The 2017 Tire Rack SCCA Solo National Championships will be held at Lincoln Airpark in Lincoln, Neb. on Sept. 5-8, preceded by the ProSolo finale. For autocross’ biggest event, Mazda Motorsports is doing its best to show appreciation to its competitors and facilitate great competition.
Mazda Motorsports will again host a Tuesday night dinner for Mazda autocrossers, welcoming them not only with food and drink, but door prizes as well. The day before, though, Mazda Motorsports will host a meal with SCCA with a greater purpose – growing the sport among women.
“We are partnering with SCCA to host a women’s initiative lunch from noon to 2:00 pm on Monday at the Airpark,” explains David Cook, manager of business development for Mazda Motorsports. “Largely, the 100-plus people that we expect are going to be people that are in the industry and from different SCCA regions. SCCA is putting together a panel of women that may include Velma Boreen, Linda Duncan and Tara Johns, along with other influencers, to answer questions. The purpose is to help grow the sport, and to learn and gain feedback from those in autocross in an effort to improve and build on what has been accomplished so far.”
To help get competitors to the Solo National Championships and other national-level events such as ProSolos, Match Tour and Championship Tour competitions, Mazda started paying deeper contingencies. That will continue, and go further.
“We’re paying deeper than we ever have. We don’t want to just reward the pointy end; we want to spread the awards and the gratitude to more Mazda racers. We’re paying down to fifth place for Solo Nationals and also for ProSolo Tour events, Solo Match and Championship Tour events,” says Cook. “Simply, we received the suggestion from Anthony Porta (BSP driver in a MAZDASPEED Miata) at Solo Nationals last year. Then, Ron Bauer and Tamra Hunt, two more National Champions, shared their great insight and we made the right changes.”
For those not finishing in the top five, there is still an opportunity to earn some cash to offset expenses. The Solo Competitor Bonus is for those who haven’t finished in the top five or otherwise earned contingency. All those Mazda drivers will be competing against each other on index, with the top 10 taking home $500 each, Cook says.
To make the days on the environment a bit more comfortable, Cook says that Mazda Motorsports will be providing a tent with some amenities where Mazda competitors and their families can hang out. (He even said if non-Mazda competitors wanted to join, they are welcome.) While the type of amenities are still being worked out, Cook says they may include snacks, a loudspeaker broadcast of the announcers, couches, chairs, tables and more. There is even going to be a cornhole tournament starting at 3:00 pm on Monday (after the women’s initiative). The winning Mazda team will earn a total of $500 via a Mazda parts credit or a check, if preferred. Cook hopes these amenities and games will create a gathering point that encourages Mazda drivers to paddock together (Row 7 of the paddock), and to continue to form tight bonds that the Solo community is well-known for. Cook credited Julian Garfield, the Solo Advancement Scholarship winner racing in Spec Miata, as well as in autocross, for helping to put this plan together. “We’re fans of bringing the Mazda community together and thankful to our our Mazda competitors for their support and help making it all happen. Julian Garfield deserves the credit with this offering,” says Cook.
If you want to be part of the fun and park in the designated Mazda area, email Julian Garfield at email@example.com by Tuesday, August 8 and let us know how much space you need.
Look for updates on Mazda Motorsports’ participation at the Solo National Championships as the event gets closer.
In Tire Rack SCCA ProSolo National Series, Match Tour and Solo Championship Tour events, Mazda offers competitors up to $275 for a win, $175 for second, $150 for third, $125 for fourth and $100 for a fifth-place finish via its contingency program. Challenge winners in the ProSolo series reap rewards courtesy of Mazda with $350 for a win and $250 for a second-place finish.
Mazda’s contingency payouts get even more generous for season-ending events, with SCCA ProSolo points winners earning up to $850 for first, $550 for second, and $300 for third; SCCA Solo National Championship competitors can claim up to $850 for a win, $550 for second, $300 for third, $200 for fourth and $125 for fifth. Solo Triad winners receive a $600 bonus through Mazda.
Full details on Mazda’s contingency program and registration can be found at mazdamotorsports.com.