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Old 12-17-2005, 12:39 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Why is drag racing so popular?

I'm not trying to start a flame war or bash on drag racers at all. But what makes drag racing so popular? I know its a good performance test for acceleration, but really...thats all it is. I think of 1/4 times as nothing but a test. Its like a 0-60 time, or skidpad number, or horsepower rating. It only measures one aspect of a cars performance. Although it may be a cheap and easy form of "racing", I dont consider it true racing, because it leaves out all the other things that cars are supposed to do, like turning and slowing down. If a 1/4 mile run is a "race", then why dont we have 0-60 races, or 60-0 braking "races"? or See who gets the highest G force on a skidpad and call it a "race"? Hell, why not just have side by side dynos and see who can make the most horsepower and call it a race (*cough*SUPRA*cough ) ? What makes the 1/4 mile TEST so much more special than all these other TESTS that propels it into so much popularity that its actually considered a race? I'm guessing just because its cheap and easy for the average person. But i'd think it would get old after a while, only getting to push your car to the limits for a few seconds at a time, and only getting to push one aspect of "the limits".

Please give me your opinions...but keep it respectful and intelligent.
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Old 12-17-2005, 01:24 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Because drag racing is more than just mashing the gas and shifting gears. Too often, roadracing "fanatics" dismiss drag racing as little more than seeing how fast cars can go. This elitist mentality is truly sad to see among car enthusiasts. It takes a lot more skill to hop into an unfamiliar car and wring every last tenth of a second out of it than most people realize.
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Old 12-17-2005, 06:39 PM   #3 (permalink)
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track racing with turns and what not to me is like being good at a wide range of things while drag is being great at a specific thing i think of it like in track racing you are puting 25% of yourself into turning 25% into braking 25% into acceleration and 25% into passing or what ever else, while drag is like putting 100% into launching down the straight line as fast as possible, not worrying about turning or braking after passing the traps. and the remark about cheap it goes both ways i have put almost 7000 into my hatch and iam no were near done for drag racing but at the same time you can have a civic and swap in a b16 for reletivly cheap and have fun at the strip also you could go buy a type R and spend thousands on suspension and what not and tear up the track or buy a reletivly cheap integra and put 600 coilovers on it and have fun on the track
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Old 12-17-2005, 06:52 PM   #4 (permalink)
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theres alot more to drag then you think. yes it is BASICALLY a test of what your car can do in a certain length. but as far as things to do/look out for? its basically being one with your car. its not like track racing where you drive it hard sometimes and in turns and all you ease up a little to keep on the track. you gotta give it all your car will give on that drag strip. so that means you have to keep an eye on your guages and monitor everything you can about your car becuause if you miss something like engine temp or sumthin, in that 1/4 mile you can siriously fuck up your ride. you have to worry about your launch. first of all, you got the guy next to you who is tryin to beat your ass. even if you think you can take it, you dont REALLY know what hes got done. so you have to pay attention to him and try to hear your car over his, watch the tree verry carefully, and when it turns green, there is a certain skill, if you will, so that you dont smoke the hell out of your tires and sit there on the line while the other guy already made his 60 foot mark. thats not all though. even the veterans get a little nervous, i shouldnt say nervous, maybe excited. but anyway you get whatever you get and the adrenaline is pumpin through your body, you gotta make sure you shift at that sweet spot right in between the rev limiter and the point where your engine starts losin power. this again comes with being one with your car. if you miss a gear, depending how bad it is, it could easily be a 1-3 tenth of a second fuck up, which in turn could cause you the race. so to others it is more then mashin the gas and goin fast in a straight line.
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Old 12-17-2005, 06:57 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Old 12-18-2005, 05:47 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Best part about drag racing...when you're in line with the rest of the cars and you're almost ready to get staged like 1-2 cars infront of you..Windows down with the heat cranking, usually when its already 80-90 degrees out..no radio just sitting listening to the car idling..thats when my heart starts to race and I get alittle edgy. You forget, there is usually alot of people watching you when you drag race so you're trying not to make an ass of yourself usually. Once you drop the hammer I love flying by the grandstands, You can see like everyones head turn its kinda' funny sometimes.
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Old 12-18-2005, 06:45 AM   #7 (permalink)
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cbf responding in depth... but anyone who thinks drag racing is simple can stfu
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Old 12-18-2005, 07:41 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for all the really good responses. I guess the thing that makes it so exciting is the competitiveness of it. Like if you were just lining up by yourself to get a test run of your car, it may not be that exciting. But have somebody else stage next to you and you've got somebody to beat, and you adrenaline starts going.

Oh and to the guy that was talkin about putting lots of money into your car and how its not cheap...i was referring to buying track time as being cheap. Like at my dragstrip during the summer its like 10 bucks and you come in for the whole night and get to race other street cars. Track days on a road course are a lot more expensive, and track days aren't really a race, more just a bunch of guys having fun seeing what they can do. To have true side by side races on a road course you usually have to be in some kind of racing series, which means fees and regulations on your car, and is usually pretty expensive.
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Old 01-01-2006, 12:55 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Knowing how fast your car is on the tracks is closer to how fast your car is on the streets, when you want to accelerate onto an on-ramp, or just pass someone on the freeway temporarily.

You hardly never use the type of driving you find in road racing in normal everyday driving.

This is not to promote street racing or anything, but sometimes you need to accelelrate really quick to pass someone, go over a coupel lanes in order to not miss an exit.
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Old 01-02-2006, 07:40 AM   #10 (permalink)
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one thing i would like to ad into this conversation and would like everyone's feedback on is drag racing and america. my view is that drag racing is more popluar in america than it is in say japan or europe because of a couple thinkgs:
1. tracks(or lack their of): drag strips are more plentiful in america than road courses. europe, japan, etc. all have abundant tracks that everyone can go out and drive...here in the us its harder to find one
2. street racing: we all know in japan and other places drifting,rallying,etc. is popular...and done on the streets. wagan runs in japan, drifting initial d style. all of that does not happen here in the states. when we street race(in america)its normally at a stop light or in some industrial park where we can get a quick run in with no extended turns or anything like that.
3. american history: drag racing goes way back, back to the muscle car days when big engines and big power ruled and where do you show off how powerful your car is.....the drag strip. some say that americans like to show how big they are and how powerful they are so we build big cars that are powerful and can go fast only in a straight line.(i actually had this debate with a guy i went to college with who was from sweden...how he can debate cars coming from a country that produces saabs is beyone me) but the point does probably have some merit.

would like everyones thoughts on this, and i must have to say this thread has been a really good read, good topic and eveyones comments have been well thoughtout and well said
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Old 01-02-2006, 07:44 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by B16AHatch
I'm not trying to start a flame war or bash on drag racers at all. But what makes drag racing so popular? I know its a good performance test for acceleration, but really...thats all it is. I think of 1/4 times as nothing but a test. Its like a 0-60 time, or skidpad number, or horsepower rating. It only measures one aspect of a cars performance. Although it may be a cheap and easy form of "racing", I dont consider it true racing, because it leaves out all the other things that cars are supposed to do, like turning and slowing down. If a 1/4 mile run is a "race", then why dont we have 0-60 races, or 60-0 braking "races"? or See who gets the highest G force on a skidpad and call it a "race"? Hell, why not just have side by side dynos and see who can make the most horsepower and call it a race (*cough*SUPRA*cough ) ? What makes the 1/4 mile TEST so much more special than all these other TESTS that propels it into so much popularity that its actually considered a race? I'm guessing just because its cheap and easy for the average person. But i'd think it would get old after a while, only getting to push your car to the limits for a few seconds at a time, and only getting to push one aspect of "the limits".

Please give me your opinions...but keep it respectful and intelligent.

Well thanks for bashing supras. Not all supras are dyno queens Its only going to be what it was tuned for nothing more..... thanks for being ignorant and casting the first stone
ID love to know what you drive that you can bash supras handling....The supra can handle real well considering its massive curb weight of over 3500 pounds.It can be made to handle extremely well...Shows what you know A car is only going to be tuned for the user has in mind for the car or a budget for......Learn something will you?
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Old 01-02-2006, 05:09 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I figured I'd weigh on this.. I roadrace motorcycles and for me going fast in a straight line gets a lil on the boring side.. There seems to be much more of a dynamic atmosphere in roadracing than drag racing..

With factors such as corners, traffic and passing overall I believe roadracing requires a lot more patience, skill and strategy.

but hey, to each his own..

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Old 01-02-2006, 07:06 PM   #13 (permalink)
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the reason I like it is.......

it is 11 to 15 seconds of full throttle, not having to worry about the cops, competition.
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Old 01-03-2006, 08:54 AM   #14 (permalink)
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The best drivers in any form of motorsport are very very skilled in their particular field. To say road racing or auto-x require skill and drag racing does not is pure ignorance.

I prefer drag racing because I enjoy the feeling of all out acceleration and the process of wringing every last .001 of a second out of my car.
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Old 01-03-2006, 10:05 AM   #15 (permalink)
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I enjoy all racing. I just am more active in drag racing. It does take alot of skill unlike many might think.
I have ran faster then many people in their own cars. Just becuase of experience.Just like anything else. I have had one of my AutoX friends beat my times in my own car too. Diff people with diff thrills and skills.
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