This past weekend I had the pleasure of participating in my third solo Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) autocross competition, along with about 8 other Embry-Riddle students. “Solo” is the SCCA brand name for autocross competition. Solo events are driving skill competitions that emphasize the driver’s ability and the car’s handling capabilities. A driving a course is set up using traffic cones as a guide in a low hazard location, such as a parking lot or inactive airstrip. In our case we used a section of DeLand Municipal airport that is no longer used, due to the deterioration of the pavement.
Cars compete within classes grouped by similar performance capabilities. All runs through the course are timed, and the car in each class with the fastest time through the course is the winner of that class. There is only one car on any part of the course at a time. In other words, you will never be “wheel-to-wheel” with another car. At each event, drivers will get about 4-5 runs through the course. While speeds are no greater than those normally encountered in legal highway driving, the combination of concentration and car feedback creates an adrenaline pumping experience. The SCCA annually publishes the Solo Rules to classify a full range of imported and domestic sports cars, sedans, and purpose-built race cars, as well as to layout the rules behind Solo competition. The SCCA also publishes the Stock Classifications to make it easy to determine the stock Solo Class for most unmodified cars.
Solo/Autocross is the safest and most inexpensive form of “racing” for both driver and car. The majority of drivers bring out their daily drivers, though there are those who bring modified streetcar “toys” as well as purpose built race cars. Almost any kind of car is welcome as long as it meets restrictions on high-center-of-gravity or rollover tendency. The courses are set up to mitigate most risks to car and driver, with the worst damage coming in the form of a rubber scuff from hitting a cone, which will come right off with a good car wash.
If you enjoy technical, skill based driving and think you have what it takes to drive in a SCCA Solo event; I highly recommend participating in an event. I will include a link below where you can sign up for future events. Come out and join your fellow students in some friendly, yet competitive, driving competition.