By on January 24, 2014

lcv

It’s kind of frightening to think about what shape amateur road racing would in be in nowadays if the 24 Hours of Lemons hadn’t happened. Luckily, cheap racing arrived right in time for an America facing a decidedly lowered set of expectations and opportunities. I, for one, welcome our five thousand hundred dollar racing overlords.

To help you choose your crapcan racing series for 2014, the folks at Hooniverse have put together this helpful guide. Knowing the RaceDAZE guys as I do, I have to say that their new series deserves your attention.

I’ll be racing Chump and LeMons in a pair of brand-new used Subarus that we’re building for the season. I’ll probably have to watch the first few races from the paddock, but come June or so I expect to be making iffy passes with the best of ‘em. See you out there!

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21 Comments on “A Guide To Cheap-Car Racing For 2014...”


  • avatar

    I’m taking my brother’s kids & my Dad/Mom/whatever other family I have room for a Lemons race later this year & wanted to know if there was a guide yet anywhere on how early to book hotel rooms, buy tickets, essential supplies to pack, etc.

  • avatar
    -Nate

    Welcome back , Jack ;

    We missed you and are glad you’re still with us .

    -Nate

  • avatar

    Saw the headline and I was like “DUDE! we _just_ ran a summary like that, come on!”. Then I clicked through. :)

  • avatar
    MZ3AUTOXR

    Glad to see that they included SCCA. New England Region specifically is going to run the ITEZ for LeChump cars.

    Also, while it hasn’t been finalized, I hear rumors of a “Racing Experience” program starting up, which is LeChump level cars but drivers will not need a specialized racing license.

  • avatar
    Travis

    I’ll be in Atlanta on the 7th and 8th for the Chump race that weekend. I’ll be in a Nissan Pulsar. Hope it holds together!

    Also, that red Rambler is stupid fast.

    • 0 avatar
      Felis Concolor

      Ho-lee . . . izzat one of the chisel-nosed, E15 equipped Pulsars or the later Sportbak model? Please let it be the former; I had no idea any of those were still moving under their own power.

  • avatar
    Schultz

    The racer in the pic thinks a Neon is a good choice. Huh. I remember visiting a Dodge dealer service department when the Neon was mid-life…there were a pile of the Neon engines piled high on the floor. If I were going Chump racing for fun (aka finishing) I would go Japanese. Japanese cars at their worst are better than most at their best.

    • 0 avatar
      majo8

      The racer in the picture doesn’t think the Neon is a good choice, he knows it. The Neon is a top 20 choice for crapcan endurance racing, better than most Toyotas and Hondas ( except for the “cheaty” Acura Integra and the Corolla/Prism ).

      Check out this article from E. Rood at Hooniverse. Reliable on the street does not equate to reliable on the track:

      http://hooniverse.com/2013/12/19/lemons-torture-test-revisited-a-2013-update-top-10/

      Good luck with your Subie’s Jack, and I’ll see ya on the track.

      • 0 avatar
        Schultz

        He knows it, huh? Domination Factor of 1.055, good for 19th. 19th! Would still go Japaneses for parts cheapishness, availability, reliability, ease of repair, etc. over the eurotrash.

        Quote from your article:
        “The 1UZ V8 found in the SC400 and LS400 is a solid LeMons motor that produces good power…it’s only a matter of time until a Lexus takes an overall win.”

        Lexus Domination Factor: 1.175, good for 3rd. There are 5 Japanese in the top 10. Like I said previously, the racer in the pic thinks a Neon is a good choice? 19th is NOT a good choice. Neon is never a good choice.

        • 0 avatar
          majo8

          Good points- missed the Lexus ( the LS400 is damn fast on the track ) and the Mazda products. My bad. Still, the Neon does very well in the 24HOL races, and a Neon won the first 24HOL race I drove in, with a Mazda-based product! D’oh…..

          • 0 avatar
            Jack Baruth

            Gentlemen,

            The Neon in the picture won the full-24h ChumpCar race at Buttonwillow this year, with fast lap set by yours truly.

            Neons win a lot of races. I have a NASA Neon that was built from a shell and into which I’ve poured an inordinate amount of money and time.

            This does not mean a Neon is the best idea for going to work in the winter or anything like that.

    • 0 avatar
      Drunkonunleaded

      Someone didn’t pay much attention to SCCA racing during the 90s, did they?

      For that matter, the head gasket issue was resolved by 98 when MLS headgaskets came into play.

      • 0 avatar
        Schultz

        “For that matter, the head gasket issue was resolved by 98 when MLS headgaskets came into play.”

        Interesting. Since the year was etched into my brain as the year me and my buddy quit the defunct dealer (dealer which would be sold and then finally go out of business) which allowed him to get a job at Dodge. The year of the pile? 2002. Wikipedia will rot your brain, son.

      • 0 avatar
        Schultz

        “For that matter, the head gasket issue was resolved by 98 when MLS headgaskets came into play.”

        Interesting. Since the year was etched into my brain as the year me and my buddy quit the defunct dealer (dealer which would be sold and then finally go out of business) which allowed him to get a job at Dodge. In fact, he was attempting to start a Neon that he just put a motor in when I went to visit him. The year of the pile? 2002. Wikipedia, much like the Neon, should never be your first choice for anything.

    • 0 avatar
      Blue-S

      The neon shown above is my team’s car. I built it, I maintain it and I do most of the work necessary to campaign it. Yes, we won the 2013 Chump 24-hours at Buttonwillow, thanks in no small part to great driving from Jack and his pal Sam. The neon isn’t outstanding in any way, but it does most everything well enough. Our secret weapon is reliability. If something breaks, though, we can usually fix it promptly at the track. Try that with a Mercedes or Lexus V8! The win at Buttonwillow was no fluke; we finished 5th in the Western Region Chumpionship at Laguna Seca last month. How many Japanese cars finished ahead of us? Zero. It was E30, A1 Rabbit, mid-90′s Mustang V8, E36, then my team in the neon.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      As the history of 24 Hours of Lemons and ChumpCar has proven, Japanese cars don’t always fare so well. Zeros for Zees!

      By contrast, the Neons that show up are almost always competitive.

  • avatar
    highrpm

    I am personally very happy to see these types of race series. I raced the SCCA Improved Touring series for a decade in the 90s and early 00s. The ranks are definitely thinner now in SCCA. Higher entry fees and overall costs don’t help.

  • avatar
    danio3834

    So far we’re planning to make a ChumpCar race in September. As time and resoucres permit, we might hit some other events. Trying to build and field cars for the drag strip kinda limits how much roundy round will happen, but we’ll be out there.


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