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Old 04-03-2008, 11:11 AM   #61
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Funny how many full size car racers/enthusiasts we have in here. I loved my 1997 Integra Type R and the many autocrosses & HPDEs I did with it, along with the many, many friends I met at those events, but cost was getting too much (insurance, storage, maintenance, car payment, etc) for my budget. About 6 months after selling it, I bought my B4 and started racing. I glance back sometimes, but will never turn around and go back especially with these fuel prices!
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Old 04-03-2008, 11:18 AM   #62
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There are more RC vehicles out there than ever before. Its not the retailers or the manufacturers fault that fewer people are chosing to use them for orgainized events.

Its really the fault of the individual racer. Lately, nobody seems to be able to enjoy it it unless they can do it on their rediculously narrow terms.

The forums are full of stories about how people quit because they didnt like foams, NiMhs, stock motors, 1/10 scale, 1/8 scale, 1/12 scale, nitro, buggies, trucks, the length of races, the time it takes . . . its agonizing.

How about this. If you have a track, frequent it. If you dont have a track, start a club and try to grow it into something. If the class at the track you like isnt there, step up and participate in a class that is popular. It won't kill you.

You can advertize during the Superbowl and put on National events and even get TV coverage but it wont do as much good as simply getting 5% of the people who already have race quality RC vehicles to show up at the tracks and clubs that are already out there.

Nothing draws a crowd like a crowd. When people see there are 50-100 doing it, they'll be much more likely to try it. But if its the same 10-20 people every week, people will stay away no matter how hard you advertize it.
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Old 04-03-2008, 11:24 AM   #63
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This is a great thread and there have been some really good ideas here.

Where still talking what if's, and no one has jumped off the sofa to do any thing about it yet. - ahem - tom (lol)

Still baby steps need to be taken. These are all great ideas now we just need someone who is in the know, to take them. I dont own a HS so I cant start any thing but if I did I would like to thing that in addition to what we already talked about in this post, would be to have my own internet store. Not on ebay, but on my store sight. Charge full retail, as long as its competitive, but offer free or standard cheap USPS shipping.

But either way now all we need is someone to do something. Tom - Just an idea. Mabie you can contact Associated, losi, ect.... with your ideas and this thread and see if you can get the ball rolling. Mabie Traxxas will even throw in a couple of Jato's for the Pinks race. The cost of 2 Jato's would be far less than the air time they can get, compaired to what a commercial would cost.

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Old 04-03-2008, 11:31 AM   #64
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OG I think you are right. What would even have more power behind it is if we ALL emailed the various manufacturers and got them involved in this discussion. In the end their insight may help refine this brainstorming session.
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Old 04-03-2008, 11:32 AM   #65
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If a tracks focus is on a $1000 class then they are going to have trouble drawing people who don't want to use their next morgage check on an r/c car. If 1/10th 2wd is not popular at your local track then you need to step up & make it mainstream. It will actually improve your driving more then any other class will.
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Old 04-03-2008, 11:33 AM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick Hohwart View Post
Which hobby are you talking about, R/C cars or R/C racing? They are as different as figure skating and ice hockey.

R/C cars ARE mainstream. There are few other products that are sold in such a wide variety of stores.

R/C racing is not mainstream. I have been around R/C since 1982, mostly as a pro racer and as a business owner ('85-'99). The main difference from the beginning to now is the fact that R/C is marketed to a different demographic than it was at its peak.

R/C racing is an adult (16+) hobby. It requires a substantial financial commitment (like most hobbies) that requires a decent amount of stability and a decent job. It seems like that more and more we are trying to get kids involved and I think this is the wrong direction to take.

I saw a post talking about $400.00 to get into racing. I see these things and wonder why this is so much now when in the late '80s and early '90 (R/C Racing Golden - 25000 ROAR members) that amount would have been considered normal. I spent almost $200.00 to get into R/C racing in 1982. We are pushing racing to the wrong people if they think $400.00 is too much. The cars are undervalued as it is. The competition segment is barely profitable and the cars are worth the full retail price.

R/C racing is a miniature form of full scale racing. We should be promoting the hobby to those that are interested in full scale racing and show it as a safer and less expensive alternative to the real thing. I road race a Honda Civic and know that R/C cars are an excellent alternative because you deal with the same basic challenges - driving, setup, maintenance, etc.. In fact, competition R/C cars are more sophisticated than most real race cars and when completed is more adjustable than a F1 car. But how many people know that?

Enough babbling. To sum it up I think we need to target middle class adult racing fans by showing them that R/C racing is a way to compete with less expense and danger.
Wow excuse my ignorance but WTF are you talking about it's an adult hobby it should be a family hobby so getting kids into racing is the wrong direction to go man thats a dumb statement, racing gives kids excitement and gets them off of there butts instead of playing video games all day, if you start them as a kid even if they get out of it they will return with there own kids someday as i have.
I started when i was 8 with my dad and did it until about 16 then when i got my car and i found other interests, but here i am today almost 20yrs later back in it again with my 8yr old.
We are a family that also races but we race MX not cars and mx racing is not cheap either but when you want to get more peoples interest in this hobby you have to make it affordable in the beginning and once they get the bug then they can go out and buy an expensive racer but not everbody wants to drop a ton of money for something they are not sure if they are gonna like.
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Old 04-03-2008, 11:47 AM   #67
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I think kids of all ages love RC vehicles. But the organized racing that Rick Hohwart was speaking of is a tough sell for kids under 12 most of whome cant work on the cars themselves much less have the money to buy them and dont have dads willing to do it for them.
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Old 04-03-2008, 12:00 PM   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick Hohwart View Post
R/C racing is an adult (16+) hobby. It requires a substantial financial commitment (like most hobbies) that requires a decent amount of stability and a decent job. It seems like that more and more we are trying to get kids involved and I think this is the wrong direction to take.


R/C racing is a miniature form of full scale racing. We should be promoting the hobby to those that are interested in full scale racing and show it as a safer and less expensive alternative to the real thing. I road race a Honda Civic and know that R/C cars are an excellent alternative because you deal with the same basic challenges - driving, setup, maintenance, etc.. In fact, competition R/C cars are more sophisticated than most real race cars and when completed is more adjustable than a F1 car. But how many people know that?

Enough babbling. To sum it up I think we need to target middle class adult racing fans by showing them that R/C racing is a way to compete with less expense and danger.
I disagree that it is an adult hobby. BMX racing or go kart racing is expensive and funded by parents, but it's not an adult hobby. Maybe a better phrase would have been "adult funded hobby".

But I do agree that RC RACING is a miniature form of full scale racing - a cheaper, safer alternative to full size racing.

So, market RC bashing to the X Box kids, and RC racing to the people looking for a cheaper safer alternative to full size racing.

If my son and I weren't racing RC cars, he'd be racing a go kart (with my financial support). We would not be playng Playstation3. Just re-inforcing my belief that RC RACING is not competing with video games. (It may be competing with the small niche of people that have a $500 seat, wheel, and pedals hooked up to their PC for racing simulations -- but that's not the same as the kid playing Guitar Hero).

Last edited by Hawk6; 04-03-2008 at 12:12 PM.
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Old 04-03-2008, 12:14 PM   #69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed237 View Post
I think kids of all ages love RC vehicles. But the organized racing that Rick Hohwart was speaking of is a tough sell for kids under 12 most of whome cant work on the cars themselves much less have the money to buy them and dont have dads willing to do it for them.
Yes true but what kid under 12 in any sort of racing (bmx,go carts,motocross) can work on it themselves , It boils down to parental help get the parents involved with the kids thats number one.
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Old 04-03-2008, 12:42 PM   #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trx450racer174 View Post
Wow excuse my ignorance but WTF are you talking about it's an adult hobby it should be a family hobby so getting kids into racing is the wrong direction to go man thats a dumb statement, racing gives kids excitement and gets them off of there butts instead of playing video games all day, if you start them as a kid even if they get out of it they will return with there own kids someday as i have.
I started when i was 8 with my dad and did it until about 16 then when i got my car and i found other interests, but here i am today almost 20yrs later back in it again with my 8yr old.
We are a family that also races but we race MX not cars and mx racing is not cheap either but when you want to get more peoples interest in this hobby you have to make it affordable in the beginning and once they get the bug then they can go out and buy an expensive racer but not everbody wants to drop a ton of money for something they are not sure if they are gonna like.
I am completely and 100% confident with my statement. If you market an expensive hobby towards people that can't pay for it, you are doomed to fail. You, and your father, are the middle class people that we need to focus marketing on.

R/C racing can be a family hobby that youngsters can enjoy with their family.
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Old 04-03-2008, 12:48 PM   #71
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What 15 year old kid has $1500 lying around for a new r/c car? When I was 15 my $1500 had something else in mind. However, you will find plenty of kids willing to part with an xbox or ps3 for an r/c car instead. Just like many parents would gladly push their kids away from nintendo & get them into a productive hobby that will teach them about things they enjoy doing such as wrenching & racing.
Tracks simply need to make it a bigger priority to have a cheap healthy class that new comers can be drawn into & the people who run the track need to promote the hell outa it if they want it to stay healthy. Without a good foundation to grow on there will not be much of a future & 1/8th scale has been undercutting this foundation. I believe that if the li//bl & nitro 2wd class continue to grow w/ events such as the pro series then r/c racing will be headed back in the right direction because it is a cheap class that is easy to get people into.
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Old 04-03-2008, 12:54 PM   #72
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Some ideas:

Get some buddys together and pull out your cars and just fly em around SAFELY, anywhere, onroad or offroad, a set of doubles made of lite plywood covered with indoor outdoor carpet using chain links to adjust the heights. Like a painting easel. Jumping back and forth nailing the dubs is always fun.
At a tailgate party during a Supercross,motocross, baseballgame, carshow, carcruise, a fair, Mcdonalds, in front of a hobby shop, parts store, park, schools (I did this while waiting to pickup my kid, I went early and used the natural terrain to get big air in the parking lot.), sports fields i.e. little league and football, go cart tracks etc... SAFELY! No one wants their car or selves or kids crashed into! I talked to so many people with so many questions.
Then tell people how to get going ez, what and where to buy em.
My first exposure was watching 2 or 3 offroad Tamiyas racing in the parking lot in front of a hobbyshop. I didn't even know R/C cars like that existed.
Talk about chargin batteries, long runtimes now available and low maint. on the electrics end of it.
Tell em about rctech.net, the LHS/track and how to use em for all their questions.
Sum that thought up, WORD OF MOUTH.

Tell em that where you race it's full of beginners just drivin around and the best part of racing is:
YOU DON'T HAVE TO TURN OVER YOUR OWN CAR! JUST STAND THERE AND DRIVE AND CRASH AND DRIVE...
That is the most fun part of the sport/hobby anyway. Workin on em is a close second tho

How about a little stand/kiosk? at the mall like the cell phone, jewelry, nic nac, photo memorabilia, hats etc.
Have videos playin, again talk about the ease of entry to the hobby/sport.
RTR kits as examples and for sale. Where and how to get going.

Get a tiny track set up, an oval for onroad or a few small jumps and bumps at the local go cart track and have entry level cars or trucks to drive for a small fee.
Just like driving their carts. Pay a little and go drivin for a few laps.
They'd be hooked! Let em see how to charge batteries.Then show em how to get their own stuff!

Ask hobby shops and racetracks about bringing in newbies, would they give you a small break on the stuff you need like parts and track/race fees!
Tell em to mention your name for a small first timer discount and build points/credits for the one who referred em.
What better incentive to go hustle up some buddys and new hobbyists.

This is the best idea that I have come up with in my own opinion.
If I had a place I'd give a break for each referral and new hobbyist.
Works for all kinds of businesses.
Have a card to punch or swipe to keep history.

As far as racing goes:
Entry level incentives.
Cars for rent.
Rent a racer.
Onroad or offroad track.
Race fee and equipment rental for the day.
Easy.
RTR electric truck or buggy/car. They are tougher.
$15 entry and $10-$15 for the race setup. Parts not included.
Have a guy or two to help out.

MORE TIME DRIVING/RACING PER DAY!!!!!!!!
Larger fields, more racers per heat.
Like motocross.
Longer races = more track time per racer.
NOT EVERY DAY THOUGH!
Have 1 day and or 1 nite with this format.
If you like it, do it, if not, run the traditional style on an alternate day.
Lot of input concerning not having time to or interest in spending all day for 3 5 minute heats!
Format= Minimum of 15-16 cars, 2 or 3 wide starting grids and minimum 15 minute motos.
All rounds for points no mains. Possibility of throw out round? Or not.
Reedy Race style.
Mod.
Stock.
Novice.
2 wheel
4 wheel
Truck
Onroad same.
Touring
Minis
Etc...
Remember, this is only once a week for those that might show an interest in a format that encourages MORE DRIVING TIME!
Again, this is for those that want to get more driving into the same amount of time spent at the track.
Might justify the bigger commitment to get to the track.
LOTS OF GREAT TRACKS OUT THERE!
MANY TOO FAR AWAY!
If you have to drive 1 to 2 hours or even more for TRIPLE the driving/racing/track time, that would surely make it worth the effort!
3 15 minute heats = 45 minutes of racing.
3 5 minutes heats = 15 minutes of racing.

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Old 04-03-2008, 01:14 PM   #73
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Any hobbies is expensive even buying a kid a skateboard is expensive after all the goodies and saftey equipment you have more than a couple hundred bucks into it, make the parents aware that is affordable and fun 1st will help promote the sport, local tracks should also hold a kind of open house day to maybe invite potential r/c buyers to see what it is all about, today tracks don't seem to be advertised and are more word of mouth. For example Pro-Line is in Beaumont 15min from my house there track is only used for races they host but if they had a open house with vendors and advertised it people would go, and second there is a R/C expo in Pomona,CA on the 18th thru the 20th of this month an di have not heard squat about it on the radio or in the paper, this is what manufactures and vendors need to get out there, if no one knows how can people go? It seems that the sport can't grow without advertisment.
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Old 04-03-2008, 02:32 PM   #74
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Couple more thoughts:

Nitros could stand to be quieter. Lot's of motorsports demand this.
Motocross did it long ago.
Nascar, NHRA etc don't need to cuz they run where they can be loud.
Nitro has enough power available to where extra muffler wouldn't kill em.
The noise just pisses people off.
Never once had a complaint runnin an electric at the park. Can't run 5 minutes without noticing irritated neighbors.
That could help nitro to be accepted closer to the public, better exposure.

Race coverage could be ALOT better.
Watching fast R/C cars is very cool, for about 2 minutes, then spectators are over it!
Only big races seem to have announcers that are on top of the action.
As much as possible. To the best of their ability.
Not knocking anybody but there is still room for improvement.
MAKE US CARE WHAT IS HAPPENING!

Really need to point out what is happening, for the entire race!
Lead changes, where the leaders are, where the battles are, what the car looks like (color to look for) and WHO these guys are!
Stay excited about it, really excited!
Scotty and Jimmy are the ones I can think of who get this.
Take it to another level even still!
To quote Jimmy Babcock at this years Cactus Classic:
"ON THE TRACK RIGHT NOW IS A COMBINED 14 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS AMONG 4 OR 5 DRIVERS!!!!!!!!!" (something to that effect).
That's hype.
Keep that intensity for the whole race, everyrace.
Train or get training for this position, take notes from the racing that IS on TV.
Gotta MAKE the spectators wanna see who wins,
give them someone to cheer for.
Point out the hottest drivers at the moment.
Hype the hottest drivers of all time, they always make the mains, and if they didn't, talk about how hard it is to make the mains.
Show where they end up on a tough day.
250 racers and only 10 make the A mains.
Same guys winning multiple championships with a format this competetive.
SELL THAT!!!!!

Someone PLEASE put together ONE quality video that covers different camera angles following the action nonstop and keeps the interest in the outcome of the race.
Replays of starts.
Replays of passing, battles, crashes, hacks and just plain stylin drivin!
Close ups and slo motion.
Yeh, I know, easier said than done but very doable.
The Ray Wood Videos get close as well as some of the other National and World Championship footage.
Just need to take it to the next level and MAKE US CARE who wins and what happened.
There are so many epic races thru out the year, there should be a huge library of great footage/coverage to be viewed.
Example:
Vin Scully does baseball for the Dodgers, ALL BY HIMSELF!
He talks about everything and anything of interest to the fans.
Stats, player history, successes, failures, all during the play by play.
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Old 04-03-2008, 03:18 PM   #75
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Go FN Cuda, with a massive brainsplurge! Thats what we need. I am actually going to find out when my next Town Council meeting is and ask if they could donate a section of a nice park to make a decent sized RC track.
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