TOPEKA, Kan. (March 19, 2018) -- Online registration for the 24th United States RoadRally Challenge (USRRC), the SCCA's premier RoadRally weekend, is open at Motorsportreg.com. This year's USRRC is hosted by the St. Louis Region Oct. 4-7 with help from the Southern Illinois Region. The annual celebration of sports cars and classic sports-car rallying will test the teamwork, time-keeping and route-following skills of SCCA® RoadRally teams from across the country.
As organized by the St. Louis Region, the 2018 USRRC will include four rallies -- two divisionals and two nationals -- beginning with a short nighttime divisional tour Thursday evening, Oct. 4, followed by two daylong national rallies Friday, Oct. 5, and Saturday, Oct. 6. The weekend will conclude with a morning divisional GTA rally Sunday, Oct. 7, followed by an awards luncheon. This year's USRRC will offer several special features, says event chairman Jim Heine.
"In addition to the regular RoadRally classes defined by the Road Rally Rules -- Equipped, Limited and Stock -- we will offer two additional classes, Historic and Rookie," Heine said. "They're designed especially for beginning or occasional rally teams, whether historic or modern, or for teams from other SCCA disciplines that might enjoy participating in the USRRC. Also, we've designed the weekend so that Historic and Rookie teams can run all four events, or if they choose, just the Saturday and Sunday events."
Last year, the SCCA's Arctic Alaska Region played host to the annual event, with Anchorage, Alaska, serving as the headquarters city. In 2016, the USRRC, under the guidance of the SCCA's New England Region, showcased the rural roads and fall colors of Vermont. Other past USRRC locations have included Pittsburgh, Pa.; Santa Maria, Calif.; La Crosse, Wis.; Portland, Org.; and Fredericksburg, Virginia. But 2018 will be the fourth time the St. Louis Region has stepped up to host the USRRC.
"We are the first SCCA region to host the USRRC four times," notes St. Louis Region executive Peter Zekert. "We last hosted it in 2005. We were selected again for 2018 because of our central location and because teams that run the SCCA's national RoadRally series, of which the USRRC is a part, enjoy coming to St. Louis."
Before 2005, the St. Louis Region, also with help from the Southern Illinois Region, hosted the USRRC in 1998 and 2001.
As with this year's USRRC, the 2001 and 2005 St. Louis based "Challenge" events were run in southern Illinois, observes SCCA Southern Illinois Region executive and SCCA Board of Directors member Chris Albin. He is pleased that the October weekend will again highlight the rural landscape of the "Metro East."
"There is a long history of cooperation between our regions, not only in rallying, but also in other activities, and this is just another example of how the Mississippi River doesn't divide us," Albin said.
"We are looking forward to hosting this event again, and we believe rally teams will find the weekend enjoyable," Zekert added.
For more information about the 2018 USRRC, visit motorsportreg.com(http://msreg.com/usrrc2018) or the St. Louis Region's website at stlscca.org.
Photo Credit: James Heine
Unlike most forms of racing, RallyCross® doesn’t have the luxury of competing on established racetracks or existing roads. RallyCross requires open spaces such as grass fields, farmlands, fairgrounds or undeveloped properties. Finding such places is often challenging for RallyCross organizers, even though RallyCross events are good for local communities and landowners. If hosting a race sounds appealing to you or possibly somebody you know, please take a moment to read the details below.
RallyCross creates increased traffic to nearby businesses. The average RallyCross participant spends $600 per weekend on food, gas, lodging and entertainment. Most racers bring along friends and family for fun, support and camaraderie, often turning a race day into a weekend stay. RallyCross also draws participants from a wide geographic area, creating new customers for surrounding businesses. Those new customers represent a wide demographic of people, most of whom are married homeowners with an average household income of over $130,000 per year.
RallyCross events present no financial risk to hosting landowners or local communities. RallyCross is relatively low in speed and prioritizes safety over competition, but in the unlikely event of an incident, SCCA provides comprehensive general and liability insurance coverage that exonerates landowners of all financial obligations. SCCA also ensures that all owner rules and local ordinances are strictly honored.
RallyCross does not require any involvement from landowners other than a place to compete. Because RallyCross is a work-to-race event, it provides its own labor teams that take care of things like monitoring entry, set-up, race management and tear-down. RallyCross also brings its own equipment and resources, such as generators, garbage cans and porta-potties. Unlike most forms of racing, cars run individually and compete against the clock rather than race together as a group. This increases safety and reduces the amount of land required. When necessary, water trucks are used to minimize dust picked up by the cars. Organizers and participants also clean up after themselves so nothing is left behind for landowners to deal with.
The end result is a seamless relationship that involves little to no effort on the part of landowners outside of simply receiving a check for the use of their land. One way to increase the level of compensation above that of just hosting a race is to allow onsite camping before and/or after race day. This reduces travel requirements for participants, which in turn creates greater visits to nearby businesses.
All regions strive to develop long term, financially sustainable relationships with landowners that provide years of racing action. This is where you come in. Do you know of a place where your local SCCA® group could have some fun in the dirt? If so, please find and contact your local SCCA region at https://www.scca.com/regions.
For further information regarding potential RallyCross sites, please contact Brian Harmer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Words & Photo: Greggar Helgeland