Answers to questions are inserted in text....
From: Derek [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Wednesday, March 12, 2003 5:15 AM
To: Hugh Barber
Subject: Re: Question about HSR
I'm sorry you and your Dad had a bad experience but I do
have to ask -
- did you raise your concerns with anyone else at HSR
either during the weekend or afterwards? Or did you just
spout off to the world (AKA the vintage-race list)?
>My father has written a letter to HSR about the matter. The Competition
Director was the "highest" ranking HSR official at the track, so there was
no one higher to "appeal" the decision. I was not "spouting off to the
world". I have attended VARA events on the west coast, but never attended
an HSR event. I was relating my experience and asking the list if this was
a usual occurance for HSR or an anomaly.
- did you have documentation about your car's early
history at the track? Or did your dad expect everyone to
accept his word on it? It is always the entrant's
responsibilty to prove his car's acceptability.
>My father had his SCCA logbook for the car, which shows its race history.
The Comp Director was told this, but said that it did not matter since he
had "no class in which to run this thing" (actual quote)
- you say your dad has raced the car with HSR for three
years with no problem. Well that really doesn't prove
anything. I regularly exceed the speed limit on the way
downtown. Would it be a valid excuse that I've never been
> Your argument is faulty as we are not talking about breaking laws. Before
he turned a wheel on the track, my father contacted HSR and recieved
approval to run. The then Competition Director (Joe Pendergast) placed him
in class 3H with the Predator XKE models. If you are not familiar with a
Predator XKE, it is a carbon-fiber and aluminum bodied XKE with a very
high-output dry-sumped engine, Jerico racing transmission, big brakes, and
wide wheels. Larry Ligas regularly wins overall in his Predator in a run
group that includes big-block Corvettes and Cobras. A Predator weighs about
1900 lbs. My father's Jag has the normal steel body, a period-correct
Muncie 4-speed and a wet-sump chevy small block. His car weighs 2600 lbs.
He is no threat to the Predators, but runs middle of the pack and has a
great time. In fact, Bill Terry, who runs another Predator, has been very
helpful to him over the past two years, suggesting suspension settings and
- if your story on the tires is correct then it would be
simple to resolve this based on the printed rules. You did
have the HSR printed rules with you didn't you?
> Unfortunately, the Competition Director was not in any mood to discuss
anything. When he said that we were in the wrong class and that it did not
matter that his predicessor has specifically put the car in that class, my
father offered to run in class 3A (sports racers). The Comp Director then
said that he could not run 3A because he is not as fast as a WSC or GTP car
(even though he would have been the only 3A entered and could have been run
with any comparable cars). My father then offered to run for no points. It
was at that point that the Comp Director decided that for him to run at all,
he would have to buy new tires (even for no points). In my opinion, the
Comp Director was not there to find a solution, he was there to ensure that
we would not run the car.
- you say "Anyhow this guy shows up....." Am I alone in
thinking this choice of words suggests a degree of
> If you mean that I don't like egotistical, elitist people, then I'm guilty
- and in the same sentence you seem surprised that a
"Safety Check" would have taken place even though the car
had already passed "Tech". Nothing unusual in that.
Subsequent inspections often happen. "Tech" is never 100%.
Getting the sticker means nothing if something unacceptable
is found later.
> It was more the way it was conducted. The inspecion went something like
"Does this thing have a fuel cell?",(yes it did)"does this thing have a fire
extinguisher?" (actually it has a fire system). In cases like this
"attitude is everything" and his attitude spoke volumes
- why do you question HSR's authority not to let race if
there are problems in practice? That isn't a "new rule
invented just for you".
> The implication from his tone was that literally anything was going to be
a cause to not let us race. His admonishment was not based on any unsafe
attitude or condition that he had witnessed because while we had shown up on
Thursday test day, we had not actually run yet. We merely got there a day
early to set up so we would not be rushed on Friday. For instance, what if
the car had a minor problem (no accident or spillage), and exited practise
early. Was that going to be a reason to not let us race? I've never heard of
any rule like that.
- finally is your car in Show condition? Or is it more
like how many cars ran back then? Or somewhere in between?
This is a very subjective area but you must have noticed
that the accepted norm for car presentation is much higher
now than it used to "back then". Is it possible that
something in this area caused someone in HSR to take a
second look? Nothing unusual in that whether individuals
like it or not.
>The car is not in show condition, but has been completely disassembled and
rebuilt to the specification it ran in 1970. All safety and driver's
equipment has been upgraded to modern specs. Here are some links to
pictures so you can make up your own mind.
Is it possible that there are two sides to this story?
>Always. I'd love to hear the Comp Director's side.
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