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Australian Racing, the decline, the elitism, the hype...


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#1 Hank the Deuce

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 05:31

Learned gentlemen, I've spent no small period of time this morning searching the BB to find a definitive thread encompassing all that's wrong with Australian motor racing; while there are a number of threads devoting pages and pages to tirades against the current domestic saloon series, its participants, organisers and devotees, I couldn't quite find one to which I could add my current thought without potentially meandering from the original topic.

I'm hoping that rather than drag the Peter Brock thread further afield from its origin, we might attack the underlying festering discord here... and to initiate the proceedings, may I throw out an uneducated guess... would I be anywhere near correct in assuming that the current state of indifference over our national racing classes has a fair bit to do with a lack of (well publicised, at least) comparison of our local open-wheeler drivers to their international counterparts?

Back in the glory days of the Tasman series, we had the summer holidays chocked fully of the Greats of the day lining up against the local stars... by the time I was watching motor racing, it was the locals v. a couple of imports in borrowed RT4's for the AGP meet at Calder (which I liked in any case)...

Admittedly, living where I did, I didn't get to attend race meetings any more glamorous than the local hillclimb at Mountainview, so I was dependent on Channel 7 and the Round Mound of Sound for the racing... but at least in those days we got Formula Vees, FFords, Formula Mondiale and F2, Clubmans, to supplement the Touring cars, sports sedans and one-make shopping trolley events...

So, am I right? Did the instatement of an F1 AGP actually nail the lid shut on our local categories (with the help of the tin-top brigade)?

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#2 DJH

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 06:08

You guys don't get it do you. The public at large these days have a little less than bugger all interest in the so called " true racing".
Touring cars get people through the gates, put bums on seats and finance the meeting. The majority of spectators regard " true racing" as they would a T.V. ad break, while the open wheelers are on track it gives them a chance to go to the toilet, buy food or check that their car is O.K. Stop knocking the Tourers, like it or not they've been the main event since the early 1960's.

#3 Ray Bell

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 06:18

Marketing puts the 'bums on seats'...

And marketing goes where the money is.

There are so many forces at work in this issue that you cannot encapsulate them in one post or a dozen posts. From the general shift of the population from a world full of spectators to a world full of participants is one of them. There's things like the technological age making it harder for people to understand the technical side, the growth of publicity machines that drown out true news with barrowloads about individuals who might not deserve it through to circuits being so expensive that costs of admission have increase out of proportion.

But, by all means, see if you can get some answers that satisfy your curiosity.

#4 Terry Walker

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 06:45

I don't think any country has had high-level open wheeler racing as its number one category with the public, at least not for many years. High-level open wheeler racing is largely the preserve of internatioanl series.

It was a happy fluke that Australia and New Zealand had the Tasman Series for a while, a set of events which can't be repeated.

We had GP drivers were were still essentially journeyman professionals, contracted for GP drives to one outfit, but picking up other sports cars and touring racing where available. We had a short GP season with a long northern winter layoff, ideal to use for a dash of sunshine down under, some fun racing, and then flog the cars to the locals and go home. We had simple tube frame GP cars and relatively low cost engines from the likes of Coventry Climax. No more.

Today GP drivers don't freelance in other areas; GP cars are unbelievably expensive and need huge teams of technicians to keep on the track. The F1 season is longer than ever. The golden days of the Tasman can never come back.

It was the glamour of the famous names - Clark, Hill, Amon, Rodriguez, and others - that pulled the punters. Take away the famous GP names, and the series withered and died. We do get the international stars, but for just one race a year, the AGP.

We tend to forget that in Australia, as elsewhere, motor racing is predominately an amateur sport. Grass-roots racing is what it's about, and grass-roots racing is, and has been for many years, production car based. It used to be sports cars and tourers, now its mostly tourers as the market for the 2-seat open sports car is moribund. The MX5 is just about the whole market. When there were lots of MGs, TRs, Healeys etc about, sports car races were more important than they are now.

If the grass-roots racing is mostly tourers, then it follows that the more professional levels will also be dominated by tourers, it's a natural progression. Worldwide, cars with roofs dominate by sheer weight of numbers. And they dominate because they of the relative ease of taking up motor racing under a roof.

Years ago Bob Biltoft, who promoted Wanneroo Park for years, told me that the public simply won't turn out for the single seaters. He tried hard, but learned the bitter lesson that headlining single seaters without really big-name stars means losing money at the gate.

I wrote a longish piece on this subect in another thread here a year or so ago.

#5 DJH

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 06:50

Marketing puts the 'bums on seats'...


Sorry Mr. Bell, I'll have to disagree with you there. No marketing in the 1960's, lots of people paid good money to see Beechy, Geoghan, Jane etc. racing, not all those other boring categories. There was no motor sport publicity here in Sydney apart from David McKay's " Behind The Wheel " column in the Wednesday morning Telegraph. Quality and close racing put bums on seats.

#6 Ray Bell

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 09:20

I was referring to modern times there, DJH...

Note some of the things that I mentioned in the next paragraph. Those are things that have changed since the seventies, things that have made 'marketing' necessary and also effective.

I'm glad to know, though, that you kept an eye on Wednesday's Telegraph (not to mention the Sun Herald for Clyde Hodgins' bit, Friday's Mirror for 'unstable's' contribution). Did you also tune in to 2CH on Saturday morning? Were you on the doorstep at Chippen Street, Chippendale looking out for RCN as well?

#7 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 09:28

Originally posted by Terry Walker
I don't think any country has had high-level open wheeler racing as its number one category with the public, at least not for many years. High-level open wheeler racing is largely the preserve of internatioanl series.



Originally posted by Terry Walker
I don't think any country has had high-level open wheeler racing as its number one category with the public, at least not for many years. High-level open wheeler racing is largely the preserve of internatioanl series.



Quoted twice for its accuracy.

#8 DJH

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 10:07

Well Mr. Bell, I never bothered with the SMH as it's broadsheet format was too difficult to handle on the 399 double decker bus headed for work in the city. As for 2CH, I can still recall Brian Muir being interviewed just before the 1964 Armstromg 500 and declaring that the SV Viva's had "more power than Hitler". There was very little press coverage relating to motorsport, in fact I used to listen to ABC Sport radio on Sunday evenings to find out who'd won that day's Touring Car Championship round, sometimes it didn't even rate a mention.

#9 Ray Bell

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 10:58

Originally posted by DJH
Well Mr. Bell, I never bothered with the SMH as it's broadsheet format was too difficult to handle on the 399 double decker bus headed for work in the city. As for 2CH, I can still recall Brian Muir being interviewed just before the 1964 Armstromg 500 and declaring that the SV Viva's had "more power than Hitler". There was very little press coverage relating to motorsport, in fact I used to listen to ABC Sport radio on Sunday evenings to find out who'd won that day's Touring Car Championship round, sometimes it didn't even rate a mention.


Monday's SMH? I hadn't mentioned it, but there was something in there... Evan Green?

I wasn't listening to 2CH quite that early on... every Saturday morning I had to chauffeur my father around his business route. But later on I rarely missed it.

As for the 399... I'm wondering if that's why you address me with the gracious reverence shown... were you on day release?

#10 DJH

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 11:39

We're getting way off thread here, so I'll just say that the 399 ( in those days ) started at Maroubra Beach and went to the city via South Coogee and Randwick. It didn't go within miles of Long Bay. I wasn't on day release, worse than that, I worked for an insurance company, my first proper job after completing my Leaving Certificate in 1964. One of my work mates there was a very well known motor racing photographer at that time. Contributed to RCN for many years.

#11 seldo

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 12:35

Originally posted by DJH
You guys don't get it do you. The public at large these days have a little less than bugger all interest in the so called " true racing".
Touring cars get people through the gates, put bums on seats and finance the meeting. The majority of spectators regard " true racing" as they would a T.V. ad break, while the open wheelers are on track it gives them a chance to go to the toilet, buy food or check that their car is O.K. Stop knocking the Tourers, like it or not they've been the main event since the early 1960's.

Too true! :clap: I read the other posts before replying, but I think this encapsulates the whole issue perfectly.
Apart from a few stoics, the public, who get charged a fair bit of money for the priviledge of supporting their motor racing, have massively voted with their feet in support of tin tops. Like it or not, they love tin tops. Get used to it!
Whilst most of us would agree that, in theory any way, open wheelers are the purest form of motor sport, the irrefutable facts are on the board that the general public don't agree. They think they are boring! I know it's a harsh, uncomfortable reality, but they think they are boring. Therefore.....they will not part with their hard-earned in order to come and watch them, despite the protestations of the great un-washed... I guess that a comparison could be drawn with heavy classical music vs soft-rock.... And as a reality fact, the promoters, one bitten twice shy, will not offer them to the general masses.
The other and inescapable fact as Terry Walker mentioned , is that today's F1 or any senior category open-wheeled formula car requires a cast of 50 to look after it. We simply cannot afford to sustain that sort of technological involvement. Back in the days of the Tasman series, a half-competent technician could maintain a Brab/Cooper Climax single-handedly with ease.
I'm afraid that the bleaters who keep harking back to the good-old-days and berating the success of touring cars are wasting their breath....

#12 Hank the Deuce

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 01:14

Originally posted by seldo

The other and inescapable fact as Terry Walker mentioned , is that today's F1 or any senior category open-wheeled formula car requires a cast of 50 to look after it. We simply cannot afford to sustain that sort of technological involvement. Back in the days of the Tasman series, a half-competent technician could maintain a Brab/Cooper Climax single-handedly with ease.
I'm afraid that the bleaters who keep harking back to the good-old-days and berating the success of touring cars are wasting their breath....


True.

Is it a matter of too many categories of motor racing being less accessible for general participation now than in the past?

#13 Ray Bell

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 01:33

Yes, there are way too many categories...

And there are way too many people want more! Not only that, there's a kind of insistence that they are all of great value and deserve TV coverage and all the bells and whistles.

I'll never forget the comment made by John Cannon when he was here with a McLaren F5000 for the Tasman. "We're using sledgehammers to crack peanuts here," he said, meaning that they were spending a fortune and using all the available technology to win relatively minor events.

That's a way of putting things into perspective. It's a sport, it's a pastime, it's a hobby. That the upper echelons of that sport can attract huge sponsorships and captivate huge audiences is somewhat natural, because as a sport it can be conveyed as being spectacular and exciting.

But is all of the sport this attractive?

I remember too, when I was in the Clubman Racing Association and we were doing deals with promoters to get races, trying to get our cars on TV to publicise the class and that sort of thing, there was an air among some that it really was more important than it really was.

The inevitability was that some were disappointed and moved on to other classes where they perceived they'd get more attention, which they learned at great cost would only be done at great cost. And then there was the introduction of aerodynamic aids to make the cars look more modern so they'd appeal more on TV and maybe to the spectators.

Nobody wins in those situations. It raises the cost of being involved while increasing the gap between the 'haves' and 'have nots'. Did Seldon have wings when he outbraked the McLaren M8 to win at Amaroo? Not a one! The cars were great as they were... why muck around with them.

And so today there are several sub-classes among the Clubmans. Three or four, I'm not sure, as well as cars that run as they did 'in the day' in Historic racing.

Similar paths are followed by other categories, then there's the multitude of one-make things that come into being. Geminis, HQs, Commodore Cup, Saloon Cars (yes, two makes there), and in former times TR7s, Alfasuds, Renault Newstar... there would be more if I bothered to look back properly.

Now Sports Sedans are being included in the Historic groupings. Which reminds us that not only current day classes are expanding, but Historics are similarly out of control. Pre-1931 sports and racing, pre-war sports and racing, pre-1961 sports and racing, production sports, pre-1966 sports and racing, pre-1973 with subdivisions for different classes... in fact, I've kind of lost track of that as F5000, FF, FV and probably others get their own groupings. That's before we look at the three or four sedan car categories and now tack Sports Sedans on there!

But there are owners out there with these cars and many are competing in them. What's happening is they are finally realising that they aren't big shot stars, they are becoming happy to compete in club meetings. But trying to sort your way through the mire would give you nightmares!

Did I answer the question? Did I get to say that motor racing remains accessible? Just add money, of course.

#14 Terry Walker

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 02:06

Categories also vary from State to State.

Of course, just about any major league sport you can think of is now a TV sport - tennis, football, cricket, V8 supercars, F1 WDC racing.

Few are more nakedly TV sports than cricket - One-Day and 20-20 were created specifically for TV. And F1 is now gearing more and more to TV prime time schedules where the sponsors are. Hence demands for racing under lights, etc. Pre-packaged, homogenised, standardised, and (it must be said) increasingly boring.

V8 Supercars, too, is now a version of a reality TV show. Neither Falcons nor Holden are actually Falcons or Holdens, being closer to Nascar than Series Production. Avesco go to vast lengths to homegenise the cars, so they are all but identical: big-bucks HQ racing. Now they have to promote driver "rivalries" instead of motor racing contests.

There is also a diminishing interest by F1 and V8S in live spectators. Hence races in the Middle East and Asia, where the owners of the circuits pay big sums to lure events to their vast spectator-free white elephants. They both prefer the circuit owners to pay them big bucks to appear the the circuits rather than pay the owners of the circuits for the use of their facilities. Bad news for circuit owners.

Another downside locally is the pre-packaging of the entire race card by Avesco, so that local heroes never get a chance to run on TV and gain that bit of extra sponsorship to help them through the rest of the season. The grass roots boys are all too often frozen out by Avesco entirely. This is very bad for the sport, and CAMS ought to stipulate a certain number of local support races for the Oz-NZ meetings.

Unfortunately, all big-league TV sports go this way: pre-packaged for couch potatoes and quick profits, total lack of interest in the grass roots.

#15 Hank the Deuce

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 02:46

Originally posted by Terry Walker
Another downside locally is the pre-packaging of the entire race card by Avesco, so that local heroes never get a chance to run on TV and gain that bit of extra sponsorship to help them through the rest of the season. The grass roots boys are all too often frozen out by Avesco entirely. This is very bad for the sport, and CAMS ought to stipulate a certain number of local support races for the Oz-NZ meetings.

Similar thoughts had occurred to me, Terry. Back in the days (and I can picture some folk rolling their eyes at me again), it seemed that the upper levels were more accessible for the weekend warrior... even in the earlier days of Group 5A (which I think was what the current V8S's were before their corporatisation), the Scotty Taylors etc, could field a car at a couple of national-level meetings, including Bathurst. While you could argue that the evolution of the cars ultimately precluded the weekend warriors due to their speed and the ability required to keep them on the island, the category (cateogries?) lost any of the "that could be me" participation factor that previous iterations had allowed.

Certainly, there are now more "professional racing drivers" than panel-beaters, mechanics, Xerox Shop franchisees or barristers in the fields, than used to be the case...

#16 cosworth bdg

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 03:04

Originally posted by Ray Bell
Yes, there are way too many categories...



Now Sports Sedans are being included in the Historic groupings. Which reminds us that not only current day classes are expanding, but Historics are similarly out of control. Pre-1931 sports and racing, pre-war sports and racing, pre-1961 sports and racing, production sports, pre-1966 sports and racing, pre-1973 with subdivisions for different classes... in fact, I've kind of lost track of that as F5000, FF, FV and probably others get their own groupings. That's before we look at the three or four sedan car categories and now tack Sports Sedans on there!

But there are owners out there with these cars and many are competing in them. What's happening is they are finally realising that they aren't big shot stars, they are becoming happy to compete in club meetings. But trying to sort your way through the mire would give you nightmares!

Did I answer the question? Did I get to say that motor racing remains accessible? Just add money, of course.

Ray, very well said......................

#17 DJH

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 04:48

Perhaps when the V8 Supercar period comes to an end ( please God make it soon ) a return to a national Series Production Championship could be considered. I don't want to mention "the good old days", but , Group E and earlier Series Prod. certainly had many car dealers and privately entered ( and funded ) cars doing battle with the big guns. Certainly gave the locals around the country a chance to display their talent, or otherwise.

#18 Hank the Deuce

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 05:04

Originally posted by DJH
Perhaps when the V8 Supercar period comes to an end ( please God make it soon ) a return to a national Series Production Championship could be considered. I don't want to mention "the good old days", but , Group E and earlier Series Prod. certainly had many car dealers and privately entered ( and funded ) cars doing battle with the big guns. Certainly gave the locals around the country a chance to display their talent, or otherwise.

When you consider the active lifespans of the categories that went before V8S, it appears that chronoligally, the current regime is a couple of years past its use-by date.

I had personally hoped that GT-P might've stepped up, but they seemed to stop dead in the water.

#19 275 GTB-4

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 10:02

Originally posted by DJH

Sorry Mr. Bell, I'll have to disagree with you there. No marketing in the 1960's, lots of people paid good money to see Beechy, Geoghan, Jane etc. racing, not all those other boring categories. There was no motor sport publicity here in Sydney apart from David McKay's " Behind The Wheel " column in the Wednesday morning Telegraph. Quality and close racing put bums on seats.


Cough!! Cough! bull#%$*....as a Liverpudlian in the 60s...there was plenty of marketing bud....the radio and later the tube was a-buzz, RCN was a-buzz and people were a-buzz....speak for yourself about people not being interested in the other categories...rubbish!!

The programs were appreciated by a bunch of people happy to put their bums on seats.

TNF People: I give you "Son of Stan" :rolleyes:

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#20 Ray Bell

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 10:35

Originally posted by 275 GTB-4
Cough!! Cough! bull#%$*....as a Liverpudlian in the 60s.....


What a shame they let you out!

#21 275 GTB-4

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 12:31

Originally posted by Ray Bell
What a shame they let you out!


Liverpool in those days had a quite a large criminal element...and therefore, quite safe...nobody, but nobody, craps in their own nest....

Ray...Ray...Ray....ah forget it ...you will never change :rolleyes:

#22 repcobrabham

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 12:41

Originally posted by 275 GTB-4


Cough!! Cough! bull#%$*....as a Liverpudlian in the 60s...there was plenty of marketing bud....the radio and later the tube was a-buzz, RCN was a-buzz and people were a-buzz....speak for yourself about people not being interested in the other categories...rubbish!!

The programs were appreciated by a bunch of people happy to put their bums on seats.

TNF People: I give you "Son of Stan" :rolleyes:


really constructive input there...

promoters will only invest in what they think is a winning product. beyond that, a compelling case has been made by several parties for the position opposing yours. i'm too young to add anything of to that but i don't think i need too - why don't you give it a try?

funny how the opposing parties both here and in the brock thread are distinguished by the quality of their discourse as well as the content of it.

and the 399 was a great bus route servicing one of the world's finest stretches of urbanised coastline!;)

#23 275 GTB-4

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 13:02

Originally posted by repcobrabham


really constructive input there...

promoters will only invest in what they think is a winning product. beyond that, a compelling case has been made by several parties for the position opposing yours. i'm too young to add anything of to that but i don't think i need too - why don't you give it a try?

funny how the opposing parties both here and in the brock thread are distinguished by the quality of their discourse as well as the content of it.

and the 399 was a great bus route servicing one of the world's finest stretches of urbanised coastline!;)



Maroubra...was to be avoided even way back then....way too close to Malabar :blush:

Where can I get some of the stuff you are on...anyone who thinks in todays the bottom line is king terms and try's to equate it to the euphoria of the 60s is....well...far out man! :smoking:

#24 seldo

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 15:14

Originally posted by DJH
Perhaps when the V8 Supercar period comes to an end ( please God make it soon ) a return to a national Series Production Championship could be considered. I don't want to mention "the good old days", but , Group E and earlier Series Prod. certainly had many car dealers and privately entered ( and funded ) cars doing battle with the big guns. Certainly gave the locals around the country a chance to display their talent, or otherwise.

But sadly, the days of the so-called independent or privateer are long, long, gone. These days, as I understand it, one has to purchase (at huge cost) a "franchise" in order to even enter a race meeting. So, apart from having to buy and prepare your car at maybe say $250k - $500k, plus a truck and team gear for about the same again, one then has to outlay another several hundred, a million or more even, for a franchise which gives you the priviledge of even being allowed to lodge an entry...!! I'm long out of it, but the numbers being bandied around are simply ridiculous.

#25 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 16 August 2008 - 13:24

You have hit it right on the head Seldo.
We now have obese Sports Sedans with obese budgets masquerading as Touring Cars. With the same promotion modern cars built to early 70s improved Production sort of specs would be far more relevant to the public and the manufacturers for about 20% of curent budgets. A car with a decent rollcage, not a virtual spaceframe. Minor modifications to engines, brakes, suspensions, hubs, wheels and probably dry sumping. And if you trash a car you can build another quickly and comparitvely cheaply al la Gp C or early GpA. And only cars sold in moderate numbers in the country.
Cochrane and co have aped Nascar in basic promotion and rules. What next unrecognisable boxes with a Ford or Holden sticker!
And then they might even put racecars back on racetracks instead of hooning around those stupid and dangerous street circuits. Note Adelaide and New Zealand debacles.
And maybe not stopping the race for a piece of rag on the track!

#26 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 16 August 2008 - 13:26

And Seldo those franchise type deals are in force for utes, Porsche cup, and other classes too

#27 Ray Bell

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Posted 16 August 2008 - 14:19

You're beginning to sound angry, Lee...

And I can't blame you! It has all destroyed the public face of the sport.

#28 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 16 August 2008 - 23:56

Me angry! Only since they decided to make motorsport entertainment than a sport. Any excuse to close up he fields, bring out the pacecar. And that is from F1 down to fairly basic local categories.These days the pacecar has a fair show of running top 10 at Enduro events.
And don't start me on parity racing.
It is probably why I seldom attend these days and yell at the TV instead, or just turn off the VCR.

#29 seldo

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Posted 17 August 2008 - 01:41

Originally posted by Lee Nicolle
You have hit it right on the head Seldo.
We now have obese Sports Sedans with obese budgets masquerading as Touring Cars. With the same promotion modern cars built to early 70s improved Production sort of specs would be far more relevant to the public and the manufacturers for about 20% of curent budgets. A car with a decent rollcage, not a virtual spaceframe. Minor modifications to engines, brakes, suspensions, hubs, wheels and probably dry sumping. And if you trash a car you can build another quickly and comparitvely cheaply al la Gp C or early GpA. And only cars sold in moderate numbers in the country.
Cochrane and co have aped Nascar in basic promotion and rules. What next unrecognisable boxes with a Ford or Holden sticker!
And then they might even put racecars back on racetracks instead of hooning around those stupid and dangerous street circuits. Note Adelaide and New Zealand debacles.
And maybe not stopping the race for a piece of rag on the track!

The trouble is of course, that the current class is the end result of years of "a few little relaxations" which began back with....yep...Series Production.
Then the "vested interests" conned/blackmailed the rule makers by saying that if they didn't get the relaxations required by the short-comings of their particular car, then they would withdraw. The masters of all this were Firth, Marsden and Moffat.
Firstly, it was optional alloy wheels (safety) brake up-grades (safety) dry-sumping (longevity, cost and safety), wheel hubs (safety) full-floaters (safety) inlet manifolds (parity), cranks, cams and pistons (if you can't control the cheating, allow full freedom) and so on......
So now we have silhouette space frame cars called V8Supercars....
But it would be interesting to start the long painful journey all over again.

#30 cosworth bdg

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Posted 17 August 2008 - 02:27

[QUOTE]Originally posted by seldo

The trouble is of course, that the current class is the end result of years of "a few little relaxations" which began back with....yep...Series Production.
Then the "vested interests" conned/blackmailed the rule makers by saying that if they didn't get the relaxations required by the short-comings of their particular car, then they would withdraw. The masters of all this were Firth, Marsden and Moffat.
Firstly, it was optional alloy wheels (safety) brake up-grades (safety) dry-sumping (longevity, cost and safety), wheel hubs (safety) full-floaters (safety) inlet manifolds (parity), cranks, cams and pistons (if you can't control the cheating, allow full freedom) and so on......
So now we have silhouette space frame cars called V8Supercars....
But it would be interesting to start the long painful journey all over again.
[/QU You have forgoten one very important name in that lot HOINVILLE, very good at twisting rules and meanings, just look at what he has done with the HISTORIC regulations, :down:

#31 haggis

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Posted 17 August 2008 - 03:08

Being in WA the thing that upsets me the most is that everything the WASCC does seems to be done to appease AVESCO and to entice them back...and what they do is NEVER good enough. It's a really negative and demoralising relationship. The continual upgrade of facilities to keep these guys happy is an enormous financial burden for a club...and try as they might to be faithful and proactive to the series, AVESCO's agenda seems hell bent on completely removing the WASCC from the pie and promoting the WA race themselves and running it on a street circuit. This would further alienate the actual enthusiasts and leave us with bugger all income to support ANY other racing in this state. I know most 'real' WA enthusiasts don't even attend the annual V8 race, because as was said earlier, it is a circus act not a sport....almost unrecognisable as the sport I have loved for 40 years. Yet these gorillas are our masters and at their mercy we remain.

I wish AVESCO would slow the V8s down....turn them back into touring cars rather than having them as sports sedans. The need for parity among brands has driven the class to the point of being brandless, such are the basic similarities of Fords and Holdens now. Not that I care about the ridiculous Ford/Holden hype that the series is based on. I guess the problem as I see it is that the whole thing is a con anyway...its like barracking for the Aussie in the pool at the Olympics only to find out afterwards that she lives in Germany, was born in Russia and only calls herself an Aussie because she likes the place because the people here were friendly to her once! The whole V8 series is insignificant to the enthusiast these days, and there really isn't much else out there that's any better. Other than the FFs, everything else is just soul less.

Club racing promoters and circuit owners need to spend more money developing their local classes, where the next top level drivers will be fostered. It irks me that every class that IS promoted properly costs well beyond the means of the average enthusiast, and there are not more sponsorship dollars available because AVESCO is so aggressive in sucking every cent of motorsport sponsorship in the country for themselves, leaving nothing for others. Local drivers can't even sell a bit of their car to the local hardware store anymore with the promise of 10 seconds of national 'air time' or a few races in front of a real crowd once a year, because they don't get to run at the 'big race' anymore...they are not part of the anointed few. Part of AVESCOs licensing agreement from CAMS (if USELESS CAMS even has a binding agreement with them) should have been that they spend some profit on fostering of motorsport at grass roots level...not just exploit everyone and run to the bank with all our money! They have effectively cut most of the enthusiasts who have developed the permanent circuits and supported motorsport in this country completely out of the deal...bringing club based motorsport to its knees and leaving nothing for the traditional fan...except a circus that just pretends to be motorsport.

I don't care for the tin top vs racing car discussion. Long as the racing is real, close and has passing, fair rules and isn't bastardised to appeal to apes, I really don't care if they race planks of 4x2 with boat engines on them. Only give something back to the people who love real, pure motor racing....if they can't bring themselves to alter the V8s to appeal to the average 'purist', then at least FOSTER something with some of the money they are making to help us to cope with the crap V8 series.

Sadly, I think the whole argument is moot anyway...as the V8s are in serious decline and will probably stop making money very soon...then the suits will leave and like aphids...they will have left very little left behind them to rebuild with...meanwhile CAMS can't even seem to organise a basic licence without needing 8 months....sigh!

#32 cosworth bdg

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Posted 17 August 2008 - 03:51

Originally posted by haggis
Being in WA the thing that upsets me the most is that everything the WASCC does seems to be done to appease AVESCO and to entice them back...and what they do is NEVER good enough. It's a really negative and demoralising relationship. The continual upgrade of facilities to keep these guys happy is an enormous financial burden for a club...and try as they might to be faithful and proactive to the series, AVESCO's agenda seems hell bent on completely removing the WASCC from the pie and promoting the WA race themselves and running it on a street circuit. This would further alienate the actual enthusiasts and leave us with bugger all income to support ANY other racing in this state. I know most 'real' WA enthusiasts don't even attend the annual V8 race, because as was said earlier, it is a circus act not a sport....almost unrecognisable as the sport I have loved for 40 years. Yet these gorillas are our masters and at their mercy we remain.

I wish AVESCO would slow the V8s down....turn them back into touring cars rather than having them as sports sedans. The need for parity among brands has driven the class to the point of being brandless, such are the basic similarities of Fords and Holdens now. Not that I care about the ridiculous Ford/Holden hype that the series is based on. I guess the problem as I see it is that the whole thing is a con anyway...its like barracking for the Aussie in the pool at the Olympics only to find out afterwards that she lives in Germany, was born in Russia and only calls herself an Aussie because she likes the place because the people here were friendly to her once! The whole V8 series is insignificant to the enthusiast these days, and there really isn't much else out there that's any better. Other than the FFs, everything else is just soul less.

Club racing promoters and circuit owners need to spend more money developing their local classes, where the next top level drivers will be fostered. It irks me that every class that IS promoted properly costs well beyond the means of the average enthusiast, and there are not more sponsorship dollars available because AVESCO is so aggressive in sucking every cent of motorsport sponsorship in the country for themselves, leaving nothing for others. Local drivers can't even sell a bit of their car to the local hardware store anymore with the promise of 10 seconds of national 'air time' or a few races in front of a real crowd once a year, because they don't get to run at the 'big race' anymore...they are not part of the anointed few. Part of AVESCOs licensing agreement from CAMS (if USELESS CAMS even has a binding agreement with them) should have been that they spend some profit on fostering of motorsport at grass roots level...not just exploit everyone and run to the bank with all our money! They have effectively cut most of the enthusiasts who have developed the permanent circuits and supported motorsport in this country completely out of the deal...bringing club based motorsport to its knees and leaving nothing for the traditional fan...except a circus that just pretends to be motorsport.

I don't care for the tin top vs racing car discussion. Long as the racing is real, close and has passing, fair rules and isn't bastardised to appeal to apes, I really don't care if they race planks of 4x2 with boat engines on them. Only give something back to the people who love real, pure motor racing....if they can't bring themselves to alter the V8s to appeal to the average 'purist', then at least FOSTER something with some of the money they are making to help us to cope with the crap V8 series.

Sadly, I think the whole argument is moot anyway...as the V8s are in serious decline and will probably stop making money very soon...then the suits will leave and like aphids...they will have left very little left behind them to rebuild with...meanwhile CAMS can't even seem to organise a basic licence without needing 8 months....sigh!

What you have just said and written is happening all over the country with the help of C.AM.S. relevent state GOVERNMENTS and of course the club/promoters of which now are too numerous

#33 repcobrabham

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Posted 17 August 2008 - 04:48

you'd have to think the supercars are on their last legs: as peter mckay has pointed out, they inflate their claims of popularity with manipulation of statistics and - quite frankly - their support base isn't particularly wealthy or sophisticated. it's likely they'll have less money to spend on race tickets and merchandise in the coming years. add to that the falcon's decline and the suddenly darker future of holden's RWD large car export prospects and you guys might soon get the clean slate you've been looking for.

#34 cosworth bdg

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Posted 17 August 2008 - 05:22

Originally posted by repcobrabham
you'd have to think the supercars are on their last legs: as peter mckay has pointed out, they inflate their claims of popularity with manipulation of statistics and - quite frankly - their support base isn't particularly wealthy or sophisticated. it's likely they'll have less money to spend on race tickets and merchandise in the coming years. add to that the falcon's decline and the suddenly darker future of holden's RWD large car export prospects and you guys might soon get the clean slate you've been looking for.

Please, please let us hope so, we can only live in hope..................

#35 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 17 August 2008 - 05:43

Haggis, shame on you it is not a circus. It is a dog and pony show!
Otherwise I agree 100%

#36 cosworth bdg

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Posted 17 August 2008 - 07:51

Originally posted by Lee Nicolle
Haggis, shame on you it is not a circus. It is a dog and pony show!
Otherwise I agree 100%

But the dog makes more NOISE, so gets feed first.........

#37 Hank the Deuce

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Posted 17 August 2008 - 08:01

Originally posted by cosworth bdg
But the dog makes more NOISE, so gets feed first.........

thought it was a lion, not a dog.... you could still be right of course...

#38 GeoffR

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Posted 17 August 2008 - 11:33

At this point in time the main money is with V8SA, and the sub categories that hang off it. Like it or not, nothing will change that in the short term.

I've recently been watching some 'old' (80's/90's) Bathurst DVDs when there were multiple classes & it was certainly a diffferent & more entertaining race than is now the case.

However the current 'main game' is firmly under the Cockroach's control and televison and the punters in general seem to be OK with that, maybe because they know no better.

The best some of the other catagories can hope for is a bit of exposure on alternate telecasters such as SBS, F3 often features there for example.

As far as the old open wheelers vs tin tops debate is concerned, i.m.o. that issue was resolved well before the Brock/Moffat days. The Jane/Beechey/Geoghan duels set us firmly down that path.

#39 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 17 August 2008 - 22:42

Good open wheeler racing can be exciting. The F3s this year have put on some decent racing. But these days the car is more than the driver and if they go off they just beach themselves. In some respects higher ride heights may make open wheelers more attractive to watch, if they go off they may be able to get back on. To my mind the F5000s were the ultimate viewing spectacle. Fast, move around a lot, sound good and comparitvly cheap to run and had more than an inch ride height.

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#40 cosworth bdg

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 06:37

Originally posted by Hank the Deuce
thought it was a lion, not a dog.... you could still be right of course...

Just look at the mess australian motorsport [ V8Supercars] is in, C.A.M.S. has jumped everytime the LION has roared , and look at the height that jump has been , Chinese Olympic style nearly....................................................................