A Proposal for Significant Changes to the 2025 Runoffs, Super Tour, and Majors Aims for Increased Competition on all Levels

In motorsports, change should be the only constant. Whether you’re talking about developing a race car or event organization, if you’re not striving for improvement, you’re falling behind.

Each year, the Club Racing Board (CRB), the SCCA® Board of Directors (BoD), and the SCCA staff analyze the performance of the Summit Racing Equipment SCCA Road Racing program, spanning Regional to National events. Recent analyses brought forth the Green-to-Checker initiative, which in turn led to the introduction of the Flagtronics electronic flagging system being utilized at Hoosier Racing Tire SCCA Super Tours and the National Championship Runoffs®.

Most recently, SCCA Staff, CRB, and BoD worked together to develop a proposal to strengthen SCCA’s Road Racing program, which was presented during a live, online webinar on June 13, 2024, hosted by SCCA Vice President of Road Racing Eric Prill on behalf of the leadership group. The complete proposal can be downloaded here.

“Tonight’s topics are centered around the National Road Racing program, which includes the Runoffs, Hoosier Super Tour, and Conference Majors,” Prill said early in the webinar. “And while you will not hear plans specific to Regional programs, it is expected that many of these programs will benefit from some of the features of this proposal.

“This evening will provide an overview of the direction being proposed, which will open a period of feedback from the membership between now and the Club Racing Board and Board of Directors meetings the final week of July.”

The webinar, which can be viewed in its entirety here, covered the proposal’s three main goals: improving the Runoffs experience, improving the participant experience and competition at Majors events, and supporting class evolution.

A Runoffs Analysis

Prill explained that there are multiple factors at work with the Runoffs.

The first component, which Prill referred to as the “elephant in the room,” is the length of the Runoffs, which currently takes nine days of on-track activity to provide testing, qualifying, and individual races for the 26 National Championship classes.

The proposal states that starting in 2025, the Runoffs will consist of two days of qualifying and two days of racing, preceded by three days of optional pre-event testing. Each day can accommodate 18 20-minute sessions, which provides space and time for 18 class qualifying sessions on qualifying days and nine races per day (Saturday and Sunday). The reduced number of Runoffs event days will help contain costs for volunteers, racers, and the Club as a whole.

Per the proposal, for 2025, fewer than the current 26 classes will be invited to the Runoffs. In 2026, there will be 18 classes invited to the Runoffs. That number will remain static from that point forward. Classes that won’t have their own Runoffs race in 2025 will either be consolidated into another class, combined with another class for their race, or not included in the Runoffs.

“Participation, growth potential, and diversity of class offerings will be among the criteria considered when determining which classes will be invited to compete for a Runoffs National Championship,” Prill added.

The following goals were presented for the Runoffs as part of the proposal:

  • Reduce costs for everyone involved, including SCCA.
  • Increase accessibility and the ability for more competitors and volunteers to attend.
  • Improve the event by featuring the strongest classes.
  • Improve competition and drive greater participation by strengthening qualification criteria.
  • Improve the experience of competitors and volunteers.

And to clarify, all current Runoffs-eligible classes will be invited to the 2024 Runoffs.

Runoffs Invitations, 2025 and Beyond

The proposal also includes a change in the qualification standards for earning a Runoffs invitation, beginning in 2025. The point standings performance criteria will change from the top half or top 10 (whichever is larger) to a driver needing to finish in the top third or top five (whichever is larger) of a Majors Conference or Super Tour point standings.

“The intent of this change is to increase competition and drive greater participation at both Hoosier Super Tour and Majors races, while also raising the level of competition at the Championship event,” Prill said.

There are no planned changes to the requirement of participating in a minimum of three U.S. Majors Tour events (Conference Majors and/or Super Tours) and finishing a minimum of three U.S. Majors Tour races (Conference Majors and/or Super Tours). The 2 Majors + 2 Regional qualification path will continue to be an option, but the Majors race finish and points requirements will still apply.

There will be no Regional or Pro path to the Runoffs.

“With the Runoffs serving as the National Championship, it makes sense that drivers should qualify for an invitation based on their season performance against National level competition that comes from the U.S. Majors Tour Conference and Super Tour events,” Prill said. “Discontinuing the Divisional path to the Runoffs allows Regions to focus on local championships, low barrier to entry racing like that offered through the Race Experience program, and new participants for the Regional race weekends.”

What This Means for Majors and Super Tours

“A deep dive into the participation data of these programs reveals that there are key events and classes that have good, consistent attendance and are considered healthy by SCCA’s traditional metrics,” said Prill. “Data also supports the notion that some classes have higher participation at specific tracks due to track characteristics or a larger population of cars in a given geographic area. Other classes are drawn to specific event types.”

Consequently, Prill explained of the proposal, beginning in 2025, invited classes will be based on event type.

In the proposal, Conference Majors will include all U.S. Majors Tour-eligible classes, while Super Tour events will include a subset of the Majors-eligible classes, referred to as Super Tour classes. In short, all Super Tour classes are included in the Majors class grouping, but not all Majors classes will be a Super Tour class. Classes may also migrate between Super Tour class status and Majors class status on an annual basis.

Furthermore, class rules will not be static and will change to increase participation and competition, and classes may be combined to also increase participation and competition. Likewise, classes that do not perform will be removed from Majors class status, and new classes may incubate as a Majors-eligible class.

Tell Us What You Think

From reducing the duration of the Runoffs to seven days (three days of testing, two days of qualifying, and two days of racing), to adjusting Runoffs invitation qualification criteria, identifying Majors and Super Tour class groups, and actively managing classes, the June 13, 2024, webinar covered a lot – but there’s more to go. A second webinar is planned for later this summer, which will add details like Majors, Super Tour, and Runoffs eligible classes to the proposal. Those plans, however, require your input.

“That analysis and discussion is well under way, but it cannot and should not be finalized without an opportunity for the membership to weigh in,” Prill concluded. “Please consider what has been shared tonight, and submit your thoughts through the SCCA letter log system, at crbscca.com.”

The entire webinar can be viewed on-demand below.

Photo by Rick Corwine