We realize not everyone is willing or able to just go out and buy a race car when beginning their vintage racing adventure. Nor is it always advisable to do so. You may not yet know for sure what type of car you really want to race. Or you may not even be totally convinced you will really enjoy the sport (Wrong!You’ll love it! We promise.)
To help you get started, RMVR provides several avenues if you don’t wish to buy a race car first thing.
Participate in our Precision Driving School
As part of our annual spring Drivers’ School there is a Precision Driving School curriculum structured to accommodate using your normal street car. It need not be race prepared, only safety checked. You’ll still learn all the basics of racing with lots of track time and professional instruction. It’s a great way to see if you want to take the next step and buy a race car.
Apply for a car scholarship
Currently RMVR offers three race cars as “Scholarships”. You must apply and be accepted for each program. If you are interested in driving one of these cars in RMVR’s Drivers’ School, please apply early! The cars are a Formula Ford, a Formula Vee and a Triumph Spitfire.
Formula Ford Arrive & Drive Program:
The RMVR Formula Ford (FF) Race Group offers a vintage Winkelmann Formula Ford as a Scholarship Program to those interested in racing a Formula Ford with RMVR. This is an Arrive & Drive Program intended to increase the interest in racing with RMVR and, in particular, racing a Formula Ford.
This is a voluntary collective effort by RMVR FF racers. The car is donated for use in the Program. Through a collective effort, routine maintenance, tires, car storage, fuel for the weekend and transportation of the car to/from the track is all provided. Trackside support (mechanical and moral) is also a part of the Arrive & Drive Program. While the Arrive & Drive program is meant to remove as many barriers to trying vintage racing as possible, the scholarship recipients are still encouraged to “get their hands dirty” and help out with their weekend activities and preparation as much as possible.
To make this happen, an initial pool of money to kickstart the Program was created by a one-time voluntary $40 contribution by RMVR FF racers. Further, to sustain the program, at each race weekend a voluntary $10 contribution to the pool is solicited from each FF racer.
Key aspects of this Arrive & Drive Program are:
- Those interested in the Scholarship must submit an application. Applications are accepted between January 1st and March 15th.
- The car is available for the spring RMVR Drivers’ School weekend and all regular RMVR events.
- Preference will be given to applicants who intend to purchase an RMVR eligible FF or CF and who wish to do the RMVR School plus two subsequent events during the year with the intent of getting an RMVR Competition License and/or to those who desire to race a FF with RMVR on an ongoing basis, but wish to first “try one on.”
- For the RMVR Drivers’ School, the Program is offered free as an Arrive & Drive weekend. However, the recipient must first join RMVR ($75), pay the RMVR “Mentor Program” entry fee (currently $350 which includes some additional benefits), and have their own (or borrowed) racing gear. For racers new to open wheel cars, the car will also be made be available for a required track lapping day (track fee paid for by the recipient) in the car prior to the school weekend.
- For subsequent race weekends the Arrive & Drive Program will cost a $400 Support Fee (paid into the FF Scholarship Program) and a $300 “deposit” that is refundable upon the purchase of an RMVR eligible FF or CF within 1 year of drivers school. The deposit is forfeited if no car is purchased within that 1 year period. Additionally, the driver is responsible for the regular RMVR entry fee (and/or any desired track lapping day fees).
- Necessary Liability & Damage Control stuff: Obviously a waiver of liability for the use of the race car will be required. As with any racing, in the event of damage to the car due to an accident (regardless of fault) or abuse of the car, the driver is responsible for repairs. In the case of driving the Scholarship car, to minimize repair costs, repairs to the Scholarship car will be done as much as possible by collective free voluntary time and talent of the RMVR FF Racers Group (which is quite awesome). But all out-of-pocket costs for needed repairs will be the responsibility of the driver. To limit financial exposure, that out-of-pocket liability to the driver will be capped at a maximum of $2,500.
Bill Temple Memorial Drivers’ School Scholarship: Through an extremely generous offer by Belinda Temple, the Vee Drivers Group has established the Bill Temple Memorial Scholarship. Bill’s RCA Formula Vee #18 will be provided for the annual Drivers’ School along with all supplies and mechanical support—free of charge to an interested and qualified student each year. If a scholarship recipient needs an advisor for the weekend, one will be provided. The Drivers’ School entry fee, successful medical examination, and personal safety gear will be the responsibility of the student. The scholarship recipient will be selected by a group of RMVR Vee drivers. Priority for selection will be based on hours of service to RMVR and the likelihood of the student becoming a regular driver. For further information or to apply for this Scholarship, contact Bill Fleming at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ray Jones Memorial Drivers’ School Scholarship: As our second Scholarship, the Historic and Small Bore Race Groups support the Ray Jones Memorial Drivers’ School Scholarship. The former Ray Jones 1964 #92 Triumph Spitfire, “Abby,” was donated by Janine Jones in 2010. It is prepared with donations from the Historic Drivers Group, and cared for by Bill Fleming and Tony Peak. The scholarship provides free use of “Abby” for the annual Drivers’ School. The two race groups provide support for the car including fuel and supplies. Tony and Bill will prepare the car to fit the selected driver. The Drivers’ School entry fee, successful medical examination, and personal safety gear will be the responsibility of the student. The scholarship winner will be selected from applications received by April 15th of each year. Considerations for selection include history of membership and volunteer work with RMVR, and likelihood of entering a car with the club as a regular racer. For further information, contact Bill Fleming at email@example.com, Bill Rosenbach at wgrosenbach@juno. com, or Tony Peak at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Find an RMVR mentor
Another avenue to get in a race car before buying one for yourself is to participate in the RMVR Mentor program. In this program, an existing racer loans a race car to you for the RMVR Drivers’ School and mentors you through that process. The mentor, in addition to helping a friend, receives future race entry benefits, but most importantly it’s a way to get friends introduced to racing. So don’t feel shy about approaching an existing RMVR racer about the possibility of being your mentor.
The mentored student (you) gets an entry into the Drivers’ School; a two year membership in RMVR; a one year subscription to Victory Lane Magazine; and an introduction to corner worker marshalling for a coupe of events. All for only $450!
The car’s owner and mentor needs to formally initiate the process naming you as his/her protégé. Learn more about this exciting program: How to Mentor a New Driver.
Attend a Race School outside RMVR
Finally, if you don’t have a race car and aren’t able to take advantage of one of the programs listed above, there are numerous racing schools (e. g. Mike Pettiford’s Go4IT, Bonderrant, Skip Barber, etc.) offering excellent instruction in many different types of cars. Successful completion of any of these schools will serve in lieu of our required Spring Drivers’ School in order to qualify for a full RMVR Competition License.
If there’s will, there’s a way even if you don’t currently own a race car.