I'm thinking of rallying or vintage-racing my car. What am I getting into?

Assuming that you have a "stock" car going in you need to get a clear picture in your mind which plan you intend to pursue. The rally path is fairly straightforward and not as intrusive as a vintage racing program. There are many opportunities to go out on rally excursions with clubs or sanctioned road rally associations. It's inexpensive, you can involve other family members and usually it is a one day affair.

How about special equipment if I go down the rally path?

Very little needs to be done to the cars drive train or mechanicals for rally preparation because you will likely be traveling on regular paved roads most of the time anyhow. Good tires are a must along with fresh suspension parts and a solid drive train. Good seats and seat belts are strongly recommended as well. If this is a serious road rally involvement then the timing equipment will be the biggest outlay of cash to be totally prepared to compete. You should figure investing $500 to 900 to really get involved at a competitive level. Lots of information is available on the web and local clubs and rally associations are anxious to help you get into the sport.

How big a leap is it from club racing or rallying to vintage racing?

This is a serious transition and should be thoroughly investigated before you jump in this end of the pool! If done to vintage racing sanctioned rules and regulations you will probably never drive the car on the street again. There are notable exceptions to this rule where most vintage organizations provide a "historics division" allowing you to drive to the track and "race what you brung"! Of course modern safety equipment is required to drive on any race track under competition conditions. Check out VSCCA as an option for this venue.

What do I need to budget if I go the true vintage racing route?

As an entry level car you can plan on an investment from a few thousand to several thousand dollars. There are many variables starting with the type of car you will be converting. But for the sake of this discussion let's stay with a small British sports car. An MG Midget can be put on the track for $10 to 15,000 dollars, soup to nuts. This assumes you are taking your daily driver and immersing yourself and the car in a full blown program. I have prepared a fairly comprehensive definition of the involvement on this site. Go to "So you want to go racing….." and it is pretty well spelled out there.

Are there other venues I can get into where I can add to the Sportscar experience?

Check out hill climbing! This is a pretty generic form of competition where you can compete with your daily driver and have lots of fun exploring the limits of your car. Be aware that it is also competition racing and will require at a minimum, the inclusion of safety equipment for you and your car. But it is usually low impact and lots of fun! What ever paths you choose do lots of research and talk to others in your area that have taken the plunge.