The following information contains everything you need to know about participating in a BMW CCA autocross event. Please read these instructions carefully, even if you are an Autocross veteran. Because using your car in this controlled environment can introduce risks, we must make sure it remains a safe series. We reserve the right to discharge a driver who creates an unsafe situation.
Event Policies and Procedures
Drivers must hold a valid driver’s license and be 16 years of age or older. If you are 16 or 17 you will need to have your parents or guardians sign the “minor waiver” form in order to participate in this low-speed, non-racetrack event. We strongly encourage parents of minor drivers to attend these events.
Up to two drivers of a single car are allowed, as long as each driver is registered separately.
Registration will be limited to one entry per person.
Please be sure to classify your car prior to registering an event. Please see the Classification rules below. Here is the sequence for registering a BMW on-line:
- Open the Model Grid and find your car’s base points.
- Download the IMF, enter your car’s base points at the top, then carefully declare any modifications made and enter the appropriate point values.
- Total all point, base pts and modifications pts, to find which class your car is in from the Autocross Classes schedule and complete the registration process on line for your car in that class.
- Bring the completed IMF form to the event.
Drivers’ meeting will be between 7:30 and 8:00 AM and the time can vary depending on whether we are going to walk the course first or have the meeting first. Get to the event no later than 7:30 AM. If you miss the Drivers’ meeting, you will not be allowed to run for the day.
We will be running two run groups, where one works, while the other runs. You will run or work, then swap, then we will break for a half-hour lunch break, then repeat the morning schedule (run and work).
We run in two run groups, while one works, the other runs. You will run or work, then swap, then we will break for a half-hour lunch break, then repeat the morning schedule (run and work). You are required to work both in the morning and in the afternoon.
Attentive course workers are the key to a well-run event. While working on the course, there is no cell-phone use, sitting, taking pictures or chatting in groups. Safety first is critical. Be alert at all time and never turn your back to cars.
If you have physical needs that prevent you from performing certain assignments or need to leave the event early, please email the Autocross Coordinators at least 5 days before the event so that we can try to accommodate your request.
Anyone who does not report for their work assignment on time, or doesn’t report at all, will be disqualified from the event. Missing work assignments is a serious offense. The event coordinators have to find someone else to work, and no cars can run until the course is fully staffed. Habitual offenders may be suspended from participating.
Visitors are always welcome at our events!
If you are planning on visiting, you will need to check in at the gate and sign the appropriate waivers. You will be instructed by the gate worker on where to park your vehicle and where you are allowed to view the event. Please be aware that are not allowed on course, you must stand well off of the runways, and you must never cross an active autocross course. Be very attentive to cars that are running. If you are unsure where you can safely spectate from, please ask. If you are planning on taking photographs, you must check-in with the Autocross Coordinators when you arrive. Photographers are not allowed past the grid area without explicit permission from the Event Coordinators and compliance with strict safety rules.
Car passengers are permitted on the course as long as they are 16 or older and are wearing an approved helmet. No backseat passengers are allowed.
Your car must be in good condition and it must pass the on-site Tech Inspection to participate in the event. Vehicles are allowed to run at the sole discretion of the Autocross Chair.
To help ensure that your vehicle and helmet fully comply with the Club’s inspection requirements, please review the following Tech Inspection Checklist:
Tech Inspection Checklist
- Each driver must wear a helmet. The helmet must be rated Snell MA2015 (or later) or Snell SA2015 (or newer).
- Non-compliant helmets will be confiscated and returned at the end of the day.
- We only have limited number of loaner helmets, so it is best to bring your own.
- Motor mounts solid.
- Battery securely mounted.
- No cracked hoses, belts tight.
- No oil, gas, antifreeze, hydraulic, or other fluid leaks.
- Throttle must be free with no binding.
- Brake fluid reservoir must be full, no dirty brake fluid
Wheels and Suspension
- Tires must have adequate tread; no cracks, blisters, or cords showing.
- Lug nuts must be torqued to spec.
- Hubcaps must be removed.
- Wheel bearings must not show excessive play and must be properly adjusted.
- Solid brake pedal feel with no bleed down.
- Seat belts must not frayed or cut.
- All loose items removed from interior, storage compartments, glove box, and trunk.
- Driver-side floor mat must be removed.
- Numbers must be affixed to both sides of the car, be at least 8” and a different color from the car. We prefer the numbers to be affixed to the body panels; not the windows.
How Your Runs Are Timed
Times are calculated differently, depending on whether you drive a BMW or non-BMW car.
For BMW cars, the average of each driver’s fastest morning time and fastest afternoon time is used to determine the finish order for each class.
Non-BMW’s are classified by the SCCA PAX index. For Non-BMW cars, the average of each driver’s PAX-ed fastest morning time and PAX-ed fastest afternoon time is used to determine the finish order for each class. If conditions allow for two or less runs per entry, the best single time (PAX-ed for Non-BMW cars) is used to determine the finish order.
Pax Index (non-BMW Classes only)
There are a variety of car makes and models in the non-BMW classes, each with different performance capabilities. In an effort to equalize the field for these classes, we use the SCCA PAX Index. The PAX index assigns a handicap to each driver’s time based on the make/model/year and level of modification of their vehicle. These handicaps are based on the actual performance of cars driven at SCCA National events.
In order to determine the PAX index for each car, we must know your car’s SCCA Solo II Class. You will be asked for your car’s SCCA Class during online event registration, so the timing system would be able to PAX your score. If you don’t know your car’s SCCA Class, please find it using the SCCA Solo Rules. If you are unsure of your car’s SCCA Class, please contact the Autocross Registrar.
Did Not Run (dnr)
If you did not start a run, it will be scored as a “did not run”, and you will not receive a time. The usual reason for a dnr is mechanical problems with your car.
Did Not Finish (dnf)
If you fail to stay on course during your run, the run is scored as a “did not finish” or dnf. Runs scored as dnf are not complete runs and as such are not considered for points.
If you knock over any cones in the stop box after the finish line, you receive an automatic dnf.
Did Not Place (dnp)
Unless you complete at least one morning run and one afternoon run, you will be scored as dnp or “did not place” for the event.
Each event usually lets you have four chances to complete a run in the morning and four chances in the afternoon. If you are new to autocrossing or to the course, please remember that experienced autocrossers are available to ride with you and help you stay on course.
If you are disqualified, you will not earn any points for the event. The Autocross Committee may at its discretion disqualify any driver for dangerous or illegal behavior, use of alcohol or drugs at the autocross site, and cheating among other reasons. If this occurs, you will be listed in the results as dsq or “disqualified”.
Fastest Time of the Day
The fastest BMW and non-BMW run of the day (the FTD) is shown in the Autocross Results for information only.
Autocross trophies will be awarded to the top finishers in each class at the end of the event. The number of trophies awarded is based on the number of qualified drivers at the end of the season. One trophy will be awarded for every 3 qualified drivers, with the number of drivers rounded up.
The Boston Chapter Autocross Series features classes for BMWs and non-BMWs. We use an empirically-derived performance-based points system for BMW cars, and we follow SCCA rules for Non-BMW classes. Cars equipped with race tires (tread wear rating < 140) run in R-comp classes.
Your car will be classed automatically as part of the event registration process, but we have listed a general class breakdown below.
BMW Autocross Classes
Each BMW is assigned base points according to model and year. Additional points are added for each modification that improves the car’s performance. Cars are then classed by total performance points accumulated.
The MINI is part of the BMW family and runs in the BMW classes.
Self-Classification for BMW and Mini Classes
To begin the classification process, find your car’s model and year on the “Model Grid”, then use the IMF to calculate any and all modification points. Your total points determine your car’s class based on the following grid:
|BMW Autocross Classes|
|Class A||100+ Points|
|Class B||80-99 Points|
|Class C||60-79 Points|
|Class D||40-59 Points|
|Class E||20-39 Points|
|Class F||0-19 Points|
Only BMW and Mini drivers should use the self-classification process.
(Non-BMW drivers should use the classification instructions in the Non-BMW Autocross Classes section).
The self-classification process starts with a base number of points assigned to each BMW according to model and year. Additional points are added for each modification that improves the car’s performance. Cars are then classed by total performance points accumulated.
BMW and MINI Model Grid
BMW Class A is unlimited. The Event chairs reserve the right to move a car from class AR car to class M if the car is modified to an unreasonable level. NO car in the A-F classes will be allowed to have a stripped interior. All side panels, windows, seats (rear bottom seat pads optional if interferes with seatbelts/harnesses) must exist, or you will be considered an A car.
BMW cars are allowed to run in SCCA (non-BMW) classes with the correct SCCA PAX for their level of modifications.
Removal of rear seats, and the installation of roll cages in BMWs and MINIs is allowed. The following points will apply:
- Removal of the seat bottom for the purposes of installing aftermarket harnesses: No penalty points.
- Roll cage installed: No penalty points
- Removal of the upright portions of the seat, or the seat bottom, not for the purposes of installing aftermarket harnesses: 5 points
Cars will be moved to class A if interior panels, sound deadening, carpets, etc. are removed from the car.
If in doubt, please contact the Event Organizers for further clarification.
Be advised, there will be spot checks on all cars throughout the season, especially for podium winners. Any car found to be over in points for their class will immediately and retroactively be bumped up to the next higher class. If the car is brought back to compliance, it will be allowed to run its original class for future events.
Inspection and Modification Form (IMF)
The IMF clarifies the penalty points to assess in order to determine your vehicle class. Download the IMF.
Drivers that do not submit their IMF need to understand that that their times will not count, and they will be required to have a tech inspection each event.
Non-BMW driver should follow the classification process on the Classes, Points and Trophies page (see below).
If you make changes to your car during the season that causes your class to change, or you want to switch cars during the season, you must register again and be assigned a new number and class.
Other changes to your car that allow you to remain in your current class will require a new IMF form to be submitted, noting the details of all changes made.
Non-BMW autocross classes are determined similarly to SCCA events.
|Non-BMW Autocross Classes (following SCCA Classing)|
|Class G||Street Class (SS, AS, BS, FS)|
|Class H||Street Class (CS, DS, ES, GS, HS)|
|Class J||SSR, Street Prepared, Street Modified, Prepared, and Modified (All R-Comps and Slicks)|
|Class K||Street Touring “Big and/or Powerful” + Friends (SST, STH, STU, CAM, X, EV)|
|Class L||Street Touring “Small and Lights” + SSC (SSC, STR, STS, STX)|
* all SS cars with less than 200tw tires (even OEM) will have to run SSR in Class J.
**Class J is a modified/race category for all cars (including BMW) that are not street legal or are judged to be SCCA Modified or higher. All cars that compete in Class J will have their respective SCCA PAX used to adjust their raw times.
You may use the following guidelines to determine if your non-BMW car is stock:
- Anything available on the exact model and year of your car as standard or optional equipment, as installed on the factory assembly line.
- Standard OEM identical replacement parts are allowed.
- Accessories, gauges, appearance, comfort, and convenience items that don’t help your car’s performance. A replacement driver’s seat is not stock.
- Added roll bar or roll cage. (Roll bars and cages are not required for autocross.)
- Driver harness is allowed.
- Trailer hitch and/or tow bar mountings are allowed.
- Any wheel of diameter and width identical to a stock or factory optional wheel, offset within +/- 0.25 inch, is considered stock.
- Most street legal tires that will fit the mounted wheels and stock bodywork are considered stock.
- Any strut/shock absorber of the same type and mounting as original. No change to standard spring mountings is allowed. Suspension geometry may not be altered. Gas, hydraulic, and/or adjustable shocks are permitted.
- Any brake pads are considered stock.
- Any front anti-roll bar is considered stock. Change to stock/optional rear anti-roll bar (if present) are not permitted.
- Any replacement air filter element (or removal of air filter element), but no plumbing changes (intake runner changes or cone air filter).
- Engine bored no more than .020 inch. No balancing or porting/polishing of head is allowed.
- Replacement of any part of the exhaust system past the catalytic converter.
- Any oil filter is allowed.
For a complete and up-to-date list, refer to SCCA’s Class Definitions.
If your car meets these definitions, you will run in Class G, or Class H.
If your car does not meet these definitions, your car most likely belongs to Class K or L (street tires) and J (R-comp tires). You are in class L or K if you run on street tires and your SCCA class is STS, STX, or ST (the Street Touring classes). Otherwise you are class J. If you have any classing questions feel free to contact the autocross registrar.
Day of Event Information
|Typical Autocross Schedule|
|Gate Opens||7:00 am|
|Tech Inspection||7:00 am to 8:00 am|
|Driver’s Meeting||8:00 am|
|Course Walk||between 7:30 and 8:50 am|
|First Car Off||9:00 am|
Worker Assignments and any additional information needed will be emailed the day before the event. Please be sure to read the email. This is our best way of communicating to you any updates or changes to the event.
Prepare for the Weather
You need to come prepared to brave the elements. Bring multiple layers (coat, sweat shirt, sweat pants) gloves, a cooler (water, pop/soda, sports drink, lunch), comfortable shoes, towels, rain gear, sunblock, an umbrella, a hat and anything else that you would want for a day spent outdoors. Please bring plenty of fluids; you can become dehydrated even when it is cool and cloudy. We recommend at least a gallon of water per person. Also, bring a tarp or bin etc. to protect your personal items. There are port-a-potty facilities on site. However, there is no running water.
Gates open at 7:00 AM. Please be at the field by 7:30 AM at the latest. This will give you time to prep your car and have it inspected before the driver’s meeting. You must attend the Drivers’ Meeting in order to drive.
Have your valid driver’s license ready at the gate. DO NOT FORGET THEM. They will be checked for expiration while you are signing the Liability Waiver.
When you arrive at the gate, your name will be checked against the registration list for the event, and you will be asked to sign the Waiver of Liability form.
All participants, guests, and spectators 16 years or older must sign the Waiver of Liability form in order to enter the field, and everyone under 16 must have a parent or guardian sign a release form. Entry to the field is not allowed without signing these forms.
Please review the Inspection Rules here. Your car must be in good condition and it must pass the on-site technical inspection to participate in the event. Vehicles are allowed to run at the sole discretion of the Autocross Chair.
You must take everything out of your car (including the driver’s side floor mat) and put your numbers on the car. Bring your helmet and, if you have not received an annual inspection sticker, your completed IMF form.
Pull your car out into one of two tech inspection lines that will be forming, where it will be tech inspected. Please stay with your car until it is inspected in case there are any issues.
Helmets must be Snell 2015 or newer – all others will be confiscated for the day. However, we DO have limited loaner helmets.
The single most common reason for failing Tech Inspection is loose objects inside the car. Cell phone in the door pocket? Jack stand loose in the trunk? Glove compartment not empty? Please clean these out in advance.
Everyone that wants to participate in the event must attend the driver’s meeting. Safety topics and special announcements are covered in this meeting, so don’t be late.
Toward the end of the driver’s meeting, we’ll have a cone school for EVERYBODY.
- After the Drivers’ Meeting you will immediately walk the course.
- After the course walk, get ready to run or to work
- We’ll start runs around 9am, which means you must be ready to drive or work (depending on your run group) by 8:45 am.
- Check-in with the Worker Boss on your way to your work assignment
- Check-in with the Worker Boss again in the afternoon on your way to your work assignment
The course will be open for walking and you can only walk it AFTER the Driver’s Meeting. Walk the course once or “jog” twice, then get ready to either work, or run. Bicycles and non-motorized scooters are allowed for “walking”. We’ll start runs around 9am, which means you must be at your work assignment or ready to drive by 8:45 am.
Participants at each event are assigned to one of two or three run groups based on the car’s class and number of participants in each class.
Cars are classified when you register for the event. Each run group is made up of the participants from a number of classes. For example, a run group may consist of classes A, B, and C.
After the Driver’s Meeting, the first run group lines up in the staging area. The second run group works while the first run group drives.
After everyone in the first group has completed three or four runs, the second run group stages (lines up) to drive. The first run group reports to the timing and scoring booth for their work assignments.
When it is your turn to swap between working and running, please do your best to make the swap QUICKLY! Don’t make everyone wait for you.
We will break for a half-hour lunch at each event.
Autocross Worker Assignments
Worker assignments are usually sent out the day before via email along with any pertinent information related to the event. All autocross registrants are required to work their assigned role during the event. Persons who do not report for their work assignment on time, or don’t report at all, may be disqualified from the event. Everyone’s participation is needed for the event to run.
In order for the event to run smoothly and minimize downtime between run groups, it is important that you check in with your worker boss at the timing and scoring tent promptly when it is your turn to work. The faster we can transition between run groups, the more efficient the event will run!
If for some reason you need to leave the event early, please contact the Autocross Registrar at least 5 days before the event so that we can plan accordingly.
Persons who do not report for their work assignment on time, or don’t report at all, will be disqualified from the event.
Please know that this is one of the most important assignments. The events literally cannot run if the course is not maintained. Please remember:
- Cones must be placed back exactly in the chalk-marked box; even if they are only slightly moved out of position
- Watch the cones (not the cars) to see if they wiggle out of place.
- NEVER turn your back to the cars.
- Cars are sent approximately every 30 seconds. You must move quickly to replace cones. If you are more than halfway across the runway, continue across. Do not try to run back. Run back after the car has passed.
- If it is not safe to replace the cone do not run out.
- If a Driver takes out too many cones to replace before the next car, you can Red Flag the next car. Be sure to radio in to Control so that they can hold additional cars.
- Your safety is critical! You must be attentive at all times. Therefore sitting, cellphone use, taking pictures and chatting in groups is absolutely not allowed.
- Red Flag Conditions:
- A car is about to catch up to another car.
- Car parts in the path of the next driver.
- Car breaks down on course.
- Car leaking fluids (be sure to get the car off the course as quickly as possible)
- Animals running across the course (no joke, this has happened).
- Do not Red Flag:
- For missing numbers or numbers flying off.
- If another corner has reflagged; unless instructed to by Control.
We have incredible instructors. You will be REQUIRED to use them!! Please turn your car’s flashers as soon as you get in line for your run. Also, most drivers will be happy to allow you to passenger with them, to help you out. Just ask for a ride and be ready with your helmet. No backseat passengers allowed, and novices are not allowed to have non-instructor passengers.
- Paddock – where you park your car when not driving. At Devens we paddock on both sides of the runway and by the porta-potties. There will be a line of orange cones across the runway when you arrive. Do not park past them.
- Grid – the holding area where you wait for your runs. We grid in the middle of the runway, just past the paddock area. We double-grid (one car parked behind the other). Dual drivers grid at the front of the line in a marked area. Grid Workers will help direct you.
- Chalk box – bases of cones are outlined with chalk. Cones must be placed exactly in the box.
- Cone Penalty – 2 seconds are added to your time if you knock a cone down or knock one out of it’s box. Moving a cone within its box it not a penalty. Pointer cones (lay-down cones) do not count for penalties.
Who can help you? EVERYONE! Please ask if you have any questions.