johndej SuperDork
7/1/22 4:16 p.m.

Never seen autocrossing televised in any capacity till at the beach this week. The cabin has a different TV package that has the MAVtv select channel airing Optima's search for the ultimate street car that featured a whole half hour of autocross coverage.

pinchvalve (Forum Supporter)
pinchvalve (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
7/1/22 4:32 p.m.

The ultimate street car is an older M3? I am OK with that. 

racerfink UberDork
7/1/22 4:53 p.m.

In reply to pinchvalve (Forum Supporter) :

For that class, yes.

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) PowerDork
7/1/22 5:38 p.m.
pinchvalve (Forum Supporter) said:

The ultimate street car is an older M3? I am OK with that. 

an E92 is an "older M3"?  Sigh, I'm not sure I'm OK with THAT! :)

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
7/1/22 6:16 p.m.
pinchvalve (Forum Supporter) said:

The ultimate street car is a newer M3? I am OK with that. 

Fixed that for you. :)

kb58 SuperDork
7/1/22 9:48 p.m.

I'm curious how many watch that, especially because the good drivers look boring on track because of how smooth they are. I was into autocross informally for a number of years, and even then I could see that for anyone other than direct participants, it offered little to no entertainment value. All I had to do was look around to see how big the "crowd" was, and it was just us and friends or family. This was in San Diego in the 1980s, so maybe it's different now. While I get that some people just really have a passion for it, I tired of being in the hot sun all day for 90-120 seconds of "track time." For me, trackday events were much more fulfilling, even when measured as track time per dollar spent. (Of course I'm conveniently leaving out the the time spent towing,  gas expense, the motel, food, etc, etc)

johndej SuperDork
7/1/22 10:02 p.m.

In reply to kb58 :

It was actually really well done. They have the in car cameras from all the cars in addition to several angles showing the runs from the outside. They did a lot of highlights showing someone say hitting a cone or overcooking a turn or spinning from both the in car and outside shots. Then the side by side as I posted showing how various cats took different lines and such over the course, in the picture above they were highlighting how far the BMW was ahead at the like 28 second mark.. Didn't publish them but if you can imagine showing the split or sector times.


bludroptop UltraDork
7/2/22 4:38 p.m.

We have the channel- I've been watching the show for several years. Some of the split screen side-by-side action is reasonably compelling on TV. Lots of driver/car profiles and fluff but still watchable. And fun when you occasionally get to see a personal friend on TV.  I think It has helped warm the CAM crowd to autox...  and in the last season or two the Optima show has cross-pollinated more imports into the mix.  

adam525i Dork
7/3/22 9:28 a.m.

Our local autocross made it onto the national news back in 2020! Fortunately we just happened to be running at exhibition place in Toronto right where one of the the Hockey "bubbles" was setup for them to finish their season so we made it into the shots, that is a lot better than the other reasons to hit the national news. The courses would run right through the original Blue Jays infield as well which was kind of cool too.

Captdownshift (Forum Supporter)
Captdownshift (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
7/3/22 10:35 a.m.

I've always thought the challenge would be good streaming/broadcasting fodder. But production and equipment needed to do it is costly. 

I'd love a tweak of the concourse though, where the presentation is taken from a driver's audio description given while navigating the autocross course, then the judges give an overview and insights on the vehicle based upon the direction given by the driver in said recording. 

GCrites80s Dork
7/3/22 6:16 p.m.


Back in the '80s when every town wanted a street course of their own, smaller towns let a downtown autocross suffice. Evansville Indiana put together a TV package at least twice:



I thought there was video of the Dayton downtown autocross from the late '80s somewhere but I can't find it now.

Woody (Forum Supportum)
Woody (Forum Supportum) MegaDork
7/3/22 6:52 p.m.

Was Tom Cruise there?

KyAllroad MegaDork
7/3/22 9:03 p.m.

Anything can be packaged to be entertaining (just look at Street Outlaws).

But the SCCA appears to actively tamp down any chance of public interest or popularity seeking.   Having been to a lot of different autocrosses in the last 10 years I can tell you that an excited/exciting announcer makes ALLLL the difference. 

drsmooth HalfDork
7/4/22 11:29 a.m.

Here's one from 1987, on the streets of London.... Ontario

For those too young to have experienced it, these videos, provide the authentic VHS experience!



kb58 SuperDork
7/4/22 12:32 p.m.

The trouble is, autocross doesn't have the very features that attract most audiences: it's not loud enough, doesn't produce huge volumes of tire smoke, and doesn't show endless big lurid slides. It's just not superficial enough for those with 3-second attention spans.

GCrites80s Dork
7/5/22 6:22 p.m.
drsmooth said:

Here's one from 1987, on the streets of London.... Ontario

For those too young to have experienced it, these videos, provide the authentic VHS experience!



The Dayton downtown autocross footage was quite similar to this.

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