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A Note On Fun & Affordability In Racing
By John Kilroy on February 23, 2012

We attended the MAZDASPEED Media Day on Tuesday, and always enjoy being part of this event, with so many of the Southern California-based motorsports journalists in attendance. Dean Case does a terrific job creating energy and news at these events, and John Doonan and Jim Jordan are creating a powerful new path when it comes to a car company utilizing motorsports to sell cars. The MAZDASPEED team can go from bold 'high concept' marketing to flawless 'boots on the ground' execution at events without skipping a beat. Pretty amazing to watch.

You’ll see a racing references in Mazda’s cool new TV advertisement. Click here to view it on YouTube. More importantly, you’ll see tons of Mazdas at your local road circuit on any given race weekend. MAZDASPEED calls the Mazda marque the most raced of any brand, and judging from photos we’ve seen of 25 Miatas entering a turn in an SCCA race, they’re right.

MAZDASPEED worked with Honda Performance Development to introduce the concept of B-Spec racing two years ago at the PRI Trade Show. We’re happy to report that the concept of racing compact cars has been widely embraced in organizations and car companies, including SCCA, NASA, Grand-Am, Ford, Mini, Kia and more.

For about $2,500 in specialty performance equipment from MAZDASPEED, and about $10,000 in safety and other improvements, a Mazda 2 is ready to compete for a very affordable price for a season of racing.

Is there a better invitation for young people to enter the sport?

We thank the MAZDASPEED team for their leadership. In these times, entry-level series are critical in developing a new generation of racing enthusiasts. Affordability is clearly what the times call for. There’s still a segment of racing where a wealthy father is buying rides for his son, hoping he’ll be the next Jeff Gordon. However, for the racing industry to stay healthy long into the future, we need the sport to put out a welcome sign for enthusiasts who work their jobs all week long and go out and have a blast on the weekends racing.

In fact, we’ll put up another note or two in succession about the topic of affordable, accessible fun in racing, and how the formula still delivers car counts and racers every race weekend.

John Doonan, director of Mazda Motorsports, introduces some of the best young drivers competing in Mazda series as part of the MAZDASPEED Motorsports Ladder and the Mazda Road To Indy at the MAZDASPEED Media Day in Southern California. Believe me, you'll be seeing at least one of these drivers in an Indy 500.

About the Author
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John Kilroy is the Publisher of Performance Racing Industry magazine.
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