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#1
MPR22

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The SCCA is run by a committee of idiots.  

 

Stock heads at 2015 run-offs.  Nice.

 

I have 5 1989 1.6 cores for sale.  Flow bench tested..... $5,000 each.  

First come first served.  

Thank you for your letter. 

 

 

 

 

 

MEMORANDUM
 
TO: Spec Miata Participants
FR: SCCA, NASA and Mazda Spec Miata Leadership Team
RE: Class Intent, Direction and Regulations
DT: November 5, 2014
 
Spec Miata purpose and intent (SCCA General Competition Rules):
The Spec Miata (SM) class is intended to provide the membership with the opportunity to compete in low cost, production-based cars with limited modifications, suitable for racing competition.
 
The rules are intentionally designed to be more open than the Showroom Stock class but more restricted than the Improved Touring class.
 
Less than 15 years ago, the concept of Spec Miata was born. The essence of the class focused on a low cost, fun, competitive environment that was relatively easy to enter. If a participant found a good donor car, added safety equipment, a hardtop and a bolt-on kit of performance parts purchased through Mazdaspeed Motorsports Development, they would have equipment capable of racing at the front of the field.
 
Throughout the years, the class veered from the original intent and direction. The scope of the class has crept into something beyond its original intent. While the essence of the class may remain the same, in some respects, it has lost its way, pushing the definition of “limited modifications” and the notion of “low cost.” Mazda, SCCA and NASA all agree that changes must be made for the long-term health of the class, regardless of which sanctioning body operates the races.
 
The 2014 SCCA National Championship Runoffs was a watershed moment in the history of the Spec Miata class. With so many cars found out of compliance at the front of the field, a working group was established by Mazda, SCCA and NASA leadership to evaluate not just cylinder head rules, but the purpose and long-term goal of the class overall. The group, established by SCCA President Lisa Noble, also includes John Doonan, Steve Sanders and Mike Allen (Mazdaspeed Motorsports Development), John Mueller (NASA), Tony Ave (SCCA Club Racing Board) and Robert Clarke (SCCA Pro Racing/SCCA Inc.).
 
The group met face-to-face at SCCA’s offices in Topeka, Kansas October 30, 2014. Also attending in consultation were: Eric Prill (SCCA), John Bauer (SCCA), Jim Wheeler (SCCA Club Racing Board), Steve Knapp (Elite Engines) and Jim Stewart (Stewart Engines).
 
Long-term Goal of the working group:
For Spec Miata to be a healthy, growing and economical class across organizations, where a racer can be competitive utilizing a stock Mazda Miata that is enhanced with bolt-on performance parts acquired through Mazdaspeed Motorsports Development.
 
In achieving that goal, it is important that current participants not be disenfranchised and unreasonably burdened while still making the class attractive to individuals that have either left the class or not engaged in the class due to scope creep away from stock.
 
The most critical issue in conflict with the long-term goal is with regard to rules that permit modifications to the stock cylinder head and the method with which these are being modified. Current SM rules permit cylinder head modifications beyond the level of more “radical” categories, including, but not limited to, SCCA Production and Super Touring® Lite. It needs to be stated that the heads examined at the Runoffs were modified on varying levels, but each head found out of compliance was in violation of the rules as they are written. Additionally, this is not simply an issue with de-burring, but rather actual smoothing, blending and porting on the sharp edge from the plunge cut.
 
To achieve the long-term goal, the class must ultimately return to stock cylinder heads with a permitted industry-standard valve job.
 
Recognizing the number of modified (both compliant and non-compliant per the current rules) cylinder heads in the community, the expense to replace these and potential parts availability concerns, the group agrees to the following path, with details to be finalized no later than theDecember 14 SCCA Board of Directors meeting:
-Permit plunge cuts and unshrouding per the current rules, but with clarification of concentricity, as well as some level of blending of the plunge cut (language TBA). These modifications may require that additional weight be added to the car.
-Independent testing will be conducted to determine the effect of the individual and collective modifications. Only once this scientific data is collected and evaluated will weight levels be determined.
-Weight additions will compensate for the power gains from the head modifications, while also encouraging the behavior of changing back to an unmodified head as soon as possible.
-The allowance of these modifications will have a sunset period of one to two years, based on parts availability. The intention is for this to happen sooner than later, but with appropriate competitor notification.
-Only un-modified heads would be permitted for competition at the 2015 SCCA National Championship Runoffs.
 
Additionally, the group unanimously desires greater resources and efforts with regard to season-long compliance checks. Collectively, it is developing an enhanced compliance program to address this. The group will also evaluate class parity and additional concepts to ensure parity and compliance moving forward.
 
Timing: The working group welcomes input, which can be submitted through SCCA’swww.clubracingboard.com site or NASA’s John Mueller at john@weekend-racer.com. A final recommendation of the group, with the support of all involved parties, will be presented to the SCCA Board of Directors and NASA leadership for approval in December.
 
At its October meeting, the SCCA Board of Directors unanimously passed the following motion:SCCA Board of Directors directs SCCA Staff and CRB to jointly develop with Mazda and NASA a rule set and timeline to address the Miata engine preparation. This may include recommendations around protest, appeals and teardown in the GCR for Spec Miata.
 
Summary: The working group believes that this structure achieves the long-term goal, while addressing short-term concerns. Drivers with modified components that need time to perform the necessary changes will be able to compete at a reasonable level in the short term, with the class as a whole driving together toward a better long-term goal.
 
For the sport,
 
Lisa Noble, SCCA President and CEO
John Doonan, Mazda Motorsports Director
John Mueller, NASA Spec Miata National Director
Robert Clarke, SCCA Pro Racing President/SCCA VP of Business Development
Tony Ave, SCCA Club Racing Board
Steve Sanders, MAZDASPEED Motorsports Development Manager
Mike Allen, MAZDASPEED Motorsports Development Specialist

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#2
Yosh

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"It needs to be stated that the heads examined at the Runoffs were modified on varying levels, but each head found out of compliance was in violation of the rules as they are written. Additionally, this is not simply an issue with de-burring, but rather actual smoothing, blending and porting on the sharp edge from the plunge cut. "


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#3
Steve Scheifler

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Sounds familiar.
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#4
Brandon

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Can't go "FIRST!" but I'll at least start getting my notices of additional comments...

 

And here's my $.02:

 

Good for the SCCA to finally release "some" data on what went down and without being wishy-washy they've mitigated the issue outright with the 'plunge-cut heads not permitted at 2015 Runoffs'.

That alone will single-handedly remove heads from the market (and more generally the field(s) as a whole) those which have been modified.

 

The only caveat I can foresee is their assertion competitors will be forthcoming on whether their own head is modified and be willing to accept the (to be) proscribed weight penalty.

I guess it means we need to come up with a "NEDiv Protest Mafia" with each member contributing $100/$200/whatever level needed to properly protest those who are suspect.

 

I can set aside a few dollars in preparation for protests in 2015...


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#5
Steve Scheifler

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I'm not sure about the "most critical" statement. It just happens to be what blew things up.
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#6
JRHille

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So now will it be more worth while to buy a bunch of heads and see which flows the best?


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#7
john mueller

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"It needs to be stated that the heads examined at the Runoffs were modified on varying levels, but each head found out of compliance was in violation of the rules as they are written. Additionally, this is not simply an issue with de-burring, but rather actual smoothing, blending and porting on the sharp edge from the plunge cut. "

 

 

What I saw surprised the hell out of me.  The blending work wasn't even tried to be concealed, plunge cuts not done on the correct plane....  All were egregious except for one that was slightly over the line.

 

The problem was this is what was thought to be acceptable, even with tooling marks by the builders three of who are in leadership positions.  It changed my mind on the sort of action that was required.  And that last part of the above sentence was a huge driving factor inside the meeting room.

 

 

 

my last easily made post until 10pm tonight... flame away.


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#8
Steve Scheifler

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Biggest concern: no-plunge will revive cherry-picking heads. The middle of the field may be closer to each other, but they will be farther from the front where those guys got the primo parts. And the front will not be as tight to each other because there are only so many 10s no matter how many you test. And of course supply has now shrunk.

This requires more debate.
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#9
tLinder

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In theory it might sound okay, everyone runs a stock head.
Hopefully my pessimism is wrong and this is not he beginning of the end of SM.
Instead of paying for head-work, now people will collect heads to find a good one via dyno time, cost to find a good motor just went up.

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#10
Chris70

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Can someone tell me what is the "permitted industry standard valve job " ?

Also , what is the "spec" on a stock head ?

Ademir

S.A.C. racing


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Steve Scheifler

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So now will it be more worth while to buy a bunch of heads and see which flows the best?


Only if you believe that better static flow translates to power. At such small variances I have doubts and some who have tested say no. So more likely you bolt each on the same block and test on a dyno. But that's already done with other parts, it's just a bigger pain.
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#12
Jason J Ball

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Anybody else confused by this? I think I understand that the excessively modified heads (a.k.a. STR massaged) will be will have weight penalty and sunset in 2 yrs but the actual plunge cut/unshrouding is still allowed. But then it says "un-modified heads will be required for Runoffs" disallowing plunge/unshrouding work??? Which is it? 
 
-Permit plunge cuts and unshrouding per the current rules, but with clarification of concentricity, as well as some level of blending of the plunge cut (language TBA). These modifications may require that additional weight be added to the car.
-The allowance of these modifications will have a sunset period of one to two years, based on parts availability. The intention is for this to happen sooner than later, but with appropriate competitor notification.
-Only un-modified heads would be permitted for competition at the 2015 SCCA National Championship Runoffs.

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#13
Yosh

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What I saw surprised the hell out of me.  The blending work wasn't even tried to be concealed, plunge cuts not done on the correct plane....  All were egregious except for one that was slightly over the line.

 

The problem was this is what was thought to be acceptable, even with tooling marks by the builders three of who are in leadership positions.  It changed my mind on the sort of action that was required.  And that last part of the above sentence was a huge driving factor inside the meeting room.

 

 

 

This is an outright failure of SCCA tech, SCCA stewarding, the Class leadership, the "teams" fielding these cars, and just an overall embarrassment.  If these engines were truly PORTED those drivers and cars should be tossed.  Period.  And for those of us that just run regionals, get ready for a bunch of illegal stuff headed our way, with no real way to police or keep up with (they can barely weigh cars at a regional, much less actually tech cars).  If you are only a "miata guy" then you need to talk to some of the other drivers in your region to know what a clusterf*ck this truly is and what a black mark this is on the class.


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#14
chris haldeman

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Sad day!!! Poor guys just got slower rich guys just got faster.
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#15
Tom OPM

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My 2 cents

 

This can not have been thought thru by anyone really involved in SM racing.

Seems like a knee jerk reaction to bad publicity at the Run-Offs.

Seems like a good way to get their marquis class Spec Racer Ford back on top.

Would SCCA ever consider asking their customers what they wanted or just do whats best for us.

 

Signed, disgusted


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#16
Alex Bolanos

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Can someone tell me what is the "permitted industry standard valve job " ?
Also , what is the "spec" on a stock head ?
Ademir
S.A.C. racing


Quoted for emphasis. What a fail, evolution with proper tech is not a bad thing. Why revert back to the stoneage?
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#17
john mueller

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Only if you believe that better static flow translates to power. At such small variances I have doubts and some who have tested say no. So more likely you bolt each on the same block and test on a dyno. But that's already done with other parts, it's just a bigger pain.

 

Steve knows...


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#18
Alex Bolanos

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Sixteen different weight/plate specs now in SM, plunge/overbore/no plunge/std bore 4 specs x 4 generations.

For a tech shed that couldn't catch HEAD PORTING all year.
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#19
FTodaro

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I think its the wrong decision. It feels punitive. "those engine builder did not even try to hide tool marks"

 

So the average guy to be complaint will have to spend 2000 to 2500  and the front runners will be spending much more.

 

I hope we get to see the results of the independent testing to see what we are really talking about in terms of a gain. I hope the wt penalty if fair and if it is, why not just leave it in place, if you tested it and its fair.

 

Forcing the change rather than offering an alternative choice is punitive.

 

Lets see where we are when the other shoe drops.

 

Lets start a pole when those final numbers come out and see if the people who support and pay for this class agree.

 

I do not think this was the only option on dealing with this issue. It is a sad day, i think its going to drive people away who have entered or thinking of entering the class.

 

Put a fair wt restriction in and allow that for those who do not want to change.


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#20
Tom Sager

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Anybody else confused by this? I think I understand that the excessively modified heads (a.k.a. STR massaged) will be will have weight penalty and sunset in 2 yrs but the actual plunge cut/unshrouding is still allowed. But then it says "un-modified heads will be required for Runoffs" disallowing plunge/unshrouding work??? Which is it? 
 
-Permit plunge cuts and unshrouding per the current rules, but with clarification of concentricity, as well as some level of blending of the plunge cut (language TBA). These modifications may require that additional weight be added to the car.
-The allowance of these modifications will have a sunset period of one to two years, based on parts availability. The intention is for this to happen sooner than later, but with appropriate competitor notification.
-Only un-modified heads would be permitted for competition at the 2015 SCCA National Championship Runoffs.

 

I'm wondering the same.


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