newbie

Discussions on race planning, preparations and how to run a "fair" and fun race.
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jvandyke
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newbie

Post by jvandyke » Wed Mar 13, 2013 6:51 pm

Our club is hosting a race for the first time. We bought a new 4 lane track, a Champ time, Grand Prix Race Manager software. I took over the planning. I have the software running and the timer hooked up for testing. I've created a .cvs file of racers and I've imported it and played around. I'm very confused by the different methods of scheduling. (I'm pretty sure I found and read the bulk of resources so I know the background). I think Perfect N is the way to go.
We group our kids in to 4 groups. So far it looks like I have 26, 8, 7, 9 but I'm waiting on 4 more clubs to report in. It will probably end up looking like 40, 18, 17, 19.
We traditionally award 1st, 2nd 3rd place or each age group.
I anticipate a Perfect N but run group by group but I'm not wrapping my head around how the software will score it all.
Maybe I should do 4 unique rosters, one for each group and just "start over" before the next group begins?
We thought we could do it by having each car run 3x (not once/lane for the sake of time). Average those times (or total) and voila.
Doesn't seem to be quite that simple though.
I'm not opposed to running each car 4x if it makes my life easier! I'm worried about how long it will take to run the larger group though. I'm committed to really having this thought out to maximize efficiency. We're having a test run Friday night, play around a bit Saturday and Monday night is go time.
I'm worried if 40 racers run in a group, each car 4 runs it will push an hour until their done. That's probably too long.



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gpraceman
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Re: newbie

Post by gpraceman » Wed Mar 13, 2013 9:21 pm

jvandyke wrote:I anticipate a Perfect N but run group by group but I'm not wrapping my head around how the software will score it all.
Scoring is by whatever you have selected in the Software Options screen, under the Standings tab.
jvandyke wrote:Maybe I should do 4 unique rosters, one for each group and just "start over" before the next group begins?
Not sure what you mean by start over. Just run each group's schedule and move onto the next group or you can use the master schedule option which will just alternate which group is currently racing.
jvandyke wrote:I'm not opposed to running each car 4x if it makes my life easier!
Yes, it will.
jvandyke wrote:I'm worried about how long it will take to run the larger group though. ... I'm worried if 40 racers run in a group, each car 4 runs it will push an hour until their done.
40 cars running once per lane with Perfect-N type scheduling will give you 40 heats. If your race crew can keep the cars flowing to the start gate, you can do a heat every 45 seconds or less. That is assuming that the race crew is handling the cars, not the racers.

Here's some things that will help you churn out the heats:

1) Print out the race schedules once they are created and give to the race crew. Your race crew should go off the printout, not what is going on on the projection screen, as it does not always show the on deck listing.
2) Cars must be clearly labeled with their car number. We always put the car numbers on top of the car, on the front end. Some cars it is hard to tell which end is front, so that is important so it gets loaded to the track properly.
3) Each car needs its own labeled "parking spot" on the staging table.
4) After each heat, the cars need to be returned to their parking spot, so they can easily be found for their next heat.
5) Have a set of trays to carry the cars back and forth. These should be labeled with the lane number/color. We use 3 trays (one has the next set of cars, one to retrieve cars and one is loading cars to the track).
6) The staging crew loads a tray with the next heat, putting the cars in the appropriate lane position.

We usually, have two people working on getting cars staged. One person is tasked with putting returning cars in their parking spot. One person at the start gate. One or two runners to retrieve cars. A good crew can stage multiple heats ahead.


Randy Lisano
Romans 5:8

Awana Grand Prix and Pinewood Derby racing - Where a child, an adult and a small block of wood combine for a lot of fun and memories.

jvandyke
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Re: newbie

Post by jvandyke » Wed Mar 13, 2013 10:34 pm

Okay, that's pretty much how I had it in my head. One group has not yet reported in with racers and car numbers. I'm worried they think they can just show up and we'll fix it on the fly, which I understand you can add racers easy enough but then my printed schedule is garbage. I will either have to lean on them for info or have a means of printing. By "start over" I meant have a roster of just each group and reload the software each time. I'm sure I'll figure it out. I'm seeing that doing it well requires a lot of forethought which I'm putt'n in, but experience can only be had "in the field" I hope that works out! With our huge investment in time and materials I've recommended we host way more then the every 5 year rotation that has been suggested. I'd rather do it every year to be honest. I love it!!!!
Probably won't do a finish camera but projecting the computer screen is feasible. All previous years it has been cars running and kids milling about and no one really knows what's happening until the end. I think we can do better and make if more fun and interesting for the kids.



jvandyke
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Re: newbie

Post by jvandyke » Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:04 pm

I'm a little scared by the number of racers at our first hosting.
Junior class is 55 racers. Yikes.
5th 18
6th 19
7/8th 20
Open Class?


All we can do is stage efficiently and run them fast.



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