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2022 ChampCar iRacing Series: Round 5, Lime Rock - 4/13/2022, 4/20/2022


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Sorry for the delay in posting these details. To make up for it, this round features the long-awaited return to the CCiS of the car that some people say offers the most exhilarating driving experience of any major simracing platform. The one, the only, the mighty, Pontiac Solstice. Back to the one-hour race format after the endurance at Daytona, but the action should be non-stop on this tricky track with overtaking opportunities at a premium.

 

Session Details

 

  • Practice Round: Wednesday, 13-April-2022
  • Championship Round: Wednesday, 20-April-2022
  • Practice Start: 6:30pm ET
  • Qualifying Start: 8:30pm ET
  • Race Start: 9:30pm ET
  • Car: Pontiac Solstice
  • In-Sim Session Date: Wednesday, 20-April-2022
  • In-Sim Session Start Time: 12:00pm
  • In-Sim Time Multiplier: 1x
  • Weather: Auto-Generated
  • Setup: iRacing Baseline Setup with 4.3g Fuel
  • Fast Repairs: 1
  • License Requirements: Practice Rounds (None), Championship Round (>D2.0)

 

Useful Links
 

ChampCar iRacing Series - League Application

ChampCar iRacing Series - Discord Server

2022 ChampCar iRacing Series Schedule

2022 ChampCar iRacing Series Broadcast Information Form

2022 ChampCar iRacing Series Protest Form

 

Guide to iRacing and Hardware

How to create your own iRacing paints

iRacing Tips and Resources

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I put a lot of time into preparing for this race.  Having two bad results out of four due to bad decisions on my part, I was hoping all the prep would yield a good result.  The night before I had a hard time getting to sleep – very similar to real life ChampCar races.

 

Lakeville CT high temp on 4/20 IRL was in the low 50’s but iRacing auto weather decided it was 77 and track temps started at 110.  Beware global warming in the metaverse lol.  I had practiced in high temps but had to refine my approach to several corners due to event specific conditions, and eventually cracked a high 1:03 in qualifying for a P5 starting position.  It was near my best qualifying effort, and much better than the P12 qualifying I managed in 2021.  There were many cars in the 1:04.0x range behind me so I figured holding my top 5 would not be easy particularly on lap 1

 

With the inside line and a decent run into 1-2 along with Mark making contact with Simon in turn 3 I was in P3 before turn 5.  This is rarified air for me.  I was able to hang in the draft of Mark and Alex for about 10 laps but once I lost that, plus probably not making the best adjustments to the hot tires, I lost a spot to Ian.  Eventually John Wilder caught me too and I had hoped to hold him up a bit but a small mistake in 5-5A gave him an easy pass.  From there I really settled into P5 and kept trying to make decent laps and get through traffic.  There was one incident with lapped traffic going into 5 I was closing on Jared but didn’t think I had enough of a run to make a pass so I stayed behind him.  Well Patrick behind me couldn’t get stopped in time and he pushed me into Jared a bit sending Jared up the alternate section of the track.  Luckily no big damage for any of us. 

 

All the leaders pitted before me and I had enough fuel to lead a lap and pit at the back end of my pit window.  I had a decent enough gap on P6 I was figuring I could avoid the undercut – and if not oh well I wanted to lead a lap for the first time. 

 

Coming out of the pits P6 had closed the gap considerably, but it seems he didn’t have enough fuel so just when the gap was getting close he had to back off.  After that it was just about executing laps and maintaining the gap to P6. 

 

So I ended where I started in P5.  This was my best result yet and 25 seconds behind P1 was also a new personal best. 

Edited by mostmint
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Lime Rock is a short circuit and very unforgiving of off track mistakes in several places.  This combo along with our current driver roster and approach to educating and policing drivers created a lot of contact and bad outcomes for some.  

 

In addition it also has the issue of cutting turn 5 and taking 1x off can save up to several tenths per lap.  At minimum I advocate we do not return to this track as it does not seem well suited to our league as it runs today. 

 

I would also like to see a set of rules or guidelines defined which should be read and understood by everyone in the league.  If these already exist someone please share I am not locating them. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I understand that there has been some debate/controversy regarding a couple of racing incidents in recent events and so I've been mulling over how to address these in relation to the above comment in a constructive manner.

 

First, I want to reiterate that the protest form (introduced for the 2021 season and updated for 2022) should still be the primary method of escalation and resolution of any disputes over events in the CCiS. This is important as it creates a record of any issues and also a method of tracking longer-term trends that might be causing issues.

 

Anything related to the league can be raised a protest, including but not limited to:

  • Contact on track (unintentional or otherwise)
  • Retaliatory driving
  • Excessive blocking
  • Abuse of track limits
  • Voice or Text communication abuse

Review of any protests can result in a variety of penalties at the discretion of the reviewer, including warnings, time penalties, disqualifications, and league bans. I think it is worth noting that we have only had one example of retaliatory driving/wrecking in the history of the league (and that itself was during one of the 2020 COVID Special Events), which resulted in a lifetime ban from the league for that driver. 

 

That said, it is important to balance the upholding of fair and good driving practices with the goal of the league to provide a welcoming and supportive community for drivers who are already part of the ChampCar world as well as those who are looking to get involved. Just as the CCES attempts to offer the most accessible route to racing, so the CCiS wants to offer the most accessible route to the CCES. With that in mind, we are always going to have a field of widely varied pace, skill, and experience. For that reason, I personally do not want to introduce a high level of stringent regulations regarding incident limits, immediate penalties for any car contact, or lengthy cautions/penalties during the session. I have raced in series like that in the past and, whilst rules like that can instill a realistic and intense level of competition, they can also lead to an increase in conflict, arguments, and recrimination. 

 

As with the real world series, there is always the expectation that drivers will give each other "racing room" - that expectation is the same in the iRacing Series. Regardless of the track/car/time of day/lap, racers are expected to treat each other courteously on track. Mistakes will always be made, and it's important from a stewarding perspective to take into account all factors surrounding an incident, including everything up to prior behaviour of the drivers involved, and any subsequent driving, communication, or feedback.

 

Finally, I have been experimenting with live stewarding in the first 4 rounds of the season, to which reaction has been neutral to negative. Feedback received indicates that doubt is placed on the ability of a steward to make good judgements quickly and mete out live penalties at the risk of materially impacting somebody's race, particularly during an event where drivers are hyped up and not in a position to analyse events dispassionately. However, in the last two events (rounds 5 and 6), there is now feedback that not enough attention is being given to the races and rules are not being enforced sufficiently. With that in mind, I will return to a live steward role for the next round to monitor events as best as I can but with the reciprocal understanding that any incident missed or not given due analysis or judgement can still be raised via protest with supporting evidence and receive a full analysis post-race.

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Thanks @Rapidofor this additional explanation. 

 

I expect the business of doing a live stewardship of 30 or more cars is a difficult task, making it very challenging to catch incidents, make a decision and apply an appropriate penalty if necessary.  In ChampCar races I know they get backed up applying penalties in some cases, and they have more people involved in the process.

 

I offer an alternative for your consideration: 

1) All incidents captured by you and reported by others are gathered up, before and within a few days of race end. 

2) you/whoever else is involved then have time to review these incidents, make a ruling, and

3) report out in the race thread here in the forum on those requiring warnings or penalties (maybe on Discord also?). 

I recognize this is going to create a no win situation as some of the decisions you have to make will not be popular with us drivers, but assigning the penalties after we drivers have our adrenaline down might be better - plus we'll all have the film to review which we don't have while we're driving. 

Using this approach and whatever guidelines you want to have will at least apply penalties in a consistent manner (always post race) rather than some in-race and some post-race. 

 

So far I have witnessed questionable behavior twice prior to Sonoma going back to 2020 when I started, that I strongly think should have been investigated - neither of which involved me.  I had assumed incorrectly I needed to be involved in order to protest, so I took no action. 

 

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