Re: Jon Tocker
I was referring to where I live, where we have one international drag strip, on national raceway, one circuit and skidpad driver training facility and one ordinary old raceway. Thats for an estimated population of 2 million people, in a state that covers 2.5 million square kilometers. Thats enough to fit the UK (where i assume your viewpoint is from) in over ten times! I quoted the figured I have to pay to get on the track, something I know as a volunteer official and trying to practice drift racer. While in the UK you might have a lot of facilities developed due to a larger population and better planning we dont. Yet we are the ones getting these ads shown to us from our tax money. ( well to be fair we have different ads being run here in WA, but they are of a similar calibre).
While the drags do run weekly 'open' events (though you cant run your street car if it goes too quick, 130mph terminal speed or 10.99 seconds and under, though it is your street car...) which are popular and I believe have curbed street racing, what I have said about the tracks stands true. The fact that they are booked out 6 months + in advance and require large sums of cash to get an event together limit things a bit. Every track event run at our only 'good' track requires you to purchase a CAMS license and a track membership, good for 1 year, so there is another $300.
So the average hoon boy racer needs to have some spare cash and a club thats well organised over here to get on the track. Or at least for drifting they could rock up to the once a month practice days, join the over subscribed queues and for their $55 get maybe 15 minutes on track, if they dont get kicked off because they came off too many times in one group of laps. good way to spend from 6 to 10pm on a friday night if you like to watch drift at least. The professionals have their own lane they get cycled through and generally get twice as much track time as boy racer, at least they are showy.
The skid pan at the other facility is reserved for motokhana and some instructor led driver training and is strictly bookings only. They are even more strict about who gets to go on their circuit. Booking the pad and doing something other than motorkhana can lead to getting kicked out, depending on the staff on the day, luckily though they arent breathing down your neck about CAMS.
Now if you just want to have some fun, maybe practice slides or do whatever else it is you want to do on the street you cant (big shock, not everyones wants to race competitvely on the track, seriously... you claim they dont turn up, maybe they dont share the passion for prim and proper racing, they might want to have fun). Free form driving will get you kicked out of any track facility here and I bet it would there too. Most arguments about facilities seem to think that everyone wants a track and to go really fast around it because thats what the professionals do. That isnt what everyone wants to do, maybe they want to test their car, do some burnouts or challenge a friend to some cornering.
My suggestion would be to lay down some big sections of tarmac interlinked together to form a circuit or seperate for people as required. Then have fee per hour use then go here is a section of tarmac, go for it. Gets them off the street and saves innocent lives. I can think of plenty of reasons why this wouldnt happen though, and that I find is really disappointing. Its the kind of facility that mimics what they do now and just moves it off the street. It would be almost equivilant to you pay to use this section of tarmac and you are free of persecution, that is all the payment gives you and as far as the owners responsibilies go.
Of course reading your post you might be complaining about the kids who cruise around playing doof doof and generally doing the stop start drive around in a group thing. I wouldnt exactly call their behaviour hooning or dangerous, just funny. Naturally you wont see them on any track but if you put a car park off the facility i mentioned maybe they'd all congregate there :P