The Reno SCCA Invites You to Race on The Course Not on The Streets
Brad Vincent reports on a traditional legal form of street racing sanctioned by the Reno chapter of Sports Car Club of America, as a safealternative amid a surge of illegal racing in northern Nevada.
Sport drivers looking for fast and intense racing may want to avoid the dangerous and risky act of illegal street racing and turn their attention toward autocross; which is a legal form of racing using traffic cones to create challenging road courses
The Reno chapter of the Sports Car Club of America holds autocross events all across the nation with the goal of taking illegal racing off the streets and putting it into an organized form of racing.
Most participants in racing maintain regular jobs and look forward to weekends during the racing season, where they can burn rubber and compete against their friends.
“If you want to drive and do all the things you can’t normally do on the street, this is a good way to get your wiggles out and see what your car can do,” long-time racer, Jeromy Ainsworth, said. “It’s super safe, and everything is set up in the safest way possible; everyone gets along great, and it’s all high fives at the end of the day.”
Events are typically held in parking lots or airports. These open flat asphalt pads are ideal for drivers looking for the fastest time without hitting cones. Each driver races the course solo, trying to get around in the shortest amount of time possible.
Despite the lower speed levels achieved by the drivers, the racing is intense, and the safety cones are placed strategically and tested by multiple drivers before the day’s competition begins.
Thousand of dollars and man hours are put into competition cars, but the common theme mentioned among competitors is safety. All participants have everyday lives and do not want to risk their safety while racing.
“I have been coming to SCCA for fifteen years; it’s safe out here,” Tom Janice, an autocross spectator said. “You will have a lot of fun at it, and it doesn’t have to be that costly.”
The cost will always be a significant factor when considering requirements for cars and drivers, not to mention ensuring competition cars are competitive. The SCCA assures cars directly off the car lot can enter competitions and race for championship points within their class.
“I have been doing this for over twenty years, so it’s in my blood,” driver Mike Janice said. “It’s tons of fun, and you can bring a car right off the showroom floor.”