ChampCar Frequently Asked Question
What’s this all about?
It's all about everyday cars.
It's all about real racing.
It's all about tearing down those high-dollar roadblocks that, in the past, have restricted people with a passion for cars and racing from getting fully engaged and involved in motorsports.
It's about enjoyment, friends, and bringing road racing back to where it was fifty years ago – when racing was fun, affordable for the "average Joe," and nobody cared whether you had Snap-On tools or a mix-match of hand-me-downs in your toolbox.
If you're interested in participating in ChampCar, it's about scouring the want ads looking for the perfect low-budget car that you think you can be competitive with and what you hope will last for up to 24 hours. That takes effort… that requires some planning… which means your knuckles will get scraped up a little.
ChampCar is all about racing on North America's finest road courses and race tracks… tracks that you never dreamed you'd have the opportunity to drive on. It's about being there… sharing, competing, laughing, cursing (not around the kids!), making things work under pressure – but, most of all, it's about the pursuit of seeing the checkered flag and hope of victory. More than anything, it's about meeting a bunch of people who are just as crazy, just as passionate, and just as caffeine-loaded as you are. These are your kind of people… it's family… old home week in the neighborhood. How cool is that?
Do I have to be a licensed race driver to enter?
No… but you do have to have a valid State or international driver's license… and you'll have to have a ChampCar Endurance Series membership. If this is your first time in a wheel-to-wheel road race, we request that you attend the ChampCar Novice Class (a brief, casual, off–track, classroom session held at your first event). It's a one-time deal, and it ensures that everyone on the track knows the basics of safety, the rules of the road, and the pit rules.
What tracks is the ChampCar Endurance Series running at?
Oh… probably no track you've ever heard about… Indy, Daytona, Mosport, Sebring, Laguna Seca, Circuit of the Americas, Road America, VIR, Sears Point-Sonoma, Mid-Ohio, Road Atlanta, Watkins Glen… perhaps you've heard of one of these? There are far too many to list here. Just check the website. Some tracks are special event venues so we won't race at them every year.
Okay, how do I enter, and how do I make sure I get accepted?
Hey, slow down there Parnelli! Entry is easy – go to our website and click to enter a race. The ChampCar Endurance Series must receive all entries before the pre-race driver's meeting. Entries are first-come-first-served, and we sell out sometimes, so keep that in mind while you're making your plans.
What else do I need?
Every competition car in our series will need basic safety equipment – roll cage, racing seat, seat belt harness, fire suppression system — and you'll need the required driver's safety equipment – helmet, driving suit, HANS device, gloves, etc. All of the required items are listed in the ChampCar Endurance Series Rules which are downloadable from the ChampCar website. Also, the ChampCar Endurance Series website has links to some great deals on excellent gear and equipment from our series sponsors. Check these out first before you go and spend a wad on something way overpriced. Here are a few words of advice to all: Got a $50 head? Then get a $50 helmet. Understood? (Don't scrimp on getting good gear!)
Is there prize money for the winners, or are we running for some stupid trophy?
Hey! That stupid trophy will be around long after you've spent the $100 prize money- so don't bash it! Yes, ChampCar awards prize money – typically over $3,000 per event – but it's all in credits in future racing. We're not professional racers. We're just a bunch of racers that get together to enjoy motorsports. ChampCar will also award other trophies and contingency prizes that we may arrange through sponsors and advertisers.
I'm serious about this, but how do I get started?
First, you download the rules found at champcar.org and read them. Next, you need to find like-minded individuals who will commit to working with you to make your dream a reality. Once you know the rules and have a few guys/gals on board, you next need to find your car. To explore your car possibilities, read section 2.2 (Vehicle Eligibility), section 4 (Vehicle Value) as well as Appendix B (Market Performance Value Index) of the rules. We like to explain your car-building process much like that of playing Gran Tourismo or Forza in that you can do any upgrade you want up to a point limit. You can do any combination of things to your car using the three sections mentioned above as your guide, as long as you do not exceed 500 points. As an example: 1995 Car A. Vehicle value is 450 points. That allows you to put 50 points of performance parts into the car. You can feel adventurous and choose a 1973 Car B. Vehicle value is 75 points. Now you have 425 points to play with. But remember, that just because you chose a car that you can spend a lot of performance points on does not mean that you can build a winner.
Okay, so you have a team and a car.
You need to turn your everyday street car into a real race car. Section 3 of the rulebook clearly outlines all safety information. Read, reread and reread this section, as we are not compromising when it comes to driver safety. Finally, all drivers need to become ChampCar Endurance Series members by signing up to our website. You've got a team, a car, and you're ready to see what you're capable of behind the wheel!
Can I be involved even without a car?
Absolutely! We always have teams looking for crew members as well as drivers. To join yourself in a team, you can use our forum thread 'Putting People Together', which can be found at forum.champcar.org, and use our Facebook page for advertising yourself. We at ChampCar are also always looking for Pit Marshals to keep our events safe and ensure a good race weekend for our teams. To volunteer, go to our website and click the link that says Be a Volunteer.