How Social Distancing Can Become Automotive Bonding

Mar 17, 2020

These are trying times. There is much fear and uncertainty about COVID-19. So, what can we do to make sure that our hobby and sport come out of this healthy and poised to continue long after this event is over?

I write this not as a member of a company in the industry, but as a true car guy. Cars are not only my career, but they are my passion. In high school, I was the kid in auto shop who was looking for a way to turn those classes into a lifelong career. Cars were—and still are—in my blood. And you just don’t get over that.

As a guy that will show up to any weekend car show just to show off my car, or to hang out with others that love to talk cars, I can’t imagine that going away. With so much pressure already on our love of cars, we can’t let this situation affect it in a way that we will never recover from.

Let’s start by stating the obvious: many of the events that we know and love will be cancelled or delayed. This will not be a normal start to the show and racing season. It will be unlike any that we have ever seen before.

I understand that both our government and sanctioning bodies want to be proactive in helping to stop the spread of this virus. I applaud them. But what can I do to help ensure that when we come out on the other side of this—and we will—that my passion for cars isn’t forever affected?

The first thing I’m going to do is keep my family safe by following CDC guidelines.

Next, I’m going to use this time to spend some extra time in the garage. My love for cars goes beyond the track or the local car show. It is a bond between me and machine.

That time away from my phone and social media will help me refocus on reality and not panic. But more than that, I will get to keep that normality that is so needed in times like these.

I’m going to continue to order parts and support those companies that support my passion.

I’m going to continue to read my favorite magazines, visit my favorite car sites and follow and like the posts of my favorite drivers and teams.

At a time when social distancing is the term of the day, why not some automotive bonding?

In a safe way, invite your friends over. Watch some past races. Work on your favorite projects. Share and build some good memories in a time when it’s easy to get lost in the stress of the day.

We love our cars. We love the sport of racing. Now is the time to use that love of cars to temper stress and remember the first time we felt that car passion truly building inside of us.

While some folks are concentrating on stocking up on toilet paper, I’m choosing to be prepared, yet also use this time to get back to what I love.

There are many outside pressures on our hobby and sport. Let’s do our part to ease those pressures, all while reminding ourselves of the reason we fell in love with cars in the first place.

We will come out on the other side of this. What will our hobby and sport look like when it’s over? That answer is in our hands.

How will you respond?

Bob Scheid is a life-long automotive enthusiast and employee of McLeod Racing.