Posted on: July 1, 2003

Autocross Guidelines and Rules

TE/AE encourages participation in the Club’s Autocross events for a fun exhibition of our car’s sporting character. Autocross is a “grassroots” level motor sport using a mini road course outlined by cones (sometimes called pylons) on a parking lot. One car at a time competes against the clock – and thus the other competitors. The Club does cheer your support since.

  • Our cars are more fun to DRIVE than to just look at.
  • Autocross competition is a long-standing tradition within TE/AE.
  • You can get an adrenaline surge while exploring your car’s performance envelope in a safe & controlled environment.
  • You can compare your driving skills against your peers in “like” vehicles; or even share the same car (multiple drivers O.K. since only one car on the course at a time).
  • Show off your car’s acceleration, cornering and braking prowess.
  • Spectators get to see some burning rubber / power oversteer (by the Tigers) without the cops being bothered, and frequently see the Alpines record even quicker times.

The general philosophy used in the development of these guidelines was to keep it simple and to differentiate classes by those things that make the most difference in autocross performance. These were determined to be tires (compound and width), posi-traction and engine, in that order. We do not differentiate a car’s autocross class by upgrades in suspension, transmission type, rearend ratios, wheel diameter, etc.

General Rules
The general TE/AE approach to Autocross is based on the SCCA’s Solo 2 rules. If you are not familiar with autocrossing, a visit to the www.autox4u.com web site could be informative and interesting. This example site includes specific “novice” explanations, definitions, and details.

Autocross is a driver (only) sport. Passengers are only permitted for “practice & training” runs – if they are included at a specific event. Final safety approval, rules definitions, and any / all other event decisions are by the Autocross Event sanctioning organization with concurrence of the TE/AE Autocross chairperson.

There are always “seasoned” competitors on hand to assist or instruct – just don’t beat them too early in the day.

Requirements
The first rule of Autocross is to BE SAFE. A little common sense goes a long way, and the following will help achieve the SAFE and fun event that everyone wants.

  • Helmets must be worn by all competitors. Helmets must have a Snell 90 or newer label attached. D.O.T. approved helmets will not be accepted. Loaner helmets are normally available if you don’t have your own.
  • Seat belts are required.
  • Safety (“Tech”) Inspection. Your car must pass a brief event safety inspection. At a minimum, the checks will include: properly functioning brakes, steering, secure battery, throttle return spring, removal of all loose items, no trim rings or nave plates, no major fluid leaks, tight suspension and wheel bearings.
  • Tire pressure – check with the tech inspector or a veteran driver about proper inflation pressures for Autocross.

Class Definitions
There are two classes for Tigers and two classes for Alpines: Stock and Street Prepared. There is one Modified class for Alpines and Tigers, combined. Other classes may be added for other Rootes vehicles. Classification will be as follows:

Stock – To be considered Stock, a car must meet ALL of the Stock criteria.

  • Engine – Must be a small block Ford engine for Tigers of no more than 302 cubic inches. Alpines must have a Rootes engine of no more than 1725cc.
  • Differential – Must have an open differential.
  • Tires – Must have regular street tires.
  • Wheels – Must have wheels no wider than 5.5″ for Tiger and Alpine roadsters, others according to original equipment.

Street Prepared – A car will be considered Street Prepared if it has ANY of the following attributes:

  • Engine – Any non-stock Ford small block engine (see Stock description above) for Tigers. For Alpines, any non-stock (see Stock description above) Rootes engine.
  • Differential – Any limited slip / posi-traction differential.
  • Tires – Any tires other than regular street tires.
  • Wheels – A wheel width of greater than 5.5″ and no wider than 7″ for Tiger and Alpine roadsters, others according to original equipment.

Modified – A car will be considered Modified if it has ANY of the following attributes:

  • Engine – Any non-Ford small block engine for Tigers. For Alpines, any non-Rootes engine.
  • Tires – D.O.T. approved “Competition” tires or race tires.
  • Wheels – A wheel width of greater than 7″.
  • Licensed – Car is not street legal and/or is purpose built for racing/autocross.
  • Safety – In addition to the basic safety rules above, Modified cars are encouraged to have a roll bar.

Classification issues will be decided by the TE/AE Autocross Chairman for the specific event.

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