Autocrossing – It Takes all Comers

Typical racing flags

This past week we saw 2 truck owners enjoy their daily driver vehicles in the unique world of autocross.  On this blog you have seen all sorts of vehicles, new & old, daily drivers and specialized cars on trailers (both open and enclosed).  Also, this motorsports arena attracts all kinds of people, men & woman, guys & gals, old & young & all variations in between.

Field of Cones

Like I was telling somebody at work today , autocrossing is the easiest and most cost-effective manner of getting into a racing activity, even if it’s only for a minute at a time.  Hey, that’s a LOT longer than a drag racer has to compete!  All you need is a car/truck in fair condition that is not leaking any fluids, put more air in the tires (I’d start at least at 40+ lbs PSI), have your driver’s license, borrow a helmet (the clubs typically have loaners) and pay the $20 to $30 fee the club charges to officially register you for the event.

Look Ahead Cones, by www.cone-designs.com

In exchange, you get a full day of racing (both the bench variety & the spurts of real autocross time around the cones).  As to safety, you’ll also do your part as a corner or grid worker, keeping cones in place & flagging the occasional errant car run.  In essence, you are helping to keep the event under control, while the other half is enjoying their 3 to 4 runs through the course.  In the working positions you can watch the different lines and competition styles of the cars running in their heat.  The TORCA Corvette Novice Autocross Handbook has some very good information and graphics (see below) – it’s a good read!

Corner worker protocol - from http://www.torcavettes.com/autocross.htm

Of course, if you want your car/truck to go faster, then you can start modifying and upgrading it to your heart’s (and wallet’s) content.  That will place you in different, special classes than the stock class you started out in.  Many of the clubs that conduct regular autocross events are not officially sanctioned by the SCCA (Sports Car Club of America).  That includes the 2 clubs I have been following these past few months: SASCA (San Antonio Sports Car Club) & SPOKES (Texas Spokes Sports Car Club, based in Austin).  But they do pretty much follow the SCCA rules & use their vehicle classification structure.

SCCA logo

Both local club logos (SASCA & SPOKES)

I wrote today’s post because this blog needs to be more than a “show & tell” of past autocross events and the vehicles/drivers that have participated.  How are you going to “Go from wannabe racer to successful racing competitor” if I don’t provide you some solid how-to information and products.  I have done that in bits and pieces – I will need to do more.  You can look forward to it, here at Racing Ready!

Dan

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