States In Financial Trouble Target Racers
I recently read an article where states in financial trouble are writing double the tickets in the first half of 2010 than they had in 2009, as a way to generate revenue. The biggest tickets obviously go to bigger vehicle — and so you have noted a many Sate Police in pickup trucks — carrying portable scales.
Last year at the NMCA race at Maple Grove in Reading, PA — quite a few racers with pickups pulling trailers larger than 28' feet (overall — not just the box) were ticketed for not having a Commercial License. North Carolina were turning back rigs greater than 65' — but recently amended their statute to allow going to and from races. Florida requires a permit, as does New Mexico. There have been complaints from New Jersey ticketing small race car trailers for weight violations and Kentucky for by passing weigh stations.
I've seen stings set up at race events and even rodeos and cattle shows — ticketing pickups and small trailers not having CDLs, with the premise being that if they can earn a prize — they're commercial.
The latest big sting appears to be the Michigan State Police and Indiana State Police targeting motorhomes pulling trailers to the tracks. Click here to see an 8+ page discussion on the topic. Troy Coughlin's Motorhome with a trailer was stopped in Michigan yesterday on the way to a IHRA race, the driver given three tickets for not having a CDL, over length, and another — and the trailer is currently sitting in an impound yard.
Racer's need to heavily lean on promoters and tracks to in turn lean on the police to stop targeting recreational drag racers. Bruton Smith did this in North Carolina when racers going to Zmax were targeted — and was able to have the regulations amended to allow for travel to and from a racing event. If something isn't done soon — promoters and tracks will see a dramatic reduction in car counts.