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2006 NASA Se7ens Challenge

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  • 2006 NASA Se7ens Challenge

    Hi all,

    As Gert noted in his earlier posting today, a group of us have put together a track program for 2006 based on the NASA Se7ens Challenge series. The Se7ens Challenge was formed a few years ago by a group of enthusiasts in Northern California. It is an excellent forum to build driving skills, share knowledge and (for some of us) scratch a competitive itch, all in a social setting that emphasizes fun, safety and learning.

    Our goal is to involve as many sevenesque cars as possible in a combined Norcal and Socal program. I am posting a copy of the article which describes the program and invites you to join the fun. The program will give you the chance to have fun on the track whether you are novice, an experienced driver looking to take it up a level, a budding time trialler, or all-out racer. Please read the attachment and join in the fun!

    We have had a very positive response from those we have contacted so far. We might event lure some hard-core seveners from Texas.

    Cheers, and hope to see you at the track soon.
    Attached Files

  • #2
    I'm hoping that we can a good turnout of SoCal 7s for the NASA event/school @ Buttonwillow on April 8/9. BW is one of the best tracks in SC and the NASA school is said to be first rate. See ya there!!

    Comment


    • #3
      This is excellent!

      All of us who participated in the last Willow Springs event agreed that it was time to move to the next stage. We were planning to introduce timing equipment to kick up the competitive edge, but were a bit at loss exactly how to proceed.

      The Se7vens Challenge allows us to expand our width from the complete newbie to the full on racer, allowing anyone to stay in the group that he or she is comfortable with.

      I think that this will be a very nice racing addition to our blats and other activities.

      Thank you Michael for driving this. It will be a very interesting year for us.

      /Magnus F.
      Last edited by magnusfeuer; January 15, 2006, 12:19 PM.

      Comment


      • #4
        Brad, I am don't think there will be a real "race school" program at these events if that is what you mean. The NASA HPDE program at the track day event is limited to general track introduction, rules and regulations and mandatory feedback/discussion meetings after each track session (the group leader is on the track and observes misbehaving drivers).

        Also, mandatory driving with instructor as passenger in Group 1 and generally opportunity to drive with NASA instructors in all groups. Overall, I agree it is a very good program but not exactly like a commercial Race School.

        Make sure you pick up one of the NASA passes/log books and have it filled in to be allowed to the higher HPDE groups.

        Gert

        Originally posted by Roll a 7
        I'm hoping that we can a good turnout of SoCal 7s for the NASA event/school @ Buttonwillow on April 8/9. BW is one of the best tracks in SC and the NASA school is said to be first rate. See ya there!!

        Comment


        • #5
          The description offered by Jon Stokes sounded rather like a school with classrooms etc. I'm not expexting Skip Barber or Bondurant, but I'm under the impression that they do teach proper behavior/technique as one goes through their levels.

          Anyway, whatever it is, I'm in!!

          Comment


          • #6
            So, I have some questions r.e. the 7s Challenge:

            1. The rules state that only normally aspirated cars are allowed. Magnus?

            2. The Caterham roadsport cage is not legal. What about the Superlight cage that's used in the racing series in the UK and Euroland?
            Edited to add: I've found it's made from 1.25" tubing, scca specs state 1.375. Why is a cage that's used all over the place there not
            good enough here?

            3. Anybody interested in a bulk buy on battery cut off switches? I don't have one either.

            4. Anybody interested in a bulk buy on the drive shaft safety hoop? I don't have one either. Where do I get one?

            5. How much of this is necessary for the HPDE licensing?
            Last edited by moosetestbestanden; January 21, 2006, 08:37 AM.
            Chris
            ------------
            A day you don't go a hundred is a day wasted

            Comment


            • #7
              Chris,

              None of that is required for the HPDE, just for racing. Unless you already have a race license you will be in HPDE to begin with. For HPDE your car needs to pass a tech inspection (a checklist is on the NASA site), and the only thing new for 2006 that I can see is possibly needing a 5 point harness instead of just a 4 point harness. For my first HPDE last October the only thing that would have kept me from passing tech was exposed battery terminals, and duct tape was fine for that. You do need a full face helmet, but otherwise just jeans, long sleeve cotton shirt, and tennis shoes.

              Stan

              Comment


              • #8
                The April weekend's focus will be getting up to license level as I understand it, non?

                Would anybody out there (Michael, Woody) care to comment as to how this will occur and how much progress can reasonably be expected?
                Chris
                ------------
                A day you don't go a hundred is a day wasted

                Comment


                • #9
                  I am planning to replace my Zetec with a Duratec during the year. Right now, though, my garage is far too small for any kind of serious work, and I am looking into renting workshop space somewhere in the vicinity.

                  I also seem to remember a requirement of 3" seat belt width, which would disqualify the standard Caterham fou r pointer with its 2" lap belt. Is this requirment only for racing or does it go for HPDE as well? Michael?

                  /Magnus F.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I am planning to replace my Zetec with a Duratec during the year.
                    I just knew it. Once you've gone 'tec, you never go back. 2.0 or 2.3?

                    But, back on topic, I've only got 2" lap (and 'crutch') belts as well.
                    Last edited by moosetestbestanden; January 21, 2006, 11:11 AM.
                    Chris
                    ------------
                    A day you don't go a hundred is a day wasted

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I might be in on a bulk buy of that stuff. A scattershield/blanket ($175??) for our bellhousings may also be a requirement and a pretty cheap way to save your feet if the clutch/flywheel have a buzzsaw sort of failure.

                      Also, Autopower Industries in SD makes a lot of rollcages for racing and already knows the NASA specs very well. A bulk buy from them might also be in order. If there is some interest I'll run my car over there and try to chisel 'em.

                      RMSCI had a used superlight cage a few months back and sold it for $1500. A new one is likely to be more than $3000 and still won't meet the NASA spec.

                      A local solution seems to be our best choice...

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by soareyes
                        Chris,

                        None of that is required for the HPDE, just for racing. Unless you already have a race license you will be in HPDE to begin with. For HPDE your car needs to pass a tech inspection (a checklist is on the NASA site), and the only thing new for 2006 that I can see is possibly needing a 5 point harness instead of just a 4 point harness. For my first HPDE last October the only thing that would have kept me from passing tech was exposed battery terminals, and duct tape was fine for that. You do need a full face helmet, but otherwise just jeans, long sleeve cotton shirt, and tennis shoes.

                        Stan
                        The HPDE sevens seatbelt issue is not new for 2006. Its an ongoing question over whether or not factory-specified seatbelts in Caterhams and other sevens (be they 3-point, 4-point, 5-point, or whatever) will automatically pass HPDE tech. If not, the belts in our cars will have to comply with NASA's racing CC&Rs. Its been said that sevens have not been treated uniformly within NASA: sometimes the belts from the factory have been accepted, as they typically are with all street-legal cars, whereas at other times the factory belts have been treated as owner creations, thus subjecting them to the CC&Rs.

                        Via the Sevens Challenge forum, a week or so ago, I asked the 2006 Sevens Challenge coordinators to convince NASA to allow factory-spec belts in sevens. As yet I've not seen any response, so I don't know whether or not the issue is being addressed.

                        More broadly, the actual HPDE rules are not the "checklist" but rather are the detailed specifications in the CC&Rs. Typically a street-legal car in good mechanical condition automatically passes on the details, and the checklist thus works fine. But sevens can get hung up on a range of safety items, and thus shunted into the CC&Rs, to the extent that the tech inspector views something as being non-standard.

                        When I staged the Infineon Super Seven Festivals in 2003 and 2004 I worked with NASA in advance to make sure that all street-legal sevens that showed up in good mechanical condition would be allowed on the track for HPDE. Something similar needs to be made permanent for all NASA regions.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I can not imagine the belt spec to be a real problem. If you have a 4-point belt you should junk it anyway. Then for a 2" strap....a new 5-point or 6-point camlock from Racerwholesale with 3" webbing is maybe $130 and lasts for a few years. That should not really be an issue???? A single track weekend participation will set you back about $400 with fee, fuel and hotel.

                          As for the racing license on the first weekend with NASA, I don't know if that is practical. You may want to check with Michael or Pierre. I do know that Pierre is working on a special cage deal.

                          Gert

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Maybe to add to the previous post....
                            I am not going for the racing license anytime soon. Maybe I will miss out on a lot of exciting action but for now I am totally happy with the HPDE track sessions.

                            Racing just means another level of comittment in terms of car preparation and risk.

                            Gert

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by slomove
                              I can not imagine the belt spec to be a real problem. If you have a 4-point belt you should junk it anyway. Then for a 2" strap....a new 5-point or 6-point camlock from Racerwholesale with 3" webbing is maybe $130 and lasts for a few years. That should not really be an issue???? A single track weekend participation will set you back about $400 with fee, fuel and hotel.

                              As for the racing license on the first weekend with NASA, I don't know if that is practical. You may want to check with Michael or Pierre. I do know that Pierre is working on a special cage deal.

                              Gert
                              Gert,

                              You are partially correct. HPDE participants pursuing a competition license, as well as many who plan to do a lot of track days, have no problem with upgrading seatbelts.

                              But most new HPDE participants aren't in those categories. They want to use their everyday street cars, usually with 3-point belts. And that matches NASA's HPDE purpose, which is to provide the chance to try out everyday cars on race tracks under safe, supervised, non-competitive conditions.

                              Perhaps there's a bit of a "policy" question here as to the desired beginner friendliness of HPDE for sevens. Maybe we should just tell sevens owners to do HPDE in their family cars until they are committed enough to doing track days to install CC&R belts in their seven. Just a thought, I don't know.

                              On the racing license question, people should read the CC&Rs and compare their own prior experience with NASA's licensing requirements. A beginner, for example, would normally start in HPDE1 and progress through 2 and 3, into 4, and then test for the license. Its virtually certain that this can't be completed in a single weekend, though I suppose that there's an exception to everything. In contrast, however, a person who has completed a pro driving school might receive a provisional license far more quickly

                              Also note tht NASA just created a new Time Trial license, which may interest some.

                              Rich

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