Wheel to Wheel Racing in Time Attack

10 Feb

It was confirmed this past Thursday on the Clockwork GTA webcast that Global Time Attack would be adding a wheel to wheel element to their time attack weekends.

As many of you well know, Redline Time Attack dabbled with adding wheel to wheel elements to to our race weekends. In 2008, we added 5-lap wheel to wheel races (Super Sessions) to two of our events (Utah and VIR), where the top 7 cars in Unlimited and top 7 cars in Modified, qualified for the race. The cars had to meet wheel to wheel safety requirements, which led to a decent number of the top TA cars not being able to run. The results of the race awarded points to the finishers that went towards the Season Championship.

In 2009, we ran Super Sessions at four of our events, and continued to add the points earned to the Season Championship standings.

In 2010, we chose to add Super Sessions to all of the events, for Unlimited, Modified and Street Tire.

During this time, we received a mix bag of feedback from the teams who were participating in Time Attack. I’d say it was about 50/50 for those who were in favor of the Super Sessions and those who were not in favor. Some teams wanted a time attack Championship to be determined solely based on results from time attack competition. Other teams did not want to increase the risk to both driver and car, even IF they supported the concept of what we were doing. Other teams were more than willing to participate and enjoyed the added competition. I can say that one of the most exciting racing events I’ve witnessed was when Tyler McQuarrie, in the BC/CWest S2000 passed  the Top Speed Subaru coming out of the last corner of the last lap of the last Super Session of the season to take 1st place and win the Grand Championship by 1 point! In the booth, seeing it in person, was overwhelmingly exciting! 🙂 talk about a Championship coming down to the WIRE!

For 2010, Jackson Stewart came up with the idea for Pro Track Challenge, a heads-up, wheel to wheel racing series (2-lap shootouts) that would see the competition set-up in a double-elimination bracket.  When we began speaking with existing TA teams about the concept, OVERWHELMINGLY, the feedback was negative. Teams did NOT want to run wheel to wheel. Including many of  THE BIGGEST names in TA… Now, perhaps there were underlying issues as to why the teams were responding negatively to the concept. Or it is possible that the format of the competition, the cost involved to participate, the rules that were introduced, competition adjustments after each race, or any number of other reasons lead to the lack of support for the concept. Either way, it didn’t work.

I believe it remains to be seen how well the concept of adding wheel to wheel racing to time attack competitions will be received by the competitors. Maybe if the W2W portion does not affect the Championship? Maybe if there are considerable sums of money paid out to the winners of the W2W portion?  No matter what, I’ll be a curious party.  As a huge fan of wheel to wheel racing and Time Attack (naturally!), I’d love to see it work!

 

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One Response to “Wheel to Wheel Racing in Time Attack”

  1. Willscarcast February 11, 2012 at 3:30 am #

    Im looking forward to seeing this get played out.

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