Shake off those cobwebs, 2016 is here and as always, the SCCA Championship Tour series kicks off with the ever popular Dixie Champ Tour. Whether you're a seasoned southerner, whose old times are not forgotten, or someone from afar, who yearns for that land of cotton (err, asphalt), Dixie has a little something for everyone. Need more convincing?

  1. Warmth! With a few freak frosts that have covered the continent this winter, many are still melting the ice off their cars. Not so, down in Dixie! While many regions are still under the weather, Dixie provides the opportunity for those from cooler climes to get behind the wheel again. Why wait till May to take the car out of the garage, when you can get a two month head start on your national championship dreams? Dixie is the perfect jumping off point to begin the 2016 season with a bang.
  2. Courses: South Georgia Motorsports Park, which has hosted the Dixie Tour since time immemorial, lends itself to fast, transition-intensive courses. Being a runway-style lot, most courses involve various types of transitions with one or two major sweeper turnarounds, and paying homage to the drag strip a few feet away, speed (and speed maintenance) is king. In years past, the courses have not favored any particular kind of car over another, a tribute to Robert Lewis' course designing.
  3. No New Tires this year! As it stands, in 2016, there are no new brands or makes of tires that have debuted. In the street tire classes, Bridgestone and BFG are still king, and the Hoosier A7 remains the R-compound to match. All the manufacturers have introduced new sizes going into 2016, so just because there aren't new compounds to try, doesn't mean the testing is over yet. Being earlier in the year than most regions start their seasons, Dixie is the perfect proving ground for developing this year's package.
  4. Competition: Being the first tour of the year, Dixie attracts talent from all over the country. Drivers come from as far away as Minnesota and California (though, they surely can't be coming for the good weather!) to compete. As such, the depth of the talent is immense. Winning at Dixie takes more than a little skill and guts, and any class is likely to have a multitude of Nationals trophy winners, if not outright champions. Bring your A-game.
  5. As always, The Party! Why do so many of us make the trip to SGMP every year? Because there truly is nothing like old fashioned southern hospitality! The welcome party is a sight to behold, with food constantly flowing off the grill, and the libations pouring well into the night. The Dixie region knows how to have a good time, whether it's enabling a late night Four Square game, or by printing the most coveted T-shirts in all of Solo. The fun truly never stops down in Dixie's land.

Photo Credit: Kestrel Racing