multiple lane "shutoff" for GPRM

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pack529holycross
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multiple lane "shutoff" for GPRM

Post by pack529holycross » Wed Mar 10, 2010 1:23 pm

As we prepare for our first Event that will include Trucks and Big Rigs, there is a concern that we might have adjacent lane interference due to the size of these guys.

Is it possible to "shut off" every other lane so that there is an empty lane between competitors that are racing in that division?

Thank you for the consideration

Nicholas



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Re: multiple lane "shutoff" for GPRM

Post by gpraceman » Wed Mar 10, 2010 2:17 pm

You can in GPRM, but depending on your timer, it may or may not support "lane masking". If the timer supports lane masking, then GPRM will tell the timer which lanes to ignore for the current heat. If the timer does not support lane masking, then you may be able to get the timer to ignore the lane by covering the sensors of the unused lanes. For some timers, that trick will not work. Other timers, like The Judge and RaceMaster IV do not support lane masking, but due to the nature of how they send the results (as each lane finishes instead of after the last car finishes) the software will know that the heat is over and will display the results.

You can view the Timer Compatibility Matrix to see what GPRM features the different timers support.


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Re: multiple lane "shutoff" for GPRM

Post by pack529holycross » Thu Feb 03, 2011 9:33 am

I am looking at the CHAMP timer system available through BESTTRACK only really because its one of the few 8 lane timer units, and has dual display... on your matrix the following feature is shown as not available with that timer


Indicate Timing Started - Timer provides some indication that it has detected the start switch (or laser gate) signal and has commenced timing. GrandPrix Race Manager can then give you a green Start indication while in the Racing screen.

I don't remember with our k3 if there shows a green indicator... is that the same portion of the racing screen that glows yellow when the software is ready to start the race?

Are there any pluses or minuses regarding a switch from microwizard to CHAMP?



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Re: multiple lane "shutoff" for GPRM

Post by gpraceman » Thu Feb 03, 2011 9:54 am

pack529holycross wrote:on your matrix the following feature is shown as not available with that timer

Indicate Timing Started - Timer provides some indication that it has detected the start switch (or laser gate) signal and has commenced timing. GrandPrix Race Manager can then give you a green Start indication while in the Racing screen.

I don't remember with our k3 if there shows a green indicator... is that the same portion of the racing screen that glows yellow when the software is ready to start the race?
Yes, the area that turns yellow indicating that the software is "Ready" will turn green for any timer that supports the "Indicate Timing Started" feature in GPRM. The newest Fast Track timers support that (ones that time out to 0.0001 seconds), but SmartLine/The Champ timers do not. If using our RaceReplay software, having that heat start indication significantly reduces the amount of hard drive space needed for video clips. Even if not using RaceReplay, the timer start indication can help visually confirm that the start gate switch/sensor is operating as it should.
pack529holycross wrote:I am looking at the CHAMP timer system available through BESTTRACK only really because its one of the few 8 lane timer units, and has dual display...
All that I can say for an 8 lane track is UGH! IMO, anything over 4 lanes is a waste of money as it is harder to store, harder to setup, harder to transport, takes longer to pre-stage/stage/retrieve all the extra cars, and limits your choices of scheduling methods. Also, from the racer's standpoint, it feels worse to be in the bottom half of racers in a heat on an 8 lane track than it does on a 4 lane track. If you haven't already bought the track, I would really reconsider.

Also, I believe that you have used Perfect-N type schedules for your races. That scheduling method is not available for tracks over 6 lanes.
pack529holycross wrote:Are there any pluses or minuses regarding a switch from microwizard to CHAMP?
Our timer compatibility matrix pretty much sums it up.


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Re: multiple lane "shutoff" for GPRM

Post by pack529holycross » Thu Feb 03, 2011 10:07 am

we are working through coming up with ways to increase the number of races for each racer... my original thought was to mask the outside lanes, use the inside 4 lanes, and run twice per lane, for 8 runs each. Some leaders have it in their mind that two runs per lane is twice as long as one run, even though I explained its only two extra races per car... so I didn't push the point. The only other consideration for future expansion is that in a District or Council Race setting, which we do yearly, it increases the visual impact of the event.

I know this somewhat changes the thread, but what would be some suggestions regarding increasing the amount of racing each kid could gain? I have read some of the information on dynamic scheduling, but still have not wrapped my head around the way it logistically works during the event.



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Re: multiple lane "shutoff" for GPRM

Post by gpraceman » Thu Feb 03, 2011 10:33 am

pack529holycross wrote:The only other consideration for future expansion is that in a District or Council Race setting, which we do yearly, it increases the visual impact of the event.
That's a pretty small pro among a bunch of cons.
pack529holycross wrote:I have read some of the information on dynamic scheduling, but still have not wrapped my head around the way it logistically works during the event.
A dynamic schedule ends up being a slower race as opposed to a "static" scheduling method, like Perfect-N type and Lane Rotation. You build the schedule as each phase completes (one run down the track for all racers) as opposed to having your entire schedule created before you start racing. So, you have to stop, generate the next part of the schedule, print it out (if you wish to do so), and then resume racing. It is not a scheduling method that I would recommend for the scale of a district or council race.


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Re: multiple lane "shutoff" for GPRM

Post by dna1990 » Thu Feb 03, 2011 12:55 pm

Randy may correct me, but I have defined Dynamic Scheduling in my mind - as an 'active' or learning schedule. Where the schedule lineup for heat n is based on results from heats 1 thru n-1. So that faster cars are detected and scheduled differently that slower cars.

The word Dynamic is more about the 'results', and is not towards human dynamic decisions - as in "I the race starter will freely determine who races next". The software is still deciding, and it uses old results to help influence the mix - rather than knowing the whole predefined chart beforehand.


I too am not sure how running X number of cars on 4 lanes one time, will not take that same amount of time to run the same X cars down the same 4 lanes again. Did you mean running four lanes, out of six available, or something like that?

When you make a schedule in GPRM (assuming PPN) it will ask how many times do you want each car to race...pick 2 - and you have it. Or when you say you would like more races, you can't say for sure how much time will be left and you need that number of times to be abit more flexible?

Is more races per car desired to help better ennsure the winner is the fastest car, or just to allow kids more track time and to see their hard work in action? If the latter, can you just form a line and let everyone races for fun? We do that at the pack level after the main event, it is probably 2x more fun to the boys and they pick their competitors, run the car backwards, hold cars back for handicapping - learning and fun. If for council, I understand such free format would be out of the question (although ours usually sets up an extra play track in the middle with no timer at all for testing/fun/play).

2 cents strewn about.



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Re: multiple lane "shutoff" for GPRM

Post by gpraceman » Thu Feb 03, 2011 1:16 pm

:offtopic:
dna1990 wrote:Randy may correct me, but I have defined Dynamic Scheduling in my mind - as an 'active' or learning schedule. Where the schedule lineup for heat n is based on results from heats 1 thru n-1. So that faster cars are detected and scheduled differently that slower cars.
Every car in the group will get one run down the track, a "phase" as the software calls it. The first phase, racers draw a random heat and lane. Each subsequent phase will base the match-ups on 1) how many heats a racer has won and 2) how many total points a racer has accumulated, based on finish order. The whole goal of the method is to maximize the total number of heat winners. It does get faster cars racing faster cars and slower against slower, so heats get tighter and tighter.
dna1990 wrote:I too am not sure how running X number of cars on 4 lanes one time, will not take that same amount of time to run the same X cars down the same 4 lanes again. Did you mean running four lanes, out of six available, or something like that?
This thread was originally about disabling some lanes of the track, due to the width of the big rigs, so they do not interfere with each other.
dna1990 wrote:When you make a schedule in GPRM (assuming PPN) it will ask how many times do you want each car to race...pick 2 - and you have it. Or when you say you would like more races, you can't say for sure how much time will be left and you need that number of times to be abit more flexible?
How much racing you give each racer is a matter of your time constraints. I recommend maximizing the number of runs per lane for each racer, when running a "static" schedule, like Perfect-N type and Lane Rotation. Being a static schedule, you need to make that decision up front, as you cannot just stop any old place on the schedule, as some racers may have run more than others.
dna1990 wrote:Is more races per car desired to help better ennsure the winner is the fastest car, or just to allow kids more track time and to see their hard work in action?
If scoring by points, the more racing you can squeeze in, the fewer ties you will have to deal with. If scoring by times, it is just more racing for the kids.
dna1990 wrote:If the latter, can you just form a line and let everyone races for fun? We do that at the pack level after the main event, it is probably 2x more fun to the boys and they pick their competitors, run the car backwards, hold cars back for handicapping - learning and fun.
You can if you wish. You can select the "Test / Tiebreak" as the group to race. No results will be recorded, though.

If you guys have more questions unrelated to disabling track lanes in GPRM, please start a new thread.


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Re: multiple lane "shutoff" for GPRM

Post by pack529holycross » Thu Feb 03, 2011 1:18 pm

to clarify :)

we have a 6 lane track, and the year I scheduled two per lane, or 12 total per kid.. the parents nearly revolted for the length of the event...

my thought was a compromise...

once down 6 lanes is 6 races / 6 to 36 points possible at end of round / X number of potential point ties at the end of the round.

TWICE down 4 lanes is 8 races / 8 to 64 points possible / a (potential?) reduction in the number of ties amongst points and adding more racing in a (relatively) reasonable amount of extra event time.



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Re: multiple lane "shutoff" for GPRM

Post by Husker » Sun Mar 20, 2011 2:03 pm

pack529holycross wrote:TWICE down 4 lanes is 8 races / 8 to 64 points possible / a (potential?) reduction in the number of ties amongst points and adding more racing in a (relatively) reasonable amount of extra event time.
Assuming the the number of cars is greater than or equal to the number of lanes, this will double the number of races. The number of heats in a round is equal to the number of cars.


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