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Author Topic: SM storage & the family effect
webby459
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Noob here! I have a couple of questions that I hope some of the experienced members here can shed some light on.

The first is, where do most of you store your SM? I have my own home in suburbia, 2 car garage. The wife's minivan occupies one side, her street miata occupies the other side, and the rest of the space holds the kiddie pool, bikes, wagons, empty beer bottles, etc. I just don't like the idea of a race car sitting outside in the rain and snow all year: I've seen what that can do to brake and other important moving parts in a car. I've thought of an enclosed trailer as an option. I'm frankly leaning toward doing a rental to begin, then an arrive and drive after I'm convinced that this hobby is one I'll stick with. Any input on storage, and storage vs arrive and drive would be appreciated.

Next question, how many weekends do most of you do per year? I have 2 year old twins, and another child well on it's way, and I simply don't think I'll have the time or family cooperation to do more than a few weekends a year. Week days are substantially easier, and I plan on doing some hpde to fill in my driving sched.

Members on here with a really young flock such as mine: do you bring the little ones to the track with you? How does that work out? My wife and I used to spectate many nascar and F1 events, as well as lots of the local SCCA events, so she is not averse to racing in general. I just can't imagine how it would be for us as a family to have her chasing the kids around the paddock while I'm hot lapping.

Thanks again for the input.

Webb

Dan Lipperini Jr
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Region: NEPA #25
Year : 1995 Spec Miata & 1990 S2000 powered Miata
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Turn her street Miata into an HPDE car that can do double-duty for a few years. Get to the track as many days as possible to hone your driving skills and then when the family time allows, build/buy a car to race. She won't have much time to drive the "street" Miata with the 3 little ones and maybe she won't even notice the rollcage, lowered suspension and removeable steering wheel.

Just a thought..............................

--------------------
Dan Lipperini Jr
http://www.Racelabz.com


S2000 powered Miata trackday toy
New 1.8 Spec Miata(for sale)

Kent Carter Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
Future Never Has Been

Region: Houston
Car #: 91
Year : 1991
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Seriously look at renting!! If you have a decent shop nearby, you'll probably find a good car available. I did it for a few months before I found the right car to buy. The math on rent/buy/build wasn't that far off. Just be sure to know what you are on the hook for... engines vs bodywork.

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Do I turn my 99 Hard S into a killerfast SM or seek a donor?

webby459
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Dan, thanks. "Her" car is set with a new roll bar, new brembo rotors, braided lines and satisfied carbon ceramic pads, and flyin miata full suspension. I just completed a skip barber one day school on monday (I know, not a licensing school), and I have my first hpde next friday. The point is, I have my track days more or less covered at this point.

However, after my experience with skippy, even with the point-by passing, I have the need to do some wheel to wheel racing. Due to my time constraints, what I do know is that I won't be building my own car, nor will I be doing between race maintenance. I have a lot of respect for you guys that have the time, ability, and dedication to do all your own work. However, I know that this is not me.

An arrive and drive would probably be in my racing future, but I still would like some feedback from forum members on how you store your race car. Also, anyone with little kids, do you bring them to the track with you?

Dan Lipperini Jr
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Year : 1995 Spec Miata & 1990 S2000 powered Miata
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Post up your location and maybe some of the members can recommend a shop local to you or near the tracks where you plan to compete.

One other question for you would be whether or not you have a tow vehicle and trailer? Where are they stored? If you are planning on purchasing a trailer, seriously consider an enclosed. Not only is it a storage spot for the car during the season, but if your wife's Miata isn't driven in the winter, it can live in there so you can "play" with the racecar in the warmth of the garage.

Again, just a thought...............

Sorry, Can't help on the kids question.

--------------------
Dan Lipperini Jr
http://www.Racelabz.com


S2000 powered Miata trackday toy
New 1.8 Spec Miata(for sale)

wheel Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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I store one in the shop and one in the trailer. Check with local homes associations and city codes to see if you need to rent storage for a trailer, since many won't allow trailers in the drive. Also, whether you can leave a race car out in your driveway.

Enclosed trailers, over the winter, can present problems with moisture, etc., depending on the climate where you live.

I don't have any kids, which is one of the reasons I can afford to race, but many racers bring their kids to at least some of the races.

wheel

G. Davis Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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Year : 1991
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Can't help you with the kids questions...

I wouldn't worry about storage if you're only talking a few events per year. I would just go the rental direction.

If you decide to buy, and you don't have time to do your own work, then wherever you get your work done is the likely place I'd look for storage. FWIW, many of these cars are stored outside. As long as the maintenance is steady, they do just fine. If you want to get yourself an inexpensive "inside" option, look at a used enclosed trailer in the 3 - 5 k range.

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Glenn Davis

webby459
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I am in the Albany, NY area. I plan on racing mostly at Lime Rock, but the Glen is the best alternate, because we already do a lot of vacationing in that area. Anyone have any recommendations for shops in my area? Any recommendations for arrive and drive shops around here? Other tracks within reasonable distance are New Hampshire and Pocono.

Pat Newton Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
Enduro addict

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1) As the other guys said, do quite a few track days before jumping into racing. Sounds like you're executing that plan, so keep it up. [Smile]

2) When you do go racing, arrive and drive is for you. You have no place to store the car and you've already said you don't want to work on it (or don't have time) so let somebody else handle all that. No point in owning your own car given your situation.

3) Yes, bring the kids to the track. You didn't mention where you are, but I can tell you on a big weekend in Oregon Region, there are probably 15 kids at the track just in the SM camp. A bunch of us had no kids when we started racing SM, but then multiplied. [Big Grin] Both of mine were at the track when they were three weeks old.

An important point- get your kids GOOD SOUND PROTECTION. They make earmuffs in kid sizes for your toddlers, and you can use earplugs for the tiny ones, or Mom can just keep them protected in a front pack carrier- that's the way we did it anyway.

Racing is a family sport, and the families get hooked. Little kids love race cars and your wife might enjoy spotting for you on the radio, as long as you don't give her a hard time for missing a yellow flag because she was chasing the kids around the stands. Ask me how I know... [Eek!]

Having a grandparent or two (or other helper) at the track with you would be helpful as well, especially if your wife would be responsible for three little ones while you're out on track.

--------------------
Crew Chief, 3D Racing #64, aka Team Scrappy 2.0
3rd place E2, 2009 25 Hours of Thunderhill

Crew Chief, EGR/Miller Motorsports #64, aka Team Scrappy
E2 Champions, 2008 25 Hours of Thunderhill

soupy
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You're in a great spot. Mo-Hud has about 40 SMs right around you. Some will be at Pocono this weekend. Come on down and visit.
PM'd you

--------------------
Charlie Campbell
Race Engineering
carbotech brakes

Vick Verified Driver
Do they sell spec training wheels?

Region: NYR
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Year : 1991
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Check out Flatout Motorsports, they do arrive and drive and have good equipment from what I have seen. They will also store your car for you and bring it to the races.

Planet Miata is a great shop down near Scranton, PA. They did my cage and seat, and have saved me with countless parts. I don't think Marc does rentals, but he's a good contact in the area.

Does anyone know if Entropy Racing still does Miata rentals? I think I saw some at an EMRA race last year, but I'm not sure what they are doing this year.

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http://www.volko.com

nealspens Verified Driver
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Regarding the family aspect, a lot will depend where you live. I started racing when my daughter was around 6. For my races in La Junta or Pueblo, Colorado there aren't a lot of kid friendly activities around, so the wife and kid stay home. But when we tow down to phoenix, the wife and kid really appreciate the activities and resorts available to them. And while I know that little Santa's theme park just outside of Firebird was extremely cheesy, I can't tell you how many brownie points (translated as additional race weekends) I got for taking my little girl on the rides and letting my wife enjoy the resort facilities with no little one in tow.

Greg Bush Verified Driver
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Racing involves a lot of sitting around. If you can keep everyone fed and entertained during that time it can be quality family time.

webby459
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Pat and Neal, thanks a bunch on the info on the family aspect. This is really the biggest concern of mine at this point: if the wife and family ultimately end up seeing this as a vacation, they will look at it as "the more the better!" That would be very very good for my continued participation. I think that my doing an arrive and drive would be key in this aspect, I will be able to spend time entertaining my wife and kids instead of messing with a car. Anyway, more feedback from racers regarding the family aspect of SM would be appreciated.

Steve D. Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
Once you get past the gag reflex, the jelly ain't bad!

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I store my kids in the trailer over the winter. Wait! What was the question?

Steve D.

Greg Bush Verified Driver
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Arrange a ride from the hotel to the track for the mornings.

That way the family can sleep in or play at the pool, and aren't at the track for the whole day. They don't have to rush and be there for a session (that adds stress to them) and you can focus on what you have to do.

With luck they'll show up right before you get in the car and miss out on the first couple of hours of sitting around.

Keith in WA Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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quote:
Originally posted by Pat Newton:
A bunch of us had no kids when we started racing SM, but then multiplied. [Big Grin]

[Eek!] Nobody told me about this! I knew I was in for tires, the occasional body panel, suspension, etc. but kids?!?! Car racing was never mentioned once in my 8th grade health class!

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Keith Novak
(Will work for tires)

Greg Bush Verified Driver
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Chicks dig race car drivers, its a fact [thumbsup]

Vick Verified Driver
Do they sell spec training wheels?

Region: NYR
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Year : 1991
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Chicks also dig miatas.......It's a two-fer!

Heck, even Barbie had a miata of sorts....
http://www.toymiata.com/picslg/pic168lg.jpg

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http://www.volko.com

soupy
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Gives a whole new meaning to "bump drafting" doesn't it keith?

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Charlie Campbell
Race Engineering
carbotech brakes

Brian Benthin Verified Driver
Professional ballast

Region: Northwest
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Year : 1990
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quote:
Originally posted by soupy:
Gives a whole new meaning to "bump drafting" doesn't it keith?

Caught my dogs doing that once. Had to turn the garden hose on them. [duck]

--------------------
Brian

Wreckerboy Verified Driver
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Region: WDC
Car #: SSM 53 "Lola"
Year : 1990
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quote:
Originally posted by Vick:
Does anyone know if Entropy Racing still does Miata rentals? I think I saw some at an EMRA race last year, but I'm not sure what they are doing this year.

I saw Charlie at an EMRA event this past weekend and he had a Miata with him, presumably being driven by a renter.

Entropy Racing

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Rob Myles
Hero To The Momentum Impaired

Mike Colangelo Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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WTF?!

Since when does a minivan get garage space over a race car? [Wink]

Gatoratty Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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Several of the SM drivers had their kids at the track this last weekend at Daytona with ages from 3 months to about 15 years old. Chris, Todd, George maybe you guys can help with this topic.

--------------------
Paul McLester

Greg Bush Verified Driver
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quote:
Originally posted by Mike Colangelo:
WTF?!

Since when does a minivan get garage space over a race car? [Wink]

Exactly. My wife drives a Mazdaspeed 3 and its never been in the garage.

Luckily the trailer can store both of our cars for the Winter.

When the kids are older, be prepared to get a second race car for your wife. Its a lot of fun if she is honestly interested.

We both raced before the baby and now she's taking some time off. She did run a few races when he was younger (she was in the car when he was 23 days old) but its just too much of a distraction and she couldn't focus on racing with the baby there.

I can't wait to get back out there with her, its a lot of fun.

Mark de Regt Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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I frequently have one of my kids at the race track with me.

Unfortunately, he usually beats me.

[rolling on floor laughin]

naparsei Verified Driver
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quote:
Originally posted by webby459:
Pat and Neal, thanks a bunch on the info on the family aspect. This is really the biggest concern of mine at this point: if the wife and family ultimately end up seeing this as a vacation, they will look at it as "the more the better!" That would be very very good for my continued participation. I think that my doing an arrive and drive would be key in this aspect, I will be able to spend time entertaining my wife and kids instead of messing with a car. Anyway, more feedback from racers regarding the family aspect of SM would be appreciated.

If you are doing arrive and drive, "amenities" might be an important part of the offering - for example, if the team has a nice RV and your wife and kids are allowed access (A/C, bathroom, shade), that would be something to consider. Most racetracks are not "fun" inherently, since they are in unattractive places most often.

LFP is beautiful, has a playground, etc. I would love for that be my home track.

Neal, you know Pueblo has a zoo, right? Kim took the kids there last summer during the Enduro weekend. They thought it was surprisingly good considering it was Pueblo...

wheel Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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MAM has a zoo, too. Some call it MiataVille on Friday and Saturday night.

nealspens Verified Driver
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quote:
Originally posted by naparsei:
quote:
Originally posted by webby459:
Pat and Neal, thanks a bunch on the info on the family aspect. This is really the biggest concern of mine at this point: if the wife and family ultimately end up seeing this as a vacation, they will look at it as "the more the better!" That would be very very good for my continued participation. I think that my doing an arrive and drive would be key in this aspect, I will be able to spend time entertaining my wife and kids instead of messing with a car. Anyway, more feedback from racers regarding the family aspect of SM would be appreciated.

If you are doing arrive and drive, "amenities" might be an important part of the offering - for example, if the team has a nice RV and your wife and kids are allowed access (A/C, bathroom, shade), that would be something to consider. Most racetracks are not "fun" inherently, since they are in unattractive places most often.

LFP is beautiful, has a playground, etc. I would love for that be my home track.

Neal, you know Pueblo has a zoo, right? Kim took the kids there last summer during the Enduro weekend. They thought it was surprisingly good considering it was Pueblo...

Yes we did know about the zoo in Pueblo and we've heard good things about it too. The last time the family came to Pueblo, they actually drove up to the Springs and went to the Cheyenne Mountain zoo, which has an interactive giraffe section that's spectacular. Now that we're running at PPIR again, I suspect the family will be much happier visiting the areas surrounding the Springs.

John Hammer Palazzolo Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
I'm not slow, I'm maximizing my track time!

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Year : '90
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My wife hadn't come to a race with me in 3 years. We ran the 24 Hours Of Lemons in SC and she came with our 2 year old son...I have to tell you, it was REALLY cool to have my boy come running up to me after I climbed from the car. It was certainly good family time.

I'll agree though; make sure you have friends/family to help out with the youngsters.

As for storing the car; I'm lucky enough to have a big garage (currently have 4 cars inside with room for another), but I'm keeping my eye open for a deal on a lift. Would be great to double stack the SM & the LeMons car!

--------------------
John "Hammer" Palazzolo

Automotive Event Facilitator
Performance Driving Instructor
JohnHammer.org
877.HEY.0005

   

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