Letters: Changes to Solo Nationals

You can submit a letter to the Solo Events Board here: https://www.crbscca.com/?page=submitLetter

If you’ve sent a letter concerning the changes to Nationals to the SEB or somewhere else within the SCCA, send us a copy at submission@soloactuallymatters.com.

To: Solo Events Board
From: Thomas Thompson
Letter ID Number: #28298
Title: Changes to Solo Nationals
Class: EO
Request: : I am writing to voice my concerns about the proposed changes to Solo Nationals. The changes to the run day spacing are of primary concern. Obviously, there will be people unable to attend because of the extra day required to come to Nationals. However, there is more impact than simply forcing competitors to stay an extra day, and any benefit is lost on me.

Having drivers stay an extra day places additional burden on paddock space, waste management, area hotels, practice course times, etc. The middle day won’t be filled with fun while watching other people race. It will be consumed with competition, last minute car changes, and time on the practice course. Competitive advantage will shift towards those who can afford or simply can reserve the most practice time on the between day. The mental challenge to stay focused on competition will increase by multiples.

The end of the year format will differ from National Tour events, which will still be back to back days. In higher prep classes, car owners who have chosen reliability over performance will be at a further disadvantage as the builds closer to the edge with have a full day to repair any issues.

The existing problems with Nationals will not be fixed with this change.

Additionally, I believe moving awards to the site will only add issues on days with the extreme weather we have come to expect at Lincoln Air Park.

To: Solo Events Board
From: Chris Pruett
Letter ID Number: #28277
Title: Longer Term Direction of the Solo Nationals?
Class: EO
Request: Not a fan of the Solo Nationals change in run days for 2020, but (baring unforeseen circumstances) I will attend and see how it plays out.
That said, curious about the longer term direction/format of the Solo Nationals. To me, it seems the Solo Nationals is moving from an event focused on competition to one focused on lifestyle. By way of comparison, less “RunOffs” more “Gridlife”…
I would just like some transparency from the BOD/SEB/etc on the direction of Nationals. Each year we move closer to a “Solo Festival” vs the “Solo Nationals”. As much as I enjoy the social aspect of the event, I really go for the competition.

To: Solo Events Board
From: Ken Brewer
Letter ID Number: #28296
Class: EO
Request: I am writing in against this change. As someone with limited PTO from work and parental duties at home requiring extra time off/time away to run Solo Nationals is not a palatable change. I am also excited about none of the proposed “benefits” that were touted with this announcement. People that want to party all week can still party all week under the old schedule. There are plenty of times to walk course under the old schedule. And selfishly I run a street class car so I don’t need (nor want) time to tinker between days – I get that others do not, so mess with their schedule and not mine.

And if you still ramrod this change through, and I still am able to work it out to attend, do NOT count my attendance as a vote in favor of keeping this change going forward.

To: Mike King
From: Matt Luckow
Letter ID Number:

Thank you for the monumental task you have taken on. I’m sure you are very busy, so I’ll try and keep this short.

I’m very disappointed in the move to split run days for Nationals. This imposes unnecessary additional hardship upon your membership. The SCCA is removing scheduling flexibility and forcing competitors to spend an extra day in Lincoln. A non-trivial subset of the community has children starting school that week. Some have limited time off and budget their days tightly. Some have limited budgets and do not want to be forced to pay for an extra hotel night. Some have all of the above.

There is zero or negative benefit to most competitors as well. The forced extra 24 hours are for… what? I already have plenty of time to see both courses in action, plenty of time to walk courses, plenty of time to get my car ready, and plenty of time to complete the 6 minutes of actual competition that is the reason I make the trip. I also have a minimum of three nights to be social and take in all the experience has to offer. Most importantly, we all currently have the option to extend the trip if we want.

On a personal level, I already cut my trip to Lincoln as razor thin as possible, quite literally trying to shave hours off. My wife returns to teaching, which means my son is back in daycare. So I must cut the trip thin to minimize the special arrangements we have to make so that I can participate. I have it down to 3 nights / 3.5 days away from home, including the 24 hours of driving to make the trip. The additional hardship of this move is a HUGE ask not just for me, but for my support system as well. I suspect I am far from alone.

FWIW, if I were single, or retired, or child-less I probably wouldn’t like it, but not care enough to write in opposing. As it looks now, this move will impact me negatively for about the next 14 years.

Please keep things simple / keep things fun for as much of your membership as possible.

20+ year member.

To: Solo Events Board
From: Sam Strano
Letter ID Number: #28255
Class: EO
Position: Against

To: Solo Events Board
From: Eric Yee
Letter ID Number: #28291
Title: Please don’t split run days for Solo Nationals
Class: EO
Request: Please reconsider splitting the run days of Solo Nationals. All adding an off day between run groups does is add to our travel expenses and keep us away from home an additional day. I understand some people like staying all week, but for many others having to stay that extra time is a negative.

To: Solo Events Board
From: Brandon Dryer
Letter ID Number: #28253
Title: Response to nationals 2020 run day change
Class: EO
Request: I am writing to oppose the decision to change run days to Tuesday/Thursday and Wednesday/Friday. This decision bars a number of my fellow region members from attending due to vacation allowances. I understand the reasoning behind wanting to make this change but consider those who you are barring from participating in this event in exchange for easier class balancing. Please consider there are members who don’t just bail when they’re done because they dont want to hang around but rely on the old event run schedule to participate due to vacation restrictions.

To: Solo Events Board
From: Tom DeYoung
Letter ID Number: #28323
Title: 2020 Solo Nationals Split Format
Class: EO
Request: I am writing to express why I am against the split run days (Tue-Thur, Wed-Fri) format that is currently planned to be used at the 2020 Solo Nationals.

I have numerous reasons but I will skip the ones that are specific to my personal circumstances and stick to issues that will negatively impact the most participants negatively.

1) Event flow. Anyone who’s spent the full week at nationals knows what a zoo paddock becomes Wednesday afternoon. This is when nearly all nationals participants are on site at the same time. Typically this is short lived as you get a couple hundred drivers that pack up and leave late Wednesday and a few hundred more gone by noon on Thursday. The split format would extend this crowded period by at least 24 hours. This affects everybody’s experience at Nationals (long lines for vendors & portajohns, crowded course walks).

2) Competition. Solo Nationals is the Champion Event following a season of National Tours. It’s format has traditionally been the same two day format as Tour events, and by adding a day in the middle, you are changing the competitive dynamics. Part of the challenge of tours is driving well two days in a row. By removing that element, you are punishing those that have attended National Tours all season and trained themselves to perform under those conditions. It’d be like allowing golf carts at the PGA Championship, it removes one of the key challenges that separates the field.

I hope you take these two key issues into consideration when discussing the event format in the months. Thank you

To: Solo Events Board
From: Steve Eberline
Letter ID Number: #28317
Title: 2020 Solo Nationals Split Format
Class: EO
Request: It has come to my attention that an announcement was made at the convention that the run format from Solo Nationals will change from back-to-back run days to a day off between run days. I find this announcement to be confusing at best as in the years I have participated at Nationals (all but 2 since 2001) I have never heard such a suggestion from a competitor nor have I seen such a question posed in member surveys. From the announcement it appears this was done to allow more time for participants to socialize.

While I am by no means at the pointy end of the field, the reason my wife and I attend Nationals, Pro Solos, and Tours is for the competition. The purpose of Nats has always been to find the best drivers on 2 courses over 2 days. It has not been to attend a party and maybe have a little competition on the side. If you want that you go to things like Gridlife, HRA, or open track days. This decision, along with the focus in recent years on parties, group tents, and classes for everyone with no limits on attendance is just another example on the continued dilution and deterioration of our National Championships.

As a member I ask that you reconsider this decision and remember the true purpose of Solo Nationals. It is a competition to determine the best drivers by class. We do, I will admit, need to get a handle on attendance. This can be done by returning to a qualifier system through Tour participation and a return to Divisional series. Decisions, such as this, that for participants to spend more time and money to compete should not even be considered.

Thank you for allowing me to provide input. I hope you will revisit this decision.