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BU Lot Transformed Into Race Course

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Binghamton University turned part of its campus into a race course Sunday.

The Southern New York Region of the Sports Car Club of America kicked off the season with its first autocross competition. 

Auto-crossing is a motor sport that uses traffic cones to make mini-road courses in a large unused parking lot. The aim of the sport is to drive through the course as fast as you can without hitting any cones or going off course.

"Basically you’re out there by yourself on the course and you race against the clock for the fastest time against cars that are matched up to a class which is other cars that are similar to yours," said Michelle Digiacomo, Regional Executive of the Southern Tier Region's Sports Car Club of America.

Digiacomo started Auto-crossing when she was 16-years-old, and says she loves being in the driver's seat when it comes to this male-dominated sport.

“It is male dominated for sure. I always try to encourage people to get into it, especially when you’re behind the wheel gender doesn’t matter."
— Michelle Digiacomo, Regional Executive of the Southern Tier Region's Sports Car Club of America.

As the Regional Executive for the area, she loves sharing her passion for Auto-crossing with others.

"We’re known as one of the friendliest regions, so we really like to have newcomers come and just encourage each other. It’s a really cool way to meet other people that are into what you’re doing," said Digiacomo.

Starting in the sport is simple. Digiacomo says all you need is a license and a car.

"You can use pretty much any car. I mean I started racing an old Crown Victoria so it doesn’t have to be setup for autocross to be a good car to autocross. It’s all about knowing your own car and so this is a good way to learn it," said Digiacomo.

With fast speeds and tight turns, it may look like a dangerous sport, but Digiacomo says otherwise.

"This is actually a very safe sport. We have trained solo safety stuarts that will go through and check a course and we have requirements that we have to fill while setting up the course to make sure you’re not close to any hard objects, close to the grass, so we haven’t had accidents here that I can remember," said Digiacomo.

For more information on Auto-crossing or becoming a member of SNYR SCCA, head over to their Facebook page here.