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The Rags to Races Podcast: Motorsports and Racing for Everyone

For years, I've wanted to get involved in motorsports, Growing up, I never had anyone to help me learn how to get started. As a teenager, I thought you needed to have piles of money to even get started in racing. Now I'm all grown up, and over the years, I've found many ways to get my fix at the track, even when I had no money at all. The Rags to Races Podcast is here to show you how anyone can get involved in motorsports, no matter what the budget you're working with is. So, if you're the kind of person that lives for auto racing in any and all forms this podcast is for you. From SCCA to Drifting and Autocross to Rally, Jake is going to cover it all!
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The Rags to Races Podcast: Motorsports and Racing for Everyone
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Aug 4, 2017

In this episode, Jake talks to friend of the show, Rich Walke. We talk about the car, the race weekend at the CAT Majors SCCA race at Road America.

Jake also talks to long-time racer and friend of the show, Mike Hart. Mike has a very unique race car and shares with us some stories, laughs and history behind his many years in the SCCA.

Make sure to rate, review and subscribe on iTunes. Follow the show on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces

The show can also be found on Instagram @rags2races, Twitter @ragstoraces or as always, feel free to email at ragstoraces@gmail.com

Jake's newest article has been posted on www.racershq.com. Make sure to check it out as well. While you're there, check out the website and see what you can do to move up in the world of motorsport!

Jul 21, 2017

In this episode, Jake recaps his first race night in his LO206 Kart. The night was full of ups and downs, but in the end he learned more than you can imagine about racecraft, kart repairs and just how good a club race can be.

Jake also fills you in on recent events along with his plans for the near future.

Make sure to rate, review and subscribe on iTunes, Like and follow at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces Follow us on Twitter @ragstoraces. Follow us on Instagram @rags2races. Feel free to email us with any questions or to share your story at ragstoraces@gmail.com

Jul 14, 2017

In this episode, Jake talks to Ike from The Untitled Car Show. Jake and Ike talk all things Formula One, Le Mans, kart racing, and open road rally.

Ike was able to compete in the 24 Hours of Lemons Road Rally on the east coast this past January, and he tells his story. He experienced pride, joy, pain, frustration, meth heads, and Freiburger and Finnegan of Roadkill fame.

They also talk about Formula One, Le Mans and the current state of the top tier of motorsports. Both Ike and Jake are competing in a F1 Fantasy league and sadly, Ike is kicking Jake's ass! (Just kidding, way to go Ike!)

If you want to find The Untitled Car Show, you can find it at www.untitledcarshow.podomatic.com, or wherever you stream your podcasts. You can find them on social media at www.facebook.com/untitledcarshow, on Twitter @untitledcarshow, Instagram @untitledcarshow.

If you want to learn more about Lemons Racing, check out www.24hoursoflemons.com.

As always, you can find us at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces, On Instagram @rags2races, Twitter @ragstoraces or email ragstoraces@gmail.com. Make sure to watch www.racershq.com for Jake's upcoming articles.

Jul 7, 2017

In this episode, Jake talks to friend of the show, James Chartres. James has been wheel-to-wheel racing with his local SCCA region for a couple of years. James drives a Spec Racer Ford (SRF), which is a completely spec series run by the SCCA.

They also talk about track days, getting involved at a local level, what its like to drive some of the most iconic tracks in America, and some of the ins and outs of the SRF package.

You can find James and Kanga Motorsports on the web and social media here:

 
 
If you'd like more information on his sponsors, you can find them here:

As always, you can find Rags to Races on Facebook, www.facebook.com/ragstoraces

Instagram: @rags2races  Twitter: @ragstoraces or email: ragstoraces@gmail.com

 
Jun 30, 2017

In this episode, Jake talks to Tim and Molly, owners and founders of a top of the line auto repair shop. The best part? It's a DIY auto repair shop!

Living in a city like Chicago and being an automotive enthusiast, it's hard to find the space needed to make even the simplest of repairs. Gearhead Workspace is there to help you out. They've got everything from lifts and tools on hand to a mechanic on site to help you through the more difficult procedures.

Tim and Molly tell us about the business, their love of cars and performance driving and give some insight to you on how to get started wrenching on your project.

You can find them at www.gearheadworkspace.com. They are located at 305 W. 31st Street in Chicago. If you'd like to make a reservation, you can email them at reservations@gearheadworkspace.com. You can also call (312)489-8818 with any questions. They can also be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/gearheadworkspace

You can find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces, Twitter @ragstoraces, Instagram @rags2races or email us at ragstoraces@gmail.com

Jun 23, 2017

In this episode, Jake talks to some new friends he met at #Gridlife; Austin, Nick and Jenna who have all participated in the Detroit Gambler 500.

The Gambler 500 is a low-budget, open-road rally that also encompasses off-road and land navigation skills. This trio participated in the Detroit Gambler, using their $500.00 Crown Victoria.

Austin, Nick and Jenna share their stories from the rally, along with some highlights from their weekend at this year's #Gridlife event.

If you want to find out more about the Gambler 500, check out their Facebook page, www.facebook.com/thegambler500. You can also check out the website at www.gambler500.com.

Here's a link to Austin's #Gridlife video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2iACabi3D48&feature=youtu.be

As always, you can find me at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces, I'm on Twitter @ragstoraces, Instagram @rags2races or email me at ragstoraces@gmail.com.

I'm also now contributing to www.racershq.com. Watch for my upcoming articles!

Jun 16, 2017

In this episode, Jake gives a recap of his time at #GRIDLIFE as it happens. There's also been a big change to the Rags to Races garage. Jake talks about the change made and why it was made.

Jake also talks to his friend, Torry Skurski about HPDE and why he chose to track a Nissan Juke!

Make sure to rate, review and subscribe to the show. Follow Rags to Races on social media: www.facebook.com/ragstoraces, on Twitter @ragstoraces, on Instagram @rags2races and you can always email us at ragstoraces@gmail.com.

Until next time, Keep the shiny side up!

Jun 2, 2017

In this episode, Jake talks to long time gearhead, Adam Jabaay. Adam has been messing with cars as long as he can remember and is now one of the organizers for one of the largest racing and automotive festivals in the country, #Gridlife.

When it comes to racing and cars, especially Hondas, Adam's done it all. From car meets, to track days, to building cars using everything he could find including the kitchen sink (Seriously!), and now he's even organizing events to help others get behind the wheel and on track.

Make sure to check out www.grid.life to keep up with the festival and all of their events.

You can find me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces Twitter @ragstoraces Instagram @rags2races and look for me on Opposite Lock- Just search for Rags to Races. As always, feel free to email me at ragstoraces@gmail.com

Until next time, keep the shiny side up!

May 26, 2017

In this episode, Jake talks about karting with two experts, Davin Sturdivant and James McMahon of KartPulse.com.

Davin and James have both been karting for years now. They found a missing segment online for people wanting to get their start and those who have a true passion for kart racing. KartPulse came soon after, and they want to help you fall in love with the sport.

Whether you're a hardcore F1 fan, into circle track racing, a sports car enthusiast or an experienced racer already, karting has a place for you. If there's a better way to learn technique, we don't know about it yet. Look at most of the top sports car/open wheel racers from around the world, and karting is where they started!

You can find Davin and James at www.kartpulse.com They are also on Facebook at www.facebook.com/kartpulse Tweet them @kartpulse or find them on Instagram @kartpulse

You can find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces Tweet us @ragstoraces We're on Instagram @rags2races and you can email us at ragstoraces@gmail.com

Until next time, Keep the shiny side up!

May 19, 2017

This is the episode Jake built this podcast around! Do you want to get deeper into motorsports than the average spectator and couch potato? How would you like to have an Indy Car come within inches from you at speed? Do you want to race, but don't have the budget for a car? This is the episode for you!

This week, Jake talks to Chris Buccola, a local SCCA Corner Marshall. Chris has been volunteering at events from the local club race all the way up to the 24 hours of Le Mans! To Jake's surprise, it isn't that hard to go from working at your local event to even getting behind the scenes at a Formula 1 race. Chris tells some great stories and shares just how easy it is to get YOUR start as a Corner Marshall.

If you're interested, you can get your start at www.scca.com/regions and look up the F&C person in the contacts page (at least, that's where Jake found it in the Chicago Region page).

Check out the AMAZING pictures Chris shared with me on all my social media:

www.facebook.com/ragstoraces @ragstoraces on Twitter and @rags2races on Instagram

If you need any help finding more information or just want to chat, don't hesitate to email me at ragstoraces@gmail.com

Keep the shiny side up!

May 12, 2017

In this episode, Jake goes over the good and bad from the past weekend's SCCA Majors race at Blackhawk Farms Raceway in Illinois. It wasn't the best weekend at the track, but it was a good time overall.

Jake also welcomes the newest member of the crew, Zack to the show. Jake and Zack have a candid conversation about getting started in motorsports, working on a race car, and first impressions of spending time both in the shop and at the race track.

Make sure to follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces

We're also on Twitter @ragstoraces

You can find us on Instagram @rags2races

Feel free to email me at ragstoraces@gmail.com with any questions, comments, or just to bench race.

Keep the shiny side up!

May 4, 2017

He's BAAAAACCK!!

Jake has returned from his hiatus. In this mini-episode, he catches you up on what he's been doing since he stepped away from the mic.

From data logging devices and transmission changes to preparing for the upcoming race at Blackhawk Farms here in Illinois, he's been keeping plenty busy.

If you're in the area of South Beloit Illinois from May fifth through May seventh, you should come join us and spend some time at the track!

Please rate and review on iTunes, Follow me on Twitter @ragstoraces. I'm on Instagram @rags2races. You can also find me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces. As always, don't hesitate to email me at ragstoraces@gmail.com

Keep the shiny side up!

Mar 3, 2017

This time around, Jake steps out of his comfort zone and watches the Daytona 500. He goes over the highlights of the race and talks about the big changes made to NASCAR Racing for the coming season.

You can always reach out to us at our email, ragstoraces@gmail.com

We're on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces

You can find us on Twitter: @ragstoraces

We're on Instagram @rags2races

As always, keep the shiny side up and remember: There are no strangers in motorsport, only friends you haven't met.

Feb 21, 2017

In this episode, Jake chats with Tom O'Gorman, the Pirelli World Challenge B-Spec Champion. We go over his beginnings in autocross, time in karting and the SCCA all the way up to his championship run in the Pirelli World Challenge and crash at the 25 Hours of Thunderhill.

Tom gives a great insight into his journey through the ranks from local autocrosser to pro racer. His story proves that with enough effort, anybody can reach their goals with enough time and willpower.

You can find Tom O'Gorman at www.tomoracing.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/tomoracing, on Twitter @tomoracing or Instagram @tomoracing.

You can find me at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces, on Instagram @rags2races, on Twitter @ragstoraces and you can always email me at ragstoraces@gmail.com

Until next time, keep the shiny side up!

Feb 13, 2017

Jake wanted to catch all of you up on what's been going on. There was a small family emergency and he had to take care of some personal things. Unfortunately, that means that the podcast, racing and the like had to be put on hold.

Hopefully, some interviews that were postponed can be rescheduled soon and we'll be back to bench racing and the like quickly!

Make sure to rate, review and subscribe on iTunes. Like us at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces. Make sure to follow us on Instagram @rags2races or on Twitter @ragstoraces.

Keep the shiny side up, the greasy side down and remember: there are no strangers in motorsports, only friends you haven't met!

Jan 23, 2017

In this episode, Jake talks to stage rally co-driver Ryan Dunham.

For years, Jake has loved watching stage rally highlights wherever they can be found here in the states. He's never really met anyone who is deeply involved in the sport. Fast forward to a listener message on Facebook, and he got to talking with Ryan Dunham, and stage rally co-driver.

Ryan graciously agreed to come on the show and talk about his experience in stage rally. Co-driving is a lot more than just saying, "Left 3 into crest, caution keep right over crest. 150 into jump into right 6." In most forms of motorsport, the driver or crew chief can be looked at kind of like a quarterback on a football field. In rally, the co-driver is the one calling the shots and making sure the entire team works like a well-oiled machine.

You can find more info on stage rally at the following links:

Rally Map:

https://www.google.com/maps/d/u/0/viewer?mid=1nMwg0YZMLAjwpoYhFKd_lL7tkTQ&hl=en_US&ll=41.14896552330403%2C-87.90676904999998&z=4

Rally University:
 http://nasarallysport.com/main/Rally-University

Rally Co-Driving Book:
 http://rallycodriver.com/

Sanctioning Bodies: http://rally-america.com/
https://www.americanrallyassociation.org/
https://carsrally.ca/
Also NASA Rallysport

Forum:
http://www.specialstage.com/

 

You can find Ryan Dunham at the following links:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/rdunhamrally

Instagram: @rallysideways

Twitter: @rallyformel1

You can find me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces

Instagram: @rags2races

Twitter: @ragstoraces

Feel free to email me at ragstoraces@gmail.com

Keep the shiny side up!

 
Jan 19, 2017

Are you an instant reflex driver or a feel sensitive driver?

This week, Jake talks to Derek Daly. Derek has a storied history in professional motorsports to include Formula 1, Indycar and the 24 Hours of LeMans. Since his retirement from driving, Derek has built a life teaching those who have the desire and drive to compete at the highest levels of motorsports.

Jake primarily asks about Derek's book, "Race to Win: The 7 Essential Skills of the Complete Champion". The book is a how-to guide to get into professional motorsports. Jake covers all aspects of "The Champion's Pyramid" and the skills needed to not only become a professional driver, but to perform at the top in all aspects of driving a race car as a business.

You can find out more about Derek Daly and order his book on his website, http://www.derekdalyacademy.com

As always, you can find me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces

I'm on Instagram @rags2races and Twitter @ragstoraces

Feel free to email me any time at ragstoraces@gmail.com

I'm blogging on Opposite Lock, and watch for more videos on the YouTube Channel, Just search for Rags to Races at either site.

Keep the Shiny Side Up!

Jan 12, 2017

In this episode, Jake goes over the basics of sim racing. Some people may call them video games, I don't. While video games are where online and sim racing started, they've come light years from the days of Pole Position and Hard Drivin'.

Nowadays, even the pros use sim racing to learn an unfamiliar track or car. Anyone with a good internet connection and a membership to iRacing can run wheel-to-wheel with the likes of Reubens Barrichello or Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Jake's start in the performance racing world was the original Gran Tourismo back in high school and it's grown from there.

He talks about getting started with sim racing, the needed hardware and software, and just how far you can go with your "Sim Rig."

As always, follow the show on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces

Twitter at @ragstoraces

Instagram @rags2races

Check out the blog at opposite lock and don't hesitate to email at ragstoraces@gmail.com.

Don't forget to subscribe, rate and review! Keep the shiny side up!

Jan 4, 2017

In this episode, Jake chats with Lefty, Train, Hollywood and Woodchuck of the B Squad Hotrod Podcast.

We talk autocross, podcasting, and more importantly, setting up your shop. We talk about what you need in your toolbox and the knowledge needed to get your start working on your own car.

If you are going to start working on your own car, there's a lot you need to get the ball rolling. Don't fret though, with a little know how and some hand tools, you can learn to turn wrenches with the best. All you need are some basic tools, safety knowledge, and a mentor. I think I can speak for all of us who wrench on our own cars when I say most of us would be more than happy to come out and give you a hand.

Make sure to check out the guys at B Squad Hotrod. www.facebook.com/bsquadhotrod They're on Twitter at @bsquadhotrod too. You can also find them at their RSS page- www.bsquadhotrod.libsyn.com

You can find me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces

I'm on Twitter at @ragstoraces Instagram @rags2races and I blog on Opposite Lock- Search for Rags to Races.

 

Keep the shiny side up and the greasy side down!

Dec 18, 2016

In this episode, Jake goes over his trip to the big PRI Show in Indianapolis. Jake talks about some of the people he met, new products and cars displayed.

Dec 4, 2016

In this episode, Jake goes over the importance of getting your hands on the rule book and not only reading it, but learning all you can from its pages.

Jake has seen it many times before, and even been guilty of it himself. Not reading the rules enough to fully understand them. Almost every question you may have about your car or the class you're racing in can be answered just by opening the rule book and reading.

Jake also talks about the advantages of knowing the rules and how they apply to your car.

Take all the information you can from this quick episode and let Jake know if there's any questions you may have.

Please rate, review and subscribe on iTunes. This helps more people find the show.

You can also find the show at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces

We're also on Twitter @ragstoraces, Instagram @rags2races and as always feel free to send an email to ragstoraces@gmail.com

Nov 13, 2016

In this episode, Jake goes over the current state of his Miata that is being built for Chumpcar Series Racing.

Jake covers just how much he's spent on the car, and how much still needs to be spent just to get the car on track. He also compares the cost of building a car from scratch to buying a used race car. (Hint- It's MUCH cheaper to buy a built car as opposed to building one yourself.)

Jake has said many times over that he's "a glutton for punishment" when it comes to building a car over buying one. It has nothing with the "Built over Bought" mantra. Jake just loves the build process and is willing to incorporate the losses incurred when comparing a built race car over buying an already proven race car.

If you're like Jake and love the build process, share your pictures on the Facebook page, Instagram or Twitter.

You can find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces

I'm on Twitter @ragstoraces

My Instagram is @rags2races

Make sure to rate, subscribe and review on iTunes. You can also find the show on Stitcher. The blog is up at Opposite Lock, and the Youtube channel is up as well.

Keep the shiny side up!

Nov 6, 2016

Hey everybody! Jake here. I've got a bit of a sore throat, so I wasn't up to doing a full show this week. I did however want to reach out to all of you and let you know what's in the works.

I've been busy emailing people for upcoming episodes and also working on some solo episodes to give you some great info on what you can do to reach your motorsport goals.

If you haven't yet, please rate, review and susbscribe on iTunes. You can also find me on Stitcher. Follow me on Twitter @ragstoraces. I'm on Instagram @rags2races. You can find me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces and check out the blog on Opposite Lock. You can always email me your questions at ragstoraces@gmail.com. As always, keep the shiny side up and the greasy side down. There are no strangers in motorsport, only friends you haven't met!

Nov 1, 2016

In this episode, Jake chats with Ian and Dave of Team Clearcoat. Jake gets their side of the big Chumpcar Race weekend, their aspirations for future motorsport goals, and starts to set up his race team for the Miata.

We have some laughs and talk about what it takes to run a successful endurance race with a car that has its share of poor engineering ideas. The biggest thing I learned from working with them during the race and talking about the weekend afterwards was just how true my saying is: There really are no strangers in motorsport, only friends you haven't met.

Before the Chumpcar weekend I had only met Ian once, and spoken to Dave via email and social media. I reached out to them when I found out they were coming out to my neck of the woods, and it turned into an exciting weekend that was full of ups and downs. You can do it too. Just starting a conversation with someone can open doors for you to this great pastime!

You can find Ian and Dave everywhere podcasts are found, on Instagram and Twitter at @TeamClearcoat. They're on Facebook as well.

Please subscribe, rate and review on iTunes. Find me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces I'm on Twitter @Ragstoraces Instagram @rags2races I blog at Opposite Lock and the YouTube Channel is up as well.

 

Keep the shiny side up and the greasy side down!

Oct 24, 2016

In this episode, I go over my weekend as a crew member on a Chumpcar World Series team, Dead Pedal Racing.

I met up with Ian and Dave from The Team Clearcoat Podcast and set to work on a 1988 Maserati Biturbo. We got to experience both good times and bad in the racing world. Between the 2 seven hour races, we had a bad day on Saturday and a great day on Sunday.

Despite all the low points, we had some pretty great high moments. Overall, it was a great journey, and one I would gladly participate in again.

If you're not listening to Team Clearcoat yet, you should give them a listen.

You can find me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ragstoraces

I'm on Twitter @ragstoraces Instagram @rags2races

You can always email me at ragstoraces@gmail.com

I'm blogging on Opposite Lock, and the Youtube page is now up with all my previous podcasts.

Remember, there are no strangers in motorsport, only friends you haven't yet met. Keep the shiny side up and the greasy side down!

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