The Super Challenge and Ladies Challenge championships, as well as the individual ProSolo class championships, aren’t winner-take-all battles, as is the case with the Tire Rack SCCA Solo National Championships that starts today in Lincoln. Instead, they’re season-long awards, with the overall Challenge titles being the most difficult to obtain.
Why so tough? The format. ProSolo’s opening day of the weekend looks similar to any other traditional autocross, albeit on dueling courses with drag-race starts. There are single runs within your class, doing what autocrossers do and trying to go as quickly as possible through the cones. The energy builds throughout the weekend as points championships are decided in each class – then come Sunday afternoon, the event reaches its peak.
Those early runs weren’t just for a class title – they also served as qualifying for the Super Challenge and Ladies Challenge. In the Super Challenge, the top 32 drivers in Open classes, as sorted by SCCA’s Index designed to equal classes, make the field. The process repeats for the Ladies Challenge, with the top eight making that field.
This is when the fun kicks into overdrive.
Each driver in the Challenges line up in the drag-race style starts on the mirrored courses as they have done all weekend, but now it’s a heads-up race to the finish. That same Index gives one driver a slight advantage, if necessary, but the first driver home advances until only one remains.
The best two Challenge finishes, plus the Finale, count for the season-long points and the championships.
You can see how difficult it is to take home a season-long Challenge title, or even just a single win. That’s what makes the Johnson-Clark Johnson Cup Super Challenge and Fletcher Cup Ladies Challenge Championships, and their accompanying Keisel Guitars custom trophies, so valuable.