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Influence at Corporate Level

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pistonwheels View Drop Down
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Joined: June.02.2005
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    Posted: January.08.2007 at 2:04pm

How active is the National Site Acquisition Committee? (Postings here seem 'slim').

Are 'they' operating at the corporate level? For example and discussion purposes.

There are some sites in CCR's area that would be great to have access to, but I think need "encouragement" at an upper-corporate level. For example, Michelin owns a great testing area within CCR's region, but local management is concerned about liability issues and having a hundred or more people wandering around the site. We've hosted events there in the past (including a Divisional Solo) but have problems getting back there. Perhaps a relationship between SCCA National Office and Michelin USA would help there.

There are a couple of major Car Auction houses in the area - in case you haven't checked out these sites, they often have large tarmac areas. The problem with such venues is that the auction house often has to move a large number of vehicles out of the way so the site can be used for an autocross. We're working sucessfully with one, but couldn't get "in" with another. Promotion of Solo at the corprate level might help the local divsion get involved... (Perhaps encouraging a Safe Driver program on a Saturday in exchange for an autocross day on the Sunday). Their site gets good local publicity and we get to 'play'....

Martin Bartlett.

CCR Regional Executive.

Drive like you're pist
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Mikeatscca View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mikeatscca Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January.08.2007 at 2:31pm

Martin,

The committee doesn't actively engage in direct contact with corporations. But, since you will be coming to the convention, I suggest you talk in detail with Raleigh Boreen and George Schweikle who will both be there conducting a seminar on site acquisition. George is the current committee chair and Raleigh is the inaugural head so they will be the good sources.

Mike

Michael E. Dickerson
Region Development Manager, SCCA
800.770.2055, ext 358
Mdickerson@scca.com
Better to have been a racer for a moment than a spectator for a lifetime.
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mattm View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mattm Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January.08.2007 at 4:45pm

Mike,

To me (IMO), this is where Mr. Julow needs to step in.

I would guess that DC bought a few tires from Michelin. Perhaps Mr. Julow could make a phone call or two to get the top of the feeding chain at that site to get an event located there. Good PR for Michelin in community relations.

Raleigh and George can obviously offer ideas, but it is the CEO to CEO concept that gets site acquisition fast tracked (especially fast tracked past the legal departments).

Solo maybe at the bottom of the totem pole but the phone calls are cheap and easy. 



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Howard Duncan View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Howard Duncan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January.15.2007 at 10:37am

It is not my habit, due to lack of time, to respond to or even read forums. However, in this case I will make an exception as I firmly believe that site acquisition/retention, along with safety matters are the two biggest issues facing the Solo program. Most of what gets attention from folks (lug nut weights, etc.) are distant second subjects. Additionally, I have some specific info regarding the Michelin site.

At the PRI tradeshow in Orlando last month, I had occasion to meet with the folks that manage the test facility. "Manage" might be a bit misleading in that their role was to keept he site busy as much as possible and upper mananagement's view was that that might be able to be done with race teams and/or race component manufacturers and they were at PRI to promote the facility. However, at this time they are not allowed to rent the facility to groups such as the SCCA for events as upper management does not want hundreds of people coming through the gate along with the security management issues. The Michelin folks that I spoke with want to allow events, but it is something they have to work slowly through the process.

As to Jim Julow having some inside track due to his former role at DCX, that is wishful thinking in this case and ignores the realities of life in corporate America. I or someone could probably could write a paper about the intricacies of working through a multilayered corporation for something that seems simple OR the belief that SCCA carries some special sway within the industry, when in fact most of the people we deal with are in departments that are trying to stay under the radar in their own company.

Anyway, the short answer is that Michelin is a no go for the short term and a possible maybe for the future, depending on the mood of the lawyers.

H.

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mattm View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mattm Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January.16.2007 at 7:41pm

Woo boy, of Howard’s three posts, one is a reply to my post. I’ll be shagging pylons for the rest of my life.

 

Howard, it is great that you could meet with the folks from the Michelin plant and learn of their issues about operations, security, etc. I would imagine that GM, Ford, and Toyota would not be real thrilled about a bunch of car geeks entering their test track facilities (gee, look at the 2011 Lexus LF-1 going by!).

 

Yes, it is the region’s responsibility to get new sites. But, we know sometimes working from the bottom we hit walls, whether physical, political corporate, or just plan stubborn people. Coming in from the top down can have problems of someone down below not liking being told what to do. But I think there are instances where a call from the big guy might get things moving.

 

The scarcity of sites makes some radical moves more appealing. Yes, one might fall on their face but it may also open doors, too. Jim explaining to a company’s VP or whoever could be a very useful tool.

 

I suppose we could ask someone with a title like “manager of competition programs” who has intimate knowledge of Solo make be able to assuage the fears of facility manager.

 

Could I interest you or Jim to call the City Mayor of Stratford, Connecticut?

 

As always, thanks for your help to the Solo community and SCCA. You makes us proud.

Matt Murray
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GESchweikle View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GESchweikle Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February.16.2007 at 2:37pm

Hi Martin,

You're correct that Solo Site Acquisition Committee postings have been slim, but we have been working. Did you get to the convention?. We gave a report of past activities, and conducted three hour long sessions that were very well recieved. All convention presentations are being placed on the SCCA website (under "Convention" and "presentations"). The SSAC presentation wasn't up yet, but they are adding things on a daily basis.

There are some new "tools" available to assist Regions. I will make another post for this, and I commit to much greater presence on this forum.

George Schweikle, Chairman

Solo Site Acquisition Committee

Originally posted by pistonwheels pistonwheels wrote:

How active is the National Site Acquisition Committee? (Postings here seem 'slim').

Are 'they' operating at the corporate level? For example and discussion purposes.

There are some sites in CCR's area that would be great to have access to, but I think need "encouragement" at an upper-corporate level. For example, Michelin owns a great testing area within CCR's region, but local management is concerned about liability issues and having a hundred or more people wandering around the site. We've hosted events there in the past (including a Divisional Solo) but have problems getting back there. Perhaps a relationship between SCCA National Office and Michelin USA would help there.

There are a couple of major Car Auction houses in the area - in case you haven't checked out these sites, they often have large tarmac areas. The problem with such venues is that the auction house often has to move a large number of vehicles out of the way so the site can be used for an autocross. We're working sucessfully with one, but couldn't get "in" with another. Promotion of Solo at the corprate level might help the local divsion get involved... (Perhaps encouraging a Safe Driver program on a Saturday in exchange for an autocross day on the Sunday). Their site gets good local publicity and we get to 'play'....

Martin Bartlett.

CCR Regional Executive.

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