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George Sunderland

“””””  This site really needs a “like”  button,. Spot on Gary.    And Gene, I have to agree with you as well. Thank you for all you’ve done.

I’ve been a member since 1980.  And for much of that time I just raced and paid little attention to how the sausage was made or who made it.  It was only when the sport I loved so much seemed to be fading that I paid more interest.   Seems like overnight in road racing we went from 600+ entries being the norm at all events to considering more than 200 a huge success.  And its not just road racing.  Here’s a comment I got from a dirt racing friend:

“As much as I dislike the notion, karting is hurting very badly. In dirt, tire prep has been the main thorn in the side of the average racer.My favorite dirt class, which is dominated by the UAS, the best engine costs more than a late model crate engine….and that is just the base engine. That is just stupid. As long as we allow rule structures that don’t follow common sense, we will continue to watch karting die a death of abandonment.”

IMHO:  He’s right.  It is stupid.  We can’t expect to attract too many new people for the long haul  with the insane costs and constant rules changes.  The question is do we care enough to save it all?  Or can it even be saved?  We may be member owned but we can only see the financial statements by appointment and we have to travel to Charlotte during business hours to do that  Strange, they used to be posted in the magazine annually.  Presidents for Life are a bad idea.  Especially when it can’t be explained how they got to be President for Life.  So are board members with major business ties and other conflicts of interest.  If you have to have rules made that force people to buy your product or keep them from using competing products, there must be something inherently wrong with it.    If you have to constantly make your product obsolete there is something wrong with it.

Hopefully we can all agree the mid 1980’s was the heyday for enduro racing.  Burris was the flagship sponsor.  But we weren’t required to use Burris tires, wear Burris suits or even display his stickers.  But I think he still did well in business through a solid product and the goodwill he established.  And several parts trucks  were at every event selling Burris products as well as his competitors’ goods.  We also saw George Kugler regularly walking the pits and talking to everyone.  Seems it took a sudden wrong turn  somehow.

No conflicts of interest.  No Presidents for Life.  Term limits on Board members. 3-5 year rules and class freezes.  And for endure racing, return to the NASCAR rovals and other venues that the average Joe recognizes.  All would be a step in the right direction. But most importantly, we all need to check our egos, selfish interests, and BS at the door  and realize without each and everyone of us, the ship has sunk.