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Ray Bell's 'Auto Action' column


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#1 Dick Willis

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Posted 18 April 2014 - 22:17

Frequent and long standing TNF contributor, Ray Bell, has a column on Historics in Australian weekly motor racing mag, Auto Action. His topic this week was "Get them out" referring to large numbers of older racing cars decaying in sheds as their owners are unwilling or unable to race them any longer but are desirous or retaining ownership. Many will agree with his sentiments but the solutions are not as simple as they may appear.

 

Australia is not Goodwood where wealthy owners engage superstar drivers to drive their cars to the absolute limit, and not to worry if it blows up or crashes. Unfortunately most of the Australian owners of old racing cars are not mega wealthy, they are not poor either but probably financially comfortable. As such they are unable to afford expensive repairs required by someone elses indulgence.

 

Assuming they were to engage a driver who would they have ? Racing a Historic car never led, to my knowledge, to a drive in F1 or Australian V8 Supercars so a younger person would not be attracted. As there is no sponsorship in Historics how would they fund a drive even if they were interested. So probably the only opening is for a younger hopeful to find a benefactor willing to put them in the car and pay tfor heir expenses, crashes, blow ups etc but for reasons outlined above I am doubtful there are many such benefactors to be found.

 

A usual situation too is that the family/children of our typical Australian old racing car owner aren't really interested in Dad's passion or are too wound up in their own families and interests to become suitable candidates to take over looking after and driving his 1949 Blattmobile F1 car.

 

While I am sympathetic to Ray's quest I am not sure what the answer is, what do others think ?



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#2 GMACKIE

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Posted 18 April 2014 - 23:05

Dick, what I think is in line with your thoughts. You could be describing me [as well as a lot of my friends] in the above.

 

CAMS are not helping - may even be hindering - the situation, with high costs to compete. My AASA National licence [$100/year] has allowed me to compete in the '59 Cooper Porsche. It means I can 'blow the cobwebs' out of the car [and myself], whithout breaking the bank.

 

Sorry, I don't know the answer, either.



#3 Wirra

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 08:46

They don't have to compete! From what I have observed it literally is a Sunday drive for many and I'm fine with that. In fact I'd be glad with parade laps and even happy to see them as static display. Why not offer free entry for static display vehicles..

 

The pathetic turn out of ex-Matich cars at the last Tasman was an insult to Frank and quite frankly (no pun) it turned me off the whole historic scene. Retrofest will be one last throw of the dice for me and sadly I read where they are struggling for entries..



#4 275 GTB-4

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 12:02

The people organising and running historic events also need to take a big slice of responsibility for its decline....



#5 DanTra2858

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 20:14

What are the Costs these days for running in a Historic event, Entry Fee, Garage or Parking area let alone Driver safety equipment?

Is it the same price at all tracks or do the Costs vary & the differance in cost is it the Promoters or CAMS Fees.

Is there a different cost structure to race as opposes to Regularity?

#6 Lola5000

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 21:29

For me,I've often thought of buying another open wheeler either another Brabham or a Ralt RT4,then I look at the time involved/money spent at a race track and the track time involved and just go Nope not me,rather spend the money on something else or the time doing other enjoyments.

Plus once you have been burn't by either CAMS or one of the goon squad...its all to hard plus its the same old tracks,cars and events ..churned over again and again . :clap:



#7 Ray Bell

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 21:44

Dick, I thank you for raising this issue...

I don't think there was ever any idea of people doing this to make a name for themselves.

#8 275 GTB-4

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 22:00

What are the Costs these days for running in a Historic event, Entry Fee, Garage or Parking area let alone Driver safety equipment?

Is it the same price at all tracks or do the Costs vary & the differance in cost is it the Promoters or CAMS Fees.

Is there a different cost structure to race as opposes to Regularity?


A recent example I know of is the ARDC/HSRCA Retro....for example: $450 entry, and $160 for a garage. No Dan, not the same price at all tracks.

Edited by 275 GTB-4, 19 April 2014 - 22:03.


#9 GMACKIE

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 22:52

A bit more on top of that, Mick. Also, if some billy-goat runs into you, then it's even more.

 

Once, in an historic race, I was rammed from behind by another driver. When I asked him what happened, [expecting 'brake failure' or similar] he replied "I don't know". :eek:



#10 275 GTB-4

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 01:30

A bit more on top of that, Mick. Also, if some billy-goat runs into you, then it's even more.


Yep...understand its nowhere near a total budget for a weekends race meeting or the cost of a season of "Hysterics" (with maybe an engine refresh at the end)...just two example components, there are obviously cheaper meetings around than the Retro which I believe may be aimed at piggy-backing on the success of Muscle Car Masters (and following on from the defunct(?) Tasman Revival)

Edited by 275 GTB-4, 20 April 2014 - 01:31.


#11 DanTra2858

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 06:41

A recent example I know of is the ARDC/HSRCA Retro....for example: $450 entry, and $160 for a garage. No Dan, not the same price at all tracks.


Thanks for the costs Mick I am afraid that my Pension payment would not leave any money to buy Vegemite for my toast, any idea of the cost of 10 wide slicks these days.

How many sets of tyres would an average Historic Competitor go though in one year of racing.

#12 Dick Willis

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 08:55

Daniel, depends on the car and how keen you are but in Group L a set of Hoosiers will last several seasons of perhaps half a dozen race meetings per year so I don't think the cost of rubber is really a factor in that category.



#13 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 09:15

Having just done Easter Mallala as a Supersprint format in Sports Sedans I would have no change out of $1500 to do the event. Entry, shed, fuel to get there plus preparing the car ,, on the cheap. That is a car that ran ok but preperation like brake pads, brake fluid, fuel, 80 litres @ $3+ a litre adds up rapidly.

It was an interesting exercise but honestly I cant see me doing it again too often. Been there and spent a lot of money from 77-2001. And everything is more now than it was then. In the 80s and early 90s I won enough to pay for entrys at least.

A mate runs a good GpN Torana and realistically there is no change out of an average $3500 a meeting.



#14 garyfrogeye

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 11:06

Do you have anything like Sprints in Oz that you could use your cars in?. I only compete in my Frogeye/bugeye, which I drive too and from the circuit/airfield but a day's racing cost me about £70.00 once you've bought some protective clothing. My race licence (only a national B) cost about £40 per year. Surely a small sprint is better than not using the car at all. Or am I missing something?


Edited by garyfrogeye, 20 April 2014 - 11:06.


#15 Dick Willis

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 12:26

Having just done Easter Mallala as a Supersprint format in Sports Sedans I would have no change out of $1500 to do the event. Entry, shed, fuel to get there plus preparing the car ,, on the cheap. That is a car that ran ok but preperation like brake pads, brake fluid, fuel, 80 litres @ $3+ a litre adds up rapidly.

It was an interesting exercise but honestly I cant see me doing it again too often. Been there and spent a lot of money from 77-2001. And everything is more now than it was then. In the 80s and early 90s I won enough to pay for entrys at least.

A mate runs a good GpN Torana and realistically there is no change out of an average $3500 a meeting.

 

Lee, you are running the wrong type of cars, ie. taxi type cars,  if you are concerned about cost.

 

And Gary, yes, you are on the right track to keeping costs under control.

 

Make no mistake, if you are hell bent on being a winner, it costs money ! Look how people have destroyed all the cheap fromulae by outspending the competition, for example, how much to do a full season in a Formula Ford if you want to run at the front, a six figure sum.



#16 Ray Bell

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 20:48

Everything being part of some 'series' also makes it more expensive...

It makes it difficult to get a run at all unless you are competing in the series and compelled to run further from home or more often than you can afford.

#17 GMACKIE

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 21:51

Do you have anything like Sprints in Oz that you could use your cars in?. I only compete in my Frogeye/bugeye, which I drive too and from the circuit/airfield but a day's racing cost me about £70.00 once you've bought some protective clothing. My race licence (only a national B) cost about £40 per year. Surely a small sprint is better than not using the car at all. Or am I missing something?

The GEAR [Golden Era Auto Racing] Club caters for those who want to just have some fun on the track....without making contact. AASA licence is $50 per year, and entry for the day is $130. There is usually enough [free] car-ports for all.

 

A few drive their road-registered cars to the circuit, but open-wheelers are more difficult.  ;)



#18 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 23:20

Lee, you are running the wrong type of cars, ie. taxi type cars,  if you are concerned about cost.

 

And Gary, yes, you are on the right track to keeping costs under control.

 

Make no mistake, if you are hell bent on being a winner, it costs money ! Look how people have destroyed all the cheap fromulae by outspending the competition, for example, how much to do a full season in a Formula Ford if you want to run at the front, a six figure sum.

Dick, the costs are relevant in all categorys. Entrys, travel, fuel, tyres, etc etc all cost the same.

For me to do a local Sprint the entry is less, I will do a few less laps so burn less fuel,, and brakes. Engine, gearbox, diff maintenance all costs.

 Racing historics means that the parts are harder to get, often cost more, and enviromental regs means that for instance brake rotors disapear faster too. Once upon a time DS11 lasted ok, and the rotors lasted 1/2 a dozen sets of pads. Now you are lucky if you will get two sets of pads to rotors. At Mallala anything remotely heavy uses a set of pads in 2 meetings, sometimes every meeting. That itself is really an added cost too as really you should go to a practice day to bed in both pads and rotors. Ideally not the Fri before a meeting incase you break something.



#19 2Bob

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 06:00

None of the following to be MENTIONED TO MY WIFE (or any other wife, partner or whatever)

 

 

Cost for my car, an ASP Clubman - most bang for the buck as Ray bell would agree, (For none oz people a Lotus 7 or Mallock style car with 1300cc highly modified production based engine (130+ BHP), gearbox and live rear axle no LSD) reasonably competitive, about slow FF or Sports 2000 times) costs:

 

To buy, an  OK example say $25,000.  

 

Last engine rebuild (professional, new rods, pistons etc, head touched up, engine dyno,) around $6,000 some 10 meetings ago, hopefully another 10 before 'minor' rebuild at maybe $3000).  Just bought new close ratio gearbox $3000 + after stuffing 4 standard, ex wrecker, gearboxes in last 2 years.

 

Brakes minimal for this car say new pads and machined rotors every 10+ meetings, max $20 meeting (and Mallala is hard on brakes).

 

Chassis/fibreglass/painting repairs say $2,000 over last 5 years, ('friend / crewchief' does technical work, i attempt the body work (have mold for the fibreglass).  Could be much more expensive if body work/paint done professionally.   

 

Entry fees;  

 

Normal Mallala meeting $450, shed $110 (getting old need a shed these days).  Race fuel $100(?) tow car fuel $50, beer $20, food minimal, sandwiches (cheap skates thermos coffee) $20 total say $750.

 

Historic Mallala (Easter - last 2 days) same - $750.

 

Historic Phillip Island, meeting with shed approx $900, camping at track $70 per person ($140 for me and pit crew), hire of Motorhome (el cheapo picked up in Melbourne, $100 per night - $400 used by 2 'teams' my share $200) fuel Adelaide to PI and return $500 (? haven't bothered to add it up), food and booze self and team $100 per day - $400, majority on the Sunday night....)  Total around $2,100.  (Thinks going again next year??? - hell yes!)

 

Tyres $2000 set, last 10 meetings maybe.

 

Last 5 years total.  Includes 5 race meetings a year at Mallala and 2 interstate (Winton and Phillip Island) say $40,000 (plus a few things that I forgot like occasional open practice days at $110 day plus fuel etc. and of course (duh), CAMS fees, helmet, overalls, (now HANS device - fair enough) I guess.

 

Probably around $10,000 a year really, for 6 race meetings.  Could be worse I guess, could take up drinking (more) or GOLF!  (Will be worse next year Phillip Island AND Winton I hope).

 

I still work - sort of, but get some pension too as my pay is less than whatever the income test for the pension amount is.  Good news is that wife gets to pension age later this year (Don't tell anyone about that either...) so the pension goes up a bit, might pay for Winton....

 

Whatever, it is better than not racing.... at least while still passing the medical.  Maybe if that becomes a problem (like blood pressure gets any higher, or I go more senile), some youngster can drive it as long as they pay the running costs or some arrangement like that - that might please Ray!


Edited by 2Bob, 21 April 2014 - 06:03.


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#20 Dick Willis

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 07:19

Bob, congratulations on going racing on a budget, Lee Nicolle please note, it can be done.



#21 Andrew Fellowes

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 07:44

Eastern Creek next meeting numbers are now well up, but only by harassing competitors. So WHY?

Because it is getting boring.
There are plenty who have budgets I can only dream of, and they race modern cars, I know one guy who winged because it was costing him $300,000 a year. So why don't they buy an old car?
If people want to do something they will. Quite simply a lot of people have lost interest. How do we change that? The reality is that even Morgan Park seems to draw more spectators than E C, but then the latter is not remotely family friendly and that perhaps is where the future is, Lime Rock being a great example, grassy banks with family picnics, Sunday a lay day with street parades, family party time.

#22 giffo

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 07:45

Some of the cost aspects I just accept. It's part of owning and running a car, whatever type it may be. For me personally it is wanting to try and get east to run but not really achieving it. That said in my case it's always a factor of 4 with regards to people and then there's distance. If I go so does the wife and 2 kids, I really wouldn't want to do it without them anyway. I guess I could always move east?

I have't read Ray's article but based on the first post it's about why aren't the cars getting used?
That's a whole different thing than just costs I think? There are so many choices one can make now, so many different sporting events to choose from and so many of those reflect current society with its "Green" ideology. Motor racing is going to have a hard time combating or competing with it. So what to do? Lighten some rules, make it easier to be involved and work as a group without infighting would be a start. Unfortunately to lighten rules there is a minimum which is quite often way more than some competing sports need. Make it easier "ditto' . Infighting, be category, class, club, organisation etc, probably the most inroads could be made here. Some people do way too much work, some don't delegate, others like the authority, others don't care. I could go on but it would become a big list.

Since my brother and I got involved in historics in our mid/late 30's (8 years ago) we have seen little new blood of a similar age, we both have small kids and do not come from a motor sport family but sitting here in down south W.A. as I try to type this out looking over a park filled with many families playing etc I can easily see many reasons for foregoing Motorsport involvement other than the love and thrill we get from driving.
But what's best to do? Hmmm..... I'll need to keep thinking, anyone got some more beer?

#23 RogerGraham

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 09:13

Is there any such thing as a "match-making" site, where people with interest and money can fund people with cars and no money?  That may include the person doing the funding getting an occasional drive as part of the deal?



#24 stuartbrs

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 10:14

It depends why we race...

 

I`m building an old 911 to run in Historics down here in Tassie. I`m really enjoying the build, Ive done all the paint prep and painting myself, learnt a few new skills along the way. The car is almost ready for assembly and I`m looking forward to that as well, although it will be with the help of mechanics where something is beyond my skill (the wiring loom for instance). I`m just an IT guy, and this is still cheaper than runing a similar costing boat.. I`ll run it 4 or 5 times a year, and probably never approach the cars limits. I`m enjoying the build as much as the driving.. isnt that what amatuer racing is all about?

 

I ran Karts for a few years and the closer we got to the front the more expensive it became.. until we realised it was more about the weekend, having fun, and not so much about the plastic trophies...the idea of this is to enjoy everything about it. Apart from which, Historic meetings are WAY more relaxing than Kart meets...

 

DSC_0783_zps490135a1.jpg


Edited by stuartbrs, 21 April 2014 - 10:18.


#25 goober

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 11:52

Having just done another Easter at Mallala the event is lacking numbers, 30% down on last year. Reasons being the cost, in comparison to Bathurst its cheap at Mallala. Maybe people are spending time with families, who knows, but this event is dying, it lacks promotion and possibly we dont have the population in Adelaide.

Personally I enjoy the event, the people and interstaters, given the options open at Easter it looks like its Bathurst next year as I am finding the whole historic thing a joke. One can get grilled having a sticker on a car that isnt period but who actually checks engine sizes on certain cars.

The organisers may need to look at loosening the criteria for entry and allowing a pre '95 drifting category......its just a thought.

At the end of the day, the event worked, the carnage was minimal and for the first time in years spectators actually sitting on the grass over the esses.

#26 stuartbrs

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 12:46

I don't get drifting at all... how can they run 500hp in jeans and tee-shirts....



#27 Lola5000

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 12:53

It depends why we race...

 

I`m building an old 911 to run in Historics down here in Tassie. I`m really enjoying the build, Ive done all the paint prep and painting myself, learnt a few new skills along the way. The car is almost ready for assembly and I`m looking forward to that as well, although it will be with the help of mechanics where something is beyond my skill (the wiring loom for instance). I`m just an IT guy, and this is still cheaper than runing a similar costing boat.. I`ll run it 4 or 5 times a year, and probably never approach the cars limits. I`m enjoying the build as much as the driving.. isnt that what amatuer racing is all about?

 

I ran Karts for a few years and the closer we got to the front the more expensive it became.. until we realised it was more about the weekend, having fun, and not so much about the plastic trophies...the idea of this is to enjoy everything about it. Apart from which, Historic meetings are WAY more relaxing than Kart meets...

 

DSC_0783_zps490135a1.jpg

 

Having just done another Easter at Mallala the event is lacking numbers, 30% down on last year. Reasons being the cost, in comparison to Bathurst its cheap at Mallala. Maybe people are spending time with families, who knows, but this event is dying, it lacks promotion and possibly we dont have the population in Adelaide.

Personally I enjoy the event, the people and interstaters, given the options open at Easter it looks like its Bathurst next year as I am finding the whole historic thing a joke. One can get grilled having a sticker on a car that isnt period but who actually checks engine sizes on certain cars.

The organisers may need to look at loosening the criteria for entry and allowing a pre '95 drifting category......its just a thought.

At the end of the day, the event worked, the carnage was minimal and for the first time in years spectators actually sitting on the grass over the esses.

Stop on BG,,I'm having more fun helping my mate with the 430CH ,then the nonsense that goes on in historics and all the cheating.



#28 goober

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 13:00

Stop on BG,,I'm having more fun helping my mate with the 430CH ,then the nonsense that goes on in historics and all the cheating.


Dont start me on cheating

When i first got my F5000 it was apparently restored.....all i bought was the rights to restore it, done the resto in accordance to the rules of historics, turn up at first event and after seeing the modifications in the category.....made me realise there are no rules. If someone can tell me they ran 650hp engines in F5000 back in 60's and 70's....well they didnt, nor were alloy heads on chev v8's used.

#29 stuartbrs

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 14:26

Cheating in motorsport...I think its worse the further down the ladder you go...  



#30 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 14:52

Bob, congratulations on going racing on a budget, Lee Nicolle please note, it can be done.

Dick, compare my figures and Bobs,, apart from tyres and if he is doing 10 meetings on them he is going bloody slow to what the car will do, that and a Corrolla1300 in a 500kg car will burn less fuel.

But lots of us like tintops,, and we are a damn site safer in them too.

 

Edit, on tyres particularly. Good rubber will make you quicker, running on junk is dangerous and false economy. Heat cycles on ALL modern tyres are limited and really a cpouple of meetings is their real limit, say 8 maybe 10 heat cycles. The second meeting they will always be slower but consistent enough. Brakes too are another item, run the pads down and you have a lot more heat being transmitted to the callipers.  Plus more than occasionally the material fries and just will not stop. Realistically most of these older cars should have the calliper seals done every couple of [Mallala] meetings as the seals just fry and suck air or worse leak. This includes HQs and the like plus the reality of replacing retracting springs, hold down clips etc in the drums [as well as wheel cylinders] as they heat aneal with the heat. Bleeding the brakes through  before every meeting too is imperative, and there goes $20-$30 worth of brake fluid alone. SRF $50!

This is basic proper preperation, the reason that I could usually run somewhere up the field in Sports Sedans for a couple of decades.

Historic racing should be a little more 'gentlemanly' but you should still be racing for a result. Other wise go do [as many do] regularity and try for consistency not speed. But even then the car still needs preperation or you end up in a wall or someone elses car. And a LOT broke down on the weekend, I went out after them most events.


Edited by Lee Nicolle, 21 April 2014 - 15:20.


#31 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 14:55

Dont start me on cheating

When i first got my F5000 it was apparently restored.....all i bought was the rights to restore it, done the resto in accordance to the rules of historics, turn up at first event and after seeing the modifications in the category.....made me realise there are no rules. If someone can tell me they ran 650hp engines in F5000 back in 60's and 70's....well they didnt, nor were alloy heads on chev v8's used.

Late Chev 5000s used Brownfields, No Holden did. 5000s are not strictly historic as they are using obviuos advancements with late type heads and blocks. Cranks rods and pistons though are better and cheaper and last longer. Cam technology would be impossible to police but heads intakes, electricals are simple.



#32 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 14:59

It depends why we race...

 

I`m building an old 911 to run in Historics down here in Tassie. I`m really enjoying the build, Ive done all the paint prep and painting myself, learnt a few new skills along the way. The car is almost ready for assembly and I`m looking forward to that as well, although it will be with the help of mechanics where something is beyond my skill (the wiring loom for instance). I`m just an IT guy, and this is still cheaper than runing a similar costing boat.. I`ll run it 4 or 5 times a year, and probably never approach the cars limits. I`m enjoying the build as much as the driving.. isnt that what amatuer racing is all about?

 

I ran Karts for a few years and the closer we got to the front the more expensive it became.. until we realised it was more about the weekend, having fun, and not so much about the plastic trophies...the idea of this is to enjoy everything about it. Apart from which, Historic meetings are WAY more relaxing than Kart meets...

 

DSC_0783_zps490135a1.jpg

Porkers will NEVER be cheap to race. Cost a lot more to prepare and maintain than  most tintops. IF done properly are quite reliable  and reasonably quick.

Though in period NEVER used cages like that



#33 stuartbrs

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 21:06

I agree Lee. The cage was built to current CAMS specs for Historics, and I didn't spare a penny on it as I wanted the safest cage possible. The current cage specs are however, a little over the top it seems.



#34 2Bob

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 22:16

Dick, compare my figures and Bobs,, apart from tyres and if he is doing 10 meetings on them he is going bloody slow to what the car will do, that and a Corrolla1300 in a 500kg car will burn less fuel.

But lots of us like tintops,, and we are a damn site safer in them too.

 

 

Lee, the Avons we use lose a second a lap, or so, after maybe the second or third meeting.  They then are pretty consistent until there is no tread left.  Last meeting I finally got down to the times I was doing 25 years ago (car was off the track for 19 years due to lack of money), this time was set on front tyres some 6 meetings old, rears were bought for this meeting of Jim Doig (his old fronts) probably half worn, when he bought new ones.  Other brands may give better performance when new but fall off the cliff (F1 talk...) much sooner.  I, and my main competition, Keith Williamson, are quite happy being some 2 to 3 seconds off Keith's 20 year old lap record as long as we beat each other or more to the point have a good dice with some passing and sometimes re-passing without hitting each other which we have been doing for the last 3 or 4 years.  On the weekend I beat Keith once and he used some other cars to balk me and beat me 4 times (joke Keith if you ever read this).  Keith (Farrell Clubman), Mark Goldsmith (Elfin 622 F2) and Graeme Hughes Royale RP37 (Sports 2000) all had huge grins when we talked and shook hands after a race or at the end of the day.  No prangs (Keith had a little of my rear mudguard paint on his nose cone when I got balked by Mark as he missed a gear) but it was good clean racing and we all gave each other just enough room at (nearly) all times.  Just what club racing should be - hysterics or not.  Not cheap compared to playing tennis (which I do in a sort of attempt to keep fit) and which I enjoy but NO WHERE NEAR as much fun (or effort or tiring or whatever).  I also used to enjoy sailing as crew on other people's yachts (more damn expensive than cars in purchase and depreciation if not running costs) but not fit and strong enough for that now and anyway not as much fun as the real thing.  Golf - you have to be joking, just an excuse for a walk in the park and more bullsh*t in the clubhouse after and probably more frustrating than the real thing.

 

I do understand the thing about being 30 or 40 with children and stuff (well I try to, not having done that...) but once you get them out of the house why not get back into racing?  I reckon that there a few father son racing teams that were set up to give them something to talk about too.

 

Lee, yes tin tops are safer probably why they hit each other more often.... but when I progressed from a Mini to an open wheeler I never wanted to go back, so much better handling and finesse.  The clubbie is a compromise, but would swap for a nice historic FF if any one would like to go the other way (mainly for lower engine costs).

 

I promised my wife I would give racing away when I feel I am a danger to myself or others on the track or I stop enjoying myself and maybe if Mark Peacock who looks after Jim Doigs car and mine when anything technical is needed gives it away



#35 Shane Bowden

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 23:05

Daniel, depends on the car and how keen you are but in Group L a set of Hoosiers will last several seasons of perhaps half a dozen race meetings per year so I don't think the cost of rubber is really a factor in that category.

 

Hi Dick in my PRAD Holden I get one years racing on a set of Hoosier's which is 6 race meetings a year. Maybe you are gentler on tyres than me. When it comes down to it I enjoy racing my car but it is the friendships I have renewed and made through the racing that makes the weekend. I just spent the weekend at Mallala supporting Dick O'Keefe as I had broken my car at PI and I had a great weekend giving him advice on how he could go faster! Regards Shane



#36 Lola5000

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 23:23

Late Chev 5000s used Brownfields, No Holden did. 5000s are not strictly historic as they are using obviuos advancements with late type heads and blocks. Cranks rods and pistons though are better and cheaper and last longer. Cam technology would be impossible to police but heads intakes, electricals are simple.

and lets not forget the current DG300 gearbox,which allows bigger gears and more HP.In the day HP was controled by the torque the gearbox would take.



#37 Lola5000

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 23:25

I agree Lee. The cage was built to current CAMS specs for Historics, and I didn't spare a penny on it as I wanted the safest cage possible. The current cage specs are however, a little over the top it seems.

Porkers are awesome for historics,i was going to run mine with carbon floors and roof,as if the clowns would have picked it up and put the K jet on a Motec box,they can't even pick fat engines or care these days.

"have another port and cigar" LOL.



#38 giffo

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 23:51

Is there any such thing as a "match-making" site, where people with interest and money can fund people with cars and no money?  That may include the person doing the funding getting an occasional drive as part of the deal?


Good idea but not likely to get the same result as PIMPING out xxxxx.
If some one with a big enough cheque book wants to come see me maybe we can work a deal. I'll be doing very little driving this year due to another mater but the car is raring to go.

As for budget, I have managed to run on under 5k a year without too many issues. That said the initial set-up cost was rather large and everything has to be absolutely top notch with the car to achieve it.
So you can do it, but it depends on where you want to run in the field. I would definitely say an open wheeler is more cost effective to run that a taxi.

#39 GMACKIE

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 00:01

A lot depends on whether you are driving to please yourself, or to please the crowd [if there is one].



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#40 Lola5000

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 00:08

A lot depends on whether you are driving to please yourself, or to please the crowd [if there is one].

Having not been to a meeting for over 10 years,have the crowds dropped off?



#41 Lola5000

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 01:04

Dont start me on cheating

When i first got my F5000 it was apparently restored.....all i bought was the rights to restore it, done the resto in accordance to the rules of historics, turn up at first event and after seeing the modifications in the category.....made me realise there are no rules. If someone can tell me they ran 650hp engines in F5000 back in 60's and 70's....well they didnt, nor were alloy heads on chev v8's used.

Correct re the HP often been told at best they were 500bhp.



#42 goober

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 01:11

Having not been to a meeting for over 10 years,have the crowds dropped off?



Racing at Clipsal in Aust GT is a huge adrenalin rush, the crowds in the stands and along our own pit area is awesome.

Funny thing is the moron factor prevails at Oakbank steeplechase on Easter with 24000 on the holiday monday, people just go for the "lets get pyst" notion, if Mallala could get just 10% of that crowd but in reality we are lucky to get 10% of the 10%.

Shannons rounds are much the same, the v8's have the pulling power, if and when the v8's lose interest I reckon there will be a resurgence in GT3 racing as its a world formula......not something limited to holden and ford and GT3 racing is highly policed, cheating happens but no where near as much as historics

#43 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 02:58

Lee, the Avons we use lose a second a lap, or so, after maybe the second or third meeting.  They then are pretty consistent until there is no tread left.  Last meeting I finally got down to the times I was doing 25 years ago (car was off the track for 19 years due to lack of money), this time was set on front tyres some 6 meetings old, rears were bought for this meeting of Jim Doig (his old fronts) probably half worn, when he bought new ones.  Other brands may give better performance when new but fall off the cliff (F1 talk...) much sooner.  I, and my main competition, Keith Williamson, are quite happy being some 2 to 3 seconds off Keith's 20 year old lap record as long as we beat each other or more to the point have a good dice with some passing and sometimes re-passing without hitting each other which we have been doing for the last 3 or 4 years.  On the weekend I beat Keith once and he used some other cars to balk me and beat me 4 times (joke Keith if you ever read this).  Keith (Farrell Clubman), Mark Goldsmith (Elfin 622 F2) and Graeme Hughes Royale RP37 (Sports 2000) all had huge grins when we talked and shook hands after a race or at the end of the day.  No prangs (Keith had a little of my rear mudguard paint on his nose cone when I got balked by Mark as he missed a gear) but it was good clean racing and we all gave each other just enough room at (nearly) all times.  Just what club racing should be - hysterics or not.  Not cheap compared to playing tennis (which I do in a sort of attempt to keep fit) and which I enjoy but NO WHERE NEAR as much fun (or effort or tiring or whatever).  I also used to enjoy sailing as crew on other people's yachts (more damn expensive than cars in purchase and depreciation if not running costs) but not fit and strong enough for that now and anyway not as much fun as the real thing.  Golf - you have to be joking, just an excuse for a walk in the park and more bullsh*t in the clubhouse after and probably more frustrating than the real thing.

 

I do understand the thing about being 30 or 40 with children and stuff (well I try to, not having done that...) but once you get them out of the house why not get back into racing?  I reckon that there a few father son racing teams that were set up to give them something to talk about too.

 

Lee, yes tin tops are safer probably why they hit each other more often.... but when I progressed from a Mini to an open wheeler I never wanted to go back, so much better handling and finesse.  The clubbie is a compromise, but would swap for a nice historic FF if any one would like to go the other way (mainly for lower engine costs).

 

I promised my wife I would give racing away when I feel I am a danger to myself or others on the track or I stop enjoying myself and maybe if Mark Peacock who looks after Jim Doigs car and mine when anything technical is needed gives it away

To me racing 3 sec off the pace is an acident waiting to happen. And I have had them! 1 second yes.

As for father and sons,,, The Brocks! 90y/o Ian, late 50s Garry and 30 something Ryan. And Ian was the most reliable! 



#44 2Bob

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 03:40

Lee:

 

"To me racing 3 sec off the pace is an acident waiting to happen"  - with the greatest respect - that is BS.  3 seconds off the pace of the car's current potential, ie with the brakes, tyres, power it has now ie at 7/10ths maybe it is an accident about to happen because you loose concentration or something but not at 9/10ths of its current potential (or maybe the driver / car combination potential).  Yes I had several incidents when I got the car out again after a 19 year layoff and going some 6 or 7 seconds a lap slower than now.  Some of that was down to unsuitable F3 radial tyres, some due to a d*ck head driver (me) some due to other d*ck head drivers.  Anyway, I and the people I am driving against now seem to be enjoying ourselves and also respect each other.  End of personal rant.



#45 GMACKIE

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 04:06

"Accidents" don't just happen...they are usually caused by someone. It takes 'two to tangle'.



#46 goober

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 04:22

"Accidents" don't just happen...they are usually caused by someone. It takes 'two to tangle'.

 

Lee:

 

"To me racing 3 sec off the pace is an acident waiting to happen"  - with the greatest respect - that is BS.  3 seconds off the pace of the car's current potential, ie with the brakes, tyres, power it has now ie at 7/10ths maybe it is an accident about to happen because you loose concentration or something but not at 9/10ths of its current potential (or maybe the driver / car combination potential).  Yes I had several incidents when I got the car out again after a 19 year layoff and going some 6 or 7 seconds a lap slower than now.  Some of that was down to unsuitable F3 radial tyres, some due to a d*ck head driver (me) some due to other d*ck head drivers.  Anyway, I and the people I am driving against now seem to be enjoying ourselves and also respect each other.  End of personal rant.

 

"Accidents" don't just happen...they are usually caused by someone. It takes 'two to tangle'.

 

 

At Clipsal I raced a Ferrari 360 Challenge (400hp) against the current GT3 cars (550hp) I was 9.5 seconds off their pace with less HP, they have mechanical grip, they have 2013 cars versus 1999 model. We each observed where we are and yes I got lapped over a 60 minute race…..mirrors become very useful and respect those coming up from behind. Christian Klein (ex F1) overtook me between turn 7 and 8 and gave a wave of appreciation that I kept my line and he powered around me in the SLS GT3.

 

The accidents or crashes were the result of people whose parabolas of ambitions and capabilities crossed.

 

Ferrari aren't stupid, they put a plaque on the driver's side of my race cars "remember you are not Michael Schumacher" and in respect what he is going through now but one must never think they are better than him when he was driving. 


Edited by goober, 22 April 2014 - 04:37.


#47 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 04:26

Lee:

 

"To me racing 3 sec off the pace is an acident waiting to happen"  - with the greatest respect - that is BS.  3 seconds off the pace of the car's current potential, ie with the brakes, tyres, power it has now ie at 7/10ths maybe it is an accident about to happen because you loose concentration or something but not at 9/10ths of its current potential (or maybe the driver / car combination potential).  Yes I had several incidents when I got the car out again after a 19 year layoff and going some 6 or 7 seconds a lap slower than now.  Some of that was down to unsuitable F3 radial tyres, some due to a d*ck head driver (me) some due to other d*ck head drivers.  Anyway, I and the people I am driving against now seem to be enjoying ourselves and also respect each other.  End of personal rant.

Bob, the biggest crashes I had on both circuit and dirt have been running on junk tyres. Trying to chase grip with softer springs etc instead of having the most important factor is just plain dangerous. a bit like driving city streets in the rain on bald tyres. Your clubbie will be a bit more user friendly on tyres than a far faster tintop. You may get a few more useable heat cycles. And that is what it is, heat cycles of the tyre, not the amount of rubber left.

Interestingly my 90s experience with Avons was inconsistency. One tyre would do a good job over 2 maybe 3 meetings, and another be useless after one or two starts. And those were new tyres. And not just my experience either.

On the weekend I was competing on good s/h tyres with some street brake pads. Quite consistent to be fair but 5 sec slower than that car has done in the past. [90s] New tyres and better pads would bring that down 3-4 sec. The extra 30 lost hp [and 500 more rpm I was not using for longevity] and 14 year younger driver would find the rest and maybe a bit more!  BUT I had already spent way too much money just to make up the numbers.

 The main object is trying to sell the car, not go superquick. Though  yes a few more laps than a normal Supersprint was good. But again any event is about going fast. BUT I did 6 starts, did not break down or fall off!



#48 goober

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 05:28

Bob, the biggest crashes I had on both circuit and dirt have been running on junk tyres. Trying to chase grip with softer springs etc instead of having the most important factor is just plain dangerous. a bit like driving city streets in the rain on bald tyres. Your clubbie will be a bit more user friendly on tyres than a far faster tintop. You may get a few more useable heat cycles. And that is what it is, heat cycles of the tyre, not the amount of rubber left.

Interestingly my 90s experience with Avons was inconsistency. One tyre would do a good job over 2 maybe 3 meetings, and another be useless after one or two starts. And those were new tyres. And not just my experience either.

On the weekend I was competing on good s/h tyres with some street brake pads. Quite consistent to be fair but 5 sec slower than that car has done in the past. [90s] New tyres and better pads would bring that down 3-4 sec. The extra 30 lost hp [and 500 more rpm I was not using for longevity] and 14 year younger driver would find the rest and maybe a bit more!  BUT I had already spent way too much money just to make up the numbers.

 The main object is trying to sell the car, not go superquick. Though  yes a few more laps than a normal Supersprint was good. But again any event is about going fast. BUT I did 6 starts, did not break down or fall off!

What was the reason for getting towed back in the last race



#49 DanTra2858

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 05:41

Back in the late 1980 when I was racing my Cortina Rotary powered Sports Sedan the best tyer wear that I achieved using Dunlop Slickc on 10" rims was 3 meetings for the front & 4 meetings for the rear, I stopped running clubbies when other compeditors began to use a set of new slicks per meeting, this was way out of my budget & instead of being in the first 5 car group I found myself more midfield.

The spirit in me wanted to be around the pointy end of the race but the Dollars were not there so I just lost interest, no matter how well a driver you are the Dollar cars are hard to be competive with.

#50 2Bob

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 05:45

As far as why people aren't out there racing when they have a car in the shed.... many reasons, money obviously, can't be bothered putting in the effort ie getting the car ready, preparation before each event, lack of enthusiastic helper/pit crew, unhelpful significant other, too many other things to be involved with (children, grand children, golf (ugh), pub, travel) .......  

 

By far the biggest thing to me is an enthusiastic and very knowledgeable helper. My mate Jim Doig and I have had Mark Peacock help ('engineer' is the current term I think) our cars since about 1969.  They are a must, all else could probably be over come especially if you have plenty of disposable money but the right 'right hand man' is pretty well essential!

 

Priorities come into things too of course.  I am lucky in that we (wife and self) did the travel thing years ago when we were young and 'enjoyed' roughing it.. Now she (we really) would like to do more but can't stand the flying bit.  We did a 6 week, $30,000 trip to Russia (with river cruise) and then sailing in Croatia, flying business class, 8 years ago but unless we win cross lotto and we can fly first class no more overseas stuff from now on. Hence some money available for racing!  Still don't have a garage to store the car so it goes in a lean to shed and wheeled out into the car port to be worked on.  Once again it is priorities, can't justify spending $5,000 on decent shed when that buys 2 sets of new tyres ie maybe 2 more years of racing.  Wife's road car is $6000 1998 BMW 316 which she likes) and mine a $6000 1998 Toyota Spacia (Townace) people mover/van for towing the racing car and carrying 'stuff'.  Trailer is older than the racing car and has Holden FJ (1955) wheels probably home made in 1960 or something like that.  Priorities.   Too each his own of course.


Edited by 2Bob, 22 April 2014 - 06:19.