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Saved by Cautions

Discussion in 'iRacing' started by Willie Watt, Aug 5, 2011.

  1. Silverado at Pocono

    I joined the 12:45 GMT race last night with a quali time of 59.3 – not that fast, but good enough for fourth on the grid. It’s a shortish race at 50 laps and it takes about 10 laps on my set up to get the NTM tyres bedded in and gripping properly through 1 & 2 which are the riskiest turns on my set once you put the power down on exit. Until the tyres come in properly, I tend not to fight for positions off the start. Dropped from fourth to sixth in the first few laps and was running comfortably on the pace of the 2[SUP]nd[/SUP] pack ( by this time the leaders who were running in the 58’s were already building a lead so I was running in a pack of four). Mid –low 59’s.

    On lap 12 I’d made a good move along the front straight and was inside and alongside 5[SUP]th[/SUP] place. He must have had a wobble because I got a sideswipe, caught the slide, but too late to avoid running onto the grass almost held it off of the inside barriers but damaged the front of the car and got a meatball. No caution! Drove back to the pit for repairs 1min 30 of required and rejoined whilst still under green, two laps down. 2 laps later there was the first caution of the race. The field pitted, I’d decided to stay out as I had changed rights at my repair stop. Got the wave around with 1 to go, 1 lap down only now. I still had good pace through the turns but down on straight line speed to I was about 1 sec down on the pace. Without another caution, I’d be stuck a lap down.my chance came 10 laps later stayed out again as the field pitted got the wave around again now at the back of the line, sitting 14[SUP]th[/SUP] as there had been a few drop-outs. Now on the lead lap, another caution moved me to 9[SUP]th[/SUP] on new tyres which I’d not had for the last 20 laps since I pitted for repairs.

    Was running 8[SUP]th[/SUP] going into the last 2 laps and was having a good fight with 9[SUP]th[/SUP]. He was just about to pass me as the final caution came out. Finished 8[SUP]th[/SUP] on the lead lap from 2 laps down. Result
  2. Cautions are they just for oval class C and above? i have had no cautions yet in what i have done
  3. that is correct Nick
  4. Ha! I love race stories =). Well done, not only on the recap, but not giving up on the race. Many would have cried foul on the no caution, mucked up later, or quit altogether. You kept your head in the game and recouped 2 (!) laps in a 50 lap event, gaining, what, 6 positions? Bravo, sir, I applaud you. =D
  5. OK another question as being a brit oval racing is not really in our blood so to speak. how come some people get waved by? i thought it was to allow back markers through to unlap but if this was the case i was never waved through. Sorry for what may seem dumb questions to you
  6. Umm...never waived through? I thought your original post said you were waved around on both cautions? I'm slightly confused...

    But to answer your question, NASCAR implemented a number of rules to address competition and safety issues. The wave around came about because, in the past, those back markers that were trapped in front of the leaders on cautions would take the green flag where they sat, i.e. in front of the leaders. You can imagine the issues caused by poor and/or damaged cars who were 2+ seconds off the pace starting in front of the fastest guys on the track. So recently, NASCAR instilled the wave around rule, where these guys were allowed to esentially get back their lap and start in the back of the pack. The back markers are happy about getting back their lap, the leaders are happy with a clear track, win-win.

    I know you didn't ask, but to bring your Colonial track racing up to snuff... :wink: .... the Lucky Dog was a safety issue. Back in the day, when the caution waved, the leaders were still to race back to the start/finish line. Cars that had just been lapped had to race the leaders for their lap back. Sometimes strategy played a part and leaders would lift, allowing the lapped cars to pass them and thereby make friends and alliances. But with a string of deaths, most notably Adam Petty and Dale Earnhardt Sr, this was abolished. Nowadays, cautions freeze the field as soon as they come out. This eliminates the need to race back to the line and allows guys to back off the throttle immediately, which allows the safety brigade to enter the track without delay and tend to a wrecked racer, whereas before they'd have to wait several seconds to minutes before it was safe to go out. To somewhat keep the tradition of that lead lap fight, the Lucky Dog was created so a car who had just been lapped would still have to fight to stay the first car a lap down, but said fight would now happen during the safety of a clear, open track.

    Hope that helps. Feel free to ask more, I'm not necessarily an Oval encyclopedia, but I do have a serious NASCAR addiction and will never complain about discussing racing. :D
  7. Wow Carl awesome reply. very informative i appreciate it. I did not make the forst post about wave throughs :)

    I was in a race today and a lap down from the leaders but i didnt get a wave through where others did i couldnt understand it.

    Im happy to hear about oval stuff however as im really getting into it now :)
  8. Bah, I don't know how I muffed up your identities. Sorry!

    But anyway....I'm not sure how iRacing implements the rules (I'm only "D" Oval, no cautions) and I also don't know the circumstances of your situation. Maybe if I detail the rule, it'll shed light on what might have happened...

    When a caution waves, the field freezes and cars line up behind the pace car. As the paced field approaches the pit entrance, pit lane is open to Lead Lap Cars ONLY. If the leaders come in, all the cars a lap down, the cars who pit just before the caution and the cars who were caught in the pit when the caution waved, move up and occupy the spots where the lead lap cars were. When the lead lap cars exit the pits, they're now behind all these people.
    On the second caution lap, pit lane opens for the rest of the field. While some of these cars may be forced to pit for tires/low fuel, those who got caught in the pits during the caution obviously won't pit because they're fresh. If the tires and fuel are marginal on the rest of the lapped cars, these cars can make a strategy decision to stay on old tires and hope for another quick caution. In any case, all these cars who do not pit on the second pit opportunity, and are thereby still in front of the leader, get the wave around. It helps the guys who effectively got screwed by being in the pits when the caution flew, and also opens up strategy games for the guys on old tires. Cautions breed cautions, to quote the Great Darryl Waltrip, and staying out on bunk tires to get a lap back will pay dividends if another cautions flies soon after the current one.

    So, the only way I can currently see how you wouldn't have gotten the wave around is if you had pitted. If you pitted, you would obviously not be in front of the leader, so the wave around rule wouldn't apply. Only by staying out can you reap the rewards. And like I said, the strategy is interesting. Some might think it's suicide to stay out on 60% tires, but if you take that gamble and another caution waves within 10 laps of the green, then you just won the gamble, got your lap back with the wave around, and can now pit, get fresh rubber and a full tank of Sonoco racing fuel.

    Hope that helps. If not and it matters that much to you, explain what happened and I'll see if I can figure out what went wrong.
  9. In addition to what Carl said, of if anyone ahead of you ontrack and on the lead lap does not pit, you will start where you are.

    If there are 8 cars in the race, you are P8 1 lap down and the top 7 cars are on the lead lap and pit, you get waved around and start at the back on the lead lap.

    If any one of those top 7 cars on the lead lap does not pit, it will be him, then you, then the cars that pitted (assuming you didn't pit). You are still one lap down (depending on session settings, you could be placed at the back of the field - there is a setting for putting all lap-down cars at the back).
  10. Thanks Carl and Eric it all makes perfect sense now, thanks both of you for your time explaining this i would never have just worked it out