View Full Version : SCCA Solo I

10-06-2004, 03:27 PM
I know this isn't about autox, but I think it would get more replies than in the Drivers' School forum

Have you guys ever thought about Solo I events? The road course events would be cool. Competition of Solo II plus the higher speeds of a DE. But I guess the main factor is that you have to prep the car as you would for road racing.

I suppose the one thing is that there aren't too many events to begin with.

And I guess also I would think if you're going to put money into your car for that kind of prep or bought a car to do Solo I, why not just club race...

10-06-2004, 03:52 PM
...if you're going to put money into your car for that kind of prep or bought a car to do Solo I, why not just club race...

$55 per Solo I event vs. $185 for a race weekend. :sad:

10-06-2004, 03:56 PM
Good point.

Actually someone on bf.c said with NASA time trials (similar to Solo I), you don't need the extinguisher, driver suit, cage, etc. All you need is a transponder.

How come you've never done it, Glenn? I don't think WDCR does it, but Philly SCCA does it at Jefferson Circuit.

10-06-2004, 04:02 PM
I was looking to do an event in PA with the ITB car last year, but just kept procrastinating. I would still like to experience it though...just need a freakin' car!

10-07-2004, 11:20 AM
Here's some good info from a post I started on bf.c:

Hey Guys,
My name is Jim Pettinato
I'm a Time Trial (Solo 1) junkie from the Northeast.
I'll chime in on this subject just because I think I Time Trial with just about every club possible(at least in the Northeast).

I have Time Trialed with EMRA, SCCA, COM, CART & NASA, plus a few other clubs that maybe do one TT a year.
For those who have not Time Trialed yet I'll take a shot at a few observations.
These are all just my opinion,,, and in my personal experience here in the Northeast (Pocono, Lime Rock, The Glen, Summit area...)

By far the best of the best, the most organised,,, yet still fun, not stifling, yet safe is EMRA. This is not a slag on any of the other clubs, but just my opinion.EMRA is still the benchmark for Time Trialing in the Northeast.
The way they work is you get 3-4 open practice sessions on track like a DE. Grouped by experience again like a DE. No mandatory point bys though. Just lapping / practice. Then they stop and start doing timed laps.
They do 3 cars on track at a time (tedious part). You get a half a lap "in lap" then two flying timed laps, then half a lap cool down out lap.
Then you wait for all the cars to do that, and you do trophies.
It wastes about 3 hours if they have a good turnout.

NASA Northeast: was ok,,, it was a Long Long time ago, they needed lots of experience. Got a fair bit of track time, but their run groups for practice was pretty messy. Tried to do a similar day structure as EMRA. Practice by groups, then timed runs. I must admit it was one of their first TT events.
The new improved NASA Northeast does not have a TT Program yet but it may be in the works.
I hear NASA on the west coast is doing a ripping good TT series, using transponders. Hopefullly this will catch on not only to other NASA regions but on to all TT clubs as this is the way to TT in the 21st century.

SCCA SOLO 1 (PHA): Great organisation,,, dont do enough "racetrack" events for my taste, still mainly concentrated on hills here in the Northeast. Very safe. You will need FULL safety gear (cage, fire suit, real helmet, shoes, gloves, etc.) Completely different format than EMRA. Upside you get way more "shots" at a good time. Cheap entry fees. Downside you get a bit less less actual seat time. It depends on whats important to you, great times, or seat time on track. Its held more like a hillclimb. They put 3-4 cars on track at a time, spaced out (no passing) you get 5 timed laps per "run". All laps are timed. You do this 6-ish times a day.

CART: Great group of people. LOADS of practice track time due to open track format for practice.TT format is same as EMRA,,, the wait.
I love this club. Watch out for a brutally fast C5 vette. The guy will eat your lunch. The only downside is a slightly ambiguous class structure. If your into just driving and seeing where your time puts you in the overall picture,,, this is your club.

COM: Very organised as well,,, alot like EMRA. Practice by groups in sessions, then timed runs. Can be a bit more uptight. Dont count on actually "doing" a TT your first time with this club. They take the TT license thing a bit far. Its easier to get a full SCCA Solo 1 license than a COM TT license. Hell its probably easier to get an SCCA Club Racing license. Even possesing an EMRA TT license, AND an SCCA Solo 1 license may not get you in the door with them. You still have to do a very tedious check out licensing procedure that may last over several events. These guys are for the most part a great TT club with some great drivers, but take themselves a bit too seriously sometimes.

It also looks like there is a THRIVING Solo 1 / TT scene over the border in Canada,,, but I have not had the time to venture up there to actually check out their scene. Last time I looked they had something like a 16 event Time Trial season all on racetracks. Very cool.

Hopefully the future will bring all these TT clubs into the 21st century where everyone runs a transponder in open lapping sessions and every lap,,, all day counts. Thats the simple version,,, but its the way it should start moving.

I like Time Trialing because you get as much track time as possible,,, along with the added bonus of having an "outcome" at the end of the day,,, as opposed to just driving in circles and talking sh*t afterwards...
Lapping days are fun,, but there is no outcome.
I love to Time Trial because there is an outcome, and its all me,,, I live or die on myself. No one is dive bombing me for a position and track space that doesn't really exist.
If I rock, I rock, if I suck, I suck. But its up to "me" to pull it off.
I think this is why I Time Trial not club race.

Hopefully more clubs will get on board with Time Trialing. Its a great sport.
jimmy p.

10-07-2004, 11:21 AM
No problem,,,I'm like an evangelist for Time Trialing.
Hmmm,,, not sure which regions with regards to a 4 point bar.
Maybe the Southeast guys (around NC). I have not run with them yet.
I know it does differ,,, but the regions that make up the Pennsylvania Hillclimb Assoc. require a full cage 6 points min.
Basically their safety requirements are the same as IT / SS.
Those are the guys that hold all the hillclimbs in the PA area and the two Summit Jeff Solo 1s.

I think it says in the GCR that a rollbar is all thats mandatory for Solo1, but its up to the regions discretion. Those guys (PHA) run so many hills,,, they require cages on all cars. It makes sense if you have ever run a hill,,, lots of sh*t to hit,, really hard stuff that doesn't move (rocks, trees, poles, cliffs, embankments). I found hillclimbs really boring and not worth all the waiting around for your 6 - 60 second shots up the hill. The PHA guys live for them though. Most of them slag the Jeff track events, all they seem to care about is the hills. Hills are alot like drag racing, just with turns and imoveable things to hit if you screw up.

Time Trialing / Solo 1 is a great sport though. I recomend it to anyone who is looking to get out of dodging cones, but is not sure about racing wheel to wheel.
Its a whole different mindset than wheel to wheel.
How many racers set fast lap on lap one or two? Thats what you "have" to do Time Trialing,,, I get a kick out of that.
Although I do favor the clubs moving to a transponder based setup, not so much because of the cold tires and brakes thing, more so we can do away with wasting alll the track time allocated for timed runs in the solo run format.
Good discussion...
jimmy p.

Steve- I moved this post to "AutoX" forum for further discussion...


10-07-2004, 01:02 PM
Steve- I moved this post to "AutoX" forum for further discussion...


Stop abusing your mod powers :roll: :grin:

Sounds interesting ... never knew much about Solo I ...

10-07-2004, 01:16 PM
Steve- I moved this post to "AutoX" forum for further discussion...


Stop abusing your mod powers :roll: :grin:

Sounds interesting ... never knew much about Solo I ...

Yeah, it does sound cool.

Offers the competition of SoloII and the high speed rush of a DE without the kind of potential for damage found in W2W racing.

Matt Williams is doing it next year.

10-07-2004, 01:49 PM
No one asked for it, but here's 2 cents:

I have raced, done drivers schools, and autoxed in my car(s). I would NEVER compete on a racetrack without full safety gear. I've seen things and had wrecks myself and I am 100% committed to properly installed and used safety gear, including a full cage, for cars driven in anger.

I have also pretty much pulled out of DE events, as many of you will have noticed. Same reasoning. Until I can supply a car that a) is safe to crash and b) I can afford to crash, I'll be staying away. Sh*t happens and I prefer to not be going 135 into T1 when it does, at least without a cage, HANS, etc.

I *love* racing and there's nothing like it, but the costs and time commitments are also much larger than people realize. Someday I'll strip my E36 down and put a cage in it and go back on track actively but for now I'm staying where its safer and where I can still drive like a bat outta hell.

If you want to do high speed competition events (ie. at 10/10ths), PLEASE put in safety equipment. If you want to do DEs, please drive at 8/10ths.

I'll shutup now. :)

10-07-2004, 02:15 PM
Hey James!

No no, that's the idea here-to get input. It's good to get an experienced person's input.

I admit that whenever I do a DE, I tend to think more about the consequences compared to the first time I ever did one. I tend to see a lot of bravado among some saying to drive at your own pace if you are nervous.

However, there are a few x-factors:
the ricer newbie hotshoe trying to play JPM in a level one run group
the car in front of you blowing it's oilpan

I had my first spin at BeaveRun when I didn't scrub off enough speed coming into T1 and at one point felt the right side of the car lift up a little. My nerves were completely shot and I did one more session before I called it a day and just watched.

I am starting to push the envelope a little more at the track (braking deeper and starting to trail brake), but that is starting to make me think more about putting in more safety equipment. Like a cage.

I didn't know you used to road race.

10-07-2004, 03:28 PM
A smart man that Jame Sheridan guy... same things I've been saying to keep myself off of the track. :)

10-07-2004, 04:22 PM
A smart man that Jame Sheridan guy... same things I've been saying to keep myself off of the track. :)

Yeah, but you said you don't trust yourself to not do 10/10ths at a DE-which is a very big reason to not be out there for yourself and other drivers.

It is a calculated risk, but as James said, if you do it, take all the precautions.