Why Planning one is important

You have started off as a weekend racer, racing in your spare time, but you’ve caught the bug and want to go the next step. One of the first things you should do is sit down and bang your head against the wall. If after that you are still determined to step up to race the next level let’s talk.

When racing becomes more than a hobby we have to look at it as a business. Any good business must have certain factors. Today we will talk about one – the budget. A budget is much more than how much money you have and how much money you need.

A budget is really a plan for financial activities. For you it is a way to organize and prepare for the season ahead for one and a way to make sure you are budgeting enough money from yourself and/or sponsors to race effectively. We budget to recognize our responsibilities and make sure we can fulfill them.

First things first – speak with a professional accountant. Have them help you set up an organized way of keeping your team’s financials. It’s important you know your team’s requirements to run a season. The majority of small race teams underestimate the costs involved. Preparing a model is key.

Expenses: Fuel, track, car, travel, equipment, employees, are obvious and can somewhat be set in stone. It is important to leave a cushion for unexpected variances. Poor planning can make the emergency expenses cause not only stress but make fulfilling those obligations impossible. Be realistic. Look ahead.

Budgets change through out the course – this allows us to use real data – ie. Expenses from a previous race to help better determine the next race’s cash requirements. This does not mean that you are allowed to wake up one morning and say ” I need so much more money to do this right”. After a race it’s time to go through all the receipts and have them documents and filed correctly. This will make it easier to do the bookkeeping and keep on track – both literally and figuratively.

It is important to communicate with crew the importance of a budget. I know one instance when a crew chief bought a year’s worth of race oil to save a dollar a case but unfortunately this left the team cash strapped for the upcoming race – not a good deal after all.

Why should you go to the trouble of detailing a budget? Not only will it help you and your team run easier but it is absolutely essential to have when pitching a potential sponsor. Not having a financial plan and you could have too little cash flow to run your team professionally or be asking too much for a sponsor to even consider.

A detailed budget can help you and your team be well prepared for a race season – good luck and remember common sense and being realistic is key.

Do you have any advice on preparing a racing budget? Drop us a line at info@racerchicks.com



Nika has had a love for cars and racing since childhood. A regional racing license holder she has been involved with the industry, working with racers, teams, journalists and automobile manufacturers in sponsorship solicitation, logistics, hospitality, road show and communication program implementation.