We Started Running on Four Cylinders

Salt Creek Sports Car Club (SCSCC) is a dedicated group of autocross and racing enthusiasts from the Chicago land area (including several members in Michigan, Wisconsin and Indiana). Our earliest roots date back to the Four Cylinder Club of America, which began in Glendale, California. Four Cylinder club grew to be one of the largest automobile clubs in the U.S., becoming national in scope in 1952. The Salt Creek Chapter of the Four Cylinder Club was formed in April of 1958. Because Salt Creek was so far from National Headquarters, participation in national events was virtually impossible. Thus, in October of 1959, the Salt Creek Chapter severed ties with the Four Cylinder Club andformed Salt Creek Sports Car Club. We later joined other clubs in the Midwestern Council of Sports Car Clubs (MC) which presently consists of 8 clubs and over 800 members.

SCSCC' s motto is Working Together. By doing this through the years our members have broadened the scope of the Club so as to offer something of interest to almost everyone. In addition to the Midwestern Council Road Racing and Time Trial Series, our annual calendar includes rallies, autocrosses, a family picnic, and our monthly meetings. Our season ends each year with our annual awards dinner, where we honor the SCSCC Member of the Year; MC Road Racing Champion; MC Time Trials Champion; SCSCC Autocross Champion; and Rally Champion.

SCSCC has over 100 members interested in motoring for fun and sport. General membership is open to all over 18 years of age and is based upon participation in meetings, events, and the general vote of the membership. Whether you're primarily interested in the various events or just socializing, we encourage you to come to our monthly meetings and share your views with us. The general meeting is held on the first Thursday of each month, approximately 8:00 PM. (Click here for meeting info, and hit "back" on your browser to return here). If you have any questions or would like upcoming event information, please feel free to contact us.

What do we do these days?

In an autocross, a single car is timed while it negotiates a paved course, the object being to establish the lowest possible elapsed time among cars in its class. Cars are classified according to the level of preparation and relative performance, with each car getting three to six attempts to set its best time. In an autocross, only one car at a time is allowed on the course, which is typically set up with rubber cones on a large, paved parking lot in such a way as to emphasize handling and keep speeds low (usually under 50 mph.) These features remove the hazards of wheel to wheel racing and make for a relatively safe sport. The only safety equipment required is a helmet, seat belts, and a car in proper running condition. While there are classes for all types of cars from stock econoboxes to fully race-prepared formula cars, most cars are stock or slightly modified sporty street cars. Autocrosses tend to be fairly social events with plenty of time between runs to adjust tire pressures, help man the course, watch the competition, or just shoot the breeze.

Salt Creek is a member of the Midwestern Council of Sports Car Clubs and participates in the Council amateur road racing program. This program provides traditional club racing for sports cars similar to the program conducted by SCCA. Under this program, automobiles are classified according to their type, size, level of modification, and relative performance and compete with other cars in their class on paved, closed circuit road courses. The cars and drivers must meet stringent safety requirements, which include rollbars, fire systems, helmets, firesuits, and a full five point safety harness. Drivers must obtain a special license to compete, which is granted when a special driver's school is successfully completed. Each year, about a dozen races are held on alternate weekends starting in late April, at such tracks as Blackhawk Farms (Rockton, IL), Gingerman (South Haven, MI) Grattan (Grattan, MI) and Road America (Elkhart Lake, WI). Many Council drivers go on to race in the SCCA on a national level.

For those who enjoy road racing but lack the resources to participate, there is the Race Workers Program. This program provides the needed manpower to conduct the many functions connected with organizing and conducting a race. This program provides an excellent way to get close and participate in this exciting sport.

Between autocrossing and road racing are time trials. A time trial shares the characteristics of the autocross by featuring a single car competing against the clock. The cars compete within four main classifications based on car preparation: Stock, Prepared, Modified and Race. These four classifications are then broken into a number of performance based classes (for example: A, B, C, & D, etc.). Time trials have the taste of road racing because the events are held on many of the road courses mentioned above. Thus, time trials are high speed, single-car events emphasizing handling and safety.

Rallying is a form of competition that involves precision driving on public streets. It does not stress speed or handling. Each car has both a driver and a navigator. Together they read route instructions, calculate time and distance, and precisely trace a prescribed course.

There are two basic styles of rallies:

Time-Speed-Distance (TSD) Rally: The goal is to drive the exact route in an exact amount of time. A Rallymaster provides route instructions telling you where to go and how fast to travel. You must then determine the time it takes to travel the route and the total route length. In TSD Rallying, too fast is just as bad as too slow; your score is calculated on how close you match the target time.

Gimmick Rally: Route instructions determine the course to be followed, but scoring is based on your ability to deal with various gimmicks. You may be asked to count mailboxes, solve riddles based on street signs, navigate based on your knowledge of trivia, or just about anything else the Rallymaster can think up. Rallies usually end at a restaurant where the participants eat, drink, and tally the scores.




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