Are you ready to take that step from watching road racing to getting behind the wheel? It’s not an easy process, but SCCA has produced more road racers than anyone, so you’re in good hands.
These are step-by-step instructions and guidance which will help you obtain an SCCA Competition License. If, upon reading this guide, you have questions or special requests, Member Services at the SCCA National Office will be happy to help you. Write/Phone/e-mail them at P. O. Box 19400, Topeka, KS 66619-0400; 1-800-770-2055.
We realize that you probably have many questions on how to begin racing. How much does it all cost, what tips are there to keep expenses in check, what options are there for obtaining a race car, and many other questions are answered in this free online resource GoAheadTakeTheWheel.com. There's also a free mentor program you can take advantage of.
If you’re interested in getting from the sidelines to the track, you’ll benefit from clear and easy-to-follow instructions on becoming actively involved in motorsports. Check out SCCA’s “Go Ahead - Take The Wheel” resource.
It's very important that you become familiar with the General Competition Rules, otherwise known as the GCR. These are the rules that govern SCCA Club Racing. Rule books can be downloaded here.
If You Have No Previous Racing Experience
STEP 1 - Join the SCCA
Joining the SCCA has never been easier, simply click here.
Next, you’ll need to go visit your doctor for a sports physical. You can download that form, as well as the Novice Permit form. If you are 15-18 years old and want to drive competitively or work in a hot area, you’ll need to complete the Minor Release and Waiver and Minor's Assumption of Risk Acknowledgment form (Form MS-L). These are available for download, or you can contact SCCA to have one mailed to you. If you are under 21 and live in Alabama, Nebraska, or Wyoming, you will also need to complete the Minor Release and Waiver and Minor's Assumption of Risk Acknowledgment form (Form MS-L).
STEP 2 - Submit your Paperwork
Submit the Novice Permit Application with all of the required documents and Novice Permit fee to the SCCA Member Services Department at P. O. Box 19400, Topeka, KS 66619-0400; OR you may obtain your Novice Permit through your local Region's licensing representative (see SCCA Divisions/Regions maps for links to Region Web sites). NOTE: If you are 15-17 years of age, you must apply for all Competition Licenses through the SCCA Member Services Department at the National Office. The Novice Permit, often referred to as a "logbook," allows you to enter an SCCA Driver School and later, SCCA Regional Club Racing events. Almost anyone 15 years and older, who has a Motor Vehicle Operators license or previous racing experience, is eligible for a Novice Permit. Items required prior to issuance of a Novice Permit include:
1. A current Physical Examination* dated no more than three months prior to application.
2. Two passport size photos.
3. A photocopy of both sides of your Motor Vehicle Operators license
4. 15 and 17 year olds:
a. A completed Parental Consent, Release and Waiver of Liability, Assumption of Risk and Indemnity Agreement form (original only, photo copies not accepted).
b. A completed Minor's Assumption of Risk Acknowledgment form (original only, photo copies not accepted).
5. If you are 18-21 years of age and live in Alabama, Nebraska, or Wyoming, a notarized Minor Waiver Release form.
6. $125 Novice Permit fee. *NOTE: If you have health problems, you must get the approval of the SCCA Medical Board. For details contact the Member Services Department at 800-770-2055.
STEP 3 - Prepare to enter an SCCA Driver School Event
Check the "Events" section of the web site, or click here to go straight to the "Driver School" page, which has a list of upcoming events at the bottom. If there is no upcoming event in your area listed, check SportsCar magazine or your Region's newsletter or web site for additional schedule listings. Call the phone number listed next to the event date that interests you and request an event entry form to be sent to you. Some Regions hold Drivers Schools only in the Spring, others conduct them year round; however, you may attend an SCCA Driver School anywhere in the country. To attend an SCCA Driver School, you must arrange for your own properly prepared race car. You will also need approved driving gear, including an SCCA approved helmet. If you do not have a race car, you will have to rent or lease one in order to attend a school. Renting allows you to concentrate on driving and also permits you to consider which class best fits your goals before you buy a car. Rental prices generally range from $500 - $2,000 depending on the car type. Contact your local Region's Competition Chairman for assistance in obtaining a rented vehicle.
READ AND BECOME FAMILIAR WITH THE GCR BEFORE your first school, paying special attention to the section on Flags! This is where you'll find information about specific vehicles as well as equipment requirements and standards.
STEP 4 - Driver School Checklist
Upon receipt of your event entry packet, READ ALL the information provided. Most importantly, note the rules and regulations specific to the event and the race track. Complete your entry form in its entirety and return it to the person listed. Make absolutely certain your personal driving equipment, (i.e., Helmet, Driving Suit, Gloves/Shoes, etc.) is in good order, and that your car is race-ready BEFORE the first on-track sessions. Be punctual for your classroom sessions. These are mandatory.
Make every effort to have a qualified mechanic on hand to ensure your car runs properly, as you successfully must complete all the on-track sessions in order to get credit for the school.
STEP 5 - SCCA Full Competition License...and Beyond
Upon completion of one Driver School and three additional race weekends (you’re still a Novice for your first three), you are eligible to receive an SCCA Full Competition License. You have two years from the date of issue to complete the Novice requirements. Once the requirements are met, send your completed Novice Permit, signed off by the event Chief Steward at your third race; a copy of your Physical Exam; Competition License Application and $100 to the Member Service Department. You will soon be the proud owner of a Full Competition License.
IF YOU HAVE ATTENDED, OR PLAN TO ATTEND, AN ACCREDITED PROFESSIONAL RACING SCHOOL...
If it's road racing you are interested in, you will most likely have to attend one SCCA approved Driver Schools.
NOTE: While the SCCA Driver Schools and private racing schools have similar names, they are somewhat different in scope. A primary goal of an SCCA Drivers School is to teach novices how to race safely and expose them to racing in the SCCA.
• Accredited Driving Schools
• SCCA Regional Driving Schools
• Divisional Licensing Chairman: (See Divisions map to verify your Division ).
• Northern Pacific Division
• Southern Pacific Division
• Rocky Mountain Division
• Central Division
• Midwest Division
• Southwest Division
• Southeast Division
• Great Lakes Division
• Northeast Division
IF YOU HAVE PREVIOUS RACING EXPERIENCE...
Depending upon your previous racing experience, some or all of your licensing requirements may be waived by the Chief Steward of your SCCA Driver School or by your Divisional Licensing Administrator.
An example: A driver who previously held an SCCA license but has not raced for a few years. Depending on this individual's previous racing record and the length of the layoff, it's possible the Divisional Licensing Administrator may waive the driver back to a Full Competition license. Or, the Administrator may require a "retread" to complete a Drivers School or a private racing school before a waiver will be considered. If you have previous racing experience and would like a waiver, document your experience and present your request to your Divisional Licensing Administrator.
NOTE: Fees and requirements listed here are subject to change. If you have questions about getting started in Club Racing; Write/Phone/e-mail Member Services Department at P. O. Box 19400, Topeka, KS 66619-0400; 1-800-770-2055. (If sending e-mail, please include your full name, member number, return e-mail address and telephone number in the body of the message).