Grattan two inner paddocks, one paved (Upper) and the lower paddock which includes the island. If you wish to rent a garage (about $125.00 per weekend) you are given an upper paddock space. If you wish only an upper paddock space (paved) the cost is $20.00 for the weekend. You may not punch holes in the asphalt so be prepared to have some other types of anchors available for any canope. The inner lower paddock has paved access roads and is for the most part a sand base, which means it is very quick draining and for the most part dry, even in the rain. All gasoline and oil must be disposed of in the available containers, not into the ground.
The high outer paddock is the flat hill from Corner 9 to the StartFinish line, and while it is possible to enter and leave at will (no need to cross the track) no facilities are close by - you must go out to the registration paddock or cross the track to the inner paddock. The registration paddock has ALL the extra special features of Grattan. Clean restrooms with showers, a swimming pool, YES A SWIMMING POOL, an RV dump station, and bleachers just up the hill to watch 70% of the track. Mom and the kids can swim and have fun at the pool, watch you race, and when done you can leave at any time to go into town.
One lap of Grattan
Taking the green flag at the starters stand, which is about a third of the way down the straight you head into turn 1 (120-degree right), don't apex too early. Since the track was repaved (1995 fall) the entrance no longer is wavy and a driver may now go far left to begin the turn. Up a slight rise to corner 2 (90-degree right) letting the car go wide left after the apex, but you must bring the car back across to drivers right to set up for the unbelievable corner 3 (130-degree left, downhill, off camber apex and exit is uphill). After not believing you actually made it through 3 you must bring the car back to drivers left to set up for corner 4(90-degree right). Hard on the gas, downhill (Sound control (see pond pic) is here, drivers left, and Grattan has a 103dB limit for 1997), uphill and a crest, see pic of lower paddock (wait for the car to settle before braking!) then a series of right left right esses. If you did not wait for the car to settle before braking you will go straight not right (not the fastest line, especially if it has been raining and you get stuck). After the esses corner 6 (140-degree left,with 25-degree banking), know as the "..bowl" (use sugar or toilet as preface). Hard on gas for corner 7 (almost a straight but with a slight turn to the right), the track has been repaved here and is a lot wider than it used to be (and a lot faster). The trees are now protected by a guard rail from corner 6 through corner 8. You will be going downhill to a completely blind apex at corner 8. Yes, you actually turn before you can see the corner. Corner 8 (115-degree right, blind apex) has a fast line that is not what is expected - most who try are hit from the inside, some are put on their heads. You need to hold the car in slightly, do not allow it to drift left at the exit. The fastest way is to brake harder going in to the corner and the get on it on the exit. Too high an entrance speed and you will be very badly out of line on the exit and have to brake to pull the car back, this is where you get in trouble if someone who took it right will pass you (hit you). Now it's uphill with a quick left and right, then corner 9 (70-degree increasing radius left) and onto the straight to the finish line located not at the starter stand but in front of the timing and scoring tower. The pit in is located at turn 9 (drivers right).
Registration is located just inside of the main track enterance. The false grid is located behind the starter stand on the road going out to turn 3. This is where all track entrance is done for practice, qualifying, and the race. The race uses a 1 and 1/2 lap pace. For practice only, the checker flag will be displayed at turn 8, leave the track at the pit in (turn 9). For qualifying and the race the checker will only be shown by the starter. The black flag station is turn 8 (and of course, start). All track exit is done throught the pit lane (turn 9). Tech (Impound) is located at the tech building near the concession stand in the upper inner paddock. For races with very large entries, Showroom Stock and American Sedan will paddock behind the registration building.
At every SCCA race there is a dinner provided free to all workers and competitors and crew. It is one of the best, no it is the BEST in CenDiv. No half cooked brats or warm beer. It usually has chicken, beef, pork, sauerkraut with sausage, meatballs, fresh rolls, baked potatoes, potato salad, macaroni salad, cole slaw, corn, beer, pop, and wine coolers. If you leave hungry, it's your own fault. AND IT'S FREE!!!!
Track Practice Days
The Friday before each SCCA race is a practice day. This is a track activity and not sanctioned by SCCA. The track provides cornerworkers and an ALS with paramedics. For the practice, track entrance is done at corner 5 and track exit is corner 3, through the false grid. Pit lane is closed for all practice. You must have a valid racing license to participate in the practice sessions. Each session is 25 minutes with a five minute break between them. If there are a lot of cars, the sessions will be open wheel and then closed wheel - otherwise they are open to all cars. Cost is $125.00 for regionals, $200 for the national. The track is available from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM. The practice fee is reduced at 2:00 PM by 50%.
Grattan Raceway is located just west of Belding, Michigan - just outside of the Village of Grattan, about 25 miles north east of Grand Rapids.
Coming from the east (Detroit) take I-96 to exit 52 (Lowell) - follow Lincoln Lake Rd north to M-44 (about 15 miles). Take M-44 west to Grattan (about 1/3 mile). Turn right heading into Grattan and about 1/4 mile take another right on Lessiter. Follow Lessiter for about 1 1/2 miles to track.
Coming from the west (Chicago) take I-196 to US-131. Go north on US-131 to Ten Mile Rd (Rockford exit) Follow Ten Mile Rd east for about twelve miles (you will T into Lessiter). Turn right on Lessiter, it's about 1 1/2 miles to track.
From the north or south - use US-131 to Ten Mile Rd.
Grand Rapids is about 30 minutes away from Grattan Raceway. Here are some of the motels that support us (and give you a discount).
President Inn 3221 Plainfield in Grand Rapids (800) 445-5004 (616) 363-0800
Holiday Inn North 270 Ann St in Grand Rapids (616) 363-9001
Greenville Motor Inn 1104 W. Washington Greenville, MI (616) 754-3668
1996 Schedule of Events
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Last Updated 11-2-96