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Estimated cost for season of Ferari Challenge

Discussion in 'Other Racing' started by Matt LaMotte, Apr 29, 2009.

  1. Matt LaMotte

    Matt LaMotte Formula 3

    Oct 30, 2002
    1,865
    Pensacola
    After spending a few days two weeks ago at Road Atlanta watching the Challenge guys tear up the track I started wondering how much it might cost to run a team for the season. Car, trailer, parts and whatever else may go along. I know there is no set price but does anyone have a guess?
     
  2. jk0001

    jk0001 F1 Veteran

    Oct 18, 2005
    6,648
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    Jim
    If you have to ask, you can't afford it. Unless you have an extra 1 million dollars just lying around.
     
  3. CornersWell

    CornersWell F1 Rookie

    Nov 24, 2004
    4,564
    Been a while since I ran the numbers, but figure on 25K per weekend for support, disposables and pre- and post-inspection. Damage is extra. On top of that, factor in the cost of the car and FNA's entry fees. Travel, hotel and catering are in addition.

    CW
     
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  4. carguyjohn350

    carguyjohn350 F1 Rookie
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    Mar 7, 2007
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    John P
    Well I know I cant afford it (yet) but I would still be interested in a ballpark answer.

    edit: Thanks CornersWell
     
  5. CornersWell

    CornersWell F1 Rookie

    Nov 24, 2004
    4,564
    More than welcome. One thing is certain: it ain't cheap!

    CW
     
  6. Fast_ian

    Fast_ian Two Time F1 World Champ

    Sep 25, 2006
    23,267
    Campbell, CA
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    Ian Anderson
    For some reason that I can't remember now I have a $1 million figure in my mind. That allows you to do the "gentleman racer" thing and just turn up at the appointed time.

    BTW - You may want to ask this q in the "Challenge cars" forum.

    Cheers,
    Ian
     
  7. CornersWell

    CornersWell F1 Rookie

    Nov 24, 2004
    4,564
    $1MM is a commonly heard number. But, I think that you'll find the actual number isn't that high. That said, including the purchase of the car, it can easily be $500K for the first season. EASILY. And, that's just to show up.

    If you want to be at (or near) the front of the pack, driver development and testing work is required.

    CW
     
  8. dan360

    dan360 F1 Rookie

    Feb 18, 2003
    2,669
    Boston
    Yep 500k-1m is the right ball park including buying a car. 300K for a new one, probably c180-200 for a decent used one right now (although with the good work at the first two weekends at least 3 or 4 are seriously out of circulation right now!). Most of the guys have at least 2 cars since T-cars are now allowed again. A good hard crash is 50K plus, bumpers and splitters at several grand each are almost consumables, tires are 2.5K and will do 5 hot laps and then another 40-50 good laps and then they fall off dramatically (if you run track days you could run another 100 laps and not worry but if you are trying to go fast then 60 laps is the max). 2500 km brake life and 16K for the brakes the list goes on.

    All that said, the prices are pretty comparable with grand-am GT racing in a 997GT porsche, everything on those is very expensive also. They are in a similar ball park performance wise. The P-car is probably 3-5 seconds quicker a lap and is a true race car and more difficult to drive, the Challenge car is remarkably close as a device to a full pro-GT car for a gentleman's race series. For example running a GT car in the 24 at Daytona is in the 2-300K range for arrive and drive depending on the team (ie 50-75K a guy for 4 guys), all in probably 100K a guy including testing days and damage :)

    FC is run very professionally by Grand-Am and the guys at the front take it very seriously, the top 10-15 guys are all quite close and you need to run probably 10 test days to work on setup etc.
     
  9. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
    Staff Member Admin Owner Miami 2018

    Dec 1, 2000
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    Rob Lay
    Running a Ferrari Challenge in NASA ST1 (360 & 430) or ST2 (348 & 355) = $1-5k a weekend with tires and entry.
     
  10. cgh1

    cgh1 Formula Junior

    Nov 5, 2003
    375
    Charlotte, NC
    Full Name:
    Chuck Hawks
    Dan360 is pretty much spot on. (Sounds like you've got some experience or been really close to it! :)).
    Rob is in a great series with NASA for shakedown and/or testing the waters to see if you want to step up and play bigger in FC. NASA is good racing and great people.

    Should you choose to make a move into racing, give me a shout as I am happy to help in driver development, coaching, co-driving, etc.
    I've got lots of experience in F-cars and coaching/driving cars of all types.

    Also like to throw in a shout out for Peter (ProCoach) who's creating a great race coaching and development studio at VIR complete with simulators where we can work away from the track.

    Cheers & C U @ d'Track!!
    C

    Chuck Hawks,
    Pro-Driver, Coach, Instructor & Facilitator
    DreamsFulfilled, LLC & rEvolution Performance Driving System ©
     
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  11. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
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    Dec 1, 2000
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    Ferrari Challenge would be a step down in talent compared to NASA or SCCA. As said, Ferrari Challenge is a "gentleman's" series for those with little concern of budget. It is what it is and great at it.
     
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  12. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Four Time F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed

    Apr 28, 2003
    41,506
    Texas!
    This has always been the deal killer for me when thinking about club racing. I remember being at TWS for a track day sponsered by Risi. One guy has just got his 360 CH out of the shop. He lost it in T2. Estimated damage -- $50k.

    Dale
     
  13. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
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    Dec 1, 2000
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    Spec Miata, even a 355 Challenge doesn't cost that much. I took my RX8 to Jano every Sunday night returning from a race weekend. Couple times I had damage on every panel down the side includding front and rear bumper. Parts & labor never more than $2,000. What's expensive is taking a street car out on the track. Not only chance insurance won't pay, but putting your life at risk without the safety equipment.
     
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  14. stewf

    stewf Karting
    Sponsor

    Dec 5, 2005
    162
    Lewisville/N. Cali
    Full Name:
    Stew F
    Cost to run a team -
    Ferrari Dealership - 15-30 mil???
    Transporter - 150 -200k
    Asstd tools - 15k
    Insurance - 10-20k??
    Spare parts - 10-20k
    Misc crew - 60-100k

    Car Owner costs -
    Car - 260k
    wheels - 30k
    weekend costs - 25-35k excluding damage
    travel/hotel - @ 10k annual
    spare car - 260k

    somewhat rough estimates........
     
  15. b-mak

    b-mak F1 Veteran

    This is true for all meanings of the above sentence.
     
  16. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Four Time F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed

    Apr 28, 2003
    41,506
    Texas!
    Tru dat. This guy ended up in the ditch outside T2. (Not that you have ever been there, but I'm sure you have seen other people there :)) Wiped out the entire front clip, which had just been repaired by FOH. I believe this was in 2004, and he was still racing in the series.

    Dale
     
  17. John Se

    John Se Karting

    Mar 15, 2005
    201
    Scottsdañe
    Where do you start counting, where do you end?. And if you have a larger budget then you for sure will find a way to spend it.
     
  18. CornersWell

    CornersWell F1 Rookie

    Nov 24, 2004
    4,564
    There are a few who've posted who don't seem to think much of Challenge drivers. While there is a wide spread of talent on the grid, there are some who are seriously fast. To say there's no talent in the Challenge is flat out incorrect.

    CW
     
  19. jk0001

    jk0001 F1 Veteran

    Oct 18, 2005
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    #19 jk0001, Apr 30, 2009
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2009
    I would not say that the Ferrari Challenge is a step down in Talent, if anything it on the same level as the SCCA & NASA. Many of the racers are extremely talented, and quite a few end up in rides in the 24 Hrs Rolex and Le mans 24. It is a no contact series. You just can't buy a challenge car and expect to go racing, you need to get a license and put your time in. It can be a challenging as the Porsche Super Cup cars.
     
  20. Schatten

    Schatten F1 World Champ
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    Apr 3, 2001
    11,237
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    Randy
    Yup, you'd know it!

    And the cost to run a competitive LeMons car? =)
     
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  21. CRG125

    CRG125 Formula 3

    Feb 7, 2005
    2,347
    Los Angeles, Ca
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    Vivek
    You know with the budget cap next year in F1, its probably just as expensive to run an F1 then a challenge team
     
  22. enjoythemusic

    enjoythemusic F1 World Champ

    Apr 20, 2002
    10,675
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    Steven
    Am sure there are some very talented drivers in the CS, yet from talking with a few longtime race supporter staffers (not CS but vintage Fcars and other vintage race cars that have seen SC races) and they both laugh about the Ferrari CS. Good way for Fcar dealers to make long green, that is obvious. Odds are the very serious drivers stuck in America can be found at SCCA National or Pro levels either before going higher end full pro or between higher up 'jobs' (Rolex, LeMans, etc). Then again not eveyone is really seekin to be a real racer (per se).

    Of course 'worth' and 'value' are very different things. If you have $650K or so burning a hole in your pocket and for some reason you want to race around other like-spec Ferrari cars the CS is one way to go about it. Smart CS guys would obviously get proper shock rebuilds and engine refreshening (plus other bits) after every race or so. Naturally the most tesing the more $$ you'll need, and real racers test and tune often.

    Personally, if i had the money i'd go much faster and more capable open wheel for pretty much the same money as CS (or A HECK OF A LOT less depending on talent and your ambitions). Of course the CS series has that 'glamour' or 'romantic' thing i guess, so if you wanna do it go for it. Better to race than to never have raced. Just remember when you spin off the track to KEEP both feet in, don't let the now backwards car roll back out on the track in front of a lot of other cars. Thanks.
     
  23. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
    Staff Member Admin Owner Miami 2018

    Dec 1, 2000
    50,071
    Southlake, TX
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    Rob Lay
    Didn't say there is no talent in the Challenge Series, but in comparison the best in the Challenge Series can't compete with the best in SCCA & NASA.

    The reason so many from Challenge Series race in Grand Am, ALMS, or even Le Mans is because of money, not such unbelievable talent they get a free ride. Ask Dan, ask Scott... Pro sports car racing is much more about money than talent. I'm great with that, there wouldn't be pro road racing without it because there aren't enough sponsors out there to support a full field.

    Scott Tucker? Most would agree the dominating driver in Ferrari Challenge. Yes he has an unlimited budget even for Ferrari Challenge standards and a great team, but we should use him as the best comparison. He has been racing now 5 years and I'm willing to bet in more race weekends and sanctioning bodies than anyone else in the world. He hasn't missed any Ferrari Challenge races since 2006, but has also filled his schedule with SCCA, Porsche Cup, and Grand Am races. He has a full time coach and seemingly unlimited budget to get the best equipment and most track time. How does he compare to SCCA Club Racers?

    2006 SCCA Runoffs: Touring 1 - Scott Tucker 13th of 24 Final, 19th of 24 Best Lap 3.6 seconds off the pace, 19th of 24 Qualifying 6.7 seconds off the pace.
    2008 SCCA Runoffs: Touring 1 - Scott Tucker 3rd of 18 Final, 4th of 24 Best Lap 1.8 seconds off the pace, 4th of 18 Qualifying 1.1 seconds off the pace.

    Scott running a 360 Challenge at Texas Motor Speedway: http://www.sowdivscca.org/raceresults/2006/20060507/Group6.pdf
    Me running a 355 Challenge at Texas Motor Speedway: http://www.sowdivscca.org/raceresults/2008/20080502/Gp6SatOfficial.pdf

    The T1 lap record at Texas Motor Speedway is 1:29.677.

    Mark McKenzie? Long time ago Mark and I used to have great head to head battles in the 355 Challenge. These days he is much faster than I am, he's taken his game to another level with the Ferrari Challenge series, Ferrari of Houston, and private coaching. He has left me in his dust. How would Mark do at the SCCA Runoffs? I think Mark would do well, but there would be 10 guys in any class he picked with the same talent or better. From there it would come down to budget along with the manufacturer and SCCA politics game.

    Steve Hill? I haven't kept up with him much. I know he did one pro race 8-9 years ago in a Porsche. I haven't seen him around here local amateur racing since then, but maybe he was doing PCA racing. He's mainly known as a street car track day instructor that is now having some retirement fun.

    So these are the best in Ferrari Challenge and you would put them against Tony Ave, Eric Foss, Stan Wilson, Andrew Aquilante, John M Buttermore, Rob Hines, Don Knowles, Robert Huffmaster, Rick Gilhart, Joel Lipperini, Will Turner, Tony Rivera, John Heinricy, Lance Knupp, Bobby Archer, Cindi Lux... the list goes on and on.

    Ferrari Challenge is great budget free gentleman racing with all the arrive and drive bells and whistles. There are also very talented drivers, but that's not where the young and old talents go that are looking for the best of the best.

    Here is Scott last weekend racing the Grand AM DP...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TcAyLKwL9s8
     
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  24. CornersWell

    CornersWell F1 Rookie

    Nov 24, 2004
    4,564
    #24 CornersWell, Apr 30, 2009
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2009
    Tell all that to Cort Wagner, among others.

    There are plenty of drivers who could step up, if they chose. They choose not to for whatever reasons. I wouldn't expect a young-up-and-comer to be in the Challenge. Ever, really. First, the costs are too high, and you have to own the car to drive it. So, honestly, not that many interested parties have $500K - $1MM to throw at having a good time. Second, who's watching?

    I know of a number of Challenge drivers who've jumped into GrandAm. Are they the next F1 hot shoe? Nope. Unlikely that will ever be the case. However, these people are not intent on making their livings from racing. Rather, this is how they spend their money and enjoy the sport. But, don't be dismissive.

    CW
     
  25. b-mak

    b-mak F1 Veteran

    Excellent drivers, all.

    In contrast, let's not forget the FC "racers" who have been "racing" in FC for, what, the last FIFTEEN FREAKING YEARS with really accomplishing anything.

    I'll give them one thing, though. They're one step above the dudes who do track days and tell their family and friends they were "racing".
     

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