A bit more on Touring Cars

There are two pig reasons I’m a fan of Touring Cars over NASCAR.

One is the road courses. Ovals are generally all about the POWERRRR and a little about handling. Road courses are all about the handling and help level the playing field a lot.

Two is the cars, and there are a few benefits there. Think, if you will, to the effort involved in getting a car together to run NASCAR. You essentially have to build your own damn car from the ground up, or buy one from someone else who did. Touring, though, you get a street car, modify it to follow safety regulations, and run with it. This lowers the expense a whole hell of a lot (which isn’t to say it’s cheap). It also means you don’t have 43 carbon copied cars out on the track. The video I linked goes over that. Some folks started importing super powerful American muscle cars, and people started racing Minis which were slower in the straights, but a hell of a lot faster in the corners. Much more interesting competition and strategy.

The British Touring Car Championship has run with a rule since the 1990: no engines over 2 litres allowed. This does limit the range of competition, but that followed the 80s where the Ford Sierra Cosworth dominated the hell out of everything else out there. Still, that rule has brought the competition closer together without turning it all into a bunch of cookie cutter cars. Not that an American equivalent would need to follow the same rules.

There are already some Touring Car series going on in the US, but they get zero media attention. And that’s a damn shame. A nationally televised series could have a pretty big and very positive impact on the car industry. Produce small, nimble handling two litre cars with great performance, sell racing editions to amateur racers, and a sport that shows off real cars? How could that be bad?

edit- In fact, I think that should be a requirement of the bailout funds. Five billion just to get it started, each of the big three required to participate to get bailout funds, etc. Brilliant.