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Garry J

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Everything posted by Garry J

  1. Pete, By all means put your hand up for the "Scale Nationals", and anyone else who has the facilities please consider doing the same. Don't worry about the naysayers, there won't be any tears from anyone I know if they don't want to participate. If I may, I'd like to propose some basic criteria for tracks wanting to host the "Scale Nationals". Please feel free to comment constructively. 1. Track(s) - race worthy track or tracks with race proven power and reliable computerised timing and racing system. Having multiple tracks is a bonus and allows the race program to be expanded or include special events. Anyone who attended the Nats at Stafford, Qld in '96 may remember the enduro racing we had on the Sunday in honour of Bob Crawford's (Sunset Racing Shells) 25 years in the business. From memory we had about 30 teams competing. This was made possible by the fact that we had 2 good quality tracks at the venue. 2. Adequate pit space - generally speaking you should have enough pit space to accommodate the maximum number of entries expected for any single class. Pit spaces must have access to power and be secured against access by the general public. 3. Accessibility - the venue must be reachable by public transport (at least to within a $10 cab ride) and provide parking within walking distance. 4. Spectator room - a venue that's a tight squeeze for 4 drivers and marshals would not be suitable. 5. Accommodation - any proposal should contain details of suitable accommodation available within reasonable distance of the venue. There are other, more subjective, questions also. Such as, is preference given to commercial venues or venues offering parts sales or access for sponsors? What impact would bad weather have on the event if, for example, there were plans to have outdoor pit spaces? I would think that the successful proposal would address all these issues and perhaps most importantly, convince us all that there's only one place we want to be for the June long weekend, and that's playing with our toys at the "Scale Nationals". Cheers, Garry Johnson PS - I call this event the "Scale Nationals" without reference to 1/32 or 1/24 because this is the current state of play at the international level. While it's true that the "Thingy" Nationals only has 1/24th scale sedans and wing cars, none of the cars we race are true scale representations of real cars. The term "Scale" has come to mean slot cars which are true recreations, or scale models, of real cars in either 1/32 or 1/24, including the "home set" market. If, for example, a 1/24 Plafit class is to be run at National level it doesn't fit into the "Thingy" culture but should be run at the true scale events as per international convention. I won't go into "Eurosport" classes as there is no current racing for these classes in Oz, or at least nothing that compares to the international state of play.
  2. Just a quick update on the ASCRA and the website, etc. I have been quietly working away on the web site; trying to get a decent structure and looking for content. There have been disappointments ranging from unfulfilled promises (pretty much all of them), through sarcastic comments, down to thinly disguised hostility but I intend to keep the site running and hopefully sometime, someone other than Werner will make a contribution. Shane has expressed an interest and I understand why he's gone missing and hopefully he'll be up and about again soon. As far as the association goes, I don't hold much hope of it ever being more than a loose gathering of people with a common interest, and experience has shown us that it's probably all that's needed. At the moment we don't have anyone putting themselves forward to host the "2009 Scale Nationals" so the opportunity is there if anyone has the facilities. Still looking for content for the web site (http://ascra.com.au), I'll take anything related to slot racing, pictures af your tracks, cars, racing events, tech tips, whatever. I'll also take ads for commercial interests as long as they're related to slot racing. You can message me through the site or at garry+johnsonsystems.com.au. (change the + to @) Cheers, Garry J
  3. Hi All, An informal meeting will be held on Saturday evening (22/3/2008) at the Dandenong Nationals to discuss the formation of a national association. At this point there's no agenda, it's just to guage what interest is out there and here proposals from interested parties. Also a good opportunity to get to know each other. Cheers, Garry J
  4. Seemed to be a case of the 2 guys most likely to run into someone finally found each other and both got what they deserved. Both of them complain constantly about slower drivers not letting them by, yet they use even more aggressive tactics when the boots on the other foot. Anyway the powers that be don't care, crashes put more bums on seats than good racing. Cheers from your friendly local, totally unbiased, Holden fan, Garry J
  5. Hi All, Peter has the same right as anyone else to call a race the Nationals. And it's also true that anyone has the right to run the Scalie Nationals or whatever XXX Nationals you care to name. Also, everyone is free to make their own judgements as to the credibility of each event and in the absence of any other 1/32nd Nationals at the moment the bar will be set at Easter, the only thing yet to be determined is the height. Personally, I'm a bit ambivalent about it. In the past, in 1/24th scale racing, we've found that very few sedan racers will travel for big races and only the "speed crazed morons" (a term of endearment for wing car racers) are willing to travel far and often. Actually, almost all of the sedan racers who travel are primarily wing car racers. The wing car racers have kept the 1/24th Nationals alive as all the tracks, with the exception of Dandenong, are owned by wing car racers who also spend a lot of time promoting sedan racing because that's their bread and butter. I don't know what the answer is for scale racing. It's taken many years for the 1/24th Nats to get where it is now and there are still those that regularly try to tear it apart. It's even been suggested that this years scale races are an attempt to get enough numbers in the sedans to usurp the wing car guys hold on the event. If that were to happen I fear for the future of 1/24th sedan racing because the wing car guys will just continue on their merry way. For the moment I'll reserve my judgement and look forward to attending a scale nationals sometime in the future. Oh, I can feel the pain of that @rse whoopin' already!!! Cheers and good racing, Garry J
  6. Thanks for the welcome. To answer your question, I really can't see it succeeding when the people who originated the idea and volunteered to perform certain functions haven't followed through. I've been involved with a few National and State organisations and they've always depended on a few willing people to do the leg work. At the moment I don't see those people coming forward, I hope they do, but I just can't see where they're going to come from. Cheers, Garry J
  7. Hi All, Werner of ACE Hobbies sent me a link to this thread so I thought it might be prudent to introduce myself. My name is Garry Johnson and I've been involved with slot racing for about 45 years on and off. My interest has primarily been in 1/24th scale racing on commercial tracks, usually 8 lanes, and I've won a few state and national titles over the years. Most recently at the Nationals in Rockhampton, 2007, where I won Group 27 class. Yes, for those purists shaking their heads, that's a wing car class but my interests cover all scales and styles of cars. Over the years I've built many commercial tracks (some of you scale guys will know the tracks at Hornsby Slot Cars which I built and both the 8 lane tracks at Mobile Raceways, Dandenong) and also many 4 and 6 lane 1/32nd and 1/24th scale tracks for fun and profit. I've also written software for slots and designed chassis for National Championship winning cars of both the scale and wing variety and I'm sure I've crossed paths with some of you over the years. Now that's out of the way I'll get to the point(s). Some time ago a group of racers and track owners held a meeting at King Willy's Raceway in Melbourne with the aim of establishing a national body of some sort. A few people were selected to come up with ideas and investigate possibilities. My job (as my primary business these days is IT) was to look into setting up a web page and finding an available domain name, and also to look into what was involved, legally, in setting up an association on paper. The best name I could find that had an available Australian (.com.au) domain name based on an acronym of the association name, was Australian Slot Car Racers Association (ASCRA). I then looked into setting up an association and found that the only option that doesn't expose members to possible litigation if something goes wrong is an Incorporated Association which is expensive to establish and maintain. I concluded this was not achievable due to the complexity and expense and the fact that the others involved in setting this thing up had contributed nothing whatsoever. However, not content to see the whole thing slide into oblivion I set about registering a business name which then allowed me to register the domain name. This was done in my own name and at my own expense. So now I have domain name and some web space but what do I(we) do with it considering interest in the association is failing? Well here's the ill conceived and poorly thought out plan. The current web site is just a holding page but I'd like to see it developed into a source of information for ALL slot racers, no forums, no discussions, just plain and simple information such as links, rules, calendars, tech tips, race results, picture galleries, products (new and old) and anything else I(we) can think of. I have 100GB of web space and 500GB of bandwidth a month and I'm happy to donate the whole thing if I can get some reliable people on side to help out. As for the Association there's supposed to be a meeting at Mobile Raceways at Easter but at this point I have no idea what's going to happen (actually I do have an idea what will happen, unfortunately). So there you have the brief history of the ASCRA. If anyone thinks this is worth doing either officially or as just a defacto association please throw in your 2 cents worth. Cheers and good racing, Garry J
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