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Second, Third and Fourth Pace Cars


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Willing to bet most of these tertiary pace cars are very intently following the "50% under yellow" guidance they receive.  Perhaps a little nuance during that discussion would be helpful?  Also a black flag and discussion with driver *and team* would make some headway.  This shouldn't be hard to do?

 

I had more than one instance in which my pack never caught the field before green was back out.  Frustrating for a mid-pack to upper third car, can't imagine if we were hunting for a trophy..

Edited by BollingerChump
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Funny how extreme the rules have to get when all we need is the Race Director to start throwing black flags at the offenders.  The board already said its the race directors responsibility to enforce t

Seemed like at Indy there were a couple times the pace car slowed WAY down or even came to a stop in order to bunch the field up.   Also, yeah the 50% thing is very confusing especially to a

There are a few every single race I have seen over the last 10+ years. We need to address this at every drivers meeting, not that everyone watches all 2,586 minutes of them though.   I would

Seemed like at Indy there were a couple times the pace car slowed WAY down or even came to a stop in order to bunch the field up.

 

Also, yeah the 50% thing is very confusing especially to a new team - more so if your car is slow.  One of our guys drove a 2:15 at Indy under full course caution trying to catch up with people all over his bumper.  Our fast lap for the entire weekend was only 2 seconds faster.  I was actually concerned a couple times I was going to get black flagged for driving TOO aggressively trying to catch the pack.  Sqeauling tires and three-wheeling through corners gets flaggers attention.  FCY pace for some cars is still 110% for others, and that's not safe either.  Just have a discussion in the drivers meeting/video about expectations under FC yellow and the intent of the rule and that would probably help more than anything.  Just my two cents.

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1 minute ago, karman1970 said:

Seemed like at Indy there were a couple times the pace car slowed WAY down or even came to a stop in order to bunch the field up.

 

That's a good point. If the race director sees cars in multiple packs, that could be a sign that the pace car is going too fast.

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Official pace car could slow to a near stop well away from  incident to collect all stragglers who aren’t paying attention and then proceed. Wouldn’t take much time to compress the field. 

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21 minutes ago, TimS said:

Official pace car could slow to a near stop well away from  incident to collect all stragglers who aren’t paying attention and then proceed. Wouldn’t take much time to compress the field. 

Might work in some instances my fear though is cars coming in too hot and blind. At Pitt Race there is tons of elevation change leading to limited downtrack sight lines. The last thing we would want is cars slamming into a stopped car at at even 50% speed. Someone can do the precise math but I don’t see how it would be all that difficult for any car to catch up to the field under a caution that only lasts a lap or two under the pace car. Fast lap  at Pitt was 1:57. Let’s say the average is closer to 2:10. From what I saw a lap under the pace car was about 4:30 if I remember correctly. Assuming the leader drops to 50% once the double yellow flies and it takes a lap for the pace car to get in front of the leader that should be about 7:45 for a car to catch up a maximum of 3 miles assuming there is only one full lap behind the pace car. If it is more than one lap there is no excuse to not catch up. The only explanation I can see is that the “second pace car” has slowed to 50% and the actual pace car is driving at 50% thus the gap isnt going to be closed. I’ve exited the pit there a couple years ago barely beating the leaders as they came down the front stretch. I was able to catch the back of the field in before it crossed the line again to take the green. It is doable. It just needs to be enforced. 

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I disagree with the premise that "slow" cars can't go fast enough under FCY to bunch up the field. There was a discussion about this a month or two ago. 

 

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6 hours ago, LuckyKid said:

Funny how extreme the rules have to get when all we need is the Race Director to start throwing black flags at the offenders.  The board already said its the race directors responsibility to enforce this via black flag.  They just need to do it.  

 

Would have been very easy to do last weekend at PITT. I know staff on pit lane went to the offending teams to let them know they needed to close their gaps as at times there was a 1+ minute gap created between the two fields. This happened several times at Pitt. 

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20 minutes ago, Snorman said:

I disagree with the premise that "slow" cars can't go fast enough under FCY to bunch up the field. There was a discussion about this a month or two ago. 

 

 

There is no car so slow that 70% speed is a 4 minute lap time at a 2 minute track. That premise is just BS. 

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The pace car speed is usually around 35-40mph according to what Jackie has told me. She can maintain that pretty much at any track in a decent vehicle except Turn 1 at AMP. To bunch the field up she is instructed to go as low as 25. In lap is usually around 45-50mph. No reason cars can't catch up.

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I think the issue is cars going the same pace or slower than the pace car.  Not cars that just can't catch up at pacecar speeds...

 

I realized a couple years ago that if you catch a second pace car at wgi, you are better off slowly passing it, paying the penalty of 5 mins and still probably being better off.

 

Sometimes we lost around 6 or 7 minutes to this phenomenon at wgi.

 

We actually had this happen while the top 5 cars were within about 40 seconds of each other with about 20 laps to go.  We were 5th and got stuck behind a guy going about 25 mph.  I almost lost my mind.

 

We finished on the lead lap as the car behind me (the leader) took the checkers.

 

In other words, lost over a minute and a half within about 1 lap of fcy.

Edited by wvumtnbkr
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3 hours ago, red0 said:

 

Would have been very easy to do last weekend at PITT. I know staff on pit lane went to the offending teams to let them know they needed to close their gaps as at times there was a 1+ minute gap created between the two fields. This happened several times at Pitt. 

This last race at Pitt seemed to be worse than any other event I've been to for this.  Chelsea was on the PA system several times asking people to get their drivers moving but it didn't seem to help.  Watching the first 10 cars roll down the front straight behind the pace car and the rest of the field coming down the hill to the back straight at 20mph was mind boggling.  I also watched quite a few cars come down pit lane at well over the speed limit and then fumble around for a 7 or 8 minute fuel stop.  Is it possible we just had a higher than normal volume of new teams/drivers who skipped the online novice class?  

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13 hours ago, bbaker480 said:

This last race at Pitt seemed to be worse than any other event I've been to for this.  Chelsea was on the PA system several times asking people to get their drivers moving but it didn't seem to help.  Watching the first 10 cars roll down the front straight behind the pace car and the rest of the field coming down the hill to the back straight at 20mph was mind boggling.  I also watched quite a few cars come down pit lane at well over the speed limit and then fumble around for a 7 or 8 minute fuel stop.  Is it possible we just had a higher than normal volume of new teams/drivers who skipped the online novice class?  

There were quite a few new teams at this race.

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Even if there were 10 new teams it isn’t an excuse. Address it in the novice school. Address it in the drivers meeting. Send a Marshall to the offending teams pit stall and address it directly. I know for a fact one of the biggest offenders has been in the series for many years.

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8 minutes ago, Kentite said:

Send a Marshall to the offending teams pit stall and address it directly. 


I know Thomas from ChampCar staff  went to the pit stalls of offending teams directly. That did not appear to work. 

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2 minutes ago, red0 said:


I know Thomas from ChampCar staff  went to the pit stalls of offending teams directly. That did not appear to work. 

So there needs to be a solution somewhere. Black flag the car? Make teams that keep offending after that sit on pit lane for the duration of any subsequent pace car periods?

I honestly don’t understand how it can be so difficult. The only thing I can imagine is going through the offending drivers mind is that he’s been told to drop to 50% race pace and thus isn’t gaining on the field. 

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27 minutes ago, red0 said:


I know Thomas from ChampCar staff  went to the pit stalls of offending teams directly. That did not appear to work. 

Then it's time to get out the black flags. 

 

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Cant wait for a 90 car field @ Road America where this is a problem every race.

 

4 miles of track if you are not running 75% or more you wont catch the field for 2 laps if the leader is right behind you.

 

Makes it tricky at a corner like turn 6 where if your hustling to catch up and the field is right around the corner things could get hairy.

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10 minutes ago, Gkuhn41 said:

Cant wait for a 90 car field @ Road America where this is a problem every race.

 

4 miles of track if you are not running 75% or more you wont catch the field for 2 laps if the leader is right behind you.

 

Makes it tricky at a corner like turn 6 where if your hustling to catch up and the field is right around the corner things could get hairy.

 

Headlights and horn might really be needed so you can flash your lights and honk your horn. I don't understand why these cars are not getting black flagged. 

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1 hour ago, Kentite said:

Even if there were 10 new teams it isn’t an excuse. Address it in the novice school. Address it in the drivers meeting. Send a Marshall to the offending teams pit stall and address it directly. I know for a fact one of the biggest offenders has been in the series for many years.

10 new teams is 40 drivers, plus probably a few more individuals who drove for existing teams with little wheel to wheel experience.  I know when I went to novice school at my first event this was covered.  I wonder how many of the, let's call them 50, new drivers at Pitt this weekend attended the online novice school?  CCES made an effort during the event to correct the actions of these teams over the PA and visiting pit stalls.  With the small percentage of people on the forum and Facebook I don't think anything we do here will help, and if they aren't here they likely aren't watching the drivers meeting or novice school videos either. 

 

I don't know that I have a solution aside from black flagging cars that have already been spoken to.  That really isn't fixing the immediate problem because race control is busy getting the yellow resolved, not watching for gaps in the field.  Pit lane volunteers are busy yelling at all of us to put visors down so it's not their focus.  Maybe amend the rule book to put a push bar on each car?

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39 minutes ago, bbaker480 said:

10 new teams is 40 drivers, plus probably a few more individuals who drove for existing teams with little wheel to wheel experience.  I know when I went to novice school at my first event this was covered.  I wonder how many of the, let's call them 50, new drivers at Pitt this weekend attended the online novice school?  CCES made an effort during the event to correct the actions of these teams over the PA and visiting pit stalls.  With the small percentage of people on the forum and Facebook I don't think anything we do here will help, and if they aren't here they likely aren't watching the drivers meeting or novice school videos either. 

 

I don't know that I have a solution aside from black flagging cars that have already been spoken to.  That really isn't fixing the immediate problem because race control is busy getting the yellow resolved, not watching for gaps in the field.  Pit lane volunteers are busy yelling at all of us to put visors down so it's not their focus.  Maybe amend the rule book to put a push bar on each car?

I think your pretty on point.   When we first started we were told to slow to x % for local cautions and y % for full course cautions, and to catch up to the pack.   We quickly learned that lots of drivers slow down about zero for local cautions and just hope for the best.  A couple years ago at NCM I had to run reasonably hard for a couple laps to catch the pack.   I did slow for the blind spots I had no desire to be that guy that runs over another car on The pace lap after quiet time.    I get that it’s a problem but with all the new folks every weekend it probably isn’t goi g to go away. A black flag during the caution for basically a “hey this is a learning moment, catch ip

to the pack.  Now get going” stop. Is probably a good idea. 

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2 hours ago, Gkuhn41 said:

Cant wait for a 90 car field @ Road America where this is a problem every race.

 

4 miles of track if you are not running 75% or more you wont catch the field for 2 laps if the leader is right behind you.

 

Makes it tricky at a corner like turn 6 where if your hustling to catch up and the field is right around the corner things could get hairy.

Every race? FCY at RA is pretty rare in my experience, but maybe things have changed.

Lots of places at RA where you have good visibility down track, you shouldn't be surprised to catch the pack in the few "blind" places. 

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