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Old 08-12-2010, 04:59 PM   #1
Potomac-Greg
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Default Spec Racer Ford

Discuss.
.
.
.

Quality of racing. Driving experience, cost of racing, etc.

Based on a couple weeks of research, it seems to be at or near the cost of Spec Miata racing at entry point, and cheaper over time, and cheaper to be competitive. Being a 1,600 lb. giant go cart, everything gets easier (trailer, storage, brake pads, tires). Safe, not so fast, but not Formula V slow. Downside is that you can't gain much with good tinkering, and parts are all purchased from God (SCCA).
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Old 08-12-2010, 05:06 PM   #2
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SRF rocks!

Spec racing. Sealed motors. simple to fix. cheap to run. inital cost is about what, $15-17K for a car and some spares, jack etc. Unless you destroy the car frame (which is pretty hard to do) you will get your money back as well.

The only think I found awkward was getting into the car without crushing the fiberglass bodywork, but that gets easier with practice.
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Old 08-12-2010, 05:47 PM   #3
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I looked close at both Spec Miata and SRF before choosing SM. But I still consider SRF attractive, and something I might want to try someday.

I chose SM because its a much bigger class in my area, and thus there were more used cars to choose from, and more people to get info from. Also, SM can run in NASA as well as SCCA, and I believe SRF is SCCA only.

Now that I'm fully entrenched in SM, I've learned that it is not as "spec" as it seems, and the equivalency forumula for the 3 different models always gives one model an unfair advantage. I'm currently locked in a championship battle against a car that's equal to mine in overall lap times, but superior in all the passing zones. So "equal" is not as equal as it seems. This frustrating scenario wouldn't happen in SRF.

In either SM or SRF, be prepared to enjoy some good, close, hard racing.
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Old 08-12-2010, 06:05 PM   #4
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IMHO by far the most important thing you need to know are the field sizes in SM and SRF in your area. You can usually find the race results online for your area. I'd look at the car counts. In my area there are 3-5 SM's to every SRF. Both classes are slow, safe, and very fun to drive provided you have plenty of people to race with. SRF numbers have declined significantly in my area. SM is holding its own despite the economy.
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Old 08-12-2010, 06:14 PM   #5
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There are a few on here with SRF's. We've spoken briefly but also

Barfly (25th Anniversary SRF challenge race champion)
Prof Helmut Tester has one I think
I think Sunday Driver has been in one.
AnalogMike did at least on rental in one.
A few others that I miss.

Can't remember what exactly I typed but the reasons I went with SRF instead of SM were

1. It's a real racecar. I like the light purpose built things about it.
2. It's a real Spec class. As dp35 said there is constant tinkering/balancing in SM. I didn't like that.
3. Most races have a CSR (customer service rep) who takes care of the cars and will have pretty much every spare your car could ever need. I've seen cars have everything ripped off the front, down to the steering rack running less than 24 hours later for the next race. In the last 3 years I can think of only 2 or 3 chassis that were destroyed. In the last 3 races I was at I can think of at least 3 SM chassis destroyed. The car is a tank.
4. There's enough to 'go through' after a weekend to satisfy the tinkering aspect.
5. SCCA Pro has series for it now. Incredibly cool weekends so far and should be better each year.
6. Can run in Enduros everywhere (including NASA) here on the east coast. A few show up to the regular NASA events at VIR.
7. Most consistently subscribed class in the US at both the reigonal and National level. Every region has good numbers.
8. Quality of Racing? The class has more national champions in it than probably any other. A number of guys have gone on to win in other classes, Formula Mazda, DSR, FSCCA etc. and have returned back to the class as it has the most intense racing on a level field. A number of seriously top drivers have gone through SRF (same with SM). I know a bunch of Koni guys (the fast ones and the gentlemen) who have run them. My car used to be in the BGB stable and Tecce, Craig Stanton, Johnathan Miller have all run the car. Hopwood and Burrows, Dorsey Schroeder.
9. Quality of people. As good as any group in club racing. There are the occasional buttheads but every class with more than zero people has those. The good guys heavily outweigh the few if any buttheads.


Wear Items. For the most part pretty cheap. Tires are a bit more expensive than SM. More expensive to purchase and can't be run as long. Rain Tires even moreso.
Brakes last forever. Same with rotors.
Wheel Bearings are a wear item. The suspesnion is from a Renault Alliance so it's not really up to long term hammering from the sticky tires.
Engines last forever. Sealed from the builder. 4500 bucks and you have the same as everyone else.

As for numbers. They are strong in the east.

Here is the participation numbers from National events so far this year.

http://www.scca.com/documents/Club_E...ation-JULY.pdf

SRF is in second for one reason.

1. The pro series. I haven't run any National races this year and only run the Pro Series. That's 8 less entries just from me and 4 or so from a bunch of others i can think of.
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Old 08-12-2010, 06:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prg View Post
IMHO by far the most important thing you need to know are the field sizes in SM and SRF in your area. You can usually find the race results online for your area. I'd look at the car counts. In my area there are 3-5 SM's to every SRF. Both classes are slow, safe, and very fun to drive provided you have plenty of people to race with. SRF numbers have declined significantly in my area. SM is holding its own despite the economy.
SRF numbers look strong in the Mid-Atlantic. 12 to 16 entrants. Not as full as SM, but pretty solid.
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Old 08-12-2010, 07:00 PM   #7
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Try one out.. You can rent cars from Hagerman ( http://www.hrace.com/srf.html ) based in MD. I recall seeing their truck at the SCCA school at SP a few years back. They are also pretty strong in the NE (think Watkins Glen and New Hampsire).

To me, like Joe said, its a purpose built race car.. not a converted street car. And its open cockpit!
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Old 08-12-2010, 07:12 PM   #8
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SRF Is an absolute blast. Looks like a mini canam car. Definately a momentum car so you really need to watch your line. Amazing how much faster an experienced driver can be. Racing is almost as intense but much safer than open wheel. A Miata will feel like a SUV after driving a SRF. I did a 4 day driving school culminating in a real race at Hallett a few years back. The instructers were great and we got up to speed fast. Lots of arrive and drive programs if you want to test the waters before you dive in.
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Old 08-12-2010, 11:18 PM   #9
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I run SM but have also considered SRF as well. Same main reason that SM is a much bigger field. SRF cost of racing is lower in my book because of how little "spec" SM actually is. If SM ever went to a sealed motor, it would be better than SRF hands down...but it won't. If the field is good in your area I can't say anything bad against SRF. Biggest piece of advice is don't use the brakes. They only slow you down. hahaha
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Old 08-12-2010, 11:40 PM   #10
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I ran SRF for three years, loved every minute of it, never regretted the choice of class.

I have tried, and tried, and tried to warn people considering SM over SRF of the below, but it falls on deaf ears. They jump into SM for either the lower initial cost of entry, or larger fields, etc, but often wind up sadder but wiser.

"Now that I'm fully entrenched in SM, I've learned that it is not as "spec" as it seems, and the equivalency forumula for the 3 different models always gives one model an unfair advantage. I'm currently locked in a championship battle against a car that's equal to mine in overall lap times, but superior in all the passing zones. So "equal" is not as equal as it seems. This frustrating scenario wouldn't happen in SRF."
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Old 08-12-2010, 11:56 PM   #11
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I am a HUGE fan of SRF's, and love racing them.









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Old 08-13-2010, 12:16 AM   #12
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Can you increase the bar around the driver to miss the driver's head in case of a "flyover" or is that against the rules? I'm thinking I would want higher side bars than the ones I see in (Joe's) pictures. I want the car going over me to miss my head if at all possible....
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Old 08-13-2010, 07:04 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary R. View Post
Can you increase the bar around the driver to miss the driver's head in case of a "flyover" or is that against the rules? I'm thinking I would want higher side bars than the ones I see in (Joe's) pictures. I want the car going over me to miss my head if at all possible....
How tall are you, and what's your inseam?
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Old 08-13-2010, 07:37 AM   #14
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that's one of the things I thought about when I looked at SRF - didn't love the open cockpit. does anyone have any data on the safety of SRF versus sedan?
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Old 08-13-2010, 08:56 AM   #15
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Quote:
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that's one of the things I thought about when I looked at SRF - didn't love the open cockpit. does anyone have any data on the safety of SRF versus sedan?
There has never been a fatality in an SRF. They are tanks.
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Old 08-13-2010, 08:56 AM
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