It’s something we all as racers need. With that said, recently I headed over to my local track to make some laps and break some tires in. I give them the $12 they asked for unlimited practice. After many sessions and 5.5 hours later I headed home and pulled up LiveRC, I ran a total of 214 laps. That is a nickel per lap my friends.
The businessman in me got to thinking. In my area, 4 tracks have closed in the last year alone. Why? I’m sure there are many stories as to why but the one that sticks out to me is why does it cost me so much less to practice as it does to race? Sure when I race I have a controlled class with competitors I am trying to go faster than, an announcer, marshalls, and LiveRC. But when I practice I have at least one marshall, LiveRC and others to race (or try to pass). When I race 2 classes it can cost me up to $40 but I can practice for as long as I want for $12? Something seems out of whack to me.
Next I searched some tracks and found practice rates as low as $10. What does 10 bucks do for a business like an RC Track? Not much my friends when some of these tracks monthly rent alone is north of $4500.
As I researched other hobbies, I found bowling for around $6/game, round of golf for $40 or Top Golf for $25/hr, shooting range at $23/hr and the list goes on.
I think it’s time for tracks to raise their rates and we as racers to step it up some and agree to pay more for practice time at our favorite tracks. If not, we may not have a place to play with our toy cars.