Racing at Mission - dwindling numbers
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Thread: Racing at Mission - dwindling numbers

  1. #1
    Registered User Array Tra5is's Avatar
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    Racing at Mission - dwindling numbers

    I've been hearing this consistently from the long-in-the-tooth folks at WMRC; the number of racers showing up year-over-year is going down. As someone who just got their novice race license and who wants to keep racing for the long-term I feel like I need to figure out why by asking the folks that enjoy going fast, but don't show up to race.

    I've seen two seasons of race students come through (me being in one of them) but very very few of those people actually show up to race again.

    What's up? Where else are you going for track days or races? Are people just not riding as much in general? Are people having a hard time justifying the costs? Can't stand the other racers? Don't feel like you're getting the support from the folks that have been doing it a while? Your friends tell you you're crazy?

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  3. #2
    Fastronaut Array Danke's Avatar
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    The track has several critical flaws.

    None of them can be permanently remedied.

    There are many people who ride there who will defend the facility passionately but if you took a rider who'd been on various other racetracks around North America and did a track walk with them they'd point the flaws out.

    Those flaws are the reason you'll never see a large sanctioned motorsports event run at the track (other than drag racing).

    The lower mainland and all of B.C. in fact deserve a better facility but there's no way for that to happen given the current climate of greens, and no-fun NIMBYs and the amount of money to be made from a golf course or housing development vs. a race track.
    Fill the house with bees.

  4. #3
    Registered User Array Tra5is's Avatar
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    I've heard that from others too.

    Reason 1: perceived safety of Mission track for motorcycle racing

  5. #4
    Let the good times roll Array Good Karma's Avatar
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    It is not so much that the track has flaws as it is a little boring in comparison to other tracks.....but the thrill of racing is still a good experience.

    One of the problems in my mind is the cost for what you get......I would prefer to spend the same money (or in some cases less money) to get a full track day at a big track in the US rather than a couple of races at Mission. Others may argue that racing is a whole different ball of wax but to me they are close enough that the track time is more important.

    Another problem is that because of Mission sound by-laws only 1000 cc bikes can run an after market pipe......750 and under need to run a stock pipe which if I guy builds and tunes a track bike to an after market exhaust makes for a pain in the butt.

    One last thing that was a real piss off was setup and takedown. I have not been involved with the club for 2 years so my experience is not totally up to date but the way things were managed was not really fair in many regards. I attended almost every track set up and tear down in 2011 and for a few of the events there were only 5 or 6 of us doing it. We spent 4 or 5 hours of hard labour doing setup...then went to bed in our sleeping bags sweaty and dirty to get up the next morning to race while other guys stayed at home, comfy in bed, had a shower and then showed up nice and fresh to race......or in other cases guys sat in their pits, drank beer, bbq and watched us do the set up. It was total bullshit but no one ever enforced any type of rules or fines....or gave any benefits to the people that did setup.

  6. #5
    Twin A Array Jaybo's Avatar
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    A matter close to my heart, it's true every race club loses some number of racers every year and the wmrc is the no different, motorcycles are a luxury -racing even more so. Unfortunately racing at mission has its drawbacks - it's not a world class facility, it has a high overhead so racers pay a premium to race with us, there's the setup and teardown to deal with.. all matters we have to deal with to be the local race club. We are constantly working trying to improve these things listed, and while I can't tell you exact details right now.. I can tell you things at mission will be a bit different next year. So stay tuned.

    It's not all bad, we have passionate motivated people who want to run the club, the track is safer than ever, track setups and tear downs are faster and better organized, and in some ways the club is actually growing.. the 250 class is pretty jumping right now!
    Last edited by Jaybo; 10-28-2014 at 07:20 PM.
    Some people are like Slinkies ...
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  7. #6
    must have more bacon Array gxr jo's Avatar
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    the safety concerns of mission are exaggerated in my opinion , every single track has flaws that are evident when ridden hard . i would rather have mission then no track at all
    listen to me or i will eat you're bacon

    wmrc #9

  8. #7
    Ridin hard n dirty Array Mr.Sushi ya ha's Avatar
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    Dont take it too seriously...I have been around long enough to see the good times and the bad...It happens all the time. As a moto x racer I watched 200+ at an event dwindle to 60 or less...Westwood days I cant remember but there were amazing turnouts that made some world class racers then there were very few...In the cross country races it was only 7-8 years ago when they had to set limits on how many can enter an event then with the last recession we had 60 ish at some events and now we are back to 150 -170 sign ups.. It seems to have a bit of who has the most disposable cash...Lately with the cost of fuel, sign up, food for the weekend I easily drop $500+ just for a weekend away and not counting the wear on the bike and tires ect. I think people that love to ride find ways to make it work but families cant spend that much for a weekend away to ride a 2 hour event. In Moto that was a big issue for me. I would drive 4 hours to send a day at the track get 2 laps practice, wait all morning do a 6 lap moto, wait till late afternoon then do another 6 laps that for most tracks takes under 3 minuets per lap so you ride for a total of about 40 or so minuets. Then I did cross country and at least you got a 2+ hour long ride in and after you could still go for a ride. The good thing about not many riders showing up at Mission is you get more track time. And at the very least we have a track to go to. I think for a while anyone who wanted to ride had to go to Seattle or Alberta to get any track time. Mission is a good track! The guys work hard to make it what it is and I am happy and thankful that there is a place like that. All the bullshit with loosing Westwood and Mission MX and the empty promises from the towns saying we will get a track to replace it never happened and may never on the future. Just get out and do it..that alone will support the club..as soon as riders start showing up it might give the club enough reason to improve the facility and the motorcycle side of it will grow for the future riders.
    Remembering Bill Mclean.
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  9. #8
    track hack Array Young Lion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Good Karma View Post
    It is not so much that the track has flaws as it is a little boring in comparison to other tracks.....but the thrill of racing is still a good experience.

    One of the problems in my mind is the cost for what you get......I would prefer to spend the same money (or in some cases less money) to get a full track day at a big track in the US rather than a couple of races at Mission. Others may argue that racing is a whole different ball of wax but to me they are close enough that the track time is more important.

    Another problem is that because of Mission sound by-laws only 1000 cc bikes can run an after market pipe......750 and under need to run a stock pipe which if I guy builds and tunes a track bike to an after market exhaust makes for a pain in the butt.

    One last thing that was a real piss off was setup and takedown. I have not been involved with the club for 2 years so my experience is not totally up to date but the way things were managed was not really fair in many regards. I attended almost every track set up and tear down in 2011 and for a few of the events there were only 5 or 6 of us doing it. We spent 4 or 5 hours of hard labour doing setup...then went to bed in our sleeping bags sweaty and dirty to get up the next morning to race while other guys stayed at home, comfy in bed, had a shower and then showed up nice and fresh to race......or in other cases guys sat in their pits, drank beer, bbq and watched us do the set up. It was total bullshit but no one ever enforced any type of rules or fines....or gave any benefits to the people that did setup.
    Couldn't agree more.

    I race with WMRRA for all of the reasons listed - I get to race on larger, more technical, and IMO much safer tracks and have no hassle to swap my exhaust or be involved with set up or tear down - unless I want to of course.

    I wouldn't consider WMRC any longer - ever since last year when the track yanked all of their race days and gave them to car guys leaving the WMRC to beg for scraps - week days I believe... 2 double header race events to decide a club series and none in peak season? No thanks, I prefer WMRRA's race every month from May-September, 2 tracks to play on, and plenty of Track Day providers so get practice and set up dialed in.

    Kudo's to the guys who race there but I have to take a ferry and drive 1.5 hours anyways, I might as well do it at a track and with a club that I think caters to my needs best.

  10. #9
    Registered User Array Steve G.'s Avatar
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    It's not just motorcycle racing. A buddy of mine, who's raced spots cars for 50 years and announced at Mission for 15, sees dwindling participation every year. It's part of a trend IMO, with younger generations becoming less involved in any manner of activities, quite happy to undertake 'virtual activities' as their life outlet/passion.

  11. #10
    Registered User Array mongoose's Avatar
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    i'd say cash flow.. like steve said.. all racing has taken a hit in the last little bit.. i mean down at skagit dirt cup is a 360 show this year to get the car count back up. people who race just don't have the cash to throw together a program it seems.. as for younger guys, I know plenty of people that can barely check their own oil and it seems that kind of mentality isn't that far off from the norm.. so getting people out and racing.. well good luck.

  12. #11
    Registered User Array Tra5is's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the responses. This is pretty interesting.

    * lack of race days
    * dB limit - associated trouble to bring your bike under the limit
    * Track setup/tear-down - frustrating watching others not help and it's a tough job. No benefit for those that actually do help out.
    * General lack of disposable funds - $500 (or more) just to get to the track for a weekend is more than some are willing to drop
    * for those on Vancouver Island it's just as easy and costs the same to head to south
    * Fewer people interested in motorsports in general, seem to prefer the virtual/online domain

    So far the one I don't hear anything about is feeling like you're part of the team. Think this would help encourage return attendance at all?

  13. #12
    Moderator Array CoolDaddyGroove's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tra5is View Post
    I've seen two seasons of race students come through (me being in one of them) but very very few of those people actually show up to race again. What's up? Where else are you going for track days or races? Are people just not riding as much in general?
    To this point, I believe many take the race school to learn, to get their first track experience, then basically "check the box". I imagine 75% of the riders in the race school never have any intention of competing (me being one of them).
    DON'T STUFF THE CAGERS!

  14. #13
    Registered User Array Tra5is's Avatar
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    Thanks Cool. What would it take to add a few more boxes to your list? Something like "Compete in my first sanctioned race", and "Win my first race"? Why were those not part of your plans to begin with?

  15. #14
    Twin A Array Jaybo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tra5is
    So far the one I don't hear anything about is feeling like you're part of the team. Think this would help encourage return attendance at all?


    you are new to us are you not Travis? What was your feeling? There's talk that the pits aren't friendly, and I have mixed feelings about that. It's a funny thing, I know almost everyone and they are great friendly people.. I was new once too and somehow through being around being involved I got to meet everyone. it's just me, but If I have a battle with someone I don't know I usually go find them afterwards and if they beat me, shake their hand and then tell them what they did wrong.. lol.
    Race events are not always the best time to meet people, during a race event people are busy, concentrating on their racing. At least I am -I can be a little grumpy at those times.. esepecially if i'm chasing kids too. but then that's not to say that I don't have time for people who come by or who need a hand.
    One way to make friends and feel a part of something is to be involved. Come out to set up & tear down, come out to the meetings, come out to the banquet all these things are great places to meet people and could always be better attended.
    Last edited by Jaybo; 10-29-2014 at 09:39 AM.
    Some people are like Slinkies ...
    Not really good for anything, but they still bring a smile to your face when you push them down a flight of stairs.

    TwinBrosRacing <-click
    WMRC & PCMRC #19
    WMRC President

  16. #15
    Registered User Array gsxr_45's Avatar
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    If there was a Ridge type track available in the LML I'd be there rain or shine it's Alot to take a day off work And pay 200 $ for a Track day . A racer told me they get over 100 bikes out at the Ridge sounds Awesome .

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