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PostPosted: Thu Sep 26, 2019 7:31 am 
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As Mike stated - "some newer racers would like to see the current top racers and get a feel for the pace and $ commitment it takes to be at the pointy end".

I learned A LOT at the Majors events I participated in this year, racing with many of you, and certainly have a better appreciation of what is required to be competitive.

Went to a Jim Russell school at Ontario Motor Speedway back in November 1978 (yes I am that old!), and I am still learning from, and enjoying racing with, all of you.

Rick

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 26, 2019 9:00 am 
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Hi all - I don't get over here much but heard there may be some clarification needed on a couple Runoffs items.

1. The percentage is 115% -- not 110. That's for Runoffs and Hoosier Super Tours. If someone is outside of that, they need permission from the Race Director to start.

2. Runoffs qualifying has been on a "Followed by" since 2017 and it has worked well. We have found that people want to know when their sessions will start. But at Runoffs, we're trying to cram so much into the day, it's easier operationally to go "followed by" for qualifying. We'd do it for HSTs but that would make race times more variable, which is something we still want to maintain on a specific schedule.

3. There will be grid calls and texts, but as a participant I would never rely completely on them. There are human beings involved in making those notifications and people can make mistakes. Know who you follow. Watch timing to know when the sessions are ending. I also suggest having an FM radio on hand that can hear the PA in case you're in a paddock spot that isn't close to a speaker.

4. We built this year's Runoffs schedule assuming that some groups would either be over the track limit for cars (none are) or be a little unruly with the combined classes. There is actually an unpublished estimated minute-by-minute for qualifying days, and the original timeline allowed for 1 additional group before lunch and 2 additional groups after lunch. We were waiting for the early entry deadline to look at the qualifying groups to see what made sense to split out. After discussing with staff, the Race Director and Asst. Race Director determined that we would have one additional session before lunch and one after lunch each day. The additional, unused session, became +2 min for all groups (from 18 to 20). They chose the groups to split based on highest car count by a combination of individual class size, total group size, lap time and speed differential. I provided input and data, but as a participant I was not a part of the final decision.

We're loading the trailers with equipment and supplies today. Some of us will be on site Monday to begin striping the paddock. Everyone that's going to VIR travel safe!

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 26, 2019 10:35 am 
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chois wrote:
kruck wrote:
They have been enforcing the 110% rule, even at Majors events, but I don't think people realize just how slow that still is. Take the Mid-Ohio pro-course for example, say the FP pole is a 1:36.0, so 110% of that is a 1:45.6. Almost 10 seconds off the pace, and probably going to get lapped twice. I've done a 1:40.7 in my ITA Integra and a 1:45.8 in my ITB Civic, and those were both like 8-12 years ago.


When did they start enforcing this?
HP at Indy had 9 starters outside 110%
The car that blocked me on two lapping passes and hit me on the third was at 124%. Twenty. Eight. Seconds. Off. Pace.


And just to clarify - I think we should maintain a more open entry path to this event. The event financials require it, and the experience of the overall week is much better for it. This is a club, and I for one enjoy getting to know the fellow members that I race with, and the more the merrier (to a point).
I only had an issue with one car, but it nearly ended my race on the last lap. I'd like to see the 115% given greater consideration, and not waive it unless there is reasonable evidence that the car can beat the 115% mark in the race. Beyond this differential you start getting into cars getting lapped 3 times, and that last time near the end where it can have a very memorable impact on the race.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 26, 2019 11:30 am 
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chois wrote:
chois wrote:
When did they start enforcing this?
HP at Indy had 9 starters outside 110%
The car that blocked me on two lapping passes and hit me on the third was at 124%. Twenty. Eight. Seconds. Off. Pace.


And just to clarify - I think we should maintain a more open entry path to this event. The event financials require it, and the experience of the overall week is much better for it. This is a club, and I for one enjoy getting to know the fellow members that I race with, and the more the merrier (to a point).
I only had an issue with one car, but it nearly ended my race on the last lap. I'd like to see the 115% given greater consideration, and not waive it unless there is reasonable evidence that the car can beat the 115% mark in the race. Beyond this differential you start getting into cars getting lapped 3 times, and that last time near the end where it can have a very memorable impact on the race.


I believe at Sonoma they started to enforce this - likely in part due to what happened at Indy. There was one entrant in EP at Sonoma that could not make the time, and I was told he was given the option to start and park (take the green but pull in on lap one). He opted not to start the race at all.

I am all for inclusive, but if you are in the way during the race you should be getting pulled in via the black flag.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 26, 2019 11:59 am 
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Just a thought.. my kids are karting right now. Thus I watched Supernats last fall. All competitors were allowed to start the race regardless of pace, but as soon as they were at risk of being lapped (leader on same straight), they were black flagged and thus their risk of affecting the front of the race was minimal.

As others have said, I want to be inclusive- invite all who qualify through whatever process- but if they can't maintain 115% (that's 18sec/lap at a 2:00 lap, which is pretty significant differential), then they need to be removed from the race. Backmarkers have adversely affected the outcome of multiple runoffs races in the last few years, and it needs to be addressed.
I don't care if you want to let them start and blck flag them, or simply not let them start the race if they do not stand a reasonable chance of a SAFE 115% or faster. (there are some people who are not safe at any speed. others who are safe at 150%... but obviously you can't write such a subjective procedure..)

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 26, 2019 12:11 pm 
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Eric Prill wrote:
4. We built this year's Runoffs schedule assuming that some groups would either be over the track limit for cars (none are) or be a little unruly with the combined classes. There is actually an unpublished estimated minute-by-minute for qualifying days, and the original timeline allowed for 1 additional group before lunch and 2 additional groups after lunch. We were waiting for the early entry deadline to look at the qualifying groups to see what made sense to split out. After discussing with staff, the Race Director and Asst. Race Director determined that we would have one additional session before lunch and one after lunch each day. The additional, unused session, became +2 min for all groups (from 18 to 20). They chose the groups to split based on highest car count by a combination of individual class size, total group size, lap time and speed differential. I provided input and data, but as a participant I was not a part of the final decision.

We're loading the trailers with equipment and supplies today. Some of us will be on site Monday to begin striping the paddock. Everyone that's going to VIR travel safe!


Just wanted to highlight this, and thank the SCCA crew for being proactive and reactive to the realities of this event.
I really appreciate the changes that were made, and can't wait to see everyone in Virginia.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 26, 2019 2:55 pm 
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Location: Corry, Pa.
Thank you Eric and Staff.
Have a safe trip and see you there.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 27, 2019 3:35 am 
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Matt93SE wrote:
... if they can't maintain 115% (that's 18sec/lap at a 2:00 lap, which is pretty significant differential), then they need to be removed from the race....if they do not stand a reasonable chance of a SAFE 115% or faster. (there are some people who are not safe at any speed. others who are safe at 150%...

I think these are all good points. Using my FP 1:36.0 pole time at Mid-Ohio scenario, 115% of that would be 1:50.4, which is 2-3 seconds slower than an ITC car around there, and would absolutely get lapped three times. But a competitor doing exactly that, would be allowed to race during The Runoffs. With that being said, some racers I'd have absolutely zero concern with them being out there in that case, because they have great situational awareness and now how and when to get very clearly out of the way for a second or two. Yet there's other drivers who are going to be running 1:45's or so, get lapped only once or twice, and will be a rolling hazard for everyone, every time. So it's a tough thing to try and mitigate these possible problems purely by lap time.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 27, 2019 5:07 am 
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Location: Dubuque, Iowa
kruck wrote:
Matt93SE wrote:
... if they can't maintain 115% (that's 18sec/lap at a 2:00 lap, which is pretty significant differential), then they need to be removed from the race....if they do not stand a reasonable chance of a SAFE 115% or faster. (there are some people who are not safe at any speed. others who are safe at 150%...

I think these are all good points. Using my FP 1:36.0 pole time at Mid-Ohio scenario, 115% of that would be 1:50.4, which is 2-3 seconds slower than an ITC car around there, and would absolutely get lapped three times. But a competitor doing exactly that, would be allowed to race during The Runoffs. With that being said, some racers I'd have absolutely zero concern with them being out there in that case, because they have great situational awareness and now how and when to get very clearly out of the way for a second or two. Yet there's other drivers who are going to be running 1:45's or so, get lapped only once or twice, and will be a rolling hazard for everyone, every time. So it's a tough thing to try and mitigate these possible problems purely by lap time.



Keep in mind some of these guys may only have a collective 1 hour of track time on a given track because of the limited runoffs run time. For some it seems hard to understand where to put their car to be the least impactful to the lead group coming through i.e. trying to be overly courteous with a big move, but ultimately making the situation worse. The situational awareness I feel is just something you have or don't, and those that don't, aren't just at the back of the field.

Your regional, heck even non-HST Majors, let 'em run. But I'd say when it comes to the HST and the Runoffs, they need to enforce the 115%. I was going to say this should apply to classes within the same group as well (BSpec) but really, when I reflected, I have had very good interactions with the B-spec group when coming around towards the end of the race.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 27, 2019 5:33 am 
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Location: Atlanta, Ga
Perhaps part of the problem is SCCA fails to communicate to lapped drivers what is expected of them. In our short track series, we dictate to the lapped drivers how they will drive when being lapped. If they do not comply, they are warned via their spotter and if they continue to not comply, they are parked. And the normal instruction is for lapped cars to stay to the left (inside). (yeah, we always turn left)

So, for SCCA, the instruction to lapped traffic should be, hold your line and give the car lapping you room. If you tell them to get out of the way, they start to dart all over the place.

And, if a car is so off the pace that they are lapped twice, I would be in favor of a black flag. Their race is done. Of course, I won a race a race at West Palm Beach once after being three laps down, but that was because I pitted to change to rain tires and lost three laps. But, then I turned three laps on rain tires to everyone elses one on slicks. Fun in the rain.

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