How long until we can get back to the track?

Howard Jones

Supporter
I guess this is really several questions, isn't it. How many tracks will there be after all this financial carnage is over. How many of the car owners will be able to afford either the time or money to take up the hobby right away? I a bit worried about this.

I should say that all of this is minor compared to the human toll and I fully recognize that. I was just wondering about racing and open track participation in the next few years.
 

Randy V

Admin
Lifetime Supporter
Many of us have the same questions Howard.
I won't touch the situations of the car owners, sponsors etc. Too many dynamics. Too many race teams that seemed healthy one day - evaporated the next and that was PRE-VIRUS Shutdown...
My thought is that the tracks that have large attendances for races put on by NASCAR and NHRA will survive and get back to racing as long as there's no requirement to do social distancing.
Those tracks that rely on individuals that are part of smaller racing organizations like SCCA and NASA will struggle for a few years.
Those without the ability to put on events for the same track fees as "pre-virus" will struggle more and many will fail. I base this on the premise that they will try to recover their losses by padding the rental fees. I've been in positions within both the SCCA and the Track and know full well the cost of putting on events and how close to the bone both the renters and the tracks are..
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My advice is to be prepared to not only pay more for your racing, but to volunteer at the track to help defray the costs to the sanctioning body et al...
 
I can`t help thinking about the poor medics who have suffered enough recently. Do they really need the extra work? Maybe when things have settled down a bit you can go back to risk taking like we all used to do?
 

Howard Jones

Supporter
I am really thinking about POST COVID, this more than likely means after a vaccine is wildly available. My guess is this winter will see a vaccine developed and wildly distributed. So that means maybe in the spring we might see some tracks reopen , Governments want to restart major league sports and fill stadiums. This can't be done without a vaccine. Not really. The push to finish up a vaccine is being done in a unprecedented world wide effort by every pharma company, university lab, and national heath organization worldwide. It will come faster than expected.

Pro racing. F1, IndyCar, IMSA, NASCAR (those with TV coverage) will all do what they have done in the past during economic recessions. Cut numbers of races, make rule changes that lower costs to teams, pay drivers less, and try to live off TV rights to a greater extent. The other non tv events will suffer from low participation and older last season cars but they will happen. SCCA, NASA will continue but with less races and participants as they have in the past when times get rough and money gets tight.

I do believe that the recession will be very deep but relative short in length.

Open track days are a relatively new thing and it will be interesting to see how this plays out. My guess is many company's will simply never reopen. Others will consolidate events, two rather than three events at a given track for example. There will be less participation but the core group of driver/owners will return when the time comes. A lot of people will just wait it out.

At least I hope!

Will a lot of cars get sold? Will the next 6 months be a good time to shop for a completed car? Trailer? Is this a bad time to sell your car?

Am I worried? Yes a bit. But I will return to the track as soon as I can...……..you can count on that!
 
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The Drivers Edge had their first track day at MSR Cresson, Texas on May 2-3. It was a great time, and nobody died. A Mustang wound up with the wheels up, after a couple of rolls, due to COVID.

On Thursday the track had a member day and it was packed........business as usual. There were restrictions on the TDE event. Masks, social distancing, no guests. As more of these events occur, and most survive, things will pick up quickly.
 

Howard Jones

Supporter
I checked the Chin Motorsports website and it looks like they are starting up again. They have a scheduled date at COTA in June. I have a couple of things to do before then but I am going to try and attend.
 

Michael

Supporter
June 5th is the next SCCA track event at Sebring. Big question will be hotel accommodations for those that need them.
 

Doug Dyar

Supporter
The Northwoods Shelby Club is still planning on their July 4th weekend bash at Road America. Thu-Sun.
There is a group of GT40s going. Would like to see more.
See Northwoods' web site to register.
 
I'm doing a 2 day even with Jzilla at Road Atlanta June 20/21st... on a side note, I need to look into doing an even with CHIN, I've had 2 friends recommend them to me.
 
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