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Old 08-12-2009, 05:49 PM
matt matt is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Edmonton
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Holy shit - that's a ton of clubs! Where do I start?
The easiest way to get started is to figure out what sort of racing you want to do. I recommend you try them all at least once and start at the bottom of the cost structure and work up. That said - my bias is for door-to-door, nothing beats battling it out with other competitors.

Below is a list of racing available in Alberta ordered from most expensive to least expensive.
  • Road racing - done in the summer on dedicated race tracks or temporary street circuits. This is door to door racing as you see it at the Edmonton grand prix, etc. Road racing in Alberta is offered by the NASCC(Northern AB) and ARCA (Southern AB).

    Requirements - the stuff you need to have to go racing
    • Race prepared car with roll cage and all other safety equipment (see http://www.wcma.ca) for rules on car types.
    • Racing license obtained at a WCMA sanctioned school (NASCC and ARCA offer these on a yearly basis)
    • Thick wallet - lots of money will help but isn't completely necessary. Road racing can be pricey but boy is it fun.

    Costs - this is a rough estimate as to what you can spend. Road racing can be as cheap or as expensive as you make it. Mostly it's on the expensive side.
    • Initial Costs - what you'll need to spend to get started
      • Safety Gear - $2000 - this covers helmet, hans, suit, boots, underwear, etc. All the stuff that prevents you from snapping your neck, breaking your skull or burning to death (fairly important)
      • Car Prep - $5000 to infinity and beyond, you can spend as little or as much as you like here. All cars require a cage, fire extinguisher and some minimum level of car prep depending on the class you want to run in. See the WCMA general competition regulations for more information on classes and car prep.
      • Licensing - $500 - You will need to take a license school to get your competition license before you can race. These are typically held on a yearly basis.
    • Ongoing costs - what you'll spend to go racing on a regular basis
      • Race Fees - $400 / weekend - typically around the $400 a weekend mark to pay the organizers to go racing. This covers the track rental, setup, marshalling costs (they are volunteers, be nice to them), and other stuff related to going racing like equipment, fire extinguishers, etc.
      • Expendables - $3000 / season to $XXXXXXX - again, you can spend as little or as much as you like here but $2000 should cover a couple of sets of tires and some brake pads / rotors and other things like oil, etc for the season. If you're as cheap as I am - you don't change the oil.

  • Ice racing - done in the winter on frozen lakes in and around the northern alberta area. All car ice racing in Alberta is organized by the NASCC.

    Requirements - the stuff you need to have to go racing
    • Race prepared car with roll cage and all other safety equipment (see http://www.wcma.ca) for rules on car types.
    • Racing license obtained at a WCMA sanctioned ice race license school (NASCC offers once a year)
    • Warm clothes - ice is cold mmmkay?

    Costs - this is a rough estimate as to what you can spend. Ice racing is incredibly cheap when compared to road racing but can still be as expensive as you want to make it.
    • Initial Costs - what you'll need to spend to get started
      • Safety Gear - $300 - this covers helmet and suit. Ice racing requires fire resistant coveralls (nomex, proban) of some sort and an SA2000+ helmet. In 2011 you will need a HANS or equivalent.
      • Car Prep - $2000 to infinity and beyond, you can spend as little or as much as you like here. All cars require a cage, and some minimum level of car prep depending on the class you want to run in. See the WCMA general competition regulations for more information on classes and car prep.
      • Licensing - $75 - You will need to take a license school to get your competition license before you can race. These are held on a yearly basis.
    • Ongoing costs - what you'll spend to go racing on a regular basis
      • Race Fees - $175 / weekend - typically around the $175 a weekend mark to pay the organizers to go racing. This covers the track setup, insurance, county licensing fees, marshalling costs (they are volunteers, be nice to them), and other stuff related to going racing like equipment, fire extinguishers, etc.
      • Expendables - $1000 / season to $XXXXXXX - again, you can spend as little or as much as you like here but $1000 should cover most things like fuel, oil, tires (one set will last multiple seasons) etc.

  • Solo - typically done on a racetrack of some kind - this is kind of like autocross in that you are racing against the clock but the cars are better prepped and speeds are much higher. The CASC in calgary offers a solo series as does Speedway Performance in Edmonton.

    Requirements - the stuff you need to have to run solo
    • A car that is safe (if it passes an insurance inspection it'll pass tech)
    • Helmet that is SA2000 or better
    • A license (in some cases)

    Costs - solo can be cheap or expensive - it all depends what you build.
    • Initial Costs - what you'll need to spend to get started
      • Safety Gear - $250 - This covers the SA2000+ helmet you need.
      • Car Prep - $0 to infinity and beyond, got a street car? Cool - you can probably run it. Or you can spend a ton of money on parts and run in a faster class. Check the rules at wcma.ca or contact the organizer if you have questions. Some cars may need rollbars, etc.
    • Ongoing costs - what you'll spend to go racing on a regular basis
      • Race Fees - $80-$300 / event - this covers your entry to the event. You will typically get large amounts of seat time at these types of events.
      • Expendables - $0 / season to $XXXXXXX - again, you can spend as little or as much as you like here. Cont on a set of tires and brakes lasting a season at best.

  • Autocross - this is racing against a clock usually done on a temporary course setup in a parking lot with cones. No door to door or passing, put on by clubs like the ASA, Miata club, etc. Has rules for just about any kind of car you can imagine.

    Requirements - the stuff you need to have to autocross
    • A car that is reasonably safe (if it passes an insurance inspection it'll pass tech)
    • Helmet that is SA2000 or better

    Costs - autocross can be cheap or expensive - it all depends what you build.
    • Initial Costs - what you'll need to spend to get started
      • Safety Gear - $250 - This covers the SA2000+ helmet you need.
      • Car Prep - $0 to infinity and beyond, got a street car? Cool - you can autocross it. Or you can spend a ton of money on parts and run in a faster class.
    • Ongoing costs - what you'll spend to go racing on a regular basis
      • Race Fees - $30 / event - this covers your entry to the event. You will typically get 8 runs at about a minute a piece for this cost.
      • Expendables - $0 / season to $XXXXXXX - again, you can spend as little or as much as you like here.

  • Rallycross - Similar to autocross a race against the clock on a closed course usually with less trees than real rally and open to cars that aren't caged. Put on by the Edmonton Rally Club. Costs are about the same.

    Requirements - the stuff you need to have to rallycross
    • A car that is reasonably safe (if it passes an insurance inspection it'll pass tech)
    • Helmet that is SA2000 or better

    Costs - rallycross can be cheap or expensive - it all depends what you build.
    • Initial Costs - what you'll need to spend to get started
      • Safety Gear - $250 - This covers the SA2000+ helmet you need.
      • Car Prep - $0 to infinity and beyond, got a street car? Cool - you can rallycross it. Or you can spend a ton of money on parts and run in a faster class.
    • Ongoing costs - what you'll spend to go racing on a regular basis
      • Race Fees - $30 / event - this covers your entry to the event. You will typically get 8 runs at about a minute a piece for this cost.
      • Expendables - $0 / season to $XXXXXXX - again, you can spend as little or as much as you like here.
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