SRT – Talking Sim Racing With Tommy Kendall

The guys over at InsideSimRacing.tv recently got the chance to sit down with a true racing legend – 4 time Trans-Am Champion Tommy Kendall.

Shaun Cole used the chance to talk about our favorite hobby with one of America’s most accomplished race car drivers, check out the full interview below.

GTOmegaRacing.com

  • Anonymous

    well i guess when youre born into privilege, have money to begin with, and eventually turn pro (95% of the time due to having wealth), the pathetic problems that pro racers encounter must seem like such big tough problems for them.

    pretty sure the pressures and problems normal people face on the street juggling a 9-5 job paying an average income, paying rent and bills, far surpass anything racing drivers have to face.

    ‘oh life so tough i have to drive this car around a track and must beat the other guy, so much pressure!’

    give me a break.

  • Anonymous

    I agree with the point on having the better equipment. I much prefer amateur racing in spec series where it’s down to setup and driving, not how much horsepower and grip-per-session you can afford.

  • GamerMuscle

    Yep

    I also think its important that simracing establish itself separate from real Motorsport as in the uk at least real motor sport is almost totally based around wealth.

    If you want to race in anything that can lead to a pro drive then you need to ether have parents spend 6-20k a year on you from the age of 8-13 or if your over 18 you need around 70-250k to get entrance to a relevant race series.

    You could just do racing for fun but at the lowest level that’s going to cost at least 25-30k a year , Given that UK average income is 26k then that’s not exactly realistic.

    Sure sponsors can cover some costs but even if you were to get a mostly sponsored ride its still going to cost over 10k a year which is absurd for 90% of the population. Its also not like the 50′s where you could be a pro mechanic and use that as a way to get into the sport sure you can be a mechanic for a team now but there is no way that could get you race seat.

    The real charm of Sim-racing is that is can offer almost all the challenge and skills of real world racing whilst remaining fair , allowing people to succeed through pure competition , dedication and skill rather than some external factor.

  • Noel Hibbard

    I never heard him say pro racing was more stressful than other jobs. He is simply comparing club racing to pro racing. I am sure there is a lot of pressure. Just like any job, if you don’t perform you risk losing your job.

    About the better equipment argument. I can see where he is coming from. Not in all forms of racing of course. But many times you just assume people are beating you with equipment when really they are beating you with talent. Same sort of stuff goes on in simracing. “Oh that guy can’t be that fast, he has to be using a RAM cheat”. Or Car A is faster than Car B when really both use the same tires, engine, physics and all that is different is the 3D model and sounds. Talent goes a long way.

  • Anonymous

    for those who don’t understand Trans-Am is the equivalent in Europe for the likes of BTCC and STCC. When you actually see how many road series there are in the US you find out that the main road racing market in the world is actually in the oval land!

  • Ghoults

    While real racing is a sport for the wealthy you still need to remember that talent is often times good enough to get you to the highest levels. If you look at the top men in each sport (nascar, F1, sportscars) you find people who did not always have rich parents but who still got the job done.

    Where the money real shows is the lower series where the competition may not be as fierce so gentlemen drivers can buy performance. Overall I agree with you though.

    But I still think some of misunderstood the meaning what Tommy was saying. Whatever you do once it becomes a job it does take away some fun from it. Be it sim racing, rc racing, swimming, poker or race car driving. Hobbies are fun but when your hobby becomes your job you have to admit it changes things. You can drive a race car in weekend competitions and have it as a hobby but once it becomes your job you need fitness training, you need to stuff for sponsors and generally you will also spend a lot of time away from home. There are downsides to it too even if driving is still great fun. That is what Tommy meant. Look at kimi for example. He seems to hate absolutely everything in F1 except the driving part :D.

  • GamerMuscle

    ” If you look at the top men in each sport (nascar, F1, sportscars) you find people who did not always have rich parents but who still got the job done.”

    Who ?

  • GamerMuscle

    ” If you look at the top men in each sport (nascar, F1, sportscars) you find people who did not always have rich parents but who still got the job done.”

    Who ?

  • Ghoults

    Räikkönen, Alonso, Mcnish, Hamilton… Read some of the wiki articles about them.

  • GamerMuscle

    Räikkönen started go carting from the age of 10
    So his parents spent at least a couple of grand on him each year which would be imposable for most families of median income and most parents with full time jobs could not afford whole weekends just to pander to a childs hobby.

    Alonso started in karting from the age of 3. Again I’m sure he picked that himself nothing todo with his parents spending disproportional large sums of money and time on him.

    Mcnish started carting at 11 so again his parents must have spent at least 2-4 grand a year in equipment and even more in time.

    Hamilton He ows his entire race corear to his dad
    “His father told him that he would support his racing career as long as he worked hard at school. Supporting his son became problematic, which caused him to take redundancy from his position as an IT Manager and became a contractor. He was sometimes employed in up to three jobs at a time, while still managing to find enough time to attend all Hamilton’s races”

    So again exactly as i said

    “If you want to race in anything that can lead to a pro drive then you need to ether have parents spend 6-20k a year on you from the age of 8-13 , or if your over 18 you need around 70-250k to get entrance to a relevant race series.”

    So no talent is not good enough and is not the crux of motor sport , sure you have to be better than all the other rich kids or kids with incredibly dedicated parents but ultimately to succeed in motor sport especially after the age of 20 you need ether allot of personal wealth or to be very well connected with business.

    Sure with anything having parents push you into it will massively help but at least you could conceivably get into allot of sports at the age of 16 off your own back and still make it working a basic job.

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