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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:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I would love to see the reasoning behind the ban in some official form from Grand-Am. If it is an issue of the rotary engine being a superior power plant, build in rules to level the playing field. I don't watch Grand-Am as much as I used to when the rotaries were running. I guess I don't see those racing sponsors and advertisers as much either.
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subject:
Backward lead heads
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
From the land down under, it appears that the USA is a forward thinking nation of "go getters". Events such as this serve to show how backward some losers can be. When the fools at Le mans banned the rotary in 1993, they tucked there head between there knees & let it back in a few years later.

You would think these losers from the American governing body would learn from the fools mistake.

Seems they need to get chastised first before they wake up to there stupidity.......Grrr
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subject:
Why?
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Grand-Am isn't really concerned with the small market of the Rotary. Why? I don't know. Maybe they think the cars are too loud? (aka the Rotary wake-up call!) 4+ rotor engines sound like F1 engines ( I LOVE IT!!). Grand-Am really reminds me of NASCAR type of thinking. BACKWARDS in some respects. They also remind me of the IRL in the same breath! They got one of the biggest events in enduro racing (Daytona) just as the IRL has the biggest bag in the Indy 500. Without those two big events, those sanctioning bodies would be nothing, or at least, pretty weak. This is just another strike against them. This "american" thinking is what should bury them. Wake up, V8's are great engines, especially back in the 60's when the Shelby cars ruled the earth, get with the times, allow all types of engines to run. Racing isn't just about engines, it's about passion to win.

Passion to win. At least IMSA got the right idea with American Le Mans. That series has skyrocketed! It's very popular and I hope will break Grand-Am's backbone. Daytona prototypes are brand new, but we all know that both ALMS prototype classes will destroy them.

Jim Downing had a rotary effort among a few others. Why destroy people's dreams and their enthusiasm. If a car dominates a race, it means the other players have to STEP IT UP!! It does NOT mean you should PUNISH the WINNER. Wake up and smell the freaking coffee!!

Bathhurst was just as bad. Them them race to the regulations and not imply some new form of BS. If other teams are running 20+ lbs of boost, allow the rotary to at least run the stock boost!

Should Ferrari be punished in F1 for winning so much? NO. This should give the other teams motivation to knock them off the top.

Do NOT regulate this area. If you have trouble putting the rotary engine into class, talk to ROTARY EXPERTS!!!! Hell, I think SCCA has done a better job at classifying rotary engines in Autocross them Grand-Am!

I hope Grand-Am fails in the area of engine restrictions. I'm glad ALMS allowed the rotary to run (albeit with restrictors, but they're still running). Think about it this way, rotary engines have MANY advantages, but they also have MANY disadvantages. How often have you seen a rotary retire due to electronic failure from excessive heat?! Often! How about failure do to cooling systems? Often! Wake up folks! It's just another entity of racing passion.

I will never watch or support Grand-Am. I really had nothing against them until now. Sports car racing should never have the NASCAR mentality to it. It is a gentleman's race. Enduro racing is man vs machine vs time. How one does it should not be limited that severly. The Saleen S7 is allowed to run in AMLS even when the car wasn't in production! There were restrictions, but Conrad racing still ran them. That's passion! Why would someone put their flame out?! ...Grand-Am has.
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subject:
Engines
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Why don't they outlaw the piston engine instead and have all rotaries?
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subject:
Outlaws
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
When rotaries are outlawed, only outlaws will have rotaries!
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Well I know which 24hr endurance race I won't be watching.
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I think the descision to ban Rotary's from Daytona Rolex 24 Hr race is ridiculous. The Rotary brings to any competition, the only non-conventional effort and succes for design and production of an engine other than piston. Shunning engines like this discourages out of the box thinking and retards innovation and development of new technologies. Loosing the Rotary from your competition lineup will only remove some of the prestige that Rolex once held for being one of the pinnacles of ultimate competition. Now with the Rotary missing from the venue, you will only be able to claim mediocre competition. How sad is that? Pehaps it will even encourage the future creation of another annaul racing venue with a rotary vs piston endurance theme that out shines Rolex claiming to be the ultimate road endurance event in the US and pulling dollars and interest away from your current venue.
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subject:
systems administrator
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I believe that if anyone wants to start a sanctioning body, or change the focus of an existing one, they have every right to.

Here is a possibility, a new sanctioning body:
“World Racing LLC”
No rules on weight, fuel, engine, chassis, body, tires, or choice of advertisers.
Engines can be pistons, rotors, turbines, electrics, rockets or whatever.
The only rules would be for spectator, driver, crew, and staff safety.
The races could include anything from multiple 20 and 50 lap sprint sessions to 6, 12 or 24 hour enduro.
The only classes would be sprint and enduro.
Safety inspection only, no qualifying. Too many cars show up – have more races.
Have a broad point scale (NASCAR got that right.)
I am not sure about this one, but maybe point penalties for damaging other team’s stuff.
All competitors world wide get an input voice and vote on safety rules and points penalty rules.
Tracks would paved oval, road, or street.
Regional points series. Top finishers in each region go to an annual “World Super Race.”
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subject:
Promote Innovation
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I am a new rotary enthusiast and even I can see it's value.

It's my understanding that a major purpose of these races is to promote the innovation of engines and automobiles in general. Well, here that innovation sits and you would squander that. If you want everyone to be the same, become a part of NASCAR. Otherwise, allow innovation in all of it's forms.....including the Rotary!
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subject:
Mr
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
This is a sad sad world were an engine as well designed and as experienced as the rotary engine is being punished for it's strengths versus the weaknesses of its competition. Next drivers will be limited to reduce the experience and skill gap between so called good and bad drivers.
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
RE: Grand-Am's decision to ban Rotary Power

What are they afraid of?? Some real competition? It's one thing to level the table, it's another to ban and/or regulate into oblivion engines, automakers, etc... Maybe Grand-Am should require everybody to use pushrod engines and carburators? No wait, that's already been done in NASCAR (yawn)... ;-)
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subject:
Rotaries Outlawed?
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Guess which race I won't be watching this year or any year until the rotaries are brought back?
RACRX
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subject:
Support Local Industries.
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
If Rotary Engine / car was Manufactured in Detroit,I wonder they would Ban it.?
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subject:
BV
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
What are they afraid of? Mazda wins LeMans once (12 years ago), and it gets banned from that race. If Toyota wins, will they ban Japanese piston engines? Audi has dominated for the last few years, why not sit them out? This is just motorsports segregation!

This is crazy, especially given that sports car racing of this caliber is suffering from lack of the exposure that other tyopes of racing have. Auto racing is the ultimate form of engineering invention and fortitude. Let the rotary show it's stuff, like all other manufacturer's.

I'd be curious to hear what long-time Rolex 24 Mazda racer Jim Downey has to say about this!...
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subject:
Ban Rotaries??
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
What are they afraid of? Mazda wins LeMans once (12 years ago), and it gets banned from that race. If Toyota wins, will they ban Japanese piston engines? Audi has dominated for the last few years, why not sit them out? This is just motorsports segregation!

This is crazy, especially given that sports car racing of this caliber is suffering from lack of the exposure that other tyopes of racing have. Auto racing is the ultimate form of engineering invention and fortitude. Let the rotary show it's stuff, like all other manufacturer's.

I'd be curious to hear what long-time Rolex 24 Mazda racer Jim Downey has to say about this!...
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subject:
rotary ban
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
This comes as quite a shock, I have watched sports car endurance racing for many years and can't beleive this decision. One of the things I enjoy about this sport is the wide variety of power plants that manufacturers showcase to promote their brand. Banning the rotary, a production engine is definatly unfair, and I can't see the reason behind it. All production engines should be allowed, if one engine holds an advantage then the rules can be changed. Thats the way its always been, untill now, bad move. The Daytona race won't be the same, and I can't wait to hear a full explanation for this decision.

UNHAPPY RACE FAN
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Wow...I'm stunned. We go to the Rolex 24 hour to watch and cheer for the rotaries. With this news you can count on 4 less attendees. I'm still trying to understand the rational behind the ban...
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subject:
Well some funny idea
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
just before the start, someone with a rotor printed on both sides of his shirt is going to sit on the circuit so the boingers can't start?
would be fun to see
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subject:
Grand-Am 24hr
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I would like to know why they made the decission to ban rotary engines from this race.

Would it be reasonable to conclude that the rotary powered car is superior to recipicating engines. And banning the rotary, the field has been evened out to engines that would most likely break down.
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subject:
Shame on Daytona
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
This is a disgrace to all Rotary lovers. Daytona just cant handle the power and beauty of a Rotary power plant.
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subject:
No title supplied
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
Mazda puts all of these new efforts into racing and then they slap this in thier face!!! I will never watch or support the Grand-Am series again!!! Its not like the rotary has dominated any roadracing in the past 10 years..........GIVE US A CHANCE GRAND-AM!!!!!!
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subject:
The magic of the rotary engine.
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I think that the rotary engine needs
more tecnological helps before its
shows to the world that it is the
best engine ever.It is incredible to
believe the amazing power that this
engine have with so little displacement.
With only 2.6 Liters 4 rotors we (the rotary
enthusiast) have a victory in Le Mans.And
alsow we hold alot of records.I am from
Puerto Rico and I am proud of being the
no #1land in records of the legendary RotaryEngine.We hold the fastest rotary
engine record in the quarter of mile on the
planet=The car is a 1993 RX-7 named Sigel
Racing.He's record is 7.13 seconds.With
the help of a 3 rotor(20B) rotary engine.
We alsow have the fastest 12A ever
droping time in the 1/4 of 8.27.Thats
are only 2 of a lot of records that we have.

Thanks for keeping up the rotary fever.For
me you are the no#1Rotary web side.
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subject:
Re: Daytona Rule Makers
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I am not going to spout endless insults and vitriol at you, as I do hope you will read this, or will be sent this list of comments. I emplore you to listen, just at this suggestion that it may simply not be not only in the best interests of the event, but the whole automotive world.

Doing something like this speaks against not only us die-hard rotor-heads, but yourselves, and your social values. How can one, on the basis of "cost", contend that it is in the best intrests of the race/series to exclude an entire fundamental design structure? Innovation, creativity, engineering genius: these are the reasons we, and you claim cars continue to improve, and continue to get faster. Would it be in the intrest of the series to exclude radical advancements in engine design like pneumatic valve actuation, or over head cams, or even more than two valves per cylinder? Would it be in the best intrests of the racing series to exclude all over-head valving systems, leaving room only for flat-heads? What about systems such as dry-sump oiling systems? What of rubber window wipers? Also, those High Intensity Discharge driving lights are awfully expensive next to thier age'd incandecent counter-parts.

If you truly believe that the rotary engine could never be developped by an automotive giant like GM, Ford, VAG, or Toyota because the only one to do it so far is a very small, niche market Japanese automaker, there is something wrong with you. There is absolutely nothing to stop GM or Daimler-Chrysler from picking up right from where they left off in the 60's, and combined with a few engineers hired away from Mazda could certainly be back in the fore-front of automotive engineering. What is stopping them? Only that they don't have to, yet. Why allow them to get along with "It's good enough" as an excuse? Why stand back and discourage serious technological advancement, which could easily be applied to ZERO EMISSIONS (turbo-hydrogen) internal combustion technology?

There are also alternatives with regard to policing, which I am sure you are aware of: relegating port area, location of ports, relegating sonic orifaces, making manditory longer intake runners, baffeling the exhausts, et cetera. Given the relatively low cost of crate motors, rebuilds, and general longevity of rotary engines, eliminating this very cost effecitive engine solution would only hurt private entrants in the wallet directly, if not also in their ability to raise sponsorship with worse results from being forced into using unfamiliar engines.

Please, again, I sincerely emplore you to reconsider your choice.

- W. Andrew Keeech
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subject:
False contest
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
When any motorsport association bans any kind of engine it shows the false competition rules these organizations work under. I'm sure that every other auto manufacturer besides Mazda (and perhaps Ford) has no problem with the banning of rotary power simply because they have no assets tied up in the development or promotion of said engines. It is unfortunate, but lets get this straight, its completely unfair that a race sanctioning body should decide what goes under the hood, no pistons, no race.
I should point out to all concerned that when rotaries were banned from Le Mans after the 787B took the win the subsequent ban on rotary power had little effect on the percieved brilliance of the car or the engine. In fact the opposite can be said to be true. Senna will live forever for the reason that he was censured at the height of his career, so too the rotary and Mazda, which won and was banned for its troubles. Car manufacturers and racing teams fear the rotary simply because they think they cannot compete. It is their nature in times of fear to protest, and through protest ban the things they fear. The race may go on, but the competition stopped some time ago.

Long live the revolution.
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subject:
Rotary power...
author:
No Rotor
date:
December 31, 1969 - 4:00pm
I am really to hear this news. Mazda has invested a lot of money, time on the rotary engine to be disrespected like this. They did kill the competition in the eighties but have not done it since. With the introduction of the new rotary engine called "Renesis" Mazda will not get a chance to show its potential. I was really looking forward on going to see the RX 8 race or any prototype with the engine. Grand Am should reconsider their desicion and make the rotary legal. I am a Honda fan and owner but I am also a fan of technology and import power. Let Mazda race the rotary! Thanks.
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