Everyone is asking that question. It's a constant point of discussion in SCCA LOL.
I'll make an opinion piece here, take it how you want.
Main problems I see:
1. Other than Mazda, none of the large entities put anything into grassroots club racing. All the focus is on the ridiculous pro levels relegated to the ultra rich. Trans Am, IMSA, Blancpain and SRO. Until these organizations use grassroots as a ladder, club racing will be in decline. I personally think the top levels of racing will someday pay a price for this as these organizations are riding on wealthy racing family dynasties.
2. Racing is too much work for the younger generations. They need instant gratification and competition alone isn't a source of motivation. If you look at #GRIDLIFE you can see why they excel. It's because the entire ordeal is an entertainment event. There is music, parties, etc. #GRIDLIFE has removed the boring ass downtime of sitting in front of your trailer for 4 hours waiting to drive for 20 minutes and they crank up the loud music after hours. I was at the BHF Majors last weekend, when 9PM rolled around I might have mistaken the atmosphere for a retirement complex in Arizona.
3. Value to fun ratio is extremely low by todays standard. My brother is straight up "millennial". He complains about the $40 SCCA RallyCross entry fee because he only gets 9 minutes of seat time. The cost of SCCA Membership is a constant complaint by young racers. They talk about all the benefits of the SCCA card but they should absolutely stop doing that. To a young person its like being sold a $100 coupon card. No one under 30 years old cares about a discount for a Hertz rental car.
Now to not be too negative after that, here are a few things we have been looking at in the region.
1. Combine our road racing weekend with a Time Trials event. I doubt there will be much crossover, but having HPDE/TT people paddocked next to road race cars can't hurt and it will increase our car counts for the weekends. Downside is we sacrifice some track time for road racers.
2. Make it easier for WRL and Champ Car drivers to run our road races. Especially fast track SCCA comp licenses to these people. The current system is "clubby" and if you don't know the ropes getting a license waiver is a challenge for someone outside of SCCA.
3. We increase our car counts by running one or two vintage groups in partnership with a Vintage club, but this is mostly out of necessity because car counts up by us are painfully low.
Finally, a couple points I would like to see.
1. There should be a Majors at every clubs home track at least once a year. The club is committed to this Majors format, and some smaller regions get double shafted by this because they both pull drivers from regionals while never bringing any Major drivers back to them.
2. Reduce the number of classes and simplify them. A tall order because you are guaranteed to lose people, but it needs to be done. People that already road race (WRL and Champ Car) can't even understand what class their car might fit in. How are people come from HPDE supposed to. This is a primary reason that SM and SRF are popular, the classing is crystal clear.
3. The events should make every driver feel like they are at a pro level event. Pretending to be on a pro race team is one of the funnest parts of the driving experience. I believe this point right here is the only reason why Majors events get more draw. Almost no one cares about conference points except for contingency.
Unfortunately, it's with much sadness that I don't see a future for grassroots road racing. Road racing is destined to be a hobby for the wealthy, and those people don't need the club level.
Edit: I forgot to mention that member involvement with the club is painfully low. Especially drivers. In the three years I have been in the SCCA I have been one of the only Non-Board Member drivers to attend the monthly club meetings. I'm sorry to say but if our members can't even be bothered to take an interest in how events run and the struggles of the volunteers/organizers, they deserve to lose club racing.