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Shawn

Event 2 - May 12, 2018

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Great course on Saturday. You will see from the videos that I made lots of little mistakes that probably cost me a few tenths. Some cones I was nice and close to, others...not so much.

Inside the car

 

Outside the car

 

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Wow, I loved this course!  It gave you room to make errors with few cones on the outside of the corners.  You could go off-line without smashing cones.  Much preferred over tight squeezes end-to-end.  We still need some of those to test your car placement skills, but fewer than we typically have. 

Here's my fastest:

The two chutes were very challenging to see.  Too many cones, with non-parallel walls and uneven spacing.  I just floored it and prayed it would all work out after the 2nd last slalom cone.  

It was a blast working the mic for the rookie heat too!  So many pumped people and huge improvements through the day!  I'm sure I got some of your names wrong, sorry.  Just come let me know (before or during) if I butcher your name.  Max I. was able to teach me how to say his name (close enough?), so the rest should be no problem!  

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Great event! Corey, you almost did that! Next level - multi language broadcasting!   

There you go, a picture of the "slowest" car! 
 

^FDA3C079C0C224FB758CAB00BA963ABC6D2F4EFCFF40B2F1F5^pimgpsh_fullsize_distr.jpg

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2 hours ago, Corey said:

Wow, I loved this course!  It gave you room to make errors with few cones on the outside of the corners.  You could go off-line without smashing cones.  Much preferred over tight squeezes end-to-end.  We still need some of those to test your car placement skills, but fewer than we typically have. 

Here's my fastest:

The two chutes were very challenging to see.  Too many cones, with non-parallel walls and uneven spacing.  I just floored it and prayed it would all work out after the 2nd last slalom cone.  

It was a blast working the mic for the rookie heat too!  So many pumped people and huge improvements through the day!  I'm sure I got some of your names wrong, sorry.  Just come let me know (before or during) if I butcher your name.  Max I. was able to teach me how to say his name (close enough?), so the rest should be no problem!  

I am so glad it worked out okay on Saturday, the non-parallel walls was something I decided to add to the course hoping it helps guide the driver to go a tighter line heading back south before the slalom & the double-double gates before the finish. As you said, the visual of these wall going North isn't great, I wish I have more time to tune that one up as well but my body say no as I leave the track on Friday.

Can you expand on what do you mean by "It gave you room to make errors with few cones on the outside of the corners." I am not sure if I understand totally but it certainly sounds like something I want to keep in mind for future course design.

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21 hours ago, helix said:

Can you expand on what do you mean by "It gave you room to make errors with few cones on the outside of the corners." I am not sure if I understand totally but it certainly sounds like something I want to keep in mind for future course design.

Hard to do in text, but I'll give it a shot.  Disclaimer #1: If you're not a course design nerd, just skip all this.  

Disclaimer #2: Please don't take this as criticism or complaining!  I hugely respect the effort, skill, and artistry it takes to make a good course that makes most people happy.  This is meant as my personal wish list based on what I've experienced and loved about other courses.  I tried to do this when I was course designer even though I rarely achieved it.  

Here's an example of what is not fun and leads to many cones being hit:  If someone were to design an entire course consisting only of 2-cone pinches, where you had to enter at a precise angle, squeeze between the two cones, and then set up for the next 2-cone pinch, that would be very demanding and have many cones hit as there is very little line selection.  Similar is a corner with a restricted exit, i.e. a wall of cones that pinch off the exit.  

An example of a fun course with few cones being hit: Saturday's course.  Aside from the  wall right off the start and the chutes near the North, there's nothing to hit if you go 5-10' wide of the racing line.  The line is set by trying to get to the next section cleanly, not by a wall of cones in your way.  That lets people make mistakes without smashing a bunch of cones.  Interestingly, I think more cones were hit by experienced drivers trying to get close than by new drivers.  

We do still need some of everything to test our abilities (big sweepers, technical stuff you need to squeeze through, etc.), but the general trend in small regions, like ours, is to take huge elements from big SCCA courses and shrink them down to 1/2-scale to fit on the space available.  I know I was definitely guilty of this as a course designer - what was a gloriously fun element on acres of concrete became pretty un-fun when scaled down to fit in our lot.  

Whenever I go to US Nationals, I'm stunned at how much line selection there is, which leads to me struggling to figure out where I want to try to cut distance vs. maintaining speed into the next element.  I don't have the answer, but I'd like to have more line selection at St. Andrews.  

Day 1 from 2017 Nationals: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MLCOC84wWUI  @0:21 - If you swung wide on the exit, it made the next slalom entry dramatically harder, so it was better to end the sweeper on the inside.  There are a few examples of this in the next few corners too.  You can room to go wide without hitting stuff, but it hurt the next turn.  

Day 2 from 2017 Nationals: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mJRAJU8sytM @0:44, I tried to stay tight on the exit through about 0:48.  I thought I was being smart as I was cutting a huge amount of distance, but it was the wrong choice.  Note the amount of OPR (other people's rubber - really mostly seam sealer tar) I'm picking up on the right front tire as few people drove there!  Watching the 2nd place guy's run, he got on the throttle earlier and carried that speed all the way to the next significant corner at 0:54.  As much as I don't like making the mistake, I did like the fact that you had to chose wisely.  

For reference, I did most of those courses in my 2nd gear with occasional shifts to 3rd and even 4th for the finish.  At our recent event I was all over the limiter in 2nd on the first run so I did everything but the hairpins in 3rd and the finish in 4th.  Our average (median? :noidea:) speeds are higher than Nationals, despite how the videos above feel.  

 

 

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On ‎5‎/‎14‎/‎2018 at 8:33 AM, Shawn said:

Great course on Saturday. You will see from the videos that I made lots of little mistakes that probably cost me a few tenths. Some cones I was nice and close to, others...not so much.

Inside the car

 

Outside the car

 

Great videos Shawn!

I liked the "outside" split screen driver/passenger side views showing both sides of the car and how close you were coming to the cones.  The "inside" video was also helpful, showing initiation of steering input relative to distance from cone.  Good learning tool.

I was working grid at Event #2 and noticed a lot of cameras mounted either inside or outside the vehicle. Don't be shy to upload and share these videos.  It gives a completely different perspective from watching the car from the side of the track.

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