A common philosophy of economical and competitive racing has produced a partnership between International Motor Contest Association (IMCA) and the RaceSaver Sprint Car Series.
IMCA brings a long history of Sprint Car racing, proven procedures, point funds and contingency awards to the table. RaceSaver has grown to 650-plus drivers competing at more than 60 tracks in 12 regions in the eastern and southern United States since its founding 17 years ago by French Grimes.
"We have a class that works really well. The rules work really well and we keep a tight lid on them. The people who believe in RaceSaver expect integrity," Grimes said. "We have followed IMCA and know they are well respected. We believe this will be an excellent marriage." In addition to the common set of rules, RaceSaver requires use of individually measured, stamped and registered cylinder heads.
Grimes had talked with Eagle Raceway promoter Roger Hadan, who expressed concerns about costs of the winged class. Smiley Sitton, who built RaceSaver's flagship region in Texas and helped develop two other regions encompassing 10 tracks, encouraged Grimes to contact IMCA.
Details of the new partnership were then ironed out with IMCA Vice President of Operations Brett Root, Sprint Car Division Director Bob Allen and Director of Track Relations Jim Stannard.
"RaceSaver will provide the best and most cost effective rules in the country and allow us to do our job as a sanctioning body," explained Stannard. "We want to help take RaceSaver nationwide and secure new tracks."
One of those facilities will be Grimes' Fork Mountain Raceway in Martinsville, Va., home to the RaceSaver Nationals since 1999.
"IMCA Sprint Cars are very strong in the Midwest and we need a presence there," Grimes said. "Our goal is to get RaceSaver to the point where it is the standard Sprint Car group in the country."
"I'm trying to be like Johnny Appleseed. I want to see RaceSaver across the country as a good Sprint Car class," he continued. "I want it to propagate and continue to be a class that blue collar guys have a chance to race in. They can come and race with us, bring the whole family and have fun, and even if they don't win, they'll be treated with respect."
No changes will be made in procedures or the familiar 40-point scoring system. IMCA RaceSaver Sprint Car national, state and track champions and the national rookie of the year will be recognized at the annual banquet in Lincoln, Neb., in November. 30.
The 2012 RaceSaver Sprint Cup Nationals will be at Fork Mountain Raceway on August 3rd and 4th.