These Are the Motorsports You Wish More People Knew About

These Are the Motorsports You Wish More People Knew About

Supercars, speedboats, and... goats? Where do you all find this stuff?

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Everybody knows about NASCAR and Formula 1, but too many forms of racing have slipped through the cracks in the public consciousness. We here at the jello picnic won’t stand for that — we think every motorsport deserves its day in the sun. With that goal in mind, we asked yesterday for your favorite overlooked motorsports. Let’s see what you came up with.

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2 / 17

The 24 Hours of LeMons

The 24 Hours of LeMons

#lemonsworld 128 - Pinto Swapped Mercedes!

Gotta give a callout to the 24 hours of lemons, (or Luckydog, which is a similar series)...

it’s a series where regular idiots like you or I can get out on a track and race. you dont need an SCCA license or anything like that... you also dont need a $100k race car, rather the opposite end of the spectrum at $500... though realistically it costs somewhere around $5000 to build up a lemons race car once you account for all the safety gear and everything. we built our race car for about $3000 TOTAL because we did the roll cage ourselves. that’s about as cheap as a race car gets.... though i should add, there are some serious crapcan race cars out there, that are wayyyy over budget.... but those get put in to class A (cheaty race cars), there’s also class B (kinda sorta play by the $500 rule, not as cheaty as A)... and class C (those who took the $500 rule farrrr too seriously, and showed up with a car that has no chance of ever winning anything, let alone finishing)

furthermore, once you have the race car built, you can race for as little as about $3200 (1 entry for 4x drivers, gas, food, tires, 1x track day, 2x days of racing) give or take for the entire weekend. so roughly $800/person for a weekend of BBQ, racing, paddock shenanigans, hanging out, and just good ol fun...

plus... how often do you get to come flying around a corner, just to mash that throttle to the floor, and hit the end of the straightaway at 110mph? at home not so much, but on the track, just about every single damn lap.

ALSO. the race directors are actually really cool about making exceptions for people who are subject to shitty circumstances....
so quick story, one of our teammates uncle has a stage 4 cancer that came back (recently. my story is little outa chronological order). he’s always been a gearhead. loved cars. loved working on cars. loved going fast (within reason) but life/this/that, he never got around to the opportunity of driving a car WOT the way you get to on a track. when he heard that we built a car for lemons he was a tiny bit jealous, he came out to a couple of our races to watch... at the time we had no idea what he was going thru, but when we heard what was going on, we knew that we had to see about getting him some time in the seat.... he was OVER THE MOON when we got him a spot in the driver’s seat at sonoma at the end of 2021, for him it was the experience of a lifetime....

fast forward to this May. shit progressed, and he wasnt feeling well. so we reached out to the Lemons staff explaining our situation, basically 3 healthy drivers, and 1 driver who may not be able to do more than about 20~30 min behind the wheel safely (racing is very tiring, he could probably go for an hour, but wed rather play it safe, both for our driver and others, so the plan was to limit him to a 20 min stint... enough to get the adrenaline pumping and feel the racing but not too far to where he’s not in control.)...

we contacted the Lemons’ staff, explaining our situation, that we wanted to add a 5th driver, because our current 5th may not be able to do much driving at all, usually that’s $250 or so. they waived the fee, and said along the lines of “look, in situations like that where we have the opportunity to provide someone with the experience of a lifetime, please dont hesitate to reach out.”

I have always wanted to run the 24 Hours of LeMons, and a couple of years I’ve come close to putting a team together and making it happen. Someday, I’ll find myself behind the wheel of one of those beautiful shitboxes.

Submitted by: redneckrob and his flock of Volvos

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3 / 17

Figure 8 Train Racing

Figure 8 Train Racing

Colorado National Speedway trains 8-11-18

Figure 8 train car racing

So we’ve got cars. Towing cars. Towing other cars. Around a figure-8 track. Surrounded by dirt. Why is this not on every television channel, 24-7, every day?

Submitted by: Icouldntfindaclevername

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4 / 17

Semi Truck Racing

Semi Truck Racing

European Truck Racing Championship - Misano 2017

European Truck Racing

I have to wonder, is there a road-legal motor vehicle less suited to motorsport than cabover semi trucks? I’m genuinely asking, because I cannot think of one.

Submitted by: Unacceptably Dry Scones

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5 / 17

The Nissan Sentra Cup

The Nissan Sentra Cup

Race 2 - CTMP / 2022

I was going to say the Nissan Micra Cup Spec series, but I see that it ended in 2020.

Nissan Sentra CupSo I’ll put up . I believe it’s Canada only. The car is a proper, spec-series racecar. From the website:

THE RACE CAR

Tested by the renowned professional Quebec racer, Jean-François Dumoulin, the Nissan Sentra® racing version is the real deal.

Each Sentra® competing in the Nissan Sentra® Cup is prepared by the Motorsports in Action team in St-Eustache. Everything in the interior of the vehicle is removed: seats, floor, door panels, steering wheel, etc., to install the racing features and transform it into the race-ready version for the Nissan Sentra® Cup.

Each vehicle will be delivered to Nissan Sentra® Cup participants ready to race, at the price of: $39, 990 CAD. The race-ready version of the Nissan Sentra® includes all of the required safety features and racing enhancements below.

One-make series like the Sentra Cup or Spec Miata can make for some of the most interesting racing around. With no differences in the car to make or break a victory, it all comes down to driver skill. At least, that’s the idea.

Submitted by: JohnnyWasASchoolBoy

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6 / 17

Jetsprint Boat Racing

Jetsprint Boat Racing

PSP NZ 2020 Jetsprint Championship Round 1 Featherston Group A

jet boat sprint racing

As a human being licensed to operate watercraft, there’s an important detail I feel most people should know before watching this video: Most boats don’t have brakes. So when you attempt this sort of Boat Autocross, which would be harsh on the brakes were you to do it in a car, suddenly you have no means of slowing down. This rocks.

Submitted by: my goat ate my homework

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7 / 17

Figure 8 School Bus Racing

Figure 8 School Bus Racing

School Bus Figure 8 race 5/18/19 Sportsdrome Speedway, Clarksville, IN

School bus figure 8 racing.

We’ve already covered figure eights with cars towing cars towing cars. But what about a single vehicle that matches the length of those car trains, while adding a whole new level of top-heavy unweildiness (real word, coined by Steve DaSilva, copyright 2022) to the equation? Ladies, gents, and folks of all other stripes, enjoy.

Submitted by: AJ19

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8 / 17

Australian Goat Races

Australian Goat Races

Comboyne Goat Races

The Aussies do it differently. Horsepower? try goatpower.

You could make the argument, and I’m sure many of you will in the comments, that motorsports require a motor. To that question, I counter: Can you define a motor in a way that does not include goats? Merriam-Webster says a motor is “one that imparts motion,” which is exactly what these goats are doing.

Submitted by: skeffles

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9 / 17

Karting

Karting

Karting Kids in 49 second Race! Super 1 2018, Rd 9 Honda Cadet Final

Kart. When you see a 6-year old behind the wheel of performing kart and how much they are competitive, you will be amazed. Also, some are so small, their helmet makes half their size and they hardly can look ahead because said steering.

Kids’ karting is kind of like watching Formula 1 with a Big Head Mode cheat enabled. Though, luckily for the kids, karts don’t seem to have quite the same porpoising issues.

Submitted by: minardi

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10 / 17

King of the Baggers

King of the Baggers

MotoAmerica Mission King of the Baggers Race at Road America 2022

King of the Baggers.

We’ve talked about KotB here before, but the series earns another look just for the sheer absurdity of the concept. Sure, baggers are fast, but they certainly aren’t known for their handling. And yet, here they are, on track. Handling it just fine.

Submitted by: McMike

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11 / 17

Walter Mitty at Road Atlanta

Walter Mitty at Road Atlanta

The Mitty from Road Atlanta 2019

You know which race I DON’T want more people to know about?

The Walter Mitty held every spring at Road Atlanta.

Great amateur racing, a wide variety of classic old racing cars and the accessibility to get up close to the cars and take some great photos.

Plus where else can you see an old MG Midget go tire to tire with some dentist who bought a retired open-wheel race car for the hell of it?

Why don’t I want other people to know about this?

Because the attendees are mostly just drivers and support crew, with a few fanatics thrown into the mix. It’s inexpensive to attend, the stands are not crowded, you can still get a seat at the local restaurants on race weekend and there’s very little traffic into or out of the track.

So yeah, stay away, losers.

Yeah, if you’re local to Atlanta, you should absolutely not go check out this wild collection of vintage vehicles all competing on the same road course. That would just be horrible.

Submitted by: Earthbound Misfit I

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12 / 17

Trials

Trials

52 min 2016 FIM X-Trial World Championship - Wiener Neustadt (AUT)

Trials. Occasional semi-viral Youtube videos of trials demos haven’t moved it beyond niche sport in the US. More people need to know that trials is a thing.

Exhibitions are typically more exciting than the sport, but how can one not be impressed and entertained by the skills on display?

Trials riders have arguably the best fine vehicle control of any race driver. Landing even an inch off your target can be disastrous in the sport, so the riders just... don’t. It’s incredible.

Submitted by: smalleyxb122

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13 / 17

Ultimate Hydroplane

Ultimate Hydroplane

2021 HomeStreet Bank San Diego Bayfair Final Heat

Boat Racing

Technically, TheDriveress just stated “boat racing,” but the included image sure looked a lot like three top-spec hydroplanes. Convenient, then, that those would be my pick to suggest anyway with a prompt like “boat racing.” Great minds think alike.

Submitted by: TheDriveress

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14 / 17

V8 Supercars

V8 Supercars

FLASHBACK: McLaughlin makes a power slide dive on Winterbottom for the podium | Supercars 2020

Supercar Championship. Something that most of North America misses. It’s fantastic racing.

Picture this: What if NASCAR ruled? What if it had bigger aero, more manufacturers, and was commentated by the best accents on the planet? My friends, here’s the answer.

Submitted by: SennaMP4

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15 / 17

Rally

Rally

Best FPV Drone Footage from Oregon Trail Rally 2022

This might sound strange given it’s world wide appeal, but I wish more people in my corner of the US knew about rally. I’m from the South, and you would think that a generation of people raised on Dukes of Hazzard to the point of idolization would flock to a racing series where cars run flat out on dirt roads through the woods, taking regular jumps along the way. What about that DOESN’T sound redneck? Alas, Nascar continues to hold the attention of Bubba and his kin despite the fact that “Nascar lost it’s way a long time ago.”

I think we need to ease Americans into rally, like a frog in a pot of boiling water. First, they got hooked on NASCAR. Now, NASCAR is introducing more dirt events. Next we need a feeder series with short-wheelbase cars on the dirt, and then it’s a simple jump up to taking them off the track and letting them go free in the wild. It’s a long-term plan, but a good one.

Submitted by: Fluffy6079

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16 / 17

MotoGP

MotoGP

MotoGP Full Race | 2002 #GermanGP

A lot of people here are being clever saying things like figure 8 or Barbie car or whatever, but the real answer you’re looking for is MotoGP.

I jumped on board in 2020 and I was fully converted by the fourth race, by the end of the year I sprang for their (admittedly pricey) VideoPass. Honestly, if you’re a racing fan and you’re not watching MotoGP, you are truly missing out. Dive deeper and check out Moto3, which I’d say is the best-kept secret in motorsports.

I’ve been advocating for MotoGP for 30 months now and if I convert even one person, it will have been worth it. It’s that good.

WRC is a good second answer, but that’s more time commitment than many will want to devote to an event. But if you’re willing to scale the learning curve on following it, it’s a lot of fun.

If you caught our Twitch stream yesterday, you would’ve been treated to an in-depth discussion about Marc Marquez’s various successes and injuries in the sport. If you missed it, you’ll just have to tune in to the next MotoGP race on the calendar.

Submitted by: Matt Sexton

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