Checkpoint Challenge?

So is the Checkpoint Challenge on for NORC 2018?  Will it be sum of absolute value of perfect time differences at Flag 6, Southbound Turnaround, Flag 6, and Flag 3 Finish?  Thanks!

Oh, and Berry, who's idea was it to let Keith Boden run again?  He's too good.  I guess as long as he isn't allowed in the 110 mph class, I'm okay with it.

Tom King
Life Member
Car # 111

Original Post

I like the Checkpoint Challenge element - if there isn't too much going on to make it a part of NORC 2018, I'd like to see Flag 6 be officially timed and incorporated as suggested!

I was proud to run 2nd in 115 - it was a competitive class and with a .001 at the top, pretty cool! I have lots to learn to slowly trim down my variances and having a few extra official timing points is useful data.

 

Ahh, the Checkpoint Challenge. My 2nd favorite part of the NORC & SSCC events.

I've already begged, pleaded, and made my case to the Board (as a whole, and to individual members) why the Checkpoint Challenge is so very important to many ORR veterans who enjoy the additional challenge within the challenge, and find the additional measurement on the course to be very useful.

However, I was told there will not be a Checkpoint Challenge for the 2018 NORC.

Why? I've no clue, as time has to be taken anyway at CP6 (going both South and North), CP9 (Southbound Finish), and CP3 (Northbound Finish). Therefore, there is no logistical reason that I'm aware of for there not to be a Checkpoint Challenge in the two-way configuration.

Perhaps if enough racers were to request it (on here, via the SSCC social media channels on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, as well as direct emails to the Board), maybe they'd change their minds and reinstate Checkpoint Challenge for NORC?

I'll gladly pass along any and all requests made by racers for the Checkpoint Challenge to continue on directly with the powers that be.

Tom, or should I say, "Mr. .0001" - I'm sure you're not afraid of a little friendly competition from anyone in any class at this point, are you?

Berry

Could it be possible that because this is the first time running the two way race, that they wanted to run it for the first time with out the challenge the same as with no unlimited class. I am sure there is a learning curve with the new race. timing and scoring may want to be sure they have the whole race timing done correct before added another challenge for them? I am sure we all want the scoring right.

Berry, thanks for the answer.  I'm actually not a big fan of the Checkpoint Challenge just because the timing results have proven to be extraordinarily difficult to get right, and I commend Timing & Scoring for even attempting it in the one-way format.  So it's fine with me if the CC is out for NORC 2018.  And yes, I am afraid of competition in any class 

Dave, you mean with no UNL class, you guys are going to have to compete on accuracy again?  Should be no problem with that egg timer of yours... 

NOTE - I am speaking about this topic as a competitor ONLY, not in any official capacity. Do not confuse the two. I'm just a racer with an opinion here.

Funny thing about the Checkpoint Challenge (CPC). Even if you are not trying to win the CPC, or could care less about the CPC, if you're trying to win your class, and are playing the long odds, you should be trying to run on time in the CPC. Why? Let me explain.

In the event of a red flag situation on the SSCC one-way course, if you're in between CP6 and CP9 (the Finish Line), and you weren't trying to be on time at CP6, you've likely just lost your class.

Furthermore, if you weren't trying to be on time at CP3, and/or don't have any idea of what time you were at CP3, and you have to restart at CP6, you've probably just lost your class. Why? Because you aren't playing the long game.

Even on the new NORC two-way course, in the event of a red flag, and/or the second leg not happening for any reason, your time at CP6 could be for all the marbles, in either direction.

While some may argue that catching a red flag below CP6 rare, it sometimes does happen, and it can cost you a chance to win the event if you weren't treating each checkpoint as the Finish Line.

Considering you only have two chances per year to race at NORC and SSCC (BBORR and SORC aside), it's a long wait between events to try again.  Unless you're just here for the camaraderie, who isn't actually trying to win? For the competitive set, which includes many of us, yes, you could say CPC matters.

Besides, I can honestly say that running in the CPC makes the race more fun and challenging as both a driver, and a navigator. No matter what class or course configuration you are running in, to be on time at CP6, you have to drive harder to, through, and beyond the narrows, in either direction. It makes you have to work harder, think harder, and drive harder. Beyond just being fun, isn't that what the competitive side of ORR is all about? Work hard, play hard, try to win!

As for any past CPC accuracy issues, I cannot speak to the first running of the CPC in the 2015 NORC, as Dad and I didn't give that one a try at CP6. That said, we have both focused on and competed in every CPC since, with overall pretty accurate results, both together, and separately, in most NORC and SSCC events.

I will tell you this, and while it may sound simple, it is the straight up truth. Knowing where CP3, CP6, and especially CP9 are major factors in winning the NORC and SSCC. Sure, you can only focus on Finish Line(s), but you're truly doing so at your own risk. Take that for what it's worth to you.

It surprises me how many people, especially those who've been running on 318 for a long time, don't actually know, or care, where CP3 and CP6 are. It's more shocking how many don't even know where CP9 is.  It's the SSCC Finish Line!

Look for the beams. Where are they? They are always in the same place at CP3 (30.11), CP6 (57.25), and CP9 (90.00). Their location has been confirmed with SSCC Timing and Scoring. There are even markers on the shoulder. Look for them.

For those of you who only compete at NORC and SSCC, you may not know that you have a huge advantage in your grasp based on the mere existence of time being taken at CP3 and CP6. When we race at BBORR and SORC, they only take time at the Finish Line in each direction. When there is a red flag in the second leg, which sometimes happens, your time at the Finish Line of the first leg is your entire race. When there is a red flag in the first leg, and they have to cancel the second leg due to weather or time constraints, if your class was on course when the red flag came out, you get no time at all, and you go home with nothing. This happened to a bunch of people last year in Texas. The pain is real.

The point is, SSCC is giving you a huge opportunity to get something extra for your money by having times recorded at CP3 and CP6. You are throwing away a potentially golden opportunity if you only focus on the Finish Line(s). My .02.

As an aside, if you're counting on your GPS alone to know where these spots are at speed, good luck. I encourage you to research GPS technology, how it works when you're standing still, and how it works at speed. Without understanding your individual GPS unit, you may not know it, but you're just guessing. Guessing may get you lucky sometimes, but guessing isn't knowing.

As for official timing at the CPC points, if you have questions, ask SSCC Timing and Scoring. They are very nice people, and they do not bite. In fact, they work hard to make sure things go off without a hitch in every NORC & SSCC event.

However, as referenced by others above in this thread, sometimes things happen. I've personally witnessed my own CPC time result at CP6 be way off once before, during the 2016 SSCC. Upon further inquiry, my understanding is there was an intermittent gear malfunction that year, in the CP6 location only, and only on some of the cars. My car just happened to be one of those that took a hit. I was fine with it, even if it knocked me out of the CPC running that race, as I was assured the CP6 equipment that glitched was replaced after that weekend.

I can report that I have seen accurate results in both the 2017 NORC and SSCC events in the CPC. I'd LOVE to claim otherwise for the 2017 SSCC, but in fact, Dad still beat me in CPC no matter how you slice it!  So in my mind, they've got the CP6 glitch sorted out. Could it happen again? It's racing. Anything can happen.

For those of you who claim the CPC isn't accurate at all, aside from the known glitch that happened during the 2016 SSCC at CP6, I've yet to find it off by much. That much is 99.9999% likely my finger. Neither have many other regulars who always compete in CPC. In my mind, it's close, if not spot on. It's better than not.

Also, don't confuse this topic with the Speed Trap radar results that were clearly off (3.8 MPH too high) in the 2017 NORC. That was clearly a radar gun issue, and has nothing to do with official SSCC Timing and Scoring process at checkpoints.

Could it possibly be that some of you may have either never tried CPC and are listening to others opinions, may have given up on CPC too easily, or perhaps you don't know where CP3 or CP6 is? I cannot speak for any of you, nor am I trying to, but I've got ideas based on past race results and/or seeing what you do in your vids.

In all fairness, don't knock CPC if you haven't tried it, and don't always try it. Give Timing and Scoring a chance, or in some cases, another chance. They, like us, are only human. We all only know what we know, and we can only fix the known.

If you want to know how accurate the CPC really is, and how frequently it can be won, ask Ted Zaleski. He's got it on lock!  I'm not kidding. For all the 2nd & 3rd place CPC trophies we Lowman boys have earned, Ted has just about every 1st place CPC trophy SSCC has ever issued. He is truly the master, and we're all working hard to catch up to him in this category!

So, if you don't like the CPC for your own reasons, I get that. It's not for everyone. Heck, this entire sport isn't everyone's cup of tea. However, in my humble opinion, it is something more of you should care about, and should strive to compete in, for an official trophy or not, as the CPC is information, and information is key in the ORR long game. That is something we all benefit from.

CPC or not, I'm getting very excited about the 2018 NORC! How often do you get a shot at being the first to win a class in a new format? I'm hungry. Are y'all?

Yes, this was long. I'm just kinda passionate about this whole timing game.

Great post, Berry!

Here's just a bit of background on what Deven and I are concerned about:

1. There's no way that Deven was 1.2 seconds off at Flag 6 in Sept 2017.  He's never that far off even if it's just going to dinner ;-)

2. My timed video plus my computer readout both indicate that I was within 0.1 second at Flag 6 in Sept 2017, yet the official timing says 2.9821 seconds off.

Yes, there were previously acknowledged timing problems at Flag 3 and Flag 6, but SSCC 2017 was reported to have solved those problems.  I'm not so sure; for me, the jury's out.  I commend the Timing and Scoring people for their incredibly difficult work and for the Board's smart decision not to bite off more than they can chew for this first running of the 2-way event.

BTW, I love what you're doing both as an individual competitor and as a genius marketing guy!  Nice work.

Thanks Tom! I went way long up there, but made my public case for the whole topic.

Yeah, CP6 is quite interesting. It seems to be the most likely place to glitch when it happens. As an aside, it almost seems to happen to those classes deeper in the field versus the top of GS. I wonder why?

My 2016 SSCC CP6 glitch saw me over 5 seconds off at CP6 alone. Tenths maybe I'd buy, but not that side of the decimal point. Again, that was a 110 Class run, not the top of GS. Interesting.

I'm not certain, but that is also the least likely place on course for a consistent cell signal. I believe that could be part of their remote info access setup, yet not sure that would affect the physical recording on the spot. Just a theory.

A move to laser beams versus infared would be nice in the future. They are more accurate in outdoor conditions.

As for the marketing, thank you! I'm working to update a lot of things, and rolling out new grassroots movements, too. This far, we're gained a lot of traction, and brought a lot more eyeballs. Now, to overfill the field!

BTW, I didn't think your box had a weightpoint click at CP6? At least, not the version I know about. Is that a new update for the Vitamix 3000?

As for the Board, I've got them chewing a lot of new bites this year. I'm not trying to be a glutton with wanting CPC. I'll run it as if there is a CPC either way. I'm just making a case for it to continue vs die.

I figure, the more we put the onus on CP6 to perform public numbers, the sooner it will get sorted out for good!

See you in May, Mr. OhOhObi One (Master of the ORR Jedis)!

 

Hey Berry, I'm with you on the Checkpoint Challenge - it's a good thing if it can be handled.  And yes, my magic box does not have a waypoint at Flag 6, but that's because I have a waypoint shortly before Flag 6 with a painstakingly good measurement of the distance from there to Flag 6 - that insures that the Ahead/Behind display is spot on as I go past the checkpoint.  Or maybe 3 seconds off, depending on who's clocking me ;-)

Now you might ask, how did I do the painstaking measurement ahead of time?  Well, my cousin, Jerry Kerwin, and I sat in the M5 supervising while Meme Lozano walked the surveyor's wheel from the waypoint to Flag 6 and back.  Jerry and I would have done it ourselves except it was kind of cold and windy that day.  So Meme, the tri-athlete, was selected to volunteer.  Ah, the sacrifices we make for the sport...

Tom - I know that cold wind quite well, as I've walked a good bit of ol' 318 along with Dad over the years.

Of course, as you also know so well, knowing where to be when, and driving to those magic numbers at just the right instant is the real challenge in this game. Everything else is just pure dumb luck!

Berry is correct! CP3 and CP6 are critical deltas that can be used in the case of a RED FLAGGED sector. Any racer who ignores the importance of CP3 and CP6 will have a bad day in the unlikely red flag drama. We all should use these 2 check points as a race unto itself.

Tom(Mr. 0.0001) and Devon are correct in pointing out the timing errors at CP6. I have experienced the same frustration there. In my 2016 NORC 130 class run timing and scoring showed my CPC variance as 12.0756 secs. The review of my race video timed out at 0.4415 secs. Big difference! In my 2017 SSCC run in the 140 class my preliminary results sheet had me 55 secs fast!! After my protest, timing and scoring changed that to 0.3481. I would like to know how this happened.

Devon is correct, IMO, regarding the North leg finish at CP3. It's a high speed corner. Lanny is correct when he stated that the driver has to drive the car. But what if the driver doesn't? Would recommend highly that all check point personnel stay away from the turn in and apex area of that corner!

And finally, regarding doing a CPC for the 2 leg NORC race coming up. I agree with NOT doing it. Should be run like BBORR. A red flag anywhere on course stops the race with no reforming mid race. BBORR attempts to complete the 1st leg for all cars and if time allows run the 2nd.

 

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