laid out the cash to get an ex-pro TC. sounds like you are REALLY men without a country.

dickita15
01-06-2011, 03:40 PM
I think that when this class was proposed it sounded good to a lot of people because it was an empty vessel. It was just a shell and each of us filled in the blanks with our own prejudiced imagination. The powers that be understand this and know the class needs to be defined fast. That is the challenge for the STAC.

By the way if I owned an ex WC car I would not do anything rash for a couple of months.

mossaidis
01-06-2011, 03:52 PM
23racer - you may want to run ITE, that is, if the region allows you to. ITE rules vary from region to region. Check out their web site for more details and/or contact their stewards/chief of tech. Doing so and if allowed, would provide a race and track where you can run with others w/o having to change anything on your car other than meeting safety regs.

Andy Bettencourt
01-06-2011, 05:01 PM
So this is an interesting issue - especially when soliciting opinions from a group (IT) that largely screamed bloody murder when it was suggested that Spec Miata's be LEGALLY placed inside their respective IT class (ITA or ITS at the time).

This is very similar in application. Follow the logic:

All IT cars can compete in STU in legal IT-trim
All IT cars fall 100% inside the performance envelope of STU
MOST IT cars fall within the rules of STU

So, as in the case of SM's in IT, you have an 'allowed' class, well within the performance envelope of said class, but with attributes that are not allowed by the classification process.

To those who are in STU and don't get it - the 'philosophy' is to allow other, non competitive cars a chance to double dip and fill up your run groups. To those who had issue with SM's in IT - you should be against this allowance as well, no?

erlrich
01-06-2011, 05:41 PM
I think one of the things you guys who are pointing at the ITR Mustang V8s are completely missing is one of the fundamental differences between ST and IT. ST is a displacement-based class, while IT is a HP-based class. Those V8 Mustangs (and did you miss the 5.0L Camaros?) aren't even going to be the class leaders in ITR; the S2000s, RX8s, 944s, and even the 3-series Bimmers are (in all likelyhood) going to be the cars to beat in ITR. And they're all under 3 litres...

I also can't see what the big deal is in allowing IT cars (in their IT prep) to compete in ST (or SM cars to compete in IT for that matter); they aren't ever going to compete with real ST prepped cars, but they will help fill the fields, while at the same time allowing IT drivers a chance to race at the national level if they so desire. Win-win IMO.

Now, I do see an issue when a WCT-legal car can't compete in STU; but I think that's a whole separate issue.

Knestis
01-06-2011, 06:26 PM
This is my world...

Any time a given policy is sold to different constituencies as meeting their individual needs we trade (1) greater support for (2) lack of policy (or program) coherence.

SPx cannot be all things to all people, but it's trying to be something to a number of different groups - IT drivers who want to "go National" without changing their cars, owners of ex-WC cars without a place to play in Club Racing, folks who want to tinker beyond the allowances of IT (with new or upgraded builds), and Honda swap fans (who arguably represent a younger and hipper demo market for SCCA). We are seeing the inevitable result of that mushiness.

I'd propose that greater support is super in the short run (i.e., getting the classes Nationally viable by car count), but coherence - a tightly defined mission, vision, and execution (rules set) - will become frustrating for participants over time. Spec Miata is an example of this as additional chassis have been integrated into the class, rules get added/complicated, etc.

K

adoyle
01-06-2011, 11:47 PM
I somewhat understand what they are trying to do. I get the idea of letting IT cars compete, and saying these cars will not be competitive. Then my question is why make the change in the rules? If a ITR mustang, or the 3.2 ltr bmws or any other ITR car over 3 ltr is not going to be competitive at that prep level, then why not let them be "uncompetitive" in STO. Why change all the rules for a class, which was based on liter size, for cars that are not going to be competitive in either class. Then these racers could still "double dip" in national racing. I just do not get why they changes the philosophy of the class for "double dipping" race cars. Why not just make IT a national class and be done with it.

Knestis
01-07-2011, 09:36 AM
Because the idea moved from the proposition that IT "can never be a National class." There have been lots of discussions here on the topic, many arguments against the idea - some sound, some specious, and some simply under-informed - and ultimately, the powers-that-be wouldn't go for it.

K

JeffYoung
01-07-2011, 10:13 AM
I'm not sure that is the case. I think it is more accurate to say that a large chunk of membership (myself included) didn't want IT to go National. And I think that is a large part of why it did not.

However, if I had known the reaction would be to create the ST classes at a prep level slightly above IT in an effort to attract IT cars and drivers over to a national rule set, I probably would have approached the "IT should go national" debate differently.

erlrich
01-07-2011, 11:02 AM
I'm not sure that is the case. I think it is more accurate to say that a large chunk of membership (myself included) didn't want IT to go National. And I think that is a large part of why it did not.


I agree with Jeff on this one; I think this was one of those all-too-rare instances where the BoD and CRB listened to the members, and acted accordingly.

Whether or not to allow IT cars to compete in ST is a valid discussion/argument in my opinion. I can see good arguments for both sides of the issue. Making IT-prepped cars of ANY displacement race with ex-WCGT Corvettes & Vipers on the other hand is a ridiculous idea. That's like saying we'll allow SM cars (in their SM prep) to compete in Touring; except the 1.6L cars will run in T3 but the 1.8L cars have to run in T1.

Ron Earp
01-07-2011, 11:25 AM
However, if I had known the reaction would be to create the ST classes at a prep level slightly above IT in an effort to attract IT cars and drivers over to a national rule set, I probably would have approached the "IT should go national" debate differently.

I agree with that statement. In essence ST is an end run around IT and I think it will hurt IT participation. In addition to creating more classes within a racing organization that has too many classes, ST further muddies the waters for new racers looking to get into the hobby. I do feel IT could have been adapted to fulfill whatever need that ST is being developed to fill.

Chip42
01-07-2011, 12:27 PM
ST seems to me, at its core, to be a class that is needed in the SCCA. the ability to muddy it with IT/jetta TDi/SM/MX5 cup/spec bobcat/pedal cars/land speed record cars has made the whole thing rediculous. I understand the need for numbers but existing classes, especially ones already recognized in club racing, shouldn't be "specifically" allowed. does an IT honda fit STL rules? yes - not to the max, but yes. you are inhearently allowed to run there, or prod with necessary safety upgrades (fire system). pointing out the crossover just seems cheap.

as for blending in pro series cars, I think that is the realm of ST and am fine with it.

I REALLY like the idea of a class where I can run a motor swap AND be within some sort of ruleset that theoretically balances performance, at least a bit - i.e. not a super production or ITEveryrthing group. I don't like what I think I will see on track, though. and I'd HATE to be working tech. (not so much becasue it is difficult, but becasue there's a lot of old guys who just can't make themselves care about this confusing melting pot of a class).

Ron Earp
01-07-2011, 12:36 PM
ST seems to me, at its core, to be a class that is needed in the SCCA.

What is the specific SCCA racing need that ST is filling?

Knestis
01-07-2011, 12:46 PM
Point being, the powers-that-be SHOULD have been where the decision was made, irrespective of what a survey of current drivers want.

This is a strategic decision about the structure of National Club Racing, about how the categories and classes fit together to build a comprehensive program, that shouldn't be made based on what Regional IT drivers want. The fact that IT folks picked their classes KNOWING that it was a Regional-only opportunity is powerful evidence that - except for those on the cusp of looking for a "next step beyond IT" - they aren't going to be inclined to be positive about the proposed change.

And the decision sure as hell shouldn't have been made based on (or even influenced by) the desires of drivers in existing National classes in an environment where the classes are competing one against another for RubOffs berths. The LAST thing they want is a new, SUCCESSFUL class.

At the end of the day, if the CRB and/or BoD HAD wanted IT to become a National category, they would have done it. That they didn't do it is strong evidence that it wasn't their desire that it happen.

The lack of strategic thinking at that level - above our category - is what got us this Platypus of a category. None of the parts fit together very well but it will probably be viable in some niche of the bigger ecosystem (i.e., the arch-typical National class).

K

dickita15
01-07-2011, 01:47 PM
What is the specific SCCA racing need that ST is filling?

If done right a more modern, relevant alternative to Production for those that want to modify there cars more than IT.

Chip42
01-07-2011, 02:22 PM
What is the specific SCCA racing need that ST is filling?

what dick said, plus various touring cars, time attackers (some), and attractive to theyounger "tuner" set. IT, for all that it is, is not that. prod less so, due in large part to the competition (cars, not people, though I'm sure the people wouldn't want "punk kids" in their class).

it fills a void. it does not NEED to have IT cars legalized using IT specs - they are already legal (all of them, I think) with a few changes. doing so simply makes the class harder to define, if not for the rules makers than for the enforcers and entrants, particularly those on the outside looking in.

TomL
01-07-2011, 03:25 PM
What need, exactly, is this fulfilling? The way I read the ST rules, it looks sort of like GT-with-stock-tubs, i.e., a halfway step between a class that was slowly dying until limited prep was introduced (Production) and one that is dying (GT - excluding GT1). I could see this as a class designed to eventually supplant GT, or maybe as a more liberalized Prod. But I can't see the need as a separate category, even with the huge number of options available within each of the new classes. Are that many people out there who would be so interested in ST-type vehicles, that they wouldn't go into Prod or GT if ST wasn't available?

Or was the thinking that this is what we need to go to long-term as a beyond-IT class (one rule set for everything, with fewer - and better subscribed - classes). And that eventually Prod and GT will be rolled into the new setup. I realize that if you tried to fit ST rules into the current Prod or GT setup (or vice versa), there would be much grief from current competitors. However, the only way that the ST rules make much sense to me is as an eventual combined class for all production based cars beyond IT (with the possible exception of a few healthy "old rules" classes such as GT1).

Chip42
01-07-2011, 04:25 PM
SCCA doesn't kill categories. this is an unfortunate (near) truth.

the class fills no racing need - it fills a void for cars of the type popular today in both pro racing (touring cars) and the aftermarket (tuners, SEMA type stuff). it's a void for new entrants and existing cars, not a place needed for people who are looking to race.

apparently the GT category was pretty hostile to the idea of merging WC cars into their classes, and both prod and GT's rulesets are pretty substantially different from WC. thus "Prepared" came to be. then they had to make it work.

now we have the actually unique and somewhat well subscribed STO, the runwhatyoubrung class STU, and "ITplus" STL.

so the "need" is currently hiding in the clouds. but I think at the end of the day, if the word is put out and the rules ironed out, ST could be like the prod of old - manufacturer supported, well subscribed, important racing. it's more relevant than GT or prod and has that certain pinache plus less "baggage".

23racer
01-07-2011, 04:41 PM
I hear what you are saying, but the 2011 STU rules don't allow WC Touring cars to enter the class. It seems to have changed from 2010 to more of a super IT grouping. Am I wrong in that understanding?

JeffYoung
01-07-2011, 04:41 PM
Just a question -- so if membership, the guys who race in IT, didn't want to go National, it would be ok to force them to do so?



Point being, the powers-that-be SHOULD have been where the decision was made, irrespective of what a survey of current drivers want.

This is a strategic decision about the structure of National Club Racing, about how the categories and classes fit together to build a comprehensive program, that shouldn't be made based on what Regional IT drivers want. The fact that IT folks picked their classes KNOWING that it was a Regional-only opportunity is powerful evidence that - except for those on the cusp of looking for a "next step beyond IT" - they aren't going to be inclined to be positive about the proposed change.

And the decision sure as hell shouldn't have been made based on (or even influenced by) the desires of drivers in existing National classes in an environment where the classes are competing one against another for RubOffs berths. The LAST thing they want is a new, SUCCESSFUL class.

At the end of the day, if the CRB and/or BoD HAD wanted IT to become a National category, they would have done it. That they didn't do it is strong evidence that it wasn't their desire that it happen.

The lack of strategic thinking at that level - above our category - is what got us this Platypus of a category. None of the parts fit together very well but it will probably be viable in some niche of the bigger ecosystem (i.e., the arch-typical National class).

K

Dave Gomberg
01-07-2011, 04:47 PM
I hear what you are saying, but the 2011 STU rules don't allow WC Touring cars to enter the class. ...
Stay tuned for the February Fastrack.

Dave

Matt93SE
01-07-2011, 05:31 PM
Stay tuned for the February Fastrack.

Dave

Is it Feb yet? My car and wallet are waiting on rules.... :)

adoyle
01-07-2011, 06:22 PM
So why then in this throw everything in class, did they stop at 1985 and newer IT cars. I have a 1980 3.5 ltr car and I would love to go double dip at Nationals.

Ron Earp
01-07-2011, 06:23 PM
So why then in this throw everything in class, did they stop at 1985 and newer IT cars. I have a 1980 3.5 ltr car and I would love to go double dip at Nationals.

Spoil the look of the class man, spoil the look of the class....

adoyle
01-07-2011, 06:23 PM
Jeff, What do you mean by force IT guys to go national. You could make IT a national class, and if member want to run national then do it, or you could run just regionals.

Ron Earp
01-07-2011, 06:32 PM
What do you mean by force IT guys to go national. You could make IT a national class, and if member want to run national then do it, or you could run just regionals.


Force the class to be a national class, not force the racers to actually race it. When polls were done quite some time ago the majority of IT racers did not wish the class to be national eligible.

Knestis
01-07-2011, 06:35 PM
Just a question -- so if membership, the guys who race in IT, didn't want to go National, it would be ok to force them to do so?

What adoyle said.

The CATEGORY going National would NOT force individual ENTRANTS to do so. Based on my present goals and personal situation, if ITB were a National class, I would almost certainly still just run Regionals within a sensible distance of Pablo's home base.

That's part of why the whole conversation was so whack. Some current IT drivers being asked, "Should IT be a National category?" were answering based on their personal desire to do National events - including the RubOffs - rather than Regionals. In essence, "I don't want to do Nationals therefore nobody should be allowed to do so in an IT car."

Again, there WERE some well-founded arguments against the idea. That just wasn't one of them.

K

Knestis
01-07-2011, 06:39 PM
Force the class to be a national class, not force the racers to actually race it. When polls were done quite some time ago the majority of IT racers did not wish the class to be national eligible.

...and it's been a while so I may be wrong but I don't think any distinction was made between "IT racers" and others who voiced opinions.

How about these for questions:

Which do you think is more likely to be beneficial to the Club Racing program as a whole: IT gaining National status or the addition of the ST classes?

Which do you think will be more detrimental to the health of the IT category?

K

Ron Earp
01-07-2011, 07:06 PM
...and it's been a while so I may be wrong but I don't think any distinction was made between "IT racers" and others who voiced opinions.


Sorry, I don't mean to mislead. For sake of clarity - "the majority of people on this board who bothered to offer an opinion, most of whom are IT racers, seemed to prefer IT not being national".

Matt93SE
01-07-2011, 08:04 PM
Which do you think is more likely to be beneficial to the Club Racing program as a whole: IT gaining National status or the addition of the ST classes?

My personal $0.02 is that I joined Club racing BECAUSE of the ST class. I specifically did not want to run IT due to the rules being too restrictive to us "tuners". I didn't want to run Prod either because I'd be stuck with a $$$$ NA engine build that doesn't make crapola for power. I can go faster for cheaper in STU, whether I'm nationally competitive or not.

As with many IT racers, my goal isn't to go to and win Ruboffs-- at least that's not on my 5 year plan. I don't think I'll ever win ruboffs (I ain't rich and I'm in a rich boy class), but I would definitely like to go and see what it's about.

erlrich
01-07-2011, 11:02 PM
How about these for questions:

Which do you think is more likely to be beneficial to the Club Racing program as a whole: IT gaining National status or the addition of the ST classes?

Which do you think will be more detrimental to the health of the IT category?

K

For the Club Racing program as a whole, I think the addition of the ST classes will untimately be more beneficial - assuming they can get a stable ruleset in place. I think IT going National would benefit National Club Racing, but that would be offset by the loss to the Regional programs. The addition of ST does add the potential for new cars to come into Club Racing; making IT a National class will likely only cause a shift to IT from other classes.

I also think IT gaining National status - absent a ST class - would be less detrimental to the class; however I feel less certain about that answer. The potential for IT to become what SM has become would be very real IMO, and that could be a very bad thing for the class.

Knestis
01-08-2011, 10:50 AM
... The potential for IT to become what SM has become would be very real IMO, and that could be a very bad thing for the class.

You mean, "popular" and "competitive?" Something else? This issue came out as one of the common arguments against National status - that "IT would become like Spec Miata" - but it was less easy for those opponents to explain HOW that would happen.


...The addition of ST does add the potential for new cars to come into Club Racing. No doubt that that STU will see some cars (or car-engine mash-ups) that wouldn't otherwise have a place to race in SCCA. Is that, in and of itself, a good thing? Montana Region could create "Spec Bobcat" (swiped from someone else - Tom, maybe?) and create a huge opportunity for an entirely new field of vehicles...

http://miniskips.net.au/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/Bobcat1.png

...but does "new" automatically translate into "successful?" (Note that this is a stock version, above. You can tell by the lack of SFI stickers on the side screens.) Even if four guys in Missoula REALLY want to race them and have full backing from the National Marketing Manager - one of the guy's father - who's willing to pay big contingency $$ for an ARRC win...?

New cars have to come with "new drivers," replacing those who leave, so we at least maintain current participation levels program-wide. And remember here that we don't primarily lose racing members because they get old and crotchety. We lose them largely because they get financially overextended, disaffected, or ultimatum'd by their spouses.


...IT going National would benefit National Club Racing, but that would be offset by the loss to the Regional programs. ...So, a thought experiment to test that theory: Is safe to assume that H Production would be a more successful class, program-wide, were it to LOSE its National status and become a Regional-only class? Or is there something else going on behind this assertion?

Does it absolutely follow that it would be "bad for Regional racing" if, for example, current Regional IT entrants had the option so decided they wanted to do Nationals? The simple loss of those entries would be the net (negative) effect on Regional IT racing...? (I think Jeff expressed this concern.) How about the possibility that more people with National aspirations would use Regional IT races to meet their licensing requirements? Or for car and driver development? Or that prices for used IT cars might increase due to a bigger market? Or that the supply of top-spec used IT cars might expand as National drivers quit?

And is it a safe first assumption that National racing competes with Regional racing? Noodle over the implications of THAT one for a minute, if your answer is "yes."

The whole point I'm trying to make here is NOT that you are wrong. It's that we need to think through the mechanisms we understand to be at work - the theories-of-action - that "cause" the results with expect from a policy decision, and anticipate how all possible outcomes might fit together to define how "successful" it ultimately is.

I could reasonably assume that an improvement to my house will make it easier to sell - curb appeal! - but it might also increase my property tax. Or make it HARDER to sell if it becomes the $400K property on a block of $100K properties. Or make it IMPOSSIBLE to sell, when I discover that nobody seems to like the stone-and-iron, sadomasochistic dungeon themed great room that I thought was the BEST THING EVER...

K

Chip42
01-08-2011, 12:40 PM
New cars have to come with "new drivers," replacing those who leave, so we at least maintain current participation levels program-wide. And remember here that we don't primarily lose racing members because they get old and crotchety. We lose them largely because they get financially overextended, disaffected, or ultimatum'd by their spouses.

Fiscal restraint is needed at all levels of the sport - the cost of a 10:10ths engine build for STU might be roughly the same as a 10:10th SM motor if you want to find the best of every tolerance. granted one will typically last longer than the other but the point is that a cheap class can lead to disillusionment, over spending, and marital woes just as easily as an "expensive" one.

disillusioned: ask an MR2 driver
high buy in: anyone with a speedsource RX7
cost of developement: Jeff young
cost to go national racing in SM: anyone with a sunbelt, race engineering, etc... motor

I'm excited there's a place I can drop in a japanese MkII MR2 non-turbo driveline into my MkI MR2. just gotta get the japanese part allowed. and the rules need to make sense before I even try. ok, so I WAS excited...

erlrich
01-08-2011, 01:07 PM
You mean, "popular" and "competitive?" Something else? Nope, I was thinking more like "a class where they're constantly fucking with the rules", or "a class where you need a $30k car to win" (athough we seem to be closing that gap pretty well in IT), but mostly "a class where every dumbshit who thinks he's the next Michael Schumacher will come, buy a prepped-to-the-max IT car, and proceed to go out and run into everything on the track". That's kinda what I meant.


No doubt that that STU will see some cars (or car-engine mash-ups) that wouldn't otherwise have a place to race in SCCA. Is that, in and of itself, a good thing? Montana Region could create "Spec Bobcat" (swiped from someone else - Tom, maybe?) and create a huge opportunity for an entirely new field of vehicles...

...but does "new" automatically translate into "successful?" (Note that this is a stock version, above. You can tell by the lack of SFI stickers on the side screens.) Even if four guys in Missoula REALLY want to race them and have full backing from the National Marketing Manager - one of the guy's father - who's willing to pay big contingency $$ for an ARRC win...? Hey, if there are enough guys out there who want to race Bobcats, I say go for it. Couldn't they run with the other open-wheel cars? I also think it would be cool to see those Caterpillar & Komatsu banners hung all around RA :D


So, a thought experiment to test that theory: Is safe to assume that H Production would be a more successful class, program-wide, were it to LOSE its National status and become a Regional-only class? Or is there something else going on behind this assertion? Bad comparison IMO; first, HP has always (to my knowledge) been a National class, so the dynamic of expanding to a larger 'stage' as it were would not be a factor; in fact, it could be argued that the 'contraction' of the class might actually improve participation, as there would be fewer choices for events & therefore more competition at each event. Secondly, HP participation is so low that the effect of such a change would probably be negligible; if it were to lose National status I would expect most of the racers would be fine with just running Regionals - the few who do actually care about going to the run-offs would just find another class to race in.


Does it absolutely follow that it would be "bad for Regional racing" if, for example, current Regional IT entrants had the option so decided they wanted to do Nationals? The simple loss of those entries would be the net (negative) effect on Regional IT racing...? (I think Jeff expressed this concern.) How about the possibility that more people with National aspirations would use Regional IT races to meet their licensing requirements? Or for car and driver development? Or that prices for used IT cars might increase due to a bigger market? Or that the supply of top-spec used IT cars might expand as National drivers quit? I think so, but that is admittedly biased by my belief that there is a finite number of events that most racers can/will run in a given season. That leads to the conclusion that every National event a driver runs would result in one less Regional event he runs. Now, I know there are guys who would (and could) take advantage of the opportunity to get more track time; but would those outweigh the number who just chose to do National event rather than Regionals?


And is it a safe first assumption that National racing competes with Regional racing? Noodle over the implications of THAT one for a minute, if your answer is "yes."
In many cases I believe that it does (or would, given the topic). Do you think there are as many cars running SM at Regional events now, as compared to when SM was Regional-only?


The whole point I'm trying to make here is NOT that you are wrong. It's that we need to think through the mechanisms we understand to be at work - the theories-of-action - that "cause" the results with expect from a policy decision, and anticipate how all possible outcomes might fit together to define how "successful" it ultimately is.
I know this is all a mental exercise, and as any good professor does your intent is to force your students really think about their answers. Too bad you can't get the folks running this show to put that much thought into what they do...

Knestis
01-08-2011, 06:13 PM
...Do you think there are as many cars running SM at Regional events now, as compared to when SM was Regional-only?

THIS is a great question, that I'd love to answer. I have this dream where the SCCA gives me all of the member and entry data they have, so I can fill up our researchers' spare minutes answering questions, the answers to which would be interesting to the Club.

First, the question hast to be about drivers, rather than cars. Second, it would be necessary to determine how many of the current SM entries - Reg'l and Nat'l - were drivers who were even members before it got National status. Beyond that...? How many Regional entries were by drivers with National licenses? Who actually entered a National in the same year? How long has each been licensed and actively participating in Club racing? How active? How many ran a different class before SM? What class(es)?

Decisions that CROSS categories and the Regional-National "barrier," need to be made considering those data - NOT what an anecdotal or biased sample of the membership wants.

K