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Discussion Starter #22
I haven’t looked to see which ones are legal, maybe by the time I get one the rule will be modified 🙂. There is a Facebook group for STH which has a lot of discussion on and off about changing the rule to allow more (and to include charge pipes).
 

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I am aware of the fb STH page and in fact I was one of the SEB letters that were selected to get the rule changed for the IC allowance. Charge pipes are still a no go, and there are only a handful of cars, (to include the FoST) that are actually able to take advantage of this allowance. Aside from custom, the only bolt on IC that is class legal for the FoST is indeed the Vortech as it does not remove the AGS or any other parts to facilitate install, which is how it is currently written in the rule book. If you want change, you need to write your letters, other wise the SCCA will tell you to pack sand as they have given an allowance that is still pissing people off.
 

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Something that irks me about STH is how few of the classed cars are currently in production. Audi, Volkswagen, Subaru, & Honda Civic are the only choices now that Ford has dropped out. None of the current Hyundais even though they're classified in Street are classed except via the catchall which means they're not legal for national competition. I laugh at including the Mazda 323 GTX as so few were made and even fewer have survived and the last time I saw one at an autocross was in the mid-90s.

It seems to me that the fastest way to kill a class, particularly a new class, is to quit classifying cars for it. On the other hand, manufacturers actually have to make cars that fit the category and, well, not many do... no Ford, no Chrysler/Dodge, no Mitsubishi, no Toyota, etc. Yet the popular class killers are not here, either (Golf R, Focus RS, Subaru STI). So I'm left scratching my head.

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Participation has been low in the 1.5 years of STH existence. There are a lot of possible reasons. awd cars vs fwd cars (is a real problem for ProSolo!), intercooler allowance that doesn't apply equally to the classified cars without doing custom intercooler builds, too many older cars with low production numbers, potential rules/classing instability, lack of vendor awareness, and lack of driver awareness(*) easily come to mind. Casual members of the target audience are still outside the rules, so they won't come play because the rules don't cater to their car build (and it never will, but that's one of those fictions we like to maintain, that there are lots of people out there who would come play if only their car build were catered to... okay, it worked for CAM, but the participants are quickly learning that trying to win with loose rules is expensive!).

(*) One of my local club drivers has a Neon SRT-4. She had no clue that it was reclassed from STX to STH and was merrily competing in STX. None of her competitors noticed, either! Only when I mentioned it to her did she learn of the change. One of the Oregon clubs hasn't yet integrated STH into their results list, but neither have they had any one compete in it or ask about STH.

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For myself, I'll wait. I like the STH ruleset in general, but spending money to be competitive in the class has to remain something that can't occur for at least 2 more years. That ought to provide time for the rules/classification to settle out. As of right now, I'd lean towards a 2016+ Audi TT Quattro as the car of choice for STH (ProSolos!) or a Honda Civic Si (contingency money).
 

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Judging by the results at Nats this year, it's still open as to what is the "go to" chassis to build seeing as Alex Piehl in his 14 WRX won and Kenny Roller in his 02/03 WRX runnered up, both of which werent favorable chassis to begin with for the class.
 

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In a reddit discussion, Alex Piehl believes he could make a newer WRX work better than his '14 (less weight, better something else). He also thinks the VAG platform is solid, but I think the fwd GTI is limited by a lack of 9" rims and there aren't enough TT Quattros running yet to separate the car from the drivers' skill. Thorpe's Golf R was in the hunt, about 0.5 sec behind per day, hot on the heels of the TT Quattro, so I think it's no worse of a choice than the TT Quattro despite the DSQ.

Alex Piehl also likes the 2017+ Honda Civic Si. It sounds like a couple people are building them for the 2020 season. The car is one of the lighter ones, 18x9" rims are available, it already has a good LSD and superior suspension geometry, but I heard they still might be camber-limited? And there's the stuck-between-gears problem since 2nd gear is only good for ~55 mph, so it will likely take a really good driver to put them in the winner's circle on National-level courses. Still, Honda contingency should pull in those good drivers.

Krauss' Talon TSI was not even close this year after winning during last year's weather debacle, but he also didn't attend any big events, so rusty skills might have held him back. He was so far back he did not beat the winning GS time.
Edit: Alex reported Krauss had a new engine that was down on power.

Then there's us with the FoST… it's clear you gotta throw money at this platform compared to the Honda and GTI. Neither has anyone proven 265 tires on 9" rims are enough for battling awd. I'm still sticking with GS for the next two years, working on my driving, but in the mean time I continue making plans and figuring things out.
 

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In a reddit discussion, Alex Piehl believes he could make a newer WRX work better than his '14 (less weight, better something else). He also thinks the VAG platform is solid, but I think the fwd GTI is limited by a lack of 9" rims and there aren't enough TT Quattros running yet to separate the car from the drivers' skill. Thorpe's Golf R was in the hunt, about 0.5 sec behind per day, hot on the heels of the TT Quattro, so I think it's no worse of a choice than the TT Quattro despite the DSQ.

Alex Piehl also likes the 2017+ Honda Civic Si. It sounds like a couple people are building them for the 2020 season. The car is one of the lighter ones, 18x9" rims are available, it already has a good LSD and superior suspension geometry, but I heard they still might be camber-limited? And there's the stuck-between-gears problem since 2nd gear is only good for ~55 mph, so it will likely take a really good driver to put them in the winner's circle on National-level courses. Still, Honda contingency should pull in those good drivers.

Krauss' Talon TSI was not even close this year after winning during last year's weather debacle, but he also didn't attend any big events, so rusty skills might have held him back. He was so far back he did not beat the winning GS time.

Then there's us with the FoST… it's clear you gotta throw money at this platform compared to the Honda and GTI. Neither has anyone proven 265 tires on 9" rims are enough for battling awd. I'm still sticking with GS for the next two years, working on my driving, but in the mean time I continue making plans and figuring things out.
The SI would be an excellent choice and Megan Racing already has a race valved suspension with the proper spring rates available to the general public so we may begin to see them pop up along side Jason Tipple's SI build next season.

Hopefully I can get my FoST out to Lincoln next year but its looking like if I do make it out there, it will have to be with a co driver either driving it out, or having the car transported and flying in to drive it. I know that my setup wont win a jacket, but with the right driver (or me not imploding) could potentially be in the hunt for at least a bottom trophy spot....lol
 

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Note that Thorpe's Golf R lost it's protest (though Chris is appealing) and was DSQ'd. Per the protest the Haldex is considered a limited slip diff which then makes his car illegal because it's got an aftermarket front LSD.

In other news there have been hints of something to come for STH either in the Fast Track due out in the next week or so or one out soon. In a perfect world I'd like to see the AGS (and similar) be removable to allow any reasonable IC, charge pipes/couplers, and bypass valves (like for like ie no vent to atmosphere), though I don't think anybody is trying for valves yet. Stock one on the FoST is pretty sad.
 
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