2020 Season Preview

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With the recent activity on the site, more than a few of you have clued in on my new year’s resolution. In the spirit of keeping that resolution, and perhaps helping my sanity during the off-season, let’s keep this thing rolling and discuss the 2020 season, plans, goals, etc…

(It’s one post per week for the less observant.)

2020 944spec

I will continue in 944spec with NASA for the 2020 season while looking for avenues and opportunities into other series. The full Mid South region calendar will take us to Barber, NCM, NOLA, MIR and perhaps Hallet. My extended calendar will take me to Autobahn, Mid-Ohio and Road Atlanta as well. With a few undetermined events with the Porsche Club of America. A national run with NASA is probably off the table as the venue is a two day drive across the country in Utah. I will focus on securing the regional title a third year in a row and perhaps a few more track records. I can feel the intensity of the competition building. Should shake out to be a great battle.

NASA Mid South Region Schedule 2020

  • Summer in February Track Event
    Feb 22nd – 23rd, 2020
    At Memphis International Raceway
  • Bourbon Barrel Track Event – Mid South crossover hosted by the Great Lakes region
    Mar 28th – 29th, 2020
    At National Corvette Museum
  • Cardi Gras Track Event – Mid South crossover hosted by the NOLA region
    May 2nd – 3rd, 2020
    At NOLA Motorsports Park
  • Winter in July Track Event
    Jul 25th – 26th, 2020
    At Barber Motorsports Park
  • Final Lap + 4 Hour Trec Track Event – Mid South crossover hosted by the Great Lakes region
    Oct 23rd – 25th, 2020
    At National Corvette Museum
  • Hunka Hunka Burnin’ Rubber Track Event
    Nov 14th – 15th, 2020
    At Memphis International Raceway

That’s the regional schedule as of January 2020 and will comprise 12+ races at this point. The Mid South also runs driving schools during race weekends. Any novice can sign up at nasaproracing.com on the events page. And if you sign up for an event at Memphis International Raceway, more often than not your instructor will be one of the wheel to wheel racers you can watch race in the afternoon. It’s pretty cool considering we were all the novice in the classroom at some point.

Other Series

I’m ready to go faster and I’ve been eyeballing spec46 and Super Touring with NASA for over a year. Although I will still keep an eye on spec46, already seeing a few 944 and e30 drivers making the move, I’m not convinced the price/performance is there. Especially with the lack of manual transmission cars I’m seeing for sale.

Super Touring has a good following in some of the other regions I am interested in. Pushing me toward a Super Touring 4 or 5 build. Specifically a Mazda RX8. I’ve received some ‘interesting’ feedback on the choice and fortunately, the rotary engine doesn’t scare me off. Especially in race trim. It’s pretty exciting starting a development cycle in a new car from scratch. Something I haven’t done in a long time. Much more on this in the very near future.

A glimpse of my thought process for this direction is simple though.

Pro’s: Chassis and drivetrains are abundant and cheap. More so than any other rwd platform I was researching.

Con’s: Factory weight and power. Weight reduction will go a long way towards the power issue and from what I’ve noticed, these builds are doing very well in Time Trials.

Support

This year will entail a lot more building/engineering and since I’m a privateer that builds and maintains his own racecar(s), it’s time for a little expansion. Late winter, early spring I will knock down my current workspace; a converted barn, and build a proper workshop for all racecar activities. It will include a welding station, alignment rack, engine assembly room etc… I will open the shop up in the summer for racecar prep and other services as the tooling grows.

Drifting

Which brings me to my final point. There is a new drift car on the horizon at Driftopia. Seeing as I get bored and antsy during the quiet of the off season, it’s time to go drifting again. The local community is pretty active year round and should offer lots of opportunity. This is also an opportunity to do something new so I won’t build anotherĀ  s13, run of the mill drift special. This is going to be something decidedly unique. A Frankenstein car of sorts built from the carnage of my racing exploits. That’s all I’m saying for now, you will know it when you see it.

There are a lot of other topics I will discuss in coming features on the site. Be sure and stop by next week.

Chris Simmons By Chris Simmons

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About the Author:

Chris Simmons

Chris Simmons is a race car driver, instructor, business owner and all around gearhead. His passion for motorsport started in the drifting community and progressed into wheel to wheel racing of all kinds. When off track Chris can be found training and working on a myriad of projects. After a hiatus from writing, he is back to share his passion, knowledge and experience in regard to motorsports on and off the track.

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