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#GRIDLIFE+ MM Equipped= No Go. Where else can I compete?

51
67
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Michigan
One of the ideas I had for this car was to compete in Time Attack. Hadn't made any real plans yet, just a thought. With the roll cage project about to begin I decided to look at the Gridlife rulebook to see what it says about interiors.

Unfortunately, what I found on the Gridlife site is that in no class, other than Unlimited, are you allowed to move the suspension pickup points. Which means the Maximum Motorsports K-Member is out.

I reached out to Gridlife to be sure and got a response confirming what I had read...I was hopeful that there was an exception for off-the-shelf parts. There is not.

I was told the only class I could compete in would be Unlimited. Reading on their site they claim 800hp is common-place in this class. Though, I follow a few cars that exceed that number in the TrackMod class. Even running in that category with my car would a joke.

I'm a little disappointed to learn that the rules have rendered the Fox and SN95 completely uncompetitive short of a max effort build to run in the unlimited class. Maybe I should have saved the money I put into the New Edge and bought a Boss...

Track days are super fun but I was really hoping to compete at some point. So, I guess I'm now looking for other avenues of competition. Bracket racing? Stick to AutoX? W2W? Should we start a club?!

Open to suggestions.

Brad
 
51
67
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Michigan
you can find a place in the SCCA or NASA, unfortunately, when you start messing with suspension pickup points, you edge up to the Gt or unlimited type classes.
Thanks, Rob. I probably should have looked further into that before posting. I guess I was a little frustrated because the SN95 has terrible suspension geometry and can't compete with the newer cars. An off the shelf part that gives it a fighting chance in the field with similarly powered cars of today takes it out of the class. Bummer. However, I did look into SCCA and NASA and their classifications are much more reasonable, IMO. No big deal, it is what it is and I'll run the one that works for me!

It looks like I could compete in the SCCA without being pushed into the Unlimited class- in the M1 class. And TT2 in NASA. The rules seem much more reasonable in both as compared to Gridlife. Where, Gridlife does not allow suspension pickup points to be altered anywhere but in the Unlimited class. Suspension components and pickup points are unrestricted in both of those categories.

NASA is basically anything goes and you're classed by weight-to-power. TT2 is up to 8:1. If my car weights 3200# with me in it after I get the cage installed and makes 375hp with the new intake and throttle body I should be right around 8.5:1.

Max Category SCCA- Based on Engine size and modification for classification. Would be Max 2 but since I modified my 4.6, I'm bumped up to Max1. Again, no suspension modification restrictions whatsoever.

Here we go!!

Screen Shot 2021-11-24 at 3.37.54 PM.png
 

Bill Pemberton

0ld Ford Automotive Racing Terror
5,763
4,303
Exp. Type
W2W Racing
Exp. Level
20+ Years
Blair, Nebraska
Honestly as a member of both SCCA and NASA you have a lot more leeway in NASA. Rules are simpler and based primarily on HP to weight ratio. You can go into the rules section ( drivenasa.com ) and jump over to the GT rules . This makes life easy as you can fill out a computer schematic to see what you can do to your car and it is pretty darn open. You will have to get a Dynojet Dyno run for your Classification proof, but the situation about removing door panels , rear seats , etc. is not really of much consequence.

Feel free to drop me a note if you wish and good luck.
 
51
67
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Michigan
Honestly as a member of both SCCA and NASA you have a lot more leeway in NASA. Rules are simpler and based primarily on HP to weight ratio. You can go into the rules section ( drivenasa.com ) and jump over to the GT rules . This makes life easy as you can fill out a computer schematic to see what you can do to your car and it is pretty darn open. You will have to get a Dynojet Dyno run for your Classification proof, but the situation about removing door panels , rear seats , etc. is not really of much consequence.

Feel free to drop me a note if you wish and good luck.
Thanks, Bill. I hadn't really looked into the rulebooks of SCCA or NASA before Rob mentioned it. Honestly, I barely knew that either organization did time trials. I thought they were dedicated to W2W. I'm going to head over and fill out that sheet you mentioned. This is great news and I'm feeling pretty stoked to start getting the car ready for a season of competition.

EDIT: I went over and filled out that checklist. That's very helpful! Turns out at my weight and power level I can run slicks and still be eligible for TT2. Yea!!
 
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51
67
Exp. Type
HPDE
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Under 3 Years
Michigan
With NASA…you essentially go through HPDE 1-3. Then you decide to either go TT or W2W.
Thanks, Patrick. I've done multiple track days but none were NASA events. Just open track days at Waterford Hills and one CGI instruction type event at GingerMan. I wonder if any of these could be counted toward my application for a TT license?

The nearest tracks to me that NASA holds events are GingerMan and Mid-Ohio. Both about 3 hours away. It looks like I could do 4 NASA HPDE events in 2022. Do you know how many events it usually takes for a person to progress though the HPDE program? The last few events I've registered for I've classed myself as a HPDE 3. So maybe I could demonstrate some competence and be granted approval to apply for the license?
 

Bill Pemberton

0ld Ford Automotive Racing Terror
5,763
4,303
Exp. Type
W2W Racing
Exp. Level
20+ Years
Blair, Nebraska
The Great Lakes NASA Region is the one that covers most of the tracks fairly close to you, and they are beyond question one of the premier Regions in the US. They have a great HPDE program , which includes Instruction through 4 phases ( along with a Logbook Instructors will fill in to assist with your growth and areas of needed improvement ). Depending on the Instructor, you do need to go through the four steps before being certified for Time Trials. Once you get to that step you will be reviewed by a Lead Instructor for your license. That is the key, you get an actual Competition License because in NASA Time Trials you can pass anywhere on the track and you want to be able to do that knowing folks have met solid qualifications. As a Porsche Instructor, Instructor at two tracks , past Viper Days Instructor , and NASA Instructor I can vouch that NASA has one of the best step by step programs in the Industry , if not the very best.

The hp to weight schematic for Classing is simpler than most , fairly broad, and you will likely find yourself Classed within the TT3 group - just a guess.
 
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67
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Michigan
Thanks, Bill. I'm glad to have someone of your experience to help guide me!

Yea, looks like GingerMan and Mid-Ohio are going to be my closest options and probably about as far as I can justify going for now. The next furthest is Autobahn which is about 4.5 hours.

Sounds like a great program, though. I'm pretty excited to get some instruction. I began this journey during the pandemic. Every time I go to a track I hear "oh man, it's a shame they can't do in-car instructors. It's so helpful!" So, I've had to figure it all out to this point. I made some friends and chasing them around the track made me faster. As I mentioned, I did the CGI Event at GingerMan in 2020, but we were still in the thralls of the pandemic so all we could do was lead/follow. I was also on 500tw tires, the 242hp 2v and basically stock suspension. I was the KING of understeer that day. But I got great feedback from the instructor. The main comment was that I was turning in too late. Had anyone been in the car with me they would have seen that I wasn't, I was overcooking the entry and actually sliding past the turn in/apex in spite of what I told the car to do with my hands- a lesson I learned following a fellow SN95 driver around Waterford Hills. Once I figured out that my car really hates to be trail-braked, and if I got braking done earlier and actually got back into the throttle to balance the car back out my lap times improved tremendously.

I did fill out that worksheet, very helpful. And you're right about TT3. On my 200tw- 275's I would have just barely been eligible for TT3, as long as my competition weight estimate is correct. But, I upgraded the intake and throttle body after it dyno'ed at 352hp. And, that DynaPack is quite conservative compared to a roller (Dewayne says a stock Mustang GT 2V PI, 5spd puts out 205hp on his DynaPack...and on rollers they're usually more like 220-230hp.), so I imagine I'll be up over 380hp on a DynoJet. Which will land me in TT2. But, then I can upgrade to some Hoosiers and still be legal for TT2. And I can always tune it down for TT3 if it seems like TT2 is too fast for me.

Brad
 
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Bill Pemberton

0ld Ford Automotive Racing Terror
5,763
4,303
Exp. Type
W2W Racing
Exp. Level
20+ Years
Blair, Nebraska
Autobahn is a great track and worth the drive and they also run over at Pittsburgh International Raceway, which may be a similar distance for you, though I am not sure exactly where you are in Michigan?
 
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Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Michigan
I want to try them all, Bill! :p

I've seen a few videos of Pitt, awesome track. Looking at the schedule for 2022 looks like they've got an event at Ozarks, too, which looks like a lot of fun to say the least.

And I'm in Southeast Michgan. About 40 minutes north of Ann Arbor.
 
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67
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Michigan
I know there is not an event with them at Grattan, but you might check SCCA.com to see if they have a track day there, as that has to be another track quite close to you?!
Yes! Grattan is less than an hour from me and was top priority for 2021 but I didn't get my car back together in time. Hoping I can get there in 2022 but I might need to allocate my track day budget to getting my NASA license for 2022.

They actually run a competition licensing school at Waterford Hills for SCCA in the spring that I've been considering. Apparently Waterford Hills is THE location for training corner workers, too. At least that's what Clutch says before every track day. If I can get my car up to competition standards by then. I wouldn't want to rent a race car for it.
 

Bill Pemberton

0ld Ford Automotive Racing Terror
5,763
4,303
Exp. Type
W2W Racing
Exp. Level
20+ Years
Blair, Nebraska
You can get up to Time Trial standards quite easily , they are not overly rigid. NASA just has more flexible rules for tires, interiors, etc. but they have been doing HPDEs with Time Trial options a lot longer than SCCA. SCCA is catching up, and they are still the King of Autocrossing. Their Time Trials are more like Autocross Classes , and as noted NASA is more HP to weight. If you get a SCCA license for Time Trials , you should be able to move into one with NASA with a test ride or two.
 
Your first mistake was thinking anyone at a Gridlife or GTA event would know that the MM K memeber "moves" pickup points. Unless you were waxing the field, you should have just ran it if it was for fun. If you started to get really competitive, then it might be an issue. I've been looking into SCCA TT classes for my GT350 since my other car I only race in NASA. SCCA, surprisingly to me, has decent and reasonable rules packages that seem to fit just about anything. Or like others have said, run NASA TT.
 
51
67
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Michigan
Your first mistake was thinking anyone at a Gridlife or GTA event would know that the MM K memeber "moves" pickup points. Unless you were waxing the field, you should have just ran it if it was for fun. If you started to get really competitive, then it might be an issue. I've been looking into SCCA TT classes for my GT350 since my other car I only race in NASA. SCCA, surprisingly to me, has decent and reasonable rules packages that seem to fit just about anything. Or like others have said, run NASA TT.
AJ, I think you're absolutely right, and may even still attend their events knowing full well that it's not likely I'd do well enough for it to matter. But like you said, the problem arises in the situation that I become competitive, which I obviously hope to be, otherwise I'd just do track days. So far the plan is to concentrate my efforts in NASA. I'd be glad to run either SCCA or NASA but seems NASA has more events within a reasonable distance to me, but I'll know more for sure when SCCA posts their 2022 schedule.
 
474
435
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
10-20 Years
Kansas City, Missouri
SCCA gave me a Novice Time Trials license with only a couple track days and a bunch of autocross experience. MiDiv uses the power/weight classing like NASA rather than the SCCA national classing so that might be something to look into also. @Cobraaph runs Time Trials in MiDiv so he might be able to shed some light on it. I still haven't made it out to an event yet :(

I had no idea about the Gridlife rules. I thought it would be cool to go to but hadn't looked at the rules that closely yet. Optima is still on the table though if you're interested in that sort of thing.
 
51
67
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Michigan
SCCA gave me a Novice Time Trials license with only a couple track days and a bunch of autocross experience. MiDiv uses the power/weight classing like NASA rather than the SCCA national classing so that might be something to look into also. @Cobraaph runs Time Trials in MiDiv so he might be able to shed some light on it. I still haven't made it out to an event yet :(

I had no idea about the Gridlife rules. I thought it would be cool to go to but hadn't looked at the rules that closely yet. Optima is still on the table though if you're interested in that sort of thing.
Ahhh, okay, that's very interesting. I'll look into that further. Thanks for that.

That's true, I hadn't really considered Optima. I think the only time I looked into it it seemed like their events were few and a good distance from me.
 
474
435
Exp. Type
Autocross
Exp. Level
10-20 Years
Kansas City, Missouri
Ahhh, okay, that's very interesting. I'll look into that further. Thanks for that.

That's true, I hadn't really considered Optima. I think the only time I looked into it it seemed like their events were few and a good distance from me.
Optima ran at Road America within the past couple months.
 

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