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NHmodfan80

SDS Modified Tour... What needs to Change??

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2018 SDS Modified Tour;  Only 8 drivers made all 24 races.  One driver raced 23 out of the 24 races.  Next best was 17 starts out of 24 races. (Only 10 drivers raced 17 or more tour races).  Doesn’t seem like much of a Tour anymore when only 8 drivers race at all 24 events. 

So what needs to change for 2019 to attract more drivers for the SDS Modified Tour?  Can it be saved?  Does it just cost way too much now to compete in the SDS Modified Tour?  Should the schedule and tracks selected be looked at?  Other tours in the northeast (including asphalt) have healthier car counts; what’s their secret?Clearly SDS Tour driver interest is low!  What are your thoughts?

 

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Big Block guys won't like my response but the 358's put on a great show , cost less and as a general rule they handle and look better going through the turns. IMO the series could transform into a small block class with little or no negative effects. I would stick with the 100 lap format.

On a side note the extended caution flag laps that were utilized at Oswego were ridiculous and that issue needs to be addressed for next year.

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Purse.  Need to step it up as has been discussed on here over the years.  The cars and motors cost so much more and they race for the same money they did 20 years ago and also pay a little more to make the field. I think it may be a little better this year as Dunn will be racing the SDS as Drellos sounds like he is going to as well according to his interview DDD.  Need some more good young talent 

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I thought the two SDS events I went to had a solid car count and a healthy turn out of spectators. Running the complete tour is not financially affordable for most drivers but it's cool to see the local talent mix it up with the tour drivers

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15 minutes ago, racermurray said:

 

On a side note the extended caution flag laps that were utilized at Oswego were ridiculous and that issue needs to be addressed for next year.

Middletown as well

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7 minutes ago, NHmodfan80 said:

I think only 8 drivers showing up for all 24 races is a bit weak for a touring series. Something needs to change in my opinion. 

Very weak

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Scheduling and purse.

Chris Hile has gone on record saying he'd love to follow the Tour but it's just not feasible to do so having a full-time job and crew members that have full time jobs to be able to get to all the mid-week shows. 

In my opinion, it's time to try and put most of the Tour dates on weekends, holidays etc. and see what kind of following you get then. Yes, it will make the weekly home track scene a little different, but if the class ever truly wants to grow, they can't be running three nights a week at their weekly tracks.

Purse is obviously the other big one. 6K-8K to win and 1K to start would help get it more in line with the late models. However, how many tracks will be willing to try and front that kind of purse for a Tour race? That's the big question.

Dean Reynolds comes from the ESS background where every race pretty much happened on Friday/Saturday/Sunday or a holiday. Hopefully the SDS tour can trend towards implementing a schedule similar to that.

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42 minutes ago, WheelsUpHammerDown10 said:

Dean Reynolds comes from the ESS background where every race pretty much happened on Friday/Saturday/Sunday or a holiday. Hopefully the SDS tour can trend towards implementing a schedule similar to that.

Every race pretty much happened on a Friday/Saturday/Sunday because that's when most tracks add them as a special to their regular program. I also see a trend with having more SDS events include the ESS on the schedule. 

I also believe car counts will suffer for regular Friday/Saturday SDS events.

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When a SDS race conflicts with Lebanon Valley and Malta, those regular programs become "show up" points races, which I can't stand. Draw for heats and heads up for the feature.   

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Everybody saying purse increase realizes that means increased admission to SDS races, right? 

And I still don’t get how a regional tour is expected to pay national tour money. The regional tours in late models and sprint cars actually tend to pay less than the SDS. 

 

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Something to chew on.. Unofficial stats for the top 2 northeast modified dirt and asphalt "tours".

Super DIRTcar: 24 Shows, 20 different tracks, 8 with "perfect attendance" 

Short Track Super Series-North: 10 Shows, 8 different tracks, 14 with "perfect attendance"

NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour: 16 Shows, 10 different tracks, 9 with "perfect attendance"

Race of Champions Asphalt Modified Tour;  10 Shows, 7 different tracks, 7 with "perfect attendance"

Not that I'm a DIRTcar apologist but for a tour running more shows and at more different tracks, I'd say they are on par with the other tours mentioned.  It just bears out that it's a general issue not just unique to SDS.

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Less races. I think you can get more to commit if there are less races. The only change to the purse that I see as a possibility at this point is to raise the start money by $100. It is already an expensive show for the promoters.

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2 hours ago, MHL941 said:

Purse.  Need to step it up as has been discussed on here over the years.  The cars and motors cost so much more and they race for the same money they did 20 years ago and also pay a little more to make the field. I think it may be a little better this year as Dunn will be racing the SDS as Drellos sounds like he is going to as well according to his interview DDD.  Need some more good young talent 

I’m done with the purse argument. Promoters put up big purses and the drivers don’t show up so enough of that excuse. 

Plus look at the sportsman class. They can get 60+ cars signed in for a regular Saturday night racing for $500. 

Modified racing is a regional thing so why bother running outside the region? Double up on the tracks that do it well. I’ve often said, make the Syracuse area your ground zero and draw a circle around that and only include venues within 5-6 hours. Anything further is too much. Venues within 2-3 hours can get 2 or more tour stops while those in the 4-6 range could only get one. 

With the possible exception of dirt week all shows should be qualified and raced on the same day. And even dirt week is way too long. This isn’t nascar. And the problem is the more you do stuff like that the more you restrict the smaller teams. Crews are almost all volunteer and it’s asking a lot to have them take lots of time off work. To that end limit mid week races to Syracuse area venues only. Asking racers and crew to drive 10+ hours one way to race means 2+ days off work, hotels, etc. Get rid of pit strategy. Races shouldn’t be more than 100 laps. 100 laps or less tells me I need to get to the front now and reduces strategy. 

Just a few ideas. The best ideas though should come from the drivers directly. Have a few focus groups and let them provide the insight. But I’ll caution you this; racers need to be policed and there needs to be tighter controls to reduce spending. Shit I watched amazing races 10-20 years ago and the competition was just as good or better even though the cars might have been fraction slower. Fans won’t notice a half second a lap difference.

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If they want to do it on weekends only, then you have to choose where you want to run. It's not fair to average joe that races one night a week and don't follow a series cause he can't afford it for a superstar that can and they do show up points for that night. What if that scenario turned into a tie in points? But without show up points average joe woulda been champion? With them superstar guy does better on last night and gets championship. 

Is that fair?

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22 minutes ago, dan dan said:

If they want to do it on weekends only, then you have to choose where you want to run. It's not fair to average joe that races one night a week and don't follow a series cause he can't afford it for a superstar that can and they do show up points for that night. What if that scenario turned into a tie in points? But without show up points average joe woulda been champion? With them superstar guy does better on last night and gets championship. 

Is that fair?

This is what I was trying to get people to understand on Facebook , but for some reason they just could not understand it . I agree with this 100% . This year the home track races had no bearing on the overall SDS title . As a result , weekly points races should count the same every week  . Having show up points at a SDS sanctioned track for the night that the SDS has a Saturday night show somewhere else only helps the touring guys .To me that shows favoritism to the track followers that follow the SDS . Pick what you want to follow . 

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they already did this weekend thing a few years ago and drivers bitched about taking a payday away on a regular night so back to mid week they went. The SDS is the premiere touring series in the northeast so why cant they pay a premiere purse ? Late Models and Sprint Cars race for no less than $10k to win at every race. Its time to take modified racing out of the stone age and put it on terms that makes sense. 

100 laps 10k with a 1k to start will attract drivers and teams. Stop pounding the back gate with divisions that no one cares to watch and just do a 1 division event and now you got your self a program worth attending. I believe USNA use to do 1 division shows. Make modified racing an event that people get excited about. See Eastern States and Oswego. If you pay them they will show up. 

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There's plenty of issues with getting more series followers but you can end the discussion at the purse. Sure if you paid 8 to 10 grand to win every race and 5 or 600 to start maybe a few more guys follow but the purse isnt going up that much. Plain and simple. Imagine telling the fans like the ones on this message board who bitch about a $4 hot dog that admission is going up by $10 and they're racing less laps??????? 

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19 minutes ago, premiumdiesel said:

Admission shouldnt be near $30.. $18 max

Many tracks are $15 for a regular show. You cant pay the SDS purse (even though its low) for $3 more. 

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48 minutes ago, premiumdiesel said:

Admission shouldnt be near $30.. $18 max

For a regular show? Sure thats fine. 18 and lower is great. But if the SDS series is in town I wouldn't expect to pay anything less than $25 for admission. The purse has to come from somewhere and most of us can agree that the purse the guys run for hasn't changed much. Plus the track isn't there to lose money, they want to make a profit too. 

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Drop the time trials! The lower dollar teams already know they can’t compete against time trials, therefore most are running for a less than tenth place finish before the feature starts. Deyo’s series provides a better chance for lower budget teams to have an opportunity. How about 70 lap races, cautions do not count? The three lap rule for cautions is taking away green flag racing. I was not at OCFS for their race but the cautions at Oswego were frustrating for me and the fans we were sitting around. We don’t pay our hard earned dollars to watch laps click off under caution!

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1 hour ago, premiumdiesel said:

Admission shouldnt be near $30.. $18 max

You just said you think they should pay $10k to win and $1k to start....a purse like that means admission will be much higher than $18.

Higher purses doesn't always equal higher car counts....there are plenty of examples of high paying shows not being supported by race teams.

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I like the idea of a minimum $10K to win and $1K to start. Personally, I'd have no problem paying extra admission for that. This year I went to The Big Show at Albany Saratoga and Mr. Dirt at Lebanon Valley. Paid $35 to go to each race  (top row reserved at Malta and tower seat at LV) and it was totally worth it. Big Show paid the $10K to win and Howard paid $25K to win for Mr Dirt. Both places were packed on their respective race nights.

Time trials need to go. I think they are a waste, especially when the fast timers are all up front for the heats. Makes for uneventful heat races. Draw for heats and make them 10 laps in distance. I'd rather see the big names possibly come from the back and work into a qualifying position.

Heat race winners should run a 5 lap sprint to determine the front starting positions for the feature. All other qualified cars do a draw. 

Double file restarts should be for the entire race and not stop at lap 90 as has been the case for the past several years. No reason to have single file restarts when there are less than 10 laps to go. I'm OK with the 100 lap distance where the cautions count up to lap 80. If the SDS was to do away with caution laps, make the races 75 or 80 green flag laps.

If the SDS races are run during the week, only have 1 support division. If the SDS race is on the weekend, go with 2 support divisions.

Excellent topic...........

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