Amateur Endurance Racing 24 Hours of LeMONS

Team Electile Dysfunction (Team ED) secured an entry in the Loudon Annoying event thanks to the witty application by Pete. Now the team is tasked to make sure the Car and Drivers are ready for the seasons events.  The team purchased a car previously used for a 2011 ‘LeMONS” race which minimized the car preparation.

Team ED met in early April to start to prepare the car for the track.

Since the team is comprised of experienced and rookie LeMONs drivers it was important for each driver to verify and obtain each had a valid LeMONS membership and all of the required personal safety equipment.

This following is a high level capture of the rules and requirements to race in 24hoursoflemons events. For specific details regarding general rules, safety, requirements, eligibility, vehicle price, teams, driving and penalty rules or anything else related to the event(s) see the official 24 Hours of LeMONS site:

Driver Requirements:

  • Valid US or international Drivers License
  • LeMons Competition Membership ($100.00/driver)
  • Drivers Helmet: Undamaged, full-face Type SA helmet, Snell 2005 or better with working visor in place (it’s your head would you want to use a damaged helmet?
  • Neck Brace– minimum foam roll-type. Huthcens device, D-Cel Harnesses, HANSs devices are strongly encouraged.
  • Fire Retardant Clothing: Drivers Suit,To be worn by all drivers at all times when inside the car. Full SFI 3.2/A or FIA 8856-2000- certified fire-retardant driving suits; Socks and Undergarments: (Nomex, Carbon-X or equivalent), shoes and racing gloves: Fire-retardant FIA or SFI rated are all required.

Personal Safety

Safety standards change, equipment ages and can become damaged therefore make sure your equipment is current and meets the required specifications. It is important to have the appropriate fire-retardant equipment. Synthetic materials (nylon, orlon, spandex) even as undergarments or socks could melt to your skin in a fire, therefore they are strictly forbidden. To be safe in the garage, pits and anywhere in/around the track  synthetic material including fleece is not recommended. Socks, long or short underwear and shirts can be found on many racing equipment sites. The challenge is to find an appropriate sports bra. While the guys may not need a bra/bro for those that do here is one place which has them; Pegasus auto racing.

Getting suited up can get expensive. Many of the requried items come in a variety of styles, fit and price ranges. 24hoursoflemons offers a safety package which includes “Everything” at a variety of “Dirt-Cheap” Prices with or without helmet.

I personally find helmet fit is important and like to try on my equipment.  Last year I replaced my drivers helmet and sought out HMS motorsport where I could try out a few helmets and have the shop adjust the face pads for a custom fit. Weight is an important consideration, especially in an endurance event, the lighter the helmet the less fatigued you are likely to be. I liked the Stilo carbon helmet, my head is valuable, but the ST4 GT W Carbon helmet was a better value and fit for me.

When I reviewed my suit and the rules I found my suit had expired. I was lucky to be able to obtain a 1 year experienced drivers suit from my teammate Mike Collier who wanted to size up; I ordered him a larger Sparco suit from Saferacer.com.

Social Media in Racing: Racing is very fan based and social media is great for the sport and sponsors. The younger drivers are embracing SM more than older drivers who see SM to be a bit like work. Brad Keseloski’s tweet of a picture of Juan Pablo Montoya’s car on fire at February’s Daytona race became the most famous NASCAR tweet. NASCAR drivers already more accessible to fans than other athletes are using twitter and Facebook; showing fans more of their real personality and growing their fan base.

Motorsport.com is a social media site targeting all racing fans.  The site includes F1, Indycar, NASCAR, Endurance, Touring, Rally, Dragster, Drift, Hill Climbs, KART, SCCA, bike, boat and other racing divisions. They do not include 24 Hrs of Lemons.  Users can select the race series they are interested in and view or upload photos and videos. The site provides the option for fans to connect and share with others on facebook and twitter. There is a Motorsport.com YouTube Channel which provides news, photos and video from the motorsport industry.

24 Hours of LeMONs social media includes YouTube, twitter and facebook to engage with racers and fans. Their facebook page has interesting photos of races and lemons cars. The 24 Hours of LeMons Forums provide general and race information, information on some interesting lemons cars and a place to sell parts, find teams or drivers or buy a Lemon (car).

The Data Communications and Telecommunications Industry and Social Media

Companies in these industries are focused of both business to business (B2B) and business to consumer (B2C) marketing. LinkedIn is the predominant social media network I see for B2B marketing. There are many groups in Linked in allowing participants to connect with other professionals to offer and fill job opportunities. There are groups created to provide a forum to discuss trends in the industry, help people find sources of products, market demand and product shortages; wire & cable industry is one such group. Telecom Professionals group focuses on new devices and technology; recent topics include “Next Generation Network Initiative- Why? Who Benefits?” by Pankaj Mitra. Other topics include companies looking for channel partners and professionals for contract work to the cause of Blackberry Failure.

Manufacturers of equipment are also advertising on Linked-in.  I have seen sublte banner ads under the Linkedin menu bar, which link to company sites.

Professional organizations have also created groups on LinkedIn. BICSI, the Building Industry Consulting Services International, Inc. uses this SM platform to promote their organization and training; facilitate member discussions and interactions related to topics BICSI is trying to promote and help educate industry professionals and end users. They also provide and area for members to promote themselves, other industry tradeshows, products/services, and job opportunities.

BICSI also has a Facebook page. They link to related standards organizations and list credentials they offer once individuals have shown sufficient experience and passed the related examinations. BICSI is on twitter. Recent tweets are related to a Canadian conference enquiring about the key note speaker and providing presentation slides and indicating how much money was raised for BICSI Cares foundation.

Telecommunications distributors and product manufacturers are also on twitter. Several have tweets related to the Canadian BICSI show. Graybar, Panduit, CPI and others were promoting their show locations, new products and presentations they were giving.

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