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  • UTVs in RallyCross

    SCCA UtilityCross (UX)

    During the last few years, the membership has approached the RXB about including UTV into RallyCross. The RXB looked at the issue and found those types of vehicles are not compatible to run at RallyCross events.

    At the 2018 SCCA convention, the RXB discussed it again. The following initiative is being brought forward after receiving approval from the SCCA Board of Directors-

    To create a separate UTV program with an advisory committee under the RXB. Eventually, this may become a separate program/board.

    The guidelines of this new program would still have to follow the safety and common sense course design of the RallyCross Rules.

    This program would not run with or at current RallyCross events but hold completely separate courses and events. They would not be new classes under the RXR.

    To further this new initiative, the RXB is looking for 4 to 6 persons to form a committee. This committee will be charged with creating the rules both for safety and classing. One item to be included will be a limited junior class for children under 12.

    Please comment and reply if you’re interested.


    Steve Hyatt,
    RXB Chair

  • #2
    Originally posted by rallycross View Post
    SCCA UtilityCross (UX)

    The RXB looked at the issue and found those types of vehicles are not compatible to run at RallyCross events.

    Eventually, this may become a separate program/board.

    The guidelines of this new program would still have to follow the safety and common sense course design of the RallyCross Rules.

    This program would not run with or at current RallyCross events but hold completely separate courses and events.


    Steve Hyatt,
    RXB Chair
    The above comments are contradictions unto themselves. I like the idea that SCCA wants to expand into new areas, but what this should be referencing is wheel to wheel utv racing, ie, like crosskarts. Guaranteed UTV's will be spending time not on their wheels. So if this opens up the idea for wheel to wheel "club rally", like "club racing", except in the dirt, I see this as a whole new program. Right now this is a hot motorsport, they even get permission to rally side by sides.

    One question I have is with the new open rallycross class, would it be logical that those vehicles fit better with this UTV concept? Also, if the new open class is rallycross legal, would they be allowed to enter RallyTrials and or RallySprint?

    Brent

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    • #3


      The above comments are contradictions unto themselves. I like the idea that SCCA wants to expand into new areas, but what this should be referencing is wheel to wheel utv racing, ie, like crosskarts. Guaranteed UTV's will be spending time not on their wheels. So if this opens up the idea for wheel to wheel "club rally", like "club racing", except in the dirt, I see this as a whole new program. Right now this is a hot motorsport, they even get permission to rally side by sides.

      This is not wheel to wheel racing


      One question I have is with the new open rallycross class, would it be logical that those vehicles fit better with this UTV concept? Also, if the new open class is rallycross legal, would they be allowed to enter RallyTrials and or RallySprint?

      The engine/drivetrain does not fit in with the new class.
      If the cage design meets the RT/RS safety rules then yes.


      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks for the info.

        Comment


        • #5
          I like the idea of a program.

          My Coworker got a Polaris Razor because it was cool and fun. Paid over $20,000 for the thing. It sat in his garage for a year, he drove it twice, and then traded it in on a challenger because he never used the thing. He asked me several times if it would be rallycross-able, but of course it wasn't.

          So, having known someone with that problem, I can say there's a HUGE market out there for giving these things a place to play. Trails are super sketchy (and have speed limits), so most owners just let them sit in the garage for most of the year on the off-chance that they can put aside an entire weekend to go play in the woods.

          I'd be curious as to the format though. Is it going to be like rallycross, but on a smaller scale (cones, times, etc)? Is it going to be more like a stage rally where you've got a course but no penalties? Lots of options. I could see at least our newest rallycross site hosting one of these (Bundy Hill in Michigan) as it's already an offroad park.

          And, as I posted on the FB page, there's always the chance that someone with a UTV will know of other places we can race rallycross. Networking is key to finding new sites!

          Comment


          • #6
            It's an under-served market, and I can't fault the club for taking the lead on a motorsports trend rather than playing catch-up (see budget enduro racing, time trials, pro touring autocross, etc.). The era of self-driven, self-owned personal vehicles doesn't have many decades left, and the potential market of SCCA members will only shrink in generations to come. The SCCA as a race sanctioning body would be wise to include more things that can be raced.

            However, organizing in the normal Solo and RallyCross manner could make this a slow start. You don't want to primarily leave it up to local regions to fund, organize, and staff UTV events. RallyCross has enough trouble getting continuous activity in a majority of regions, even with the crossover potential of people who already like having fun with cars. It's a human resources scarcity more than a fundamental problem with RallyCross itself.

            Accommodating a new vehicle type is the smallest part of the challenge. People will figure out a safe, viable formula to run UTVs. The hard climb is building a duplicate and parallel volunteer leadership structure. There's not a lot of overlap between car people and UTV people. We the SCCA volunteers would be tasked with recruiting and assimilating a UTV group, then probably not participating much ourselves because we're largely not UTV owners. I like the concept, but I honestly don't have the time or inclination to help promote this task. More power to those that do.

            Comment


            • #7
              What is the reason to not run UTV's with the Rallycross program? because UTV people want jumps? Besides that it would seem that the surface/course would be the same and could be easily integrated into the program, similar to how karts are integrated in with cars in autocross.

              Comment


              • #8
                I'll reiterate here a version of what I said on the Facebook post, which I hope RXB is reviewing. SCCA stands for Sports Car Club of America. Where do we draw the line? Is the club going to start allowing Motorcycle classes for AutoX, TT, and Club racing? Is the club going to change its name to SVCA, Sport Vehicle Club of America? The line always used to be cars and light pickup trucks. The only exception were karts because they are a logical feeder into road racing. Karts are generally engineered for youth, who are physically too small to drive full size cars. UTVs have no logical progression path since they are engineered for adults and they wouldn't feed into an existing program like karts do. Also, UTVs are just as expensive as cars so there is no logical cost based rational either.

                Also, I think there is enough struggle for RallyCross programs to find and retain sites that adding another series that would also have unique site requirements is only going to make that worse.

                I think the RXB should focus on supporting the existing RallyCorss programs and growing the RallyTrials and RallySprint programs, and leave the UTVs to the "off-roading racing" community.

                (Also, this whole thing confuses people quickly because it's titled "UTVs in RallyCross" but then in the body it's really a separate program not to even be run on rallyx sites. Should be titled something along the lines of Proposal for RallyCross style UTV series.)
                Last edited by RallyKeith; 03-12-2018, 09:42 AM. Reason: Added the comment about how confusing the title of this can be.

                Comment


                • #9
                  As long as the UTV's would be COMPLETELY separate from the rallycross program I don't see it being a problem. It should have it's own organizers who are familiar with the vehicles, classes, already existing programs, issues, etc. I don't even see why this is being brought up to us if it is going to be a separate program. This should be tabled to all SCCA members, not just us. I just don't want to see it interfering with our rallycross program, and taking away some of the already limited resources we have. They should not be running at our venues, even if it's a separate event. We already have enough trouble finding, and keeping sites. The nature of their racing will lead to a lot more course degradation then we typically see in rallycross. On the other hand, that demographic may be helpful for us finding new sites? But I don't think it will go the other way. Your average UTV "racer" is going to want to navigate our boring courses anyways. They want woops, and jumps, and rocks and all the other fun stuff that they can tackle with ease. Also think a lot of them are looking for wheel to wheel racing. Are we going to provide that? That is where the big draw is right now.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    RallyCross and autocross exist independently of stage rally and road racing, and draw greater numbers. The motivators in UTV racing may be the same. Cone-style time trials offer a lower threshold for more frequent participation (and participation includes both the competitive and social aspect). More appealing entry fees, travel distances, equipment prep and attrition, etc.

                    The sentiment I get most often from RallyCross-ineligible vehicle owners is that their limited purpose machine is underutilized. People spend money on UTVs, sand rails, trophy trucks, etc., only to park them in a shed most of the time. They see RallyCross as an additional place to participate, and come to people like me actively wanting to show up, pay, and compete. I see a missed opportunity for the club every time we have to turn them away.

                    I'm concerned about site wear, though.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I’ll chime in having ridden in, and operated a UTV, and having a father who has owned multiple UTVs and currently organizes and leads UTV trail rides.

                      UTVs absolutely obliterate the surface they run on. They monster terrain more extreme than RX could ever imagine. (In my mind the Iowa site is the most extreme terrain we’d ever use.) They are much louder than most modified class RX cars.

                      i whole heartedly agree that IF the SCCA decides to pursue the UTV machines they need to be wholly independent from all other programs. I think the UTV people the SCCA wants are those that use them as adrenaline machines rather than utility and exploration vehicles. Those people want X-treme terrain and a magnified sense of speed. Think Arena Cross meets King of the Hammers. Is the SCCA able to accept that?

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