Time for the final solo report of 2020. Going to keep it simple.
Thanks for a fantastic 2020 Cincy SCCA Solo season! As you’ve undoubtedly heard, a tough and correct decision was made to put the health of our competitors and their families ahead of getting together en mass for a formal banquet on Feb 1. Plans to celebrate and present trophies by a safe and alternate means are being worked. An announcement on 2020 Year-End Solo trophies will be coming out shortly.
In the meantime, we have a very tentative, draft schedule listed on our website along with a local area schedule of other major events. The dates are subject to change and out there for comment. Please go review the schedule and let me know if you have additional information or corrections.
I made the first part of this as a post a week ago or so after our last points event but feel it’s worth repeating.
I want to take this moment to say “Thank you!!!” to all the entrants and your family/friends who made this season not only possible, but in my opinion, very successful. Thank you!!!
It certainly started off shakily with COVID-19 constraints where we weren’t confident we would even have a single event. As the state started opening things back up, working closely with the city, the police, and county health dept. we were able to host our first events on Jun 6/7 – a mere nine weeks later than planned. Of course we had to tweak how we did things, like pre-register prepay only, no loaner helmets, online SpeedWaiver, masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, “water boy” position, etc. – some which may become permanent as they worked so well and some of which I hope go away period. With all your help in practicing social distancing, wearing facial coverings, etc. we were able to complete our 2020 season successfully with all eight (8) points events (incl two make-ups), a T&T, the Southwestern Ohio Autocross Challenge, a Novice 101 school, and the Great Lake Solo Series events.
I also want to personally thank the Solo Committee for all your help in crafting this season, volunteering your time, making it happen, and having it go so well. Without you it wouldn’t have been so successful. Thank yous go out to:
Anthony Bodnarik, Rob Clark, John Custer, Jo Dziengel, Myke Dziengel, Bill Hughes, Nick Isaac, Nick Maludy, Shari McCoy, Tom Mills, Mark Minge, Terry Prand, Nathan Roberts, Dan Steele, Tact Takagi, Glenn Thompson, Jim Zeisler, and Krzysztof Zielinski.
Thank yous also go out to others who are not on the committee but also volunteered their time working hard to making this go well, such as: Nicole Clary, Ashley Ervin, Christian Moist, Danny Popp, Ben Weaver, and a few others I’m sure I’m missing and will kick myself for not remembering once I post this.
To step back a bit, we had two events in Oct to end the 2020 Championship points season. First was Points Event 8, normally the last points event of the season. We had 156 entrants and were able to get everyone five runs. Unfortunately for those running fourth heat the r-stuff came about an hour earlier than forecasted so both they and the course workers had less than favorable conditions to say the least. The course was not a “normal” course for Traders World as it had a near counter-clockwise loop off the start, a fast-flowing set of three cone walloms along the back, and two big 180 sweepers to the finish. Thanks go to John Custer, Jo Dziengel, and Tact Takagi for the inspiration. As far as results: the top 3 cars on PAX were all Hondas (Chris Rudy, Dave Rudy, Jack Burns); the top 7 on PAX were DS, GS, and CS; and top raw time went to Kumar Viswalingam in his SSM Miata. Closest battle was in the 10 entry CS class with Shari McCoy edging Charles Totten by a mere 0.012 secs.
Our last points event was originally intended to be a fun event but instead became a make-up for Points Event 2. This one had 157 entrants braving the cold weather for one last dance. The course finished the season with another great albeit atypical course, this one a vision (hallucination) of Danny Popp’s which seemed to favor those who enjoyed 180s. In this case, the top ten (10!) cars on index were street class cars (HS, DS, and HS) with Chris Rudy edging out Jack Burns and James Rector (the lone HS car in the top 10). The top five in raw were headed by Paul Curley in the borrows LS powered FRS of Joel Spitsnaugel, Marshall Reinert setting the time to beat in the first heat and holding until the fourth, Terry Prand in his STU Golf, Bill Hughes in his new CAM-S Corvette, and Austin Adams in his SSM Miata. In class battles, there were quite a few where the margin of victory was 0.103 secs or less, such as SSM, STX, SMF, CAM-C, Novice All Other, Street Open, and Pro. However, the closest was the battle of the Matts in STX where Matt Fuller edged Matt Davis by 0.010 secs.
Now, onto new stuff:
IFF (if and only iff) the weather is nice and we have enough entrants, we have added a year end fun event for next weekend on Nov 8. Registration is open, hopefully the weather is great!
Year end points are posted and should be updated soon with final trophy positions indicated. Stay tuned, but here’s the link. Congrats to all! Not sure what the year end trophies will be, one year they were plaques with embossed pictures of the competitor’s choosing with 3D add-ons, one year it was a choice of jacket or duffel bag, last year it was a cool wooden/plexiglass trophy. Open to suggestions.
As many of you have seen, we are likely to establish sound limits next year to address the many complaints we’ve gotten over the past couple years and protect our fellow competitors hearing. We measured sound levels at our past few events and posted them for full disclosure so no one feels targeted. No idea what the sound level will be but due to the site geometry and higher ambient noise levels it will be higher than the standard SCCA levels. If we can hold the fun event we will measure sounds there too if possible.
There will also be many other behind the scenes improvements you may or may not notice like probably a different timing software.
The 2020 season, although certainly unique has been a lot of fun. I can’t wait to celebrate this season at the Awards Banquet on Feb 1st and for the 2021 season!
September was a crazy month for our autocross program, with our Southwestern Ohio Autocross Challenge (SOAC) event on Sept 5 & 6 and our Great Lakes Solo Series events on Sept 19 & 20.
Southwestern Ohio Autocross Challenge (SOAC), Sept 5 & 6
When the SCCA National Championships were cancelled, there was an opportunity to host an event so all of us who would normally be making the 14 hr trek to Lincoln had something to take our minds off of missing them. We posted a survey on our Facebook page and people not only loved the idea but also had some great suggestions, one of which was to incorporate a challenge bracket. Sep 5 & 6 seemed like the perfect weekend except MVSCC had an event scheduled that weekend so after discussing options with them, we chose to host a combined event. MVSCC used each day as separate points events for them, Cincy was a non-points, combined-time, two-day event, and Sunday was to include a 32 driver challenge bracket based on top 10 or so pax positions from each of the heats on Sunday. Saturday we had 116 entrants and were able to get everyone seven (7) runs. Sunday we had 114 entrants and got everyone five (5 runs) with plans to run the challenge. Unfortunately, we had our timing/scoring software crash during the 3rd heat which erased most of the first heat runs and corrupted many others. As a result we had to cancel the challenge brackets but opened the course for fun runs. Due to Herculean efforts by Myke Dziengel and Mike Wolf, results were finally reconstructed about the time we had to leave the site. All in all, even with the disappointment of not being able to hold the challenge, everyone had a great time. Look forward to redoing the challenge in the future.
Great Lakes Solo Series (GLSS) Events, Sept 19 & 20
We had the ninth and tenth events of the GLSS scheduled early on, but with Nationals being cancelled the national office and various regions worked together to schedule a number of Championship Tours and ProSolos across the country in Sept, Oct, and Nov. Unfortunately, a Championship Tour was scheduled opposite our event in Toledo. We explored various options for moving the event date but in the end chose to leave it as scheduled for the many competitors who had bookmarked this weekend and wouldn’t be able to change it. Unfortunately that meant we lost a number of competitors and key members of our solo committee. That said, our other committee members and other volunteers stepped up to make things go off extremely well. We had 113 drivers on Sat and 165 on Sunday after turning away another 15 or more who had registered on the waitlist hoping to get in. Event went very well, we were able to get everyone 6 runs on Sat and five runs on Sunday with entrants getting back on the road by 4:00 or 4:30. We have been asked to repeat in 2021 with the finale events if possible. We had great support from our series sponsors. Continental Motorsports returned after being away the Labor Day weekend providing fantastic on-site support for all your racing goodies, helmets, gauges, etc. AutocrossDigits was there providing many number sets for and free GLSS sticker shaped magnetic vinyl cut outs our competitors. Summit Racing also came on board as a series sponsor and provided many door prize goodies!
Points Event #8 is this coming Sunday, Oct 4. As of right now, we have 160 entrants with 16 on the waitlist even with temperatures forecast to be in the 50s and potential for rain. We will obviously see how it goes, but should be a great time.
Our last event for 2020 will be Oct 25, it was a fun event but now will be a points event, and count as Points Event #2. Entries have not hit the cap yet, but you can almost certainly count on it happening by Oct 18 so register early. If you have registered and it turns out you cannot make it, please go into MSR and cancel so others on the waitlist can make it in. https://cincyscca.motorsportreg.com/
2020 Cincy Championship Series Point Standings
Finally, our 2020 Cincy Championship Series Year-End Points are posted to the website. You need a minimum of four (4) events to qualify and your best five (5) count toward year end points. Trophies are primarily based on how many drivers qualify in the class along with some solo chair discretion to account for things like extremely close battles. Last year we awarded 63 trophies at our “Year End” Banquet – Look for future announcements, should be in the Feb 2021 timeframe. http://cincyscca.com/autocross/2020-solo-schedule-results/
Wow, August has been a hectic month! Thanks everyone for hanging with us through the good and bad.
SCCA Solo Town Hall Meeting webinar, Aug 5, 2020 2020 National Championships – August started with a SCCA Solo Town Hall webinar on Aug 5 during which we heard the 2020 Solo National Championships had been cancelled and the Junior Driver Program was to remain suspended throughout the rest of 2020. Not going to go into a whole lot of detail here, but SCCA had been working closely with the city and county officials and determined the cancellation of the Championships was the prudent decision in light of it attracting 700 – 1200 people from all across the nation and possibly endangering countless others no matter how responsible everyone was. Additionally, this helps preserve the great relationship we have with Lincoln and the opportunity to return for many years in the future. I was disappointed personally as it would have been my 24th year and Ben’s first, but I understand fully – that said, everyone should make plans to attend at least once in the future, it’s a great site and even better event!
Junior Driver Program – The second part of the webinar covered the Junior Driver Program being suspended for 2020 and not returning until 2021. For those who hadn’t heard, earlier this year where even though all the processes and procedures were being followed properly a junior karter was involved in an incident which highlighted the need for the immediate strategic pause initiated much earlier this year the Friday before our first event. They are studying how to ensure proper procedures and processes are in place, what those should be, and how to enforce them. Discussions included the potential for each region needing to be certified starting 2021. More to follow, but alas, no Junior Driver Program events for us in 2020, sorry.
So on with the good…
With the 2020 National Championships cancelled, we took the opportunity to add an event this coming weekend: Southwestern Ohio Autocross Challenge, Sept 5-6, 2020
This promises to be a great event! After we heard Nationals was cancelled we placed a poll on our CincySCCA Solo-Autocross Facebook page to gauge interest in an event. The response was overwhelmingly positive and included some interesting suggestions, the most intriguing of which was to hold a bracket challenge Sunday “afternoon” like at the CAM Challenge, ProSolo, or Match Tours So, we are going to do just that! Anyone running Sunday can qualify for a 32 driver bracket “Sunday afternoon” where the person who is closest to their dial in time or improves the most in each paring will move on to crown the inaugural champion. You can enter to run just Saturday, you can enter to run just Sunday, or you can run both days. This will be a joint event with MVSCC as we would have been stepping on their regularly scheduled event and each day will count as separate points events for them if you enter in a NASA-X class. For Cincy, it will be a two-day combined-time event and even if you don’t run both days you might still be able qualify for an event trophy. PAX times Sunday each heat will be used to determine qualifiers for the Challenge.
Novice 101 School – Aug 15, 2020
We were able to conduct our Novice 101 school for 42 entrants in August. With COVID limitations, the majority of the instruction was from outside the car having instructors radio in things they saw from the course as well as the other instructors providing the 1-on-1 feedback. We would have liked to have been able to be in car with the students as traditionally done, but we did what we could. Everyone got at least 12 runs and in talking with the students and instructors it still seemed to go have gone very well and very appreciated. Students received instruction on everything from having their car ready for tech inspection, driver position, course walking, looking ahead, late-apexing, and worker skills. Looking forward to next year where we can go back to in car instruction hopefully in 2021.
Points Event #6 – Aug 16, 2020
We had 163 entrants, gave 6 runs, and had last car done by 4:12. The John Custer designed course was a hoot to drive, many thought it was the best we had there, potentially ever. It included a loop near the beginning, what became a high speed run exiting the loop into/through the walloms, and a good mix of technical aspects. The tightest battle of the day was in STR where Justin King in his Miata edged Tom Mills in his S2000 by a mere 0.002 secs for the win! Not to be outdone, Christopher Walentschik edged Glenn Thompson by the same 0.002 secs for the battle between 6th and 7th in an 11 driver STU class. Street Open had the lead swapping back and forth all day amongst the top five finishers with Chris Rudy taking the win and the top four finishing within 0.102 secs. Top Raw time went to Danny Popp with a 35.997 over Paul Curley with a 36.230. Top PAX seemed to become a Corvette challenge as Chris Rudy (4th) was the only non-Corvette in the top six where Danny Popp garnished top PAX with a 29.985 over Rob Clark with a 29.990. Results are here: https://cincyscca.com/autocross/2020-solo-schedule-results/
Great Lakes Division Solo Series Events 9 & 10 / Cincy Points Event #7, Sep 19 & 20, 2020
Our next events in Sept after our challenge event is our Great Lakes Division Solo Series Events 9 & 10 / Cincy Points Event #7. These are separate events each day being the last two of the GL Div 2020 season and with Sunday’s event also being a points event for Cincy. With the cancellation of Nationals, a number of national level events were scheduled across the country in Sep and Oct to make up for the loss. In this case, SCCA and NWOR scheduled a Championship Tour on the beloved concrete of Toledo Express Airport on the same dates as our event. We explored many other options such as potential dates of Sep 26-27 and Oct 10-11 to resolve this conflict, but in the end it became apparent the best approach for the majority of the entrants was to leave it on Sep 19-20. The biggest factor was how so many of our competitors had bookmarked these dates early in the year and can’t change work schedules to be there, but there were also no clean dates which didn’t have other event conflicts. Please understand this was not an easy decision as Toledo is a big draw for many of us personally, but I firmly believe it is the right one. Other than that, I am very excited, these events have been a great draw and bring in great talent from across the division!
2020 Season Point Standings
The standings are posted with many tight battles and only two points events remaining on Sep 20 and Oct 4 currently. We are considering making the Oct 25 fun event our last points event to make up for missing PE2, please stand by for updates.
See standings here: https://cincyscca.com/autocross/2020-solo-schedule-results/
Last weekend we had a joint event with Western Ohio Region (WOR) at Traders World on July 25 & 26. Everyone needs to thank WOR for helping us resolve a conflict with our originally scheduled date a week earlier which became the date for the Peru Championship Tour at Grissom Aeroplex. Out of the graciousness of their heart they agreed to let us move our event to what was their weekend and move their event to Saturday at Traders World! Along that line, we had 20 Cincy members attend the Peru Champ Tour to enjoy the grippy concrete with a couple first timers and many of us who regularly travel to other events. Congrats go to David O’Maley who set fastest time of day both raw and PAX!
For those who attended the joint WOR/Cincy events last weekend, you know it went very well even with the sweltering temperatures. WOR hosted a great event on Saturday with 142 entrants – by far the largest turn out on a Sat yet! Sunday, we had 154 entrants. Everyone got six runs both days on challenging and very different courses on Sat and Sun designed by Nathan Roberts and were done running by 3:30! I want to personally thank all of you for playing within the state COVID guidelines, saw plenty of masks, hand sanitizer being used, and social distancing. Thank you
Our next events are a Novice 101 School on Aug 15 and Points Event 6 on Aug 16. The Novice school is intended for novices (no matter what class you run) and will provide instruction on work assignments, tech inspection, what to do to be ready for an event, driver position, walking the course, and of course driving skills. Primary instruction will be with instructors outside the vehicles to comply with COVID guidelines. We will have an entry cap of 50 students for the school, please sign up early!
Going back to the large Cincy group traveling to events outside Cincy, the CAM Challenge is back at Peru next weekend, Aug 7-9. You do NOT have to have a CAM car to compete, they have a “worker” class where you can run both days (9 runs over the two) for $40 but you will need to stay and work the CAM Challenges on Sunday afternoon.
I’m happy to report our second event weekend (Points Event 4 by number) is in the books and went very well! Thank you to the 159 entrants and of course the solo committee who decided to spend Fathers Day with us and made it all possible to hold these events in a responsible manner while getting to enjoy the hobby we love. Unfortunately we made the decision to limit it to only four runs because we had timing issues first heat, the weather was threatening to thunderstorm in the afternoon, and of course it was Fathers Day so we wanted to make it so people could go spend time with their loved ones. Want to take the time to recognize Danny Popp and his team for designing one of the funnest courses we’ve ever had at Traders World! When timed competition ended at 2:30 thanks to great work by all during heats 2, 3, and 4, it looked like we would have the opportunity for fun runs. Looking at the radar it appeared the weather gods had something else in mind as the storms came right after we awarded trophies and got the trailer loaded. Guess the four runs was the right decision.
Next up is a joint event with WOR at Traders World on July 25 (WOR) and July 26 (Cincy Points Event 5.) This was originally scheduled for July 19 but the Grissom Champ Tour got moved to the 19th so we had to move ours to a week later on what would have been a conflict with WOR. We worked closely with WOR to see what could be done and thankfully WOR helped us come to this fantastic arrangement. The Saturday event will be a points event for WOR at Traders World using their classes, but we will also award points as a make up for PE1.
No new information on potential for changes to our COVID procedures, but the Monroe police officer were there and were very complimentary to how we conducted our event. Stay tuned to our Cincy Solo Facebook page for updates to the procedures as we determine we can make them.
Registration is now open for Saturday July 25th Western Ohio Region (WOR) Solo Points Event #5 and Sunday July 26th, Cincinnati Region Solo Points Event #5.
*The event registration closes on Thursday July 23rd, 10:00PM.
*Pre-Regisger/Pre-Pay ONLY, Entry CAP 150 (may change)
*Please read our COVID-19 Guideline closely. The Guideline will be updated as situation changes.
Saturday is WOR Points Event #5, but also counts toward CincySCCA PE1 Make-up Day. As such, car classes will primarily be those offered by WOR. (Cincy points will be calculated per Cincy classing structure after the event.)
WOR will be running “PAX (Index)” classes to facilitate better competition. They are as follows:
S – Street (formerly Stock) Classes (SS, AS, BS, CS, DS, ES, FS, GS, HS, HCS) ST – Street Touring Classes (STF, STX, STS, STR, STU, STP) SP – Street Prepared Classes (SSP, ASP, BSP, CSP, DSP, ESP, FSP, SSR) P – Prepared Classes (XP, BP, CP, DP, EP, FP, HCR) M – Modified Classes (AM, BM, CM, DM, EM, FM, FSAE, SMF, SM, SSM) CAM – Classic American Muscle & XS (CAM-S, CAM-T, CAM-C, XS-A, XS-B) L – Ladies (any sub-class) N – Novice (any sub-class)
Sunday is Cincinnati Region’s Point Event #5. Classes will be normal Cincy offering.
Cincinnati Region SCCA accept all SCCA Classifications. In addition, we also have Index Classes for similar category cars, as well as Novice, Pro, and Tire Index.
If you would like your Saturday event results to be counted toward Cincy PE1, please make sure to run appropriate/equivalent Car/Class for the Cincy Region’s class offering.