As time trials — often referred to as time attack in some circles — is a motorsport format growing with increasing momentum in recent years, it’s only natural that Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) expand their own take on it. The accessibility, variety of vehicles, relatively smaller probability of touching another car, and the familial atmosphere are only some of the appealing aspects of the format. Now, with the success of the Tire Rack SCCA Time Trials Nationals at NCM Motorsports Park, SCCA has announced a 2019 launch of the Tire Rack SCCA Time Trials National Tour.
Next year, the Time Trials National Tour will visit at least eight of the United State’s greatest tracks. Thus far, the decided sites are: Pittsburgh International Race Complex, High Plains Raceway, Carolina Motorsports Park, Portland International Raceway, GingerMan Raceway, Heartland Motorsports Park, Thunderhill Raceway, Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park, and of course the TT Nats at NCM Motorpsorts Park. With two venues still undecided, two coasts covered, and a variety of course configurations and shapes, there’s plenty to address the burgeoning interest in time trials.
Jon Krolewicz, the SCCA Time Trials program manager, has planned this nationwide tour to capitalize on the energy and buzz from the NCM event, and spread the enthusiasm to all four corners of the United States. “By expanding across the country with the series and with the support of Tire Rack, we can bring a best-of-motorsports experience to a much larger audience while also providing SCCA Regions resources to help them grow their own Time Trials and Track Events,” Krolewicz elaborates.
Time Trials National events will not be a points series, but one-off events based on the Tire Rack Solo Championship Tour model, with collaboration between host Regions and National staff leading up to the 2019 Time Trial Nationals, which will be held once again at NCM Motorsports Park.
For drivers looking to better themselves on the track, in a sanctioned environment, there are few avenues more appealing — or easier to enter. Drivers competing in any of the events on the tour will need to have a Time Trials license, which can either be earned from moving up through the Track Event process, or proving experience from other series or sanctioning bodies.
The rules are kept deliberately loose to accommodate people who don’t have a track-oriented car; rather every young hot-shoe with a modified Civic is encouraged to show just what they’re capable of. Drivers of comparable experience will run together, regardless of their vehicle — but times will be classed along with cars of a similar potential. Civic or Corvette, drivers will test their abilities and will leave the circuit with their adrenaline pumping, eager to ask one question:
“What was your best time?”
Since so many young racers measure their own pace and ability with those five simple words, the hierarchy of speed is established, and with some luck, a new culture of grassroots can grow from this inclusive new category.