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Lack of kids racing will be the death of our hobby

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#51 raisin27


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Posted 24 December 2016 - 11:36 AM

I think one thing that we as "racers" fail to realize is that people like us are great to have but we aren't what will keep the hobby alive. If there were 10 times the number of "racers" that wouldn't be enough to sustain a healthy industry. What the hobby needs is casual participants who come in and have a good time playing with their toys, tell others about it and come back for more occasionally. When was the last time any of us just showed up at a track to show off your newly painted body or run a few laps for the fun of it? Sure, for those that have a "home" track they may come in to test or try out that new set up but they never come just to run the cars for the fun of it.


When the hobby shifted from the "just a fun thing to do with friends" to competition I think it was the beginning of the decline.  Don't get me wrong, nothing bad about competing. That's what the appeal is to me and probably most that frequent the Slotblog, but there are not enough of us to support a whole comercial industry.

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#52 Brinkley47


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Posted 24 December 2016 - 11:54 AM

How many parents have posted here? Do your kids race?

I have 3 little ones and 2 race on a semi regular basis. My oldest is 10 and wants no part of working on the cars (he prefers to turnmarshal and the other racers are thankful for that). My 7 year old would work on them all day if I let him.

Different kids with different interests. The important thing is that we all have fun when we are racing/playing.
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#53 tonyp


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Posted 24 December 2016 - 01:20 PM

This sums it up. Seen it happen over and over.

When the hobby shifted from the "just a fun thing to do with friends" to competition I think it was the beginning of the decline. Don't get me wrong, nothing bad about competing. That's what the appeal is to me and probably most that frequent the Slotblog, but there are not enough of us to support a whole comercial industry.
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#54 Dominator


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Posted 24 December 2016 - 01:57 PM

I think the best way to get kids, and parents, into the hobby is through birthday parties.  Every raceway I every raced at always offered birthday parties but I can only think of one that gave the kids a reason to come back after the party.  I'm not talking about a 15 or 30 minute free track time card.  Need for Speed in NH had a 3-tier party package.  I can't remember the exact details of each package but I think the top package they offered was the birthday person recieved a group 10 starter kit (motor soldered in, axles soldered, guide adjusted, etc...) and the seven other racers received cars.  If they have the car in their hand I think it has more meaning than just a card. 


If they want to race it's their choice but there should also be a weekly kids race.  Kids want to race with kids.  My daughter who races with me occasionally in NERR enjoys it but tells me at the end of the day she wishes there were more kids.   Retro's are probably not the best choice for someone just starting out but a solid group 10 car is. 

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#55 Mark Wampler

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Posted 24 December 2016 - 02:03 PM

We have a kid!  Crazy fast driver too.  Gibson is 18 and  took 2nd in Thursday's GTS race.   I'm wondering where  are all the dads are with their sons?  Why hasn't the passion for slot cars rubbed off?

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#56 Dallas Racer

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Posted 24 December 2016 - 03:05 PM

My son was raised with slot cars and no longer has any interest in them. Never had much to begin with. RC cars was a different story.

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#57 Cap Henry

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Posted 24 December 2016 - 03:26 PM

Samian, how many on your list are under 18? I'm going out on a limb, saying most of your list is over 25. Younger then the majority of slot racers, yes, but by no means kids.

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#58 Samiam


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Posted 24 December 2016 - 05:54 PM



I'm 57. If you're closer to birth than you are to death I consider you a " Kid ". I have spoken to Noose about adding a spot on the Tech. sheet for age. Would be interesting to see average age of racers and podiums, oldest and youngest racer.


The fact that we can get any youngsters to compete in Retro is encouraging. It's a class that was originated by some of the living legends many of us looked up to as kids. To race side by side with them is part of the magic of Retro. But to see young guys and gals who were not there back then enjoy Retro as well as other classes of racing is a good sign. There is light at the end of the tunnel. 


Another sign of light is the recent sale of two major players in slots. JK and Pro-Slot have both had the reigns handed to new vibrant owners. 


Tonight is the start of Chanuka. The festival of lights. They only had lamp oil for one night. But it lasted for eight. Let's hope our " light " stays bright for many more years to come. 


Merry Christmas and Happy Chanukah everyone.

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#59 Dushkwoneshe


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Posted 26 December 2016 - 11:51 PM

WHO Racing ( Worthing H.O. )...

Here's 2 short videos...   They race twice a month at the
English Martyrs Church Hall, Goring-By-SeaWest Sussex, UK...

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#60 Horsepower


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Posted 27 December 2016 - 02:27 AM

Part of the reason slot cars took off in the time frame from 1963 to 1967 was it was new, something not seen before. Then there was the coolness factor. Everyone was doing it. Simple to build Monogram cars morphed into kit cars, RTRs (ready to run) and scratch building. By 1967, slot cars had been around for 5 years or so,and those 12 and 13 year olds were old enough to start driving and dating and models and slots took a back seat, or maybe I should say trunk.This may not sound like a viable option to some but I think if toy manufacturers promoted a "coolness factor" with some advertisement it might generate interest again although it would take a little time and it wouldn't be to the level of the 60's. If a group of beginner kit cars could be manufactured that were 1/24th scale and could be easy to assemble and keep running with only an allen wrench, no need for paint, a screw driver and /or a combination tool (sort of an included Swiss Army tool) it would give kids and maybe Dad's a start. It might help the commercial tracks. It would take a "big money" push from manufacturers and for advertisement but the only alternative I see is slot cars going the way of model trains. A few rare die hards and the rest of the time you will only see them at Christmas.

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#61 Samiam


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Posted 27 December 2016 - 07:46 AM


 AMT tried that and failed miserably. Only usable part of the kit is the body. Too bad they didn't consult one of the many experts here before producing that dud. It could have had the results you describe.

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#62 Mattb


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Posted 27 December 2016 - 06:58 PM

I've posted all the flaws I see to any expansion of slot racing as we know it with 1/24 scale. Possible there can be a little expansion in 1/32 home racing in the future as 1/24 slowly dies. I think one factor overlooked in all these discussions is how small the manufacturer side of the slot car hobby is. The 1/32 plastic industry is probably 20/30 times or more the $ size of the 1/24 industry. Neither of these industries probably has much money to put into advertising. Nationwide advertising is costly, costly, costly, especially on tv which has the largest audience. I don't think it is at all realistic to think these companies have enough profits to band together for a serious broad, unified advertising/publicity project.

Even if you could get them to work together, the home racing companies have no stake in promoting 1/24 commercial racing.

We're just beating a dead horse!
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Posted 28 December 2016 - 08:46 AM

I recently put a track in my home.  I've hosted 5 races since September for 1/24 scale hard body cars. I bought a couple of scale auto cars to use as guest cars and at the last race we had four eighteen YO racers, one a female.  I supplied cars for 3 of them, another racer supplied one. I think of the four we may get two to stick.  One has several models that he has built, and painted of non car subjects, like sci fi and such, but he loves cars and even bought a model car kit to convert to a slot car.


He gets it and loves it so far and is able after a bit of demonstration do some repairs to the cars and he won a race.  The female loves cars, has an uncle who is a mechanic, so I feel although a bit shy, she might be in it for good too.  We'll see.

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Posted 30 December 2016 - 09:02 PM

The pattern I have seen is much like what happened with my kids; started at 5 lost interest at 11. BUT....I was also like that,and then wanted to do it again at 34 (with my kids).
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