FROM: Skip Barber RE: USRRC
LAKEVILLE, Conn. (Nov. 25) - When I left the October 1 New York meeting that initiated the USRRC, I was full of hope for the future of sports car racing as a professional sport in the U.S. The general concept was that a new company —not the SCCA, not Professional Sports Car, not a reincarnation of the old IMSA —run by a strong representative board of directors, would tackle this difficult job. The major tracks committed, knowing we were "investing" in the future rather than being simply the immediate beneficiaries of change.
That optimism slipped away as time went by with little coordination of effort. There were conflicting messages being sent; no schedules or rules being issued; and a Board not announced. Concerned that a great opportunity was disappearing, I decided to commit my efforts and the resources of my company, its personnel and financing, and to take advantage of our strong and diverse ties in the sports marketing and automotive industries. Mike Rand agreed to be the General Manager. I didn’t think we were fighting to get control of a "diamond." Rather, we were taking a "piece of coal" and trying to make something good out of it. A daunting job that shouldn'’t b tackled with any encumbrances.
I believed an arrangement with the SCCA had been finalized the second week of November, one that gave the new company both the real independence, as well as the perception of independence, necessary to inspire confidence and trust. The SCCA was to participate as a vendor providing services as needed, catastrophic insurance and FIA listings, with a relationship not unlike the one it has with Toyota Atlantic and Barber Dodge. With the mutual economic benefits of shared services, the SCCA would have sports car racing "united" under it's umbrella.
It turns out we don'’t have the appropriate arrangement with SCCA. Therefore I'’m disengaging: I wnon’t be the "spokesman" or be on the Board. Obviously we will not provide the funding. Mike Rand has decided not to be the General Manager. We both, with considerable regret, apologize to anyone who has made plans based on our commitments.
The Lime Rock "model"—sports cars, GT cars and the Trans-Am on the same weekend —is the right format. We look forward to our third such event Memorial Day and hope the USRRC is a great success. -end
Contact: Rick Roso, Skip Barber Racing School, 860.435.1300