2017 Road Racing Pre-Season Drivers' Meeting Report
On Saturday, March 4 we held a Drivers' Meeting for the Road Racing Division of CASC-OR at Paragon Competition (http://www.paragoncompetition.com/). We had in excess of 60 drivers and quite a few officials attend. It was a good group and I'd like to thank everyone that took the time to come out.
The power point presentation I used can be found here:
I encourage everyone to take the time to view the slides to see what we discussed. A number of people asked if we'd be taking minutes - no we did not, but Harland was on hand filming and I believe he'll post something on Facebook soon.
I did make some notes myself about the more detailed discussions we had:
Slide 9: GT Challenge - a competitor asked the drivers present how many were planning to run the 3 hours sessions. He was concerned there may be smaller grids because of the extra prep required to run 3 hours. 17 drivers present said they were planning to run the series. I mentioned we need 25 or so each weekend to make the series financially viable for the host clubs.
Before the meeting, a competitor asked me by e-mail to see how the group would feel about running GT Challenge using the 13/13 No Contact rules that PCA, BMW, and VARAC run under. If you are not familiar with the 13/13 rule it works like this: any incident needs to be reported and if a driver is found at fault then they may be subject to a warning, or placed on probation for up to 13 months, or if already on probation, they may be suspended for up to 13 months. It was noted that our current rules prohibit contact, but we all recognize that "racing incidents" happen. Under 13/13 some form of penalty is much more likely.
The consensus in the meeting was to try it for one event. I suggested something mid-season, but a competitor countered it makes more sense to try it early so that we run under the same rules for the entire series. Accordingly, the 3 hour GT Challenge race at the Spring Trophy Races will be held using the 13/13 No Contact rule. At the end of the session I will poll those present to see if they had issues/concerns and to see if the rule will be adopted for the remainder of the 2017 series.
Slide 13: June 24-25 CASC-OR Motorsport Showcase event - this event is listed on the 2017 Road Racing Schedule, but as of today's date, it is still "tentative". We are in discussions with Ontario Time Attack, the division that has rented the Mosport Grand Prix Track at CTMP for the weekend to run a grid for GT Sprints and another for Formula Libre. I will send out a dedicated e-mail confirming whether the event is a "go" or has been cancelled as soon as I know - I should have an answer in the next few weeks so watch for it.
Slide 19: CASC-OR Road Racing Banquet - instead of holding the banquet post-season, for 2017 we will be holding it immediately following the racing on Saturday, Sep 30, at the Celebration of Motorsport event. That means all of the CASC-OR Road Racing Championships will end as of Saturday, Sep 30. There will be a full day of racing on Sunday at Celebration - it was suggested the races count towards the 2018 Championships and I am considering the idea. As of right now, the plan is to have podiums after each race on Sunday at Celebration in recognition of our many generous sponsors. Stay tuned for more information.
Slide 23: NA Tires Winners' Compound for 2017 - thanks to the efforts of Eric Nummelin, CASC-OR is pleased to announce that for 2017 the the podiums will be run as the "NA Tires Winners' Compound". NA Tires have offered a 10% discount to all CASC-OR competition licence holders, as well as discount coupons for 1st, 2nd and third in each class at each event in the amount of $300, $200, and $100 respectively. They have also generously offered to provide class champions at the end of the year with jackets. You do not have to be running NA Tires to be eligible for these prizes. Full details will be posted shortly on the CASC-OR website following NA Tires press release on the program.
Questions from the floor - the topic that generated the most discussion was started with a question about timers in cars, specifically digital dashes that have built in timing/lap devices. Our rules haven't kept up with technology in that while we ban timing devices in all but GT1 cars, the rule is difficult to enforce. The group didn't come to any sort of conclusion so I undertook to ask the officials to pay closer attention to this in 2017. We'll start by doing some research into what other sanctioning bodies are doing about this and try and build on their experience.
I'd like to thank Paragon Competition once again for hosting the meeting and for the "refreshments" that they provided. Based on the activity in their showroom before and after the meeting, I hope they recovered the costs in equipment sales...
Registration will be open soon for all of the 2017 Road Racing events - please register early as it greatly assists with event planning. Payments won't be taken until just before the event starts, but make the commitment and let us know that you are planning to attend.
67 days until we're back on track (you knew I was going to say this). Is your car ready? Have you renewed your licence? The clock is ticking...
I'll see you at the track!