October 13, 2015 by
The world of auto racing can seem like an intimidating place. At the highest levels of competition, professional drivers race cars that cost more than $100,000 in parts alone. However, stepping into the world of racing may not be as difficult as you think. There are several different types and levels of racing, ensuring that you can find some way to participate regardless of how much time and money you can invest.
The easiest way to start racing is with autocross. The Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) holds more than 1,200 events around the country, and these events are open to anyone. All you need is a car that has passed a safety inspection and a helmet, which you may be able to borrow at the race.
In autocross, makeshift tracks are laid out with traffic cones, often in a large parking lot or at an airport. You’ll race the course alone, just you against the clock, and compare your time against other vehicles in the same class. You can talk to your local race organizer about how to best prepare for the event, but common advice is to put some extra air in your tires, remove your hubcaps and take any loose items out of the car.
If autocross doesn’t quite cut it for you, wheel-to-wheel racing might be more your speed. You’ll be put on a road course with several other drivers, pitting your skill – and your car – against theirs. Being on the track with other racers does add an element of risk, which is why your vehicle will have to meet strict safety requirements. Here are a few safety features most racing clubs require: Read the rest of this entry →
September 08, 2015 by
You may be the biggest racing fan on the planet, and you want to try your hand at the circuit. What it all comes down to, though, is money. You can’t run with the big guns until you get a car and dedicate it to racing.
With all these souped-up racecars around, you may think it costs a fortune to get a car up and running for racing. This simply isn’t true. You can start with any basic, affordable sporty car – even a factory one, right off the assembly line. The point is, racers add to their cars as they go.
How do you think great racers started in the first place? That race-ready Volkswagen Jetta didn’t just fall into their hands – they worked hard to get it there. You can, too; but you’ll need to pick a set of wheels first. Here are some cheap and reliable suggestions:
Volkswagen Golf GTI
If you’re looking for the perfect starter, look no further than the Golf. Hailed by racers for a little more than a decade, this is a modder’s dream car. It’s a hot little hatch with some screaming power – 210 horsepower and a 2.0 liter turbocharged engine.
While the car’s acceleration is a tad slow at 8.5 seconds, it makes up for it with its unrivaled agility. Read the rest of this entry →
April 08, 2015 by
The British Grand Prix is always one of the sporting highlights of the year in the UK.
Even if you are a casual observer, you will likely have noticed the passion and fervor associated with sporting events held annually in the UK, and how they keep drawing in the crowds year after year. Here are some of the highest profile sporting events.
The FA Cup Final
Held in May of each year, the FA Cup Final marks the end of the football season and the culmination of one of the most famous knockout competitions in world football. The Cup Final, held at Wembley Stadium, is a glamorous affair and receives extensive media coverage both at home and internationally, but the competition starts in August of each year and goes through six qualifying rounds before the League clubs enter the draw. The FA Cup has become famous for its so-called giant killings, with unfancied teams beating their more high-profile opponents. If you are a football fan, you will likely remember some of these matches, including Cup Finals such as 1973, when Sunderland beat Leeds United, and 1988, when Wimbledon shocked Liverpool, the then-giant of English football.
The British Grand Prix
The UK has a long association with motor car racing, and Formula One comes to the country annually with a Grand Prix, currently held at the Silverstone Circuit. Grand Prix motor racing in the UK can be traced back to the 1920s, and the history of the British Grand Prix shows some thrilling races down through the years. Such homegrown talents as Stirling Moss, Nigel Mansell and, more recently, Lewis Hamilton have enjoyed wins in the race. Hamilton won the 2014 race on his way to that year’s World Championship and will hope for a repeat in July. Read the rest of this entry →
April 15, 2014 by
Many of our favorite sports have changed drastically over the last few decades; with some becoming obsolete altogether. Some of the sports that were popular with the rich and famous are now sports we all play on a regular basis whereas some sports we all used to play are now nowhere to be seen. Were traditional sports better than their modern counterparts, however? Let’s take a look at some of the hobbies and pastimes that have changed over the years, and which was better; traditional or modern.
Back in 1946, Formula One became the premier single seated racing sport in the world, and it hasn’t given up that title to any other motorsport. Pre-war regulations used to determine the engine capacity of the racing cars, with manufacturers such as Alfa Romeo leading the way in the competition. 4.5 liter cars were allowed, non-supercharged, to race against a supercharged 1.5 liter model. With only a handful of manufacturers being able to compete, the competition was unlike anything sports lovers had ever seen before. Now, the regulations and the cars have changed exponentially, making the competition faster, more thrilling and far more expensive. The Formula One today is followed by millions of motorsport’s fans; some of which travel the globe in order to watch their favorite driver or team. Although the adrenaline rush of motorsports is far greater now, there was something so fantastic about motorsports back then. We think the traditional sport beats the modern day version, hands down. Read the rest of this entry →
October 08, 2013 by
NASCAR has its origins from the prohibition era.
The inventive minds behind the creation of the first stock cars didn’t have sporting amusement on their minds when they pioneered the modification of early-era automobiles.
Nope, the good old southern boys of the 1920s had more pressing concerns than daydreaming about a future when their creations would spear one of the most popular spectator sports in the country. They were more worried about just eking out a living.
An illicit living.
NASCAR’s forefathers didn’t “soup up” their rides in order to outrun each other around an oval track in hopes of taking home the checkered flag.
On the contrary, the purpose was to outrun the law and get home with a few barrels of whiskey.
Yes, while other American sports are steeped in tradition (baseball) or immersed in warfare (football) the history of NASCAR is soaked in prohibition-era moonshine.
The earliest “stock car racers” were mostly located in the Appalachian region of the United States, where drivers modified their cars to improve speed and handling. The earliest “stock car races” took place down winding mountain roads and involved bootleggers attempting to outrun the police. With these modified early version stock cars, many of them succeeded.
The repeal of prohibition diminished the amount of bootleggers in operation, but by then a demand for moonshine had developed and many still transported moonshine while running from “revenuers” who wanted to tax them.
It is believed that while on these runs, many bootleggers would often race each other; creating the earliest stock car races. Read the rest of this entry →
September 13, 2013 by
This late race accident by Jimmie Johnson helped give his teammate, Jeff Gordon, a chance to pass many of the race leaders and remain within contention for the Chase.
With their rulings this week that ultimately ensured that NASCAR darlings Jeff Gordon and Ryan Newman were in the “Chase for the Cup”, NASCAR showed that manipulating results to benefit your teammates is only okay if done in a covert manner.
Much has been made of Clint Bowyer’s spin and the apparent attempts by some teams to help certain drivers (Martin Truex Jr. and Joey Logano) earn additional points to ensure their participation in the NASCAR Chase.
Based on the history of race manipulation in NASCAR, what they are really guilty of is not being stealth enough in their approach.
They need to work at emulating the expert performances of Hendrick Motorsport teammates Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon. Two of the most successful drivers of the last decade, both drivers have well deserved reputations for bending ethics to ensure success.
Both drivers have more than a wall full of trophies earned as a result of knocking drivers out of their way, in many of those cases doing so by masking intentional unfair actions under the guise of “that’s just racing.”
So it should be no surprise that during the final green light pits of the Richmond race (and thus the last real big chance to alter chase order), Johnson mysteriously had a “tire get low” and banged into the wall just in time for Gordon, who seemed hopelessly out of the points race, to work his way through and pass many of the race leaders to suddenly get back in contention. Read the rest of this entry →