FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What's this all about?
It's all about cars.
It's all about racing.
It's all about tearing down those high-dollar roadblocks that, in the past, have restricted people with a passion for cars and racing from getting fully engaged and involved in motorsports.
It's about enjoyment, friends and bringing road racing back to where it was fifty years ago - when racing was fun, cheap and nobody cared whether you had Snap-On tools or a mix-match of hand-me-downs in your toolbox.
It's about scouring the want-ads looking for the perfect hefty-hunk-of-screaming-junk and racing a $500 car for 24 hours. That takes effort... that requires some planning... that means your knuckles are going to get scraped-up a little.
It's about racing on North America's finest road courses and race tracks... tracks that you never dreamed you'd have the opportunity to drive on. It's about keeping that $500-wonder of yours running for 7, 12, 18, 24 hours... and even longer!
It's about being there... sharing, competing, laughing, cursing (not around the kids!), making things work under pressure - but, most of all, it's about being there at the checkered flag. It's not about winning.
And, it's about giving back. ChumpCar events promote and contribute to local charities at each race.
More than anything, it's about meeting a bunch of people who are just as crazy, just as passionate, and just as caffeine-loaded as you are. These are your kind of people... it's family... old home week in the neighborhood. And when the sun finally comes up after 18 hours of racing, and you look around at everyone else looking around, well... that's when you realize that you still have another 6 hours of racing to go! And so does everybody else! How cool is that?
Do I have to be a licensed race driver to enter?
No... but you do have to have a valid State or international driver's license... and you'll have to have an Optima Batteries / ChumpCar World Series Competition License - but those are pretty simple to get... they're included with your driver fee! If this is your first-time in a wheel-to-wheel road race, we do require that you take the ChumpCar Driver's School (about an hour in a casual, off-track, classroom session, held at your first event). It's a one-time deal and it ensures that everyone on the track knows the basics of safety, the rules of the road, rules of the pit and what everyone is talking about when they are discussing a decreasing radius-double apex-off-camber corner with a pinched entry. Got that?
Should I have my head examined?
Yes. No doubt about it. This is insanity at its finest. I mean, how many people do you know that would climb into a $500 car and push that car beyond 42 miles an hour for extended periods of time, lap after lap? Well, actually, you better know at least three more people like that. You see, you'll need a team of four (4) drivers for our endurance races. We've worked hard to develop this series into something totally insane and fun, but that's as safe as possible... and the tracks that we hold our events are among the best, the most sophisticated and the safest in the world. Regardless, go see a shrink before sending in your entry form.
What tracks is the Optima Batteries / ChumpCar World Series running at?
Oh... probably no track that you've ever heard about... Daytona, Mosport, Sebring, Laguna Seca, Texas World Speedway, Road America, VIR, Sears Point-Sonoma, Nelson Ledges, Road Atlanta, Watkins Glen... perhaps you've heard of one of these? Just check the website. There are far too many to list here. Keep up-to-date by signing-up for our e-mail newsletter.
Okay, how do I enter and how do I make sure I get accepted?
Hey, slow down there Parnelli! Entry is easy - just fill-out our on-line Entry Application form. All entries must be received by the Optima Batteries / ChumpCar World Series before the application cut-off, which is 90-days prior to the event. The payment deadline is 60-days prior to the event, and any team missing either deadline will have their entry cancelled, with the spot going to a wait-listed or previously rejected team. It's only fair.
Where do I find a $500 race car?
Well, when your neighbor's not home and you've noticed that he left his 1983 Honda Civic in the driveway...okay, better not. Actually, there really isn't such a thing as a $500 race car...and, if you find one, please DON'T bring it to one of our events! What you want is a car valued at $500... or close to it. We suggest that you start by searching CraigsList.com and collecting ads for your AIV. What's an AIV? That's Average Internet Value. It's how we value your car. We use the AIV process because when Aunt Ethel and Uncle Buck sold you their 2006 Toyota Sentra for $500 (because you're their favorite nephew), that doesn't mean that you have a $500 car. It's the AVERAGE value of the car, as found by checking ads from across the US of A and Canada... it's not the price you paid for it.
What else do I need?
Okay, so you've got a car valued at $500. The car will need about $1,500 in safety equipment - roll cage, racing seat, seat belt harness -- and you'll need the required driver's safety equipment - helmet, driving suit, gloves, etc. All of the required items are listed in the Optima Batteries / ChumpCar World Series Rules which are downloadable from the ChumpCar website. Also, the Optima Batteries / ChumpCar World Series website has links to some great deals on excellent gear and equipment from our series sponsors. Check these out first before you go and spend a wad on something way overpriced. That said, here are a few words of advice to all: Got a $50 head? Then get a $50 helmet. Understood? (Don't scrimp on getting good gear!)
Is there prize money for the winners or are we running for some stupid trophy?
Hey! That stupid trophy will be around long after you've spent the $100 prize money on some cheap beer and a few chrome-plated parts from J.C. Whitney, so don't bash it! Yes, ChumpCar does award prize money - typically over $3,000 per event - but it's all chump-change. We're not professional racers. We're just a bunch of chumps that get together to enjoy motorsports, a great BBQ and some beer. ChumpCar will also award other trophies and contingency prizes that we may arrange through sponsors and advertisers.
Why in the world is ChumpCar doing this?
We ask ourselves the same thing...every day.