Official Press Release
Jan. 16, 2012
Steel Block Bandits Corp. Office
Steel Block Bandits - Memebership/Points update for the 2012 Season
The Steel Block Bandits Series, under the direction of new co-promoters Butch Mayo and Greg Keister, are implementing many innovative ideas for the 2012 racing season. This change of philosophy is being made in an effort to attract more drivers and tracks to the SBB series.
Perhaps one of the most notable internal changes within the series will be the elimination of paid memberships for drivers this season. Although there will be no paid memberships, all participating drivers will be eligible for the same benefits as last season. This change, in effect, makes the SBB Series an open series for all steel block late model teams to be able to compete for the championship.
“The way the economy is, we are doing everything possible to save these race teams money,” said Mayo. “Under this new system, every driver at every track can enter the race and compete for the same amount of points,” Mayo stated. “In the past, drivers, who were not members of the series, have won races but have not collected as many points as Bandit members that finished in the top-10 due to bonus show-up points,” he further explained. “Eliminating our paid membership was something we discussed in diligence. Yes, we know it eliminates the bonus show-up points, but it’s traded off by us no longer requiring paid memberships,” Keister said. “It also allows drivers, whom have not been members in the past, to be able to come in and compete on a level playing field. They no longer have to feel like it’s an ‘us against them’ situation,” Keister added.
Other enhancements to the series include the following: Any driver failing to qualify for a specific event will receive 85 non-qualifier points. The new promoters have taken this one step further. This season, any driver entering a SBB race will be eligible for “Tough Luck” points. On race day, after a driver has paid his or her entry fee, the driver will be eligible for these 75 points. These points will be used to cover teams that have mechanical problems prior to taking the green flag in a qualifying event (time trials or heat races). “We had several drivers last year that had trouble in the pits or in hot laps and left the venue with zero points,” Mayo explained. “We want to reward the teams that are going to travel to tracks and these points will help them out,” he said. Once a driver takes the green flag in a qualifying event, the Tough Luck points will become null and void. The driver will then become eligible for the non-qualifier points.
Additionally, the SBB will again offer hardship points. However, due to no paid memberships, these points will now be eligible to all racing participants. These 70 points will be offered to each driver twice a season. These points will be given to a driver prior to race day if he or she is unable to race in the SBB event due to a personal hardship (i.e. personal illness, injury or death in the family) or a major mechanical issue on the car prior to race day. “Last season, there were a few cases where hardship points were given to drivers that had mechanical issues prior to race day,” Keister said. Drivers that request hardship points but race at any other venue the same day of a SBB race will not be eligible for these points. The hardship points will be given to any driver for a particular SBB event or weekend, whichever case applies.
The SBB Series will again offer provisional starting positions for each event. The first provisional will be the host track’s provisional and the second one will be awarded to the driver highest in the point standings and not already qualified. Provisional starting positions will be based off last year’s final standings for the first two races of the 2012 season. Once the season reaches its third race, a provisional will be based off the current year’s standings. The usage of two provisional will trim the SBB starting field to 24 cars this season. All A-Main and heat race points will be awarded in the same manner as last season.
“Butch and I excited to bring these changes to help drivers that want to race with the series. Also, we want to give reassurance to all tracks that every local late model driver will be afforded the same opportunities within the series as the regional travelling race teams,” Keister said.
Please continue to monitor steelblockbandits.com for more news throughout the 2012 racing season.