From Sports Cars To Stock Cars, Racing Is A Booming Sport

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While the term ‘sports car' usually means a 'sporty automobile' to the uninitiated, the actual term in the auto racing world typically means a car with two seats, precise handling, and the ability to decelerate sharply and accelerate quickly. In sports car racing, driving enjoyment and vehicle performance are considered more essential than cargo space and comfort.

Ever since cars have been around, it's safe to say that someone has been racing them. Built for performance and swiftness, these sports cars are designed for taking turns at top speed and barreling past competitors with thundering power.

It's only natural that so many people would enjoy the thrill of racing - the roaring of the engines, the caustic scent of burning rubber, and the pushing of the world's fastest automobiles to their extreme limits. The Le Mans 24 Hour Race started it all in 1923, spotlighting the focus of the car rather than the driver. Today, from quarter-mile drag strips to 600-mile endurance races, the sport of auto racing provides variety and excitement while boasting a devoted following.

Sports car racing, to be distinct from open-wheeled ‘Indy' cars and stock cars (NASCAR), emphasizes elements such as endurance, driving strategy, and the vehicle's reliability rather than the element of pure speed found in most other forms of auto racing. The length of these races usually calls for driver changes, complex pit strategy, and a more team-oriented atmosphere - all in opposition to the individually-minded arena of popular stock car racing.

Now, sports car racing extends far beyond the rules and regulations of the original organizers of the Le Mans 24 Hour Race and other governing bodies of auto racing, encompassing amateur road racing classes in the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) which now sanctions amateur sports car racing.

With the help of its loyal fan base, the growth of this sport has remained consistent due to the presence of considerable infrastructure in the form of amateur race tracks all across the nation. Many of these tracks offer race events for motorcycles as well as automobiles, National Auto Sport Association (NASA) rallies, driving schools, family events, auto shows, and other activities which appeal to novices and sports car enthusiasts alike.

One track due for an upcoming expansion in 2010 due to recent growth, GingerMan Raceway in South Haven, Michigan, offers many of these activities near one of Lake Michigan's most charming resort towns with camping, hotels, entertainment, restaurants, shopping, and many area attractions all within a short drive.

Michigan, long a hotbed of amateur and professional racing activity due to its close ties with the auto industry, has dozens of racetracks including asphalt ovals, dirt ovals, drag strips, figure 8 tracks, and road courses. For the sports car racing enthusiast, Michigan racetracks definitely offer something for everyone.

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