United Sports Car Championship (USCC)

Discussion in 'Motorsports Chat & Race Preparation' started by Steve, Jun 6, 2013.

  1. Steve

    Steve Administrator
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    The merger of ALMS and the Grand-Am Rolex series into USCR is an ongoing topic with discussion characterized by ... well, lively debate would be a kind way to put it.

    There are two M/A threads wherein we've already discussed, to an extent, first the possibility and then the reality as known to date. For those who would like to catch up, I'll just link them here rather than trying to replicate.

    ALMS - Grand Am to Merge in 2014

    Grand Am / ALMS has a new name

    Those attempting to prepare for 2014 are getting frustrated. Apparent lack of agreement on the way forward has stalled announcements about pretty much everything other than the new name and teams have no idea what standards they'll need to comply with and prepare cars, etc, for.

    As far as I can tell, the center of debate is over how to make sure the DP cars will be able to compete for outright wins against the P2 cars. Ignoring for the moment the costs and practicalities, it comes down to either speeding up the DPs, slowing the P2s, or a bit of both. I think even the DP teams still stubbornly sticking to the "we shouldn't have to spend more money to make this work, slow down the P2s or just get rid of them" chant realize that if they don't speed up their DPs a bit the ALMS GT cars may be biting at their heels.

    Consider that a summary as things stand now (based on my completely armchair view) before you listen to the excellent audio interview linked below.

    Starworks Motorsport compete in the Rolex series with DPs (they took 3rd at Detroit last weekend) but they also have at least one P2 car. They had to withdraw from WEC competition for 2013 due to lack of full funding commitments but they were the WEC LMP2 champions last season so know the P2s very well. They took both car types to the Sebring test this year and ended up with a comparison the USCR heads are still trying to simulate.

    Starworks driver Ryan Dalziel discussed the very interesting test findings in a Midweek Motorsport interview and covers a bunch of other important aspects (tires, true costs of adding carbon brakes to the DPs, etc). The audio in this long interview (I'll guess it's half an hour?) is a bit messy, esp. early on, but you can still get a lot more than just the gist of it.

    http://audio.rpix.org.uk/grand-am/2013/2013_dalziel_int.mp3

    FWIW, these are only one man's opinions but he seems to know what he's talking about.
     
  2. ScottinBend

    ScottinBend Space Cowboy
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  3. minimark

    minimark Well-Known Member

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    Would seem that the answer would be both, slow the LMP cars a tick, and let the DP cars go a bit faster by adding some weight to LMP and allowing the DP cars to reduce weight.... I know that's an old formula to equalize cars but....it's an old formula because it works... Both could retain their identity that way, at least for the first season or two....:cool:
     
  4. Nathan

    Nathan Founder

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    Yeah but if slow the LMP cars some the GT cars will be all over them.
     
  5. minimark

    minimark Well-Known Member

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    I said a tick slower, besides, the more the merrier!!!:D
     
  6. Steve

    Steve Administrator
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    #6 Steve, Jun 7, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2013
    Regardless of the current argument focus, deep down they also know in the end they'll want, if they can, to establish the traditional multi-class sports car obvious class speed differentials. I think it's also true, even if none of them are saying it out loud, the USCR heads will do whatever it takes in the end to ensure the king of the classes will be DP. Ignoring P2 altogether, that means an obvious speed differential between DP and GT much like Rolex has today. If they slow down the fastest GTs -- I really hope they don't do that -- it will bunch up the GT classes.

    Personally, I wish they'd leave them all as they are for the first year, it would make for some fun races. Then again, I like that idea partly because it won't burn me up if the DPs lose. If the DPs have to win (and I'm sure they do) there are only a couple options that won't also mess with the GTs. I bet they'll go for a bit of both; faster DPs and slower P2s. If Dalziel is right it sounds like they can bridge half the gap from the DP side fairly easily/cheaply, leaving a narrower gap for the P2s to bridge, also fairly easily/cheaply, without making them non-ACO compliant.
     
  7. Jason Montague

    Jason Montague New Member
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    :cornut: Thanks Steve! If it wasn't for you and the others that post, I wouldn't have a clue as to what's going on in our kind of racing.:Thumbsup:

    Jason

    :devil: Of course as to me not having a clue, there are others who say.......................:lol::lol::lol:
     
  8. minimark

    minimark Well-Known Member

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    Fact is that weekend and week out how many LMP cars actually compete? Then look at last weeks Grand Am race in Detroit and at the end of the race you could have thrown a blanket over the top four DP finishers at the checkered flag, then came the GT's where the same blanket could have been tossed over the top six finishers.

    I have seen now both ALMS and Grand Am at VIR, loved watching both but Grand Am was hands down the most competitive and the best to watch.

    Oh and there was only three LMP cars even competing last year at VIR, two of which were from the same team. That my friends is not competition, I don't care how cool the cars are.

    My prediction; in the end this series will look a lot more like Grand Am than ALMS...good or bad.;)
     
  9. CHKMINI

    CHKMINI Club Coordinator
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    IMO, if it looks more like Grand-Am from a competitive perspective, that's a good thing:Thumbsup:
     
  10. Steve

    Steve Administrator
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    Class Specifications For 2014 United SportsCar Racing Debut Taking Shape (ALMS.com)
     
  11. Nathan

    Nathan Founder

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    So far this sounds good.
     
  12. Steve

    Steve Administrator
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    Broadcast rights announcement.

    IMSA and FOX Sports Announce Five-Year Multi-Media Rights Deal (alms.com)
     
  13. Crashton

    Crashton Club Coordinator

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    Having a TV deal bodes well for the series. I hope the series can thrive.
     
  14. Nathan

    Nathan Founder

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    While I think it is good there is a TV component I want to know more. What about the smaller support races, are they going to be covered or not.

    Who is in the broadcast team, will the folks now at Speed be absorbed into this new entity called Fox Sports.

    I'm sorry, as much a positive person as I am I'm not getting warm fuzzies from this.
     
  15. ScottinBend

    ScottinBend Space Cowboy
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    Me either.......not real happy with the percieved direction of Fox Sports. I think this was a slam dunk for Fox as they already had the NASCAR contract.
     
  16. Steve

    Steve Administrator
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    A couple good articles following the combined Grand-Am, ALMS race weekend at Road America.

    Road America rocks for Rolex, ALMS, but two big hurdles remain for ’14 (nbcsports.com)

    Dallara interested in P2, DP sports car chassis partnerships (racer.com)
     
  17. mrntd

    mrntd Well-Known Member
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    I would say the broadcast team would be the guys doing Rolex coverage now. They're good and know what their doing.

    I didn't figure the coverage would go to a network other than Fox just like Scott said.

    I want to know the schedule (Mid-Ohio?) and the classing. I think the P2 cars will go away after the first season. There aren't enough of them.
     
  18. Steve

    Steve Administrator
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    I expect this as well but for me it comes with a bit of a sense of dread.

    It's been worrying me because the announcers are one of the reasons I tend to not watch the Rolex races...I think. I can't even put my finger on exactly why they bother me, I just don't like it and can't get through an entire race without getting annoyed and switching away. Maybe it's not the announcers themselves but the overall style of the coverage, I seriously don't know, but whatever it is my expectation that USCR broadcast coverage will come off like Rolex coverage bugs me more than anything else I've read about this takeover.
     
  19. Nathan

    Nathan Founder

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    Wonder who will have Bob Varsha.
     
  20. Steve

    Steve Administrator
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    I completely understand all the frustration. It also looks like they may be planning to force the DP owners to do more than they should have to, esp. in the first year. On top of that, it's taking so long they might not be able to get their cars ready in time.

    I think they should go for a 50% (-ish) solution the first year and be happy with that, screw this "one chance to get it right" biz, then see how it plays out on the track and decide what other adjustments to make for year 2, if any. The most important thing I learned while helping design systems for the USAF was a version of the law of diminishing returns. The closer you get to a 100% solution, the more each additional % costs in one form or another. Stop all the simulation and CFD, publish a set of regs based on the compromises to this point and let the teams get on with it!

    USCR: Questions, Concerns Remain Over DP/P2 Integration (speedtv.com)
     

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