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Rotaries outlawed from Daytona 24
Submitted by SuperUser on Wednesday, January 29, 2003 - 5:25pm

This year, the Grand-Am sanctioning body, outlawed all Rotary Engine Powered
Race cars at the Daytona Rolex 24 Hour Race. Section 3-1.6 Rotary engines are not allowed (Rolex Series only). We take this as another one of
those misguided and ignorant decisions, by rules makers and sanctioning
bodies that do not and care not to understand the Rotary power plant. The
Rotary engine has been a mainstay of endurance sports car racing around the
world, for 3 decades. Endurance racing is one of the last great places where
the inherent values of the Rotary Engine can still shine through, at a world
class level of competition, although it's been severely regulated/restricted
of late.

We wanted to ask all Rotary enthusiast what they thought of Grand-Am's
decision to ban Rotary Power, at this, one of the most famous, 24-hour
races. Please send us your thoughts and comments, and we will compile them
and send them to Grand-Am. Let's get Rotary Power back on the endurance
circuit! We want to show Grand-Am and all Road Racing sanctioning bodies,
that Rotary enthusiast play a major part in supporting sports car racing and
we want to see Rotaries back in the game! Click the link below to leave your feedback.

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subject:
Small Minds
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Sadly, we see this type of response in too many of our modernn institutions.

POWER and MONEY trump INNOVATION and COMPETITIVENESS.

SPONSERSHIP is obviously more important than SPORTSMANSHIP to these misguided folks. But in the end they are made smaller by their decisions, and history will record them as only LEGONDS IN THEIR OWN (small) MINDS.

And no one will care much anymore - it will be just another modern day contrived event.
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subject:
Grand Am out of touch!
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
It seems a shame that the Grand Am powers that be can't undertand their market. Sports car racing should include all types of sports cars and all types off engines,that's why there are formulas devised by sanctioning bodies to balance the playing field. With the history the rx7 has at Daytona it seems rather strange to ban all rotarys.
I was looking foward to hearing the howl of a three or four rotor when the new prototype coupes came to Watkins Glenn, I quess not!
At least I know the ALMS won't make such a stupid error in judgement.
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subject:
Ban the Rotary?
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Boycot the Daytona Rolex 24!
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subject:
Afraid?
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Are they afraid of a unreliable 1.3L, old technology?!?!?

I guess is not so "UNRELIABLE", and still holds its own against modern engines. Lets be honest and explain the "real" reason why rotary's can't compete.

Chicken?
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subject:
Ho Hum
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
How typical...

Just to be sure, could someone verify the ruling ie. post the page, section, paragraph or paste-in the official verbage. After all, this is the internet.

I wanted to attend this year. Oh well. That weekends open now.

Steve C.
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subject:
Banning Rotaries?
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Actually, there is no specific ban on rotaries, but none were submitted by a manufacturer for approval. A little background is needed here.
Grand-Am made somewhat of a "call for entries" for its new Daytona Prototypes program. Cars were then submitted and approved. A Mazda and/or rotary engine were not submitted, therefore are not legal for use in Grand-Am's top tier.
However, there is nothing precluding the use of an RX-7 in the GT or even GTS class. The 3rd gen is still a homologated car and therefore can be raced in either class. In fact, I believe there is a GT-1 spec RX-7 floating around somewhere that might be legal in AGT.
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subject:
The little rotary engine that could
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
It is so sad that 1has to cancel out what they dont understand instead of trying to. The rotary engine was never givin its chance of really all out showing it montrous potential in racing. Mazda who struggled even in off hours to keep the very definition of there company alive get shuned out in the worst of ways because Mazda lives through motorsports. In a way this is funny beacuse we all know givin the chance the rotary will come atop the competion. Need not worry the rotary will be back to race this time all out.
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subject:
Rotaries Outlawed At Daytona
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
three words: you blew it!!!
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subject:
make the technology better
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
If the reason banning rotar-powred cars is because they think rotaries have the advantage over the piston powered engines, then those who think they will lose with piston powered engines should get a rotary power plant.

Piston powered engines have a lot more money invested into making their technology better, so why should people not be allowed a rotary engine that has less years and money in development? Only if they, the sponsors or whoever is responsible for sanctioning races, allow rotary powered cars rotary to participate in major competitions, the technology will be improved, and benefit the automotive market.
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subject:
Why
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Ever since the rotaries first wins regulations have been placed on it to slow it down. Even when the engine was discontinued, and enthusiasts continued with limited resources and little support, the sanctioning bodies refused to let rotaries win more than once.

Since it's inception the rules and regulations have tried to smother the rotary into non-existance, and when it continues to win, you disregard all subtleness and just flat out ban it from competition alltogether. This does not vote well for anyone's confidence in your orginization, much less rotary enthusiests, due to the fact that you refuse to accept all willing parties to participate. You are essentially sanctioning yourself, to see no new competative technology and are doomed to the same boring racing that has plagued NASCAR. You will have the same limited audience that drive mustang and camaro's with v8's except since you are no different then you will be in direct competition with NASCAR and will be partially ignored.

What is your goal as a sanctioning body? To make the playing field exactley equal?(overdone) If that is the case, then why don't you supply the engines, cars, and chassis and only allow minimum modifications, like many racing circuits do? Or was your goal to allow a variety of competitors on the track with similiarly powered cars and modified cars toduke it out? (which was my opinion of grand am racing until recently) If that is your stance then why in the world are you eliminating the single most unique advance in racing technology since the model T. Banning a minority because it is too competative?? Ridiculous.

I am extremely dissapointed in grand am for their recent decision due to the fact that I am relocating to florida very soon, and was looking forward to seeing one of the only major races where a rotary WAS still allowed to compete. So I could cheer the rotary on. I guess now I have the option to go watch a bunch of cars that are equally as fast and monotnous drive around a road corse for a while, but why?? I can see that twice a month 9 months out of the year. Don't worry you won't catch me at your prejudice races, I'd much rather be working on my 7.

Grand-Am racing....come race with us, just don't go too fast, or we'll BAN YOU!!!
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subject:
Rotaries Banned from Daytona
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I have to say that saying the rule makres are "mis-informed" is a very polite comment. It is
plain bias really. The French did it at La Mans after Mazda won the 24hr race there. Their
attitude was "if you can't beat them, ban them!". Have the Americans, 10 years later,
decided the same thing? I would have expected a lot more intelligence and fairness from
this part of the world. Such a sad thing really. At least the French realised their mistake
and corrected it a few years later. Why can't Daytona learn from the French mistake and
not make one at all?? With this happening and Ford trying to kill off the rotary development,
its amazing this engineering marvel is still around for those of us with the foresight and
appreciation to enjoy.

Very dissapppointed,
Garry Hasler
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
This played a big role in our decission NOT to purchase a suite at the 24 hour race. Last year the MRCCFL (Mazda Rotory Car Club of Florida) had a suite and avery decent showing of Rotary enthusiast. It was a last minute decision and we had mixed emotions about doing so. There were only two Rotaries in the field last year but at least there were Rotaries. We hope the sanctioning bodies change there mid for next year. Jack
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Those are some fast cars! I've read about Siguel racing. Didn't they race against Abel Ibarra in the states for some sort of shoot out? I think S Racing was using nitrious and Abel was just on the turbos.

Nothing like high horsepower rotaries! Rotaries can be a cheap entry for racers (or real expensive for others!). Defiently fun!
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subject:
Engineering Manager - Rotary engines
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I have been involved with Rotary engines for forty years. In all that time, when a rotary engine proved to be competative, they would ban it for some trumped-up reason. They would penalize us for displacement or just say only piston engines!
The rotary is in every way a legitimate, 4 stroke cycle engine and it displaces air the same way. The fact that it can run higher speed because of the lack of valves and reciprocating parts should not cause it to be banned.
Its simplicity is the prime reason for its great endurance record. In many race venues, rotaries allow the "fund-limited" racers to compete because they don't have to do a rebuild after every race.
These are competative features, face the competition or lose Grand-Am!
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I would like to see the ruling. Is there a location where this can be viewed???? Is the ruling sound related or ???? A link to this information might be usefull.
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subject:
Will add this to the main article too
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
http://www.grandamerican.com/competition/2003_General%20Regulations.html

Section 3-1.6 Rotary engines are not allowed (Rolex Series only).
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
What was the Grand-Am sanctioning body's rationale for this ruling that outlaws rotary engine powered cars at the Daytona/Rolex 24 hr. Race? Who or what organizations (racing teams, mfg's, etc.) lobbied the rules makers to impose such an idiotic, anti-competitive ban? I WANT NAMES!!! These anti- fair & square competition weenies need to be exposed for what they really are. Obviously, they fear losing races and losing $, but racing is all about fierce competition. If they can't handle it, they should all step aside instead of whining about it to the rules makers.
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Please reconsider the ban on rotary engines! While I enjoy most forms of road racing and consider myself to be a loyal fan, I am even more engaged in the race when a rotary is in the field. Restrict if you must, to make the field competitive, but do not ban the rotary.
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subject:
perseverence
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
To the sanctioning bodies of the Daytona Rolex 24 Hour Race, you sure know how to make an auto enthusiast grin and smile, but most of all your creating great publicity for this little tiny powerplant The RENESIS.
It is nice to see that all the engineering by Mazda has not gone to waste, that the people who place these sanctions can recognized the advantages of the rotary engine, plus this should make the rest of the automotive industry wonder just how would their outdated piston engine compare to the rotary.
I know I'm interested to find the answer, but I guess me and thousands of other rotary enthusiast's will just have to watch other races where concept and innovation are good things.
One day the Rolex 24 Hour Race will be a "MAJOR SPORTING EVENT" until then I hope all car manufacturers do well and that Mazda and its rotary do even better.
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I see some parallel between this situation and back when Audi competed in TransAm and IMSA. TransAm welcomed Audi with open arms, figuring the Fords and GM based cars would have no trouble leaving those "5 cyl furrin cars in their dust"
...after pretty well dominating and winning TransAm, Audi was basically banned from racing their cars in TransAm. The next year they went to IMSA and did the same thing......winning the title and proving their point, albeit being banned from further IMSA racing. I thought racing meant if the other guy was faster, you went back to the shop and built something better on order to outrun the other guy. Perhaps it is easier to legislate competion out rather than winning by better engineering?
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I hope in the years to come when the return of the rotary hits full stride and Mazda takes advantage of it's massive following that it will start racing and winning with factory owned and run teams. It's been very hard for us, the grassroots racer, too compete, win, and advance with the current engines that haven't changed since it's begining? When Mazda comes in full bore to racing sanctioning bodies will then have to either deal with the the loss of fans and factory team involvement or allow the rotary engine. But like allways they will penalize this great engine because they find it hard to understand what it realy is. And one last thing if you remember this engine started the envolement of Japanese companies to endurance racing back in the seventies no one else from Japan was thier. So you owe it to Mazda to allow this engine IT'S PART OF ENDURANCE RACINGS HISTORY.
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subject:
Let the Rotary back in!
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I myself do not own a rotary powered vehicle currently, but I've been fascinated by the rotary engine and Im now considering purchasing a car powered by one. I think sanctioning bodies have lost their minds... Variety is the spice of life...
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subject:
Injustice
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I think the people from Daytona Rolex is really scare of the power of the rotary engine, also I think that there is somethink dark out there that don't want the rotary engine to kick out the piston engine , but very deep inside us we know that sooner or later (like happen with the rock style music) the rotary engine will dominate .
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subject:
IT Consultant
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Sounds to me like they are scared. Rotary's have been around long enough to have earned a place in any sports car race. If it is an endurance race, type of engine should not matter. Either the car/engine combo can go the distance or it loses, right? I thought the main point was supposed to be endurance without prejudice.
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subject:
n/a
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Banning the rotary in the Grand-Am series is just antoher step backwards in the evolution of racing technology. =(
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