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Time Trial/Time Attack - OTD participants thoughts

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Time Trial/Time Attack - OTD participants thoughts

Postby Clutch » Mon Feb 18, 2013 8:09 am

MJNova brought up a good idea about running HPDE sessions during the race weekends in this thread: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=4554
I'd like to see what our Open Track participants think of this, and how they would like to see it run.

Open track participants only... Let's see what they come up with.
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Re: Time Trial/Time Attack - OTD participants thoughts

Postby markitect » Mon Feb 18, 2013 11:16 am

I think I can speak for a lot of OTD people when I say we would all love to race, but 3 things stop us(they might really just be 3 parts of one thing).
  • 1. Money
    For $160 we can get about an hour of track time at an OTD, This would need to give people a similar preceived value.
  • 2. Risk
    While some friendly competition arises at OTDs I think most people at least preceive that we have less risk, the actual racing. I don't know how this will translate to HPDE, it will probably vary person to person. I think the following could help address this
    • a. Track Insurance:I think 3 ball racing has this available for the OTDs, they might be able to help you find out how to offer this.
    • b. HPDE/OTD Driver School. This might be partially shared with regular driving school, but not include the wheel to wheel race. This is also a good place to give out OTD log books, and of course make a some extra money for the track.
  • 3. Time
    I know a lot of people show up to every OTD, but some of us only make 1 or 2 a year. This might seem odd, but I would focus on single day results, not season results(one big list based on a PAX like system). This will help keep it open to casual attendance.
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Re: Time Trial/Time Attack - OTD participants thoughts

Postby ldunk » Wed Feb 20, 2013 6:28 pm

Adding to what markitect posted above, if it's going to be straight HPDE, then track time becomes an issue. A driver at a typical HPDE weekend would get 60-90 minutes of track time on each day. There would be three or four run groups to accommodate varying driver skill levels. I just don't think you can add an HPDE to an already busy race weekend.

I can certainly see the merit to including HPDE people in a race weekend - if WHRRI is looking for prospective racers, the HPDE/OTD/Autocross crowd might very well be the best place to look.

In the other post on this subject, the idea of bracket racing or perhaps Time Attack/Time Trials was brought up. Competing in my HPDE car has a great appeal to me. I would be willing to reduce my expectation of track time in return for the adrenaline rush of competition.

There are a couple of important points however.

1) To attract the HPDE people, you will need to use HPDE tech rules. This means that you would have street cars competing.

2) If people are going to compete in a street car, then the competition has to be structured within HPDE driving/passing rules. I need to know that the other drivers on the track will benefit from giving/receiving polite, clean passes and that aggressive passing will be penalized.

3) there needs to be a few run groups to accommodate driver/car combos of varying abilities.

4) the competition needs to be structured in a way that does not require vehicle classes.

I can think of a few possibilities for structuring the competition:

1) Bracket racing. Drag racing has used bracket racing to attract lots of racers to the sport. Every event I've been to has featured at least one stock Neon, and that driver has the same chance of winning as any other driver.

2) A time attack where you get 8-10 laps and are scored on consistency. Scoring would take the average of my 2nd and 3rd quickest lap, and subtract my fastest. Closest to 0 wins.

3) Staggered standing starts. Races would be 8-10 laps, and cars would be released (slowest car first) at intervals calculated so that the cars would cross the finish line about 1 second after each other (assuming they all drive their time perfectly). This might appeal to both driver and spectator - the results of the race would be obvious as you crossed the finish line.

In all of these formats, you are competing against lots of drivers, but you only drive against yourself. There would still be red mist, but it would be sort of pinkish instead of blood-red.

Whatever the format, I would love to get involved in race weekend activities without the expense and upkeep of a full-on race car. I suspect that there are others like me.
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Re: Time Trial/Time Attack - OTD participants thoughts

Postby Clutch » Thu Feb 21, 2013 9:19 am

Excellent points...
I like a lot of the previous points... here's my current preferences:

1) This will not be an OTD running during a race weekend.
2) I think the Bracket format will work best. This allows cars of different capabilities to share the track. Timing is based on the driver's targeted lap time, so no complex PAX system is required. Cars would be "launched" with spacing based on their chosen lap times.
3) Cars will be the same street cars we use at the OTD with the same safety requirements. The only additional requirements will be:
*Car numbers for identification purposes
*Transponders for timing - we may be able to rent the transponders, we will need to come up with mounting brackets at a minimum.
4) Passing will be strictly controlled so we do not have any contact issues - we would use the same rules as the Advanced OTD group
*Passing only with a point
*Mandatory passing when given a Blue Flag
*No passing allowed between Turns 4 and 5
5) There should be a mandatory driver's school before participants are allowed to run in this group. This can be done during a regular OTD day... come in early for the classroom and we can provide on track feedback to the driver during the day.
6) Cost - the board will have to decide that, but I think it should fall somewhere between the regular race registration and a Co-Driver fee. For that price you would get a 20 minute practice session in the morning and the 10 or more laps of the bracket race.

What do you guys think?
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Re: Time Trial/Time Attack - OTD participants thoughts

Postby 38Bfast » Thu Feb 21, 2013 8:32 pm

Just for reference NASA TT is the same price as the door to door groups.
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Re: Time Trial/Time Attack - OTD participants thoughts

Postby Kamron » Mon Mar 04, 2013 10:06 pm

This sounds very interesting. I would probably participate as long as it allowed for casual participation; i.e., once or twice a year. For me, time is probably more of a consideration than cost. I usually participate in a 2-3 track days per year between here and Gingerman. I'd love to do it more often than that, but my schedule just doesn't allow for it. So, as long as it's made to be somewhat convenient in that respect, I'm sure I'd take a try at it.
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Re: Time Trial/Time Attack - OTD participants thoughts

Postby Jon h » Tue Mar 12, 2013 3:01 pm

My thoughts as the typical OTD driver:

-Cost. As mentioned earlier, It should offer at least the track time/dollar ratio that the OTD does, preferably better as those costs have gone up quite a bit.

-Time. I stopped doing autocross because I spent my entire Saturday or Sunday to get 4 minutes of driving. OTDs take up my whole day too, but that's OK because I get to drive a lot more. I understand that this event would happen in conjunction with the race's, so its something I am concerned about.

Otherwise, I am very interested. I don't have the time or money for door to door racing yet, and would like some level of competition that we do not get at the OTD.

Looking forward to more details.
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Re: Time Trial/Time Attack - OTD participants thoughts

Postby thekinn » Sat Mar 23, 2013 8:28 am

The trial/time attack idea is pretty cool. I have been an OTD participant for a few years now and, at times, have thought about competing in some way. My main concerns have always been..

1. contact. I won't risk racing door to door racing in my 50/50 street/track car. That's just not on the table for me. I know that OTDs are inherently risky based on the activity itself.. but if I wreck I'd prefer that it be MY fault.
2. expense of building the car to meet certain club guidelines - scca, nasa. Since I only participate in OTD, HPDE, I like the freedom of doing whatever I want to my car.
3. ties to #2 above slightly... tires. I do not have the resources to trailer my car, tires, equipment. I prefer to stay away from the 'black-crack' and keep my street tires and ability to drive it as is to and from the track.

So, it looks like you have considered these items in one way or another. Based on the replies so far I think my only other concern would be actual track time. I really enjoy getting a full day's worth of track time. At least at the beginning of the season, I don't think I would sacrifice much of my day to participate in a time-trial event - when I could get 60+ minutes of OTD time. My thoughts on this might change after that first OTD of the year, initial rush is cleared. :)

I understand that everyone is different - I am just providing some other feedback and a potential participant's point of view. Thanks for the discussion - and thanks to all the staff and volunteers for years of fun out at Waterford.
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Re: Time Trial/Time Attack - OTD participants thoughts

Postby thekinn » Tue Mar 26, 2013 1:45 pm

I re-read the first post here - for some reason I thought this HPDE/TimeAttack group was geared towards the OTD events. Now, I see you meant it as an add-on to the race-weekends. Interesting. My main concerns still apply except for the track time. If you can decide on a good way to instill the competition without the need to make major mods to my car I might give it a go.
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