Why government should regulate illegal racing - Weekend

Why government should regulate illegal racing

Jerome NeriAtty. Jerome G. Neri
The Scrutineer

I READ in the news that the Mayor of Medellin, Ricardo Ramirez wants to regulate motorcycle racing in his town in the wake of reports that there are a lot of illegal street motorcycle races going on. It is the correct and most intelligent thing to do to solve the problem of illegal street racing.

Anywhere in the world there is an illegal street racing scene. There are jurisdictions that even destroy the vehicles used in illegal street racing. Yet, illegal street racing continues. The best solution to the illegal street racing problem is to take them off the streets and put them on the track. Providing a venue for the racers to do their thing in a controlled environment greatly reduces the risk and dangers to the racers and spectators.

Although it would be better, local governments don’t have to build racing facilities, they can temporarily close certain roads that do not have heavy traffic on some days for racing, dictate the proper safety equipment to use and install in their racing vehicles, etc.

Motor racing is a sport, just like basketball and this sport has been growing leaps and bounds in the motorcycle world since the advent of cheap and affordable motorcycles. There is also a good growth of motor racing in the car scene. It is about time that local governments give some support to the racing community by being open to providing venues. This way, a lot of illegal street racers will be taken off the streets.

ELECTRIC RACER. An unveiled all-electric race car on display ahead of the Sept. 13 inaugural Formula E auto race in Beijing, China. Organizers of the FIA Formula E Championship, the first series exclusively for electric cars, are giving racing aficionados their first chance to see a fully electric car in action in Beijing. (AP FOTO)
ELECTRIC RACER. An unveiled all-electric race car on display ahead of the Sept. 13 inaugural Formula E auto race in Beijing, China. Organizers of the FIA Formula E Championship, the first series exclusively for electric cars, are giving racing aficionados their first chance to see a fully electric car in action in Beijing. (AP FOTO)

IMPORTED VEHICLES. Department Order (DO) No. 32-2014 issued by the Department of Finance in May 2014 requires owners and operators of car exchanges, garages, auto trades and other similar establishments to present proof that duties and taxes have been paid on imported vehicles. The DO also directed the Bureau of Customs to seize imported vehicles if no proof of payment of duties and taxes can be presented.

With this DO, the BOC started cracking down on automobile dealers selling imported vehicles in various auto exchanges. So far, a total of 39 vehicles were inspected and given the all-clear. Although none of the vehicles they inspected were illegally imported into the country, this, I believe, is the correct procedure in cracking down smuggled vehicles.

UNJUST CRACKDOWN. Just some months ago, the Highway Patrol Group were cracking down on what they claim were smuggled vehicles and they were targeting vehicles on the road that already have been bought by third parties and previously had the all-clear from government agencies such as the LTO and the Highway Patrol Group themselves.

This method is unjust and oppressive. The end user loses his car that he paid hard earned cash for, while the smuggler/seller, corrupt LTO officer and corrupt Highway Patrol Police have made a profit.

SPORTS CAR. Mercedes just recently unveiled the Mercedes-AMG GT and it looks really good. This all-new 500+ horsepower twin turbo Mercedes-AMG is mated to a seven-speed paddle shift twin-clutch gearbox. The car looks like and appears to be a real grand tourer. The Porsche 911 now has some serious competition in the sports car class.

ELECTRIC FORMULA CARS. The latest single-seater racing kicked off last weekend in the streets of Beijing. This is the Formula E. It is an FIA sanctioned racing series using electric powered formula cars. This is the highest form of racing for electric powered vehicles.

The cars are built by Spark Racing Technology using a Dallara chassis, a McLaren electric motor and a battery created and developed by Williams F1. This will definitely be the quietest single-seater racing series. Racing fans are usually called petrol heads, but with electric racing, I wonder if there still will be the same appeal to the petrol heads?

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