The Death of Desert Racing?

Dave_G

Well-Known Member
Posts
2,859
Reaction
307
The death of competitive desert racing may be closer at hand than most people realize. And no, it's not because of the BLM or the econazis. It's because of the insurance industry. As of today there are NO insurance companies that will write a liability policy for an off road race team. The only company that was offering coverage is no longer doing so. Many of the big name teams have not been able to get coverage as of the first of the year and if they can't find coverage they will probably not race at all. They just can't take the risk to race without it.

The Laughlin race my be the first shoe to drop....

This is going to get ugly......

This is not good news......


Dave

"I know it all, but I can't remember most of it..."
 

Sites

Well-Known Member
Posts
246
Reaction
14
What insurance companies are they using? State Farm, 21st Century? If so, I didn't even realize that they would even touch you if you said "race". I know there are a ton of legetimate insurance companies that specialize in insuring high-risk vehicles, such as race cars, exotic cars, etc.

94' Lightning Prerunner (in-progress)
 

mgobaja

Well-Known Member
Posts
3,374
Reaction
594
They use the same companies that Nascar uses. They are huge corprate insurance companies. 21st century and the such would have no concept on how to write a policy for this. Loyds of London may be one of them. If they will insure and Actors voice or hand then a race or race car shouldnt be much riskier. A lot of racers have individual " umbrella policies " covering them and their assets.
 

stuckthrottle

Godlike
Posts
4,817
Reaction
111
http://www.vanisleinsurance.com/new/race_car_insurance.html
http://www.motorsports-insurance.com/
<A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.amsre.com/insurance/>http://www.amsre.com/insurance/</A>

...etc
 

Dave_G

Well-Known Member
Posts
2,859
Reaction
307
Re: "Loyds of London may be one of them. If they will insure and Actors voice or hand then a race or race car shouldnt be much riskier."

I have first hand knowledge that that was tried today by a major team and they laughed at them. The problem is not the cars but they type of racing. Insurance companies see open desert racing with spectator access to the course as big liability. With NASCAR and the likes the course and spectators are confined and controlled unlike desert racing. Believe me, this is a BIG problem for the insurance companies.

Dave

"I know it all, but I can't remember most of it..."
 

Dillon

Well-Known Member
Posts
390
Reaction
0
What about rally cars? Its a fringe sport that must be insured I'm sure. Aircraft insurance maybe? I never even thought about that...

Who was the one company? Any reason why they quit covering?
 

Dave_G

Well-Known Member
Posts
2,859
Reaction
307
Re: "Any reason why they quit covering?"

Apparently there were some big claims paid out and several suits in the works that are coming. The losses to the insurance company is overtaking the gain. Since 9-11 insurance companies are re-evaluating their risks and everybody is getting hit hard.


Re: "Aircraft insurance maybe? "

Oh [censored]! Don't even go there..... I struggle with that every year when renewal time comes around for my airplane. It's almost as bad as what the race teams are going through.

Dave

"I know it all, but I can't remember most of it..."
 

Steve_Sourapas

Well-Known Member
Posts
1,398
Reaction
1,356
Dave,as usual you are right on with the magnitude of this issue.I'm very concerned as are two other major teams I talked to today that we will not be able to buy insurance at any price.I will be working on this tomorrow but I'm not very confident that I will be able to fix the situation before Laughlin or this year.I hate to even think of it but as it stands right now my truck is parked unless a miracle happens.

BEERMAN
 

John Bitting

Administrator
Posts
11,951
Reaction
2,560
Because I am a giver, I will race your truck for you Steve, John Bitting Racing is broke and no one could get anything from me.

Seriously, I hope this problem is resolved ASAP, I dont like the sound of all the big teams not being able to race just as the TT class was getting huge.

"She's a real spark plug, about duece, duece and a quarter"
 

Dave_G

Well-Known Member
Posts
2,859
Reaction
307
Re: "Because I am a giver, I will race your truck for you Steve."

Damn John, You da man!

Dave

"I know it all, but I can't remember most of it..."
 

hoeker

Well-Known Member
Posts
2,004
Reaction
101
there have been several insurance companies at the Perforamance Racing Industry show the last couple years. PRI is the largest all racing show in the nation. all speciallize in racing insurance, the desert should be no different. i can't think of the names right now, but could look tomorrow. i think H&K is one. let me know if you want me to look.


The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.
 

BA_DirtDriver

Well-Known Member
Posts
157
Reaction
0
What about coverage provided by event promoters. I haven't looked at those policies but don't they cover spectators? What do the individual team policies typically cover? As a side note is it possible to get rider type policies to blanket exsisting life insurance policies that have motorsports exclusions. I can see where this would be a major problem specially here in CA. Drivers can always move all of their assets to irrevocable trusts in an attempt to be more judgement proof. Have there been any rulings or awards against racecar drivers and or owners? Is everyone involved going to have to holdharmless all participants? At some point we have to decide that we don't need insurance. Some things are inherently dangerous and bear the risk of ultimate loss. God forbid someone is injured or killed. Which is worse the risk of getting sued or killed? In our litigious society it is hard to forego insurance because of the zealousness of the advocates out there. The problem truly arises when someone who has no ability to assess the risk is affected by a racing incident. What everyone needs to accepted is that ANYONE in the proximity of a racing vehicle can be injured or killed. That includes all spectators and team members, their families and friends. A chainlink fence won't stop a TT traveling at 100+ MPH as won't a scrub brush stop a class 10. But I digress, this is not a good thing at all. What are the pending cases? These might have a huge influence on the insurability of our sport.

Bret
 

RacnCPA

Well-Known Member
Posts
834
Reaction
2
Also try Combined Insurance. They insure the drivers. I had a policy on the ex and I have one on me. I don't know the extent of the coverage because I only needed accident and life. Give it a try and I'll look for a phone number and any other info I can find.

Sc
 

martininsocal

Well-Known Member
Posts
22,828
Reaction
5
I tried to get insurance coverage for my offroad vehicles in a blanket policy a couple years ago. The agent laughed when I said the behicles were raced as well as driven in the desert. Coverage for play is easy to get, but noway for competition events. The coverage you pay for to the promoter is just to cover the promoter in the event that something happens and they receive a claim against them. I believe they have maximum payout(if I remember right, it was 2 million dollars per claim) but the driver of the vehicle could still be liable in a separate suit. For big money teams, it really is a problem because they are deep pockets, unlike most of us.

Shortcourse anyone?

Martin

If your gonna go, go BIG
 

pciscott

Well-Known Member
Posts
1,639
Reaction
708
Insurance is a luxury I race without, besides half the time the insurance policy becomes the target in a law suit. My pockets are not deep enough for a law firm to waste his time on. I hope I am never involved in the big one or ever harm someone with my racing. With that said you spectators better stand way back because if I do get you, your chances of a big payday are slim to none. I know some people have there race teams set up as LLC corporations does this protect you from liability? Beerman I hope you Smith and the Herbst get your insurance in line because I will be at Laughlin and I am hungry!

God Bless America

Scott Steinberger Trophy Truck #7
 

motoxscott

Well-Known Member
Posts
1,240
Reaction
299
I'd hate to see someone or some team not race because of this, because in the end all it does his hurt or delay the sport from growing and getting the recognition it deserves.

Hope this pans out for everyone soon.

PCI Scott, you can hit me anytime, I would consider it an honor !
 

ACID_RAIN28

Well-Known Member
Posts
1,409
Reaction
60
There are all kinds of companies in the uk that insure everything from a whole F1 team to yatchs, they specialze in high stakes accounts. The one listed earlier in the in this thread is one of them. I do know that finding insurance these days is hard. The Gold Stike wanted us to have an unheard of 10 million in coverage for our race. We looked from hawaii to england and found one or two people that could do it. Most insurace companys now adays don't have the capital support high risk industrys anymore. Most big name teams and corporations set up their own insurance company, for this particular reason.

Mabey you all could get set up with something like the Nevada corp. and become a contracted driver for the "company" just a thought.

IF ALL ELSE FAILS.......DROP THE "HAMMER"!
 

jeff

Moderator
Posts
7,427
Reaction
321
If you are a rich dude / dudette and you are the one behind the wheel when the stuff hits the fan it won't really matter who your insurance is because the other guys money hungry legal team will try to bleed you for all you are worth. If you own the team or have stake in the team I'm sure the attorneys would go after whoever had the biggest pocket. Hell, they'd probably sue the sponsors too while they were at it. Like Scott said, if you ain't got anything there isn't anything for them to take. If I started racing I'd make sure my ass (and assets) was protected.

The LLC deal... If you are outside of California creating a limited liability company in most states is usually around $50 bucks for a 1-time fee and then a whole lotta paperwork. California wants $800 up front and then + + + for fees. The downside is that in California (and most states) the LLC regulations would make it less than desireable for a race team... When you create an LLC you are basically liable for whatever you have personally invested. So assuming you don't invest anything they can't get anything... but it doesn't protect your personal assets from attack. They clearly state that the LLC members' personal assets are vulnerable in case of a lawsuit. Not talking bankruptcy or protection from creditor law suits... this is the gross negligence type stuff. They take the business assts first and then go after the LLC members. If you were just dealing with creditors/vendors it would be different and the LLC would do a pretty good job of protecting you. In racing it wouldn't do much.

The real issue boils down to the people that attend the races. I wish that people would just take responsibility for themselves and accept it when bad things happen. If you go to a race and watch it "trackside" and get smushed by the PCI trophy truck when it veers off course that was your decision to be where you were. If people in the US weren't so SUE crazy we wouldn't have to worry about this crap.

With that said. I'm with John. I'll gladly take ALL of your equipment, put it ALL in my name, and let you use it whenever I'm not using it. I'll even store it ALL for free.

Aloha
 

ACID_RAIN28

Well-Known Member
Posts
1,409
Reaction
60
Well there has to be a safe way around all this, if not then it is slowly becoming a sad world to live in, where we have to think twice before we do anything.

IF ALL ELSE FAILS.......DROP THE "HAMMER"!
 

hoeker

Well-Known Member
Posts
2,004
Reaction
101
WSIB is another

The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.
 
Top