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DE Passing Etiquette & New "Advanced" Drivers

 
Old 07-01-2004, 11:39 AM
  #61  
mitch236
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I like the idea of continuing education. I also like the idea of letting anyone behind you pass.

Do you guys notice that if you wave off a pass from some folks (for reason of not feeling that the pass can be accomplished at that point) you never get another one? That is sooo frustrating.

I think I am going to suggest a "proper passing technique" session for all students to our region. Not just a glossed over "stay on line" type that's now being taught.
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Old 07-01-2004, 01:37 PM
  #62  
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Yes Mitch;

Being the guy that is always working his tailpipe off to try and get by these people, it is particularly frustrating when someone takes a situational wave off as a signal that you NEVER want to pass. You practically have to punt them in order to make them understand it was a one-time-only offer... and that they are still SLOW and IN THE WAY!!!

If everyone gives a signal to every car that is behind them, such maladies never occur. If the car behind knows the car in front has been held up, or that they have not otherwise earned the pass, they should give a wave off. The trick is getting full compliance to BOTH halves of the rule.
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Old 07-01-2004, 01:38 PM
  #63  
M758
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This post is a little different, but on a similar idea.

I took my little 2600 lbs as raced, 131 rhp 944 to Las vegas for the PCA Club race there. Being prepped to 944-spec forces me into PCA GT4S. The way the classes were divided GT4S was the slowest class in the fast group. Considering that my car has no chance in class it was going to be interesting.

Well with the top cars (Modded GT3 Cups, GTC3 Cups, GT3RS, etc) in the group run 15-20 seconds faster per lap I did alot of looking the mirrors and gave alot of point bys in the practice. One thing I wanted to do was to let them know that I knew they were there and what I was going to do to let them by. Seemed to work as most folks learned this during the weekend and never hassled me. Funny thing was that I did not hold them up that much in the corners, but was very keen on pointing by when the road straightned out. I typically held my line and point them by at track out.

No point bys are needed in racing, but again given the slow speed I could muster I wanted the others to know I was not going to try to mess with them. Overall it really seemed to work as very few forced passes were made. Most guys waited until the right time and drove off in the distance.

A couple times in the race I would franticly point by multiple cars especially cars racing for position. No need to get in between a position fight if I can avoid it.
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Old 07-04-2004, 10:18 PM
  #64  
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Originally posted by Z-man
1. Point-by's in the corner: what's the difference if I give a point by in the corner or at the track out cone? Perhaps the car behind me will be able to get ahead of me a few meters earlier. But most passing zones are sufficiently long enough to not have to worry about a few meters! (The only really tight passing zone I can think of is the 'chute' between Big Bend and the Left Hander at Lime Rock). My point is this: it is far safer to give a point-by at track out rather than at the apex. Will this 'upset' the following car's momentum? Not if the cars are familiar with each other! Most people I run with know how I drive, what to expect of me, and they will certainly get a point by at the soonest (and safest) time if they come up behind me. As said before, in DE, it's safety first. It is far safer to signal after the apex (or signal before the turn and after as well).
Z:

I completely disagree. I think a "point-by before the trackout" is a valuable skill that all upper run group drivers should be able to use.

In DE we accept that the slower car stays online and the faster car goes off-line to perform the pass. This is because if the pass is not completed before turn-in, the faster car should be able to take the turn off-line at equal or greater speed than the slower car.

Well the same idea exists for tracking out. A faster car should be able to exit a turn, without fully tracking out, at a same or faster speed than a slower car.

A good example of this is the Downhill at Lime Rock. If I have a faster car behind me I don't see a problem with giving a right-side point by as we go under the bridge. The faster car can't pass me before the Downhill (It's not a passing zone, and we're too close to the turnin). Then he can choose to fully trackout and then pass me, or not fully trackout and pass me on the fly. If I don't give the signal before trackout, he can not make that decision.

Also, whenever you cross the track during a passing zone, I think it's a good idea to give very early (pre-trackout) signals. At the Heel at WG, I frequently give a Left signal in the braking zone. The faster car is not going to pass me on the left (in the grass). I then don't fully trackout of the Heel, and the faster car can fully trackout and get a good pass (in a relatively short passing zone). If instead I do as you suggest, I fully trackout, then start to get to the right and THEN give a left signal, we're half way up the hill to the uphill-offcamber and the pass is very difficult if not impossible.

A similar example at WG is a Left signal in the Carousel with the pass being completed before the Laces.

JD, #177
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Old 07-04-2004, 11:30 PM
  #65  
Pete Debusmann
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JD

For what it's worth the downhill at Limerock is a passing zone for the Red run group in Schattenbaum. I have passed cars there as well as given the pass there.

Pete
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Old 07-05-2004, 09:37 AM
  #66  
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JD,

The corners at WG you describe talk about early vs late passing signals. On the heel, an early pass is taken on the right (as is the carousel) and a late pass is taken on the left (as is the carousel) The car being passed should not be required to move off line, he can if he chooses, but it is the responsibility of the passing car to complete the pass safely.
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Old 07-05-2004, 10:47 AM
  #67  
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Jimbo -
Having just gotten back from Pocono DE, I can somewhat see your point.

The fact was that I was able to give a point-by as I was approaching the trackout point. I'm running in black with a slower car compared to some of the other cars out there. (Pesky cup cars! ) Anyway, the fact is that most folks in my run group are by now familiar with my car, and will be expecting their point-by. So I am not slowing them down any by waiting a few meters after the apex to give them the pass.

IMHO, all this is relative to the cars involved, the track, the corners and the drivers. There are no absolutes when it comes to the best methods for point-bys.
-Z.
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Old 07-05-2004, 11:08 AM
  #68  
Bill Gregory
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I think a "point-by before the trackout" is a valuable skill that all upper run group drivers should be able to use.
I much prefer a passing signal when the pass should be executed - as it's clear to both drivers what's available (left or right, now). Giving the signal before a turn allows for something to happen (didn't take the corner well or whatever) prior to the other car making the pass. You shouldn't assume that because a pass isn't allowed, that by giving it early, that someone won't take it. Unfortunately I've seen drivers give passing signals, and being passed, in zones that weren't available to them.

Also, if the track officials are watching for passing signals (coming out of the downhill at LR, for example), a signal prior to the turn won't be picked up, and the overtaking car may be black flagged.
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Old 07-05-2004, 11:54 AM
  #69  
Skip Wolfe
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Originally posted by Z-man
...Anyway, the fact is that most folks in my run group are by now familiar with my car, and will be expecting their point-by. So I am not slowing them down any by waiting a few meters after the apex to give them the pass...
That's a good point Z. I find that it is pretty easy to learn who is going to let you by easily and who is going be difficult. So if I know the car in front of me always lets me by, then I go ahead and take the turn offline if needed to get setup for the pass, so when I receive the signal at track out, I am already in position and can pass without really missing a beat. And for those who don't - I live with it and take the oppurtunity to play a bit - take a turn offline, play with trying variations of a line, etc. And then if they go a lap and still don't let me by, then I stoop to filling their mirrors which usually helps them get the point.
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Old 07-05-2004, 12:43 PM
  #70  
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Hey Gents;

Of course we could go on and on about passing as it pertains to VERY SPECIFIC SCENARIOS at SPECIFIC LOCATIONS at SPECIFIC TRACKS. The point of my bringing this all up was to highlight the need for new advanced group drivers to get with their new program and give early signals to ANYONE, especially if they happened to be just a windshield and a pair of beady eyes in their mirrors. Being held up by inattentiveness or old intermediate skill sets in advanced groups SHOULD NOT HAPPEN. Not for long anyway.

ALL drivers regardless of run group should be encouraged to give signals at the earliest moment they feel comfortable.

- It is not fair nor necessary for a more powerful car to Signal and Squirt for turns-on-end while a faster driver fumes behind them, at a snail's pace in the turns.

- It would not be fair or necessary for - say, my car - to wait until the absolute track out point on the back straight at WGI to let a Cup Car pass. I stay left passing the apex in 3, move over 1 car width going over the bridge and let them go WELL BEFORE sight of the flag station. When faster drivers grow accustomed to my style, they do indeed appreciate it!

At the stage we should be at as advanced drivers, I am going to default to giving the earliest signal I can EVERYWHERE. It is then up to the passer to do it right, or opt out of a pass if it seems imprudent to him. The only skill required by the passee is to decide if it will be a left or right pass, early or late, and then to make sure he is settled and in control for the pass he is allowing. It is then up to the passer to do his deal effectively and within protocol.

You may often find times when a car will be held up in mid turn. This is to be expected and dealt with in an adult fashion. But, there is no reason why a faster car should be held up unnecessarily (or ignored!) exiting a corner. That is the fault of the passee, and that person needs to first be aware that he is holding people up, and perhaps being rude, and then take steps to correct this problem and make himself a good addition to the advanced group.

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Old 07-05-2004, 02:07 PM
  #71  
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Originally posted by Z-man
Anyway, the fact is that most folks in my run group are by now familiar with my car, and will be expecting their point-by.
You need to do some non-NNJR events. When me & BrianP did Summit with Potomac earlier this year (and also at Zone 2 VIR), it was very confusing since I didn't know any of the cars or drivers. You shouldn't assume the driver behind you knows your habits.

RedlineMan: Agree completely. Give earlier signals everywhere.

One thing I think has been missed in this thread is giving late passes. Less-skilled/lower-HP drivers think they are driving 10/10th of a corner. They don't realize that more-skilled/faster driver can take corners faster than they think is possible. By not giving a late pass signal, they are holding up the faster car unneccarily. If the faster car can't make the pass, he then has the option of waving the pass off. Without a signal, he has no options.

- RedDogger, #177 (Should have been RD, not JD)
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Old 07-05-2004, 02:38 PM
  #72  
RedlineMan
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True Jimbo;

There are a lot of other issues involved with passing that we could get into other than timeliness of signalling, but that is the MAJOR and PERVASIVELY UNIVERSAL issue, and one that does not need to exist if everyone buckles down and does what they should.

Late passing is something we all do and know about, even if it is "not supposed to happen." I have no problem with it at all as long as everyone has their chops. It gets the fast guys going and the "slow" guys rid of them! It's fun too!!

Just another aspect of advanced driving. That is why I take generic novice passing scenarios as an opportunity to teach ALL of my students the proper mechanics and etiquette of late passing right from the start. When they get to intermediate and advanced, they already know how!

Start 'em out right when theyz young, fellers!
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Old 07-05-2004, 03:09 PM
  #73  
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Having also been at Pocono, I noticed one thing that courteous drivers do and the not so courteous don't.... A courteous driver will make sure that the passing signal comes in time so that the passer doesn't have to lift. Maybe the higher HP cars don't mind it as much, but if you are driving a momentum car and you have to lift waiting for the pass signal... well, that's when things get frustrating.

In that regards, I don't mind waiting for a pass signal until track out if I don't have to lift. If the passee knows that he's under the limit and can give that signal earlier so that I can adjust my line and carry my momentum, then I'm extremely happy. Also, the passee is likely to be happier too. If I have to lift, my momentum is shot, and the passee will likely have to go down the following straight at half throttle if he wants me to get by him. If I could have carried my momentum, it's possible that we both could have been at full throttle.

I suspect this might be why "momentum" drivers might be seen as a bit aggressive. I'm going to try to carry my speed until the last available opportunity. Basically, I'll give the passee every chance to signal and I'll try to carry my speed so that the pass happens quickly. If that signal doesn't come, it'll look like I'm racing right up onto the guy's back bumper.
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Old 07-05-2004, 03:24 PM
  #74  
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One other thing. I suspect that the original reason that John started this thread had VERY LITTLE to do with whether a pass signal came at track out or at the apex. I suspect it had a lot to do with the fact that a pass signal never came at all. It didn't come at track out on the guys who were caught in the corner, and it didn't come on the straights on people he caught because he was coming out of the corners much faster and therefore carrying more speed.
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Old 07-05-2004, 07:25 PM
  #75  
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Well, Brian;

Actually it WAS about the timeliness of the signal. I see it as only fair, right, and necessary for an advanced driver to be able to give an early signal.

As for the guys who DON'T signal, if it were up to me they would be black flagged, sat still, talked to, and then sent out to correct their communally inappropriate behavior. If it happened again, they would be sent out with the explicit understanding that they would be watched VERY CLOSELY, and if they did it again, they'd be invited to leave, and be back in intermediate the next time.

Guys who are in people's way like that get stuffed in the fence in SCCA. Boy... if only...

So I'm a little PO'd at the moment?! Not at you guys, or about this topic. I just have a hard time with mediocrity and ignorance. I just don't think we should have to default to that low a common denominator in advanced. I want everyone to strive for better, and it seems there needs to be some energy spent in training new advanced drivers, or retraining old ones!

Signal here, signal there, signal everywhere!
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