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sperkins

Why mix HPDE 1 & HPDE 2?

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sperkins

Went to my first NASA event this weekend at Barber. Why does NASA mix the HPDE groups like they do. There were HPDE 1 & HPDE 2 cars mixed in 2 different run groups.

 

The first group was:

HPDE 1A & HPDE 2A.

 

The second group was:

HPDE 1B & HPDE 2B.

 

Why not just run 1 & 2 separately to avoid the train? There were a lot of people upset about this as there was a huge difference in speed between some of the cars.

This can't be the safest way to do this - right?

Edited by Guest

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kbrew8991

since this is a regional thing, best to ask over there

 

doing it this way spreads the compete newbies out and actually creates *less* trains. You should've seen it before that tweak As far as safety - you shouldn't be riding each other close enough for it to matter, and remember, it takes at least 2 cars to create a train, there is always the "pit for space" manouver

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dbright007

If Hpde1 is one, separate group = 40 instructors for 40 students.

DE2 = no instructors.

 

If you split DE1 in half, you only need 20 instructors - they first instruct 1a then instruct 1b.

You actually get 20 quality instructors who want to instruct instead of some people being pressed in to it that don't want to do it.

 

I have driven 1 and 2 both separate and combined. Trains just come and go, and some weekends just seem to form them worse than others. I couldn't drive BMP but watched a lot of the groups the weekend from the media center. Was happening in DE3/4 also.

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TurboShortBus

Running HPDE1 and HPDE2 at the same time gives HPDE2 drivers more experience in traffic before promoting them to HPDE3, where the passing rules are a little more liberal, although it's not a free-for-all.

 

It's not always just about being able to drive the line and recognize the flags. It's also about your awareness in traffic and around other cars of various speeds.

 

Mark

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jason

I believe it also helps alleviate instructor shortages.

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TurboShortBus

I have seen a situation in an HPDE1/2 download session where the chief instructor told a driver that he needed to take a standby instructor with him during the next session, due to bad driving, misbehaving, etc. (reason enough to keep 2 seats in your car if you are in HPDE2; don't gut it just yet). Having this driver switch from an HPDE2/3 combo back to HPDE1 involves a different wristband and all other sorts of shenanigans; however, with the HPDE1/2 combo, all the driver had to do was pick up the standby instructor at pit central at the usual session time. Or, the HPDE2 driver would have to take an instructor with him during a regularly scheduled HPDE2/3 combo, but many instructors run in HPDE3, so that could cause a scheduling conflict.

 

Mark

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Raznkane

This was also my first NASA event and my 2nd time on Barbers track, I was in 1B group. I thought it went pretty well and mixing different classes sharpens everybodys driving, or at least it should. My first time on track was with another orginazation and they had novice, intermediate and advanced on the track together, needless to say I didnt have much fun or learn much as a novice.

 

The instructor I had with NASA was great and made it where I could learn this time. I was driving a yellow Mach1 and if I held anybody up I apologize and will try to keep improving with everybodys help.

 

Jimmy

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StraightSix
since this is a regional thing, best to ask over there

 

Someone must not have paid attention when we made the switch.

 

TMK, the combination of HPDE1 and 2 is something that National wants and tested, with success, in California before trying to implement it nationally. NASA-MA, again TMK, is the only region still splitting HPDE 1 and 2.

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kbrew8991

since when do I run anywhere else besides SE and MA??

 

I've been around a TX event once, and yeah... didn't really even resemble NASA besides the car classes...

 

and besides, the gripes this guy has are better handled regionally anyway... so..

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chuck schultz

My impression from the corners is that the instructors are zeroed in on getting the drivers to do what they want them to, and the drivers are overstimulated, and everybody forgets to look at the mirrors and misses the d*mned blue flag I waved at every train I saw at station 10.

 

When I got near the apex at 4 on Sunday, I think I scared a few folks, but I was seeing arms shoot out of windows as soon as I was able to put the flag in the instructors' faces. After a while, I'd see 'em point if I just looked at 'em too hard.

 

My hand still hurts from waving so much all weekend, but it was a blast. Can't wait 'til next time!

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Raznkane

I noticed you moved down there, I didnt see a blue flag though. Thanks for working Chuck, and everyone else that did.

 

Jimmy

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STRINGER
My impression from the corners is that the instructors are zeroed in on getting the drivers to do what they want them to, and the drivers are overstimulated, and everybody forgets to look at the mirrors and misses the d*mned blue flag I waved at every train I saw at station 10.

 

When I got near the apex at 4 on Sunday, I think I scared a few folks, but I was seeing arms shoot out of windows as soon as I was able to put the flag in the instructors' faces. After a while, I'd see 'em point if I just looked at 'em too hard.

 

My hand still hurts from waving so much all weekend, but it was a blast. Can't wait 'til next time!

 

 

Well I will add this. In both MA an SE regions. My instructors were very aware of what was going on all around the car. Although I was able to do a point or wave before they mentioned it....it was just a second before they mentioned it if needed.

 

But I can really understand your point about both instructor and students not watching mirrors. I spent several laps in Group 1 and 2 behind a car that was trying to work on lines and was unaware of vehicles behind and did not get a point by in the passing zones. Unfortunately this will always be an issue on some occasions and just has to be dealt with along with the understanding and the option to pit in and give the sign for spreading out.

 

Now that I am in group 3. I spend a huge amount of time glancing in my mirrors looking to point by anyone that needs it from the education that my instructors have given me. The good thing about that is since I drive a Miata...I dont have to lift much to let most everyone past.

 

So please dont group all instructors in that.

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sperkins

I guess that does make sense about not having enough instructors. That certainly is a good way to make sure there are enough in each group. I don't really buy the idea that it helps non-instructor drivers learn how to manage traffic though. There's always going to be traffic in any group regardless if there are instructors present or not. All in all I though am very happy with the sessions I was able to run. I got most of the point by's when needed with only a few exceptions. My hats off to all of the corner workers and NASA officials for a great job this weekend. thumbsup.gif

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TurboShortBus

Personally, I think the HPDE1/2 combo with standalone HPDE3 works well. When you're in HPDE1, you're basically learning to ride a bike with the training wheels on. In HPDE2, the training wheels are off, but you're not quite ready to ride on your own just yet (see my earlier post about an HPDE2 driver being told that he needed to take a standby instructor with him). Being promoted to HPDE3 is your "reward" for learning to manage all of the above...the line, traffic, etc., and you're rewarded with more liberal passing rules and a more open track with fewer freight trains.

 

I recently made it into HPDE3 (something I'm relatively proud of), and although the car count was lower than in HPDE1/2, nobody got hung up behind anybody else. I wouldn't accuse myself of being one of the quicker cars out there, but I wasn't being passed left and right, either. There was no "freight train."

 

If NASA instructors just turned drivers loose into HPDE3 without making sure that they were comfortable in traffic, then they would be doing a disservice to everybody in the class, especially the more advanced drivers who have been in HPDE3 for quite a while and are trying to work their way into HPDE4/TT.

 

In my opinion, if you don't like the "freight trains" that develop in the HPDE1/2 combo sessions, then you should focus on your own skills and work your way into HPDE3, where situations like this are reduced or eliminated. Besides, if they just handed out HPDE3 passes like Halloween candy, then you truly haven't accomplished anything, have you?

 

Mark

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99HOSS
TMK, the combination of HPDE1 and 2 is something that National wants and tested, with success, in California before trying to implement it nationally. NASA-MA, again TMK, is the only region still splitting HPDE 1 and 2.

 

 

...and as an instructor with the MA group, I prefer it that way, as we are (ususally) booked to wait list for all of our events, with the only exception being the CMP event. We are also blessed with a great bunch of instructors, to the point that we have several on stand-by for each session, each event, as well.

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dbright007

Good stuff folks, nice discussion.

 

I have bounced back and forth from 1 to 2. Every de3, De4, and TT I know (and I travel with usually a good size group- Usually a lot of Rx8's, a certain gold mustang, couple miatas, and a beat up Rx7) - they all try to catch rides with each other to improve.

 

I like the ability to drive solo in 2 without the pressure of 3 (not ready) but if you know an instructor, I have signed up for 1 to insure I got that instructor and just communicated I wanted to run solo also. Gives them a break from having to run every session, and now that 1/2 are combined - you are on track with the same cars anyway.

 

You just have to sit thru that DE1 class....

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Raznkane

Thanks to all the instructors also. If that gold mustang was at barbers this past weekend and was TT 007, that was my instructor. He was awesome, thanks JFR!

 

Jimmy

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Shawn M.

Ill add this little tidbit of info for you to ponder on.....

 

Most regions only have 1 single run group for HPDE1-2.

 

HPDE 1-2 typically fill up the fastest and in Socal, they fill up and close the entries very early.

 

Its alot of work for the instructors to handle 2 run groups of students and then try to be focused on racing too. It makes for a busy day!

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kbrew8991

thats why racers shouldn't instruct (and don't in most regions), but thats another thread

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TurboShortBus
thats why racers shouldn't instruct (and don't in most regions), but thats another thread

 

Schedule-wise, racers wouldn't be able to pull it off in NASA-FL. There's an overlap for pit lane grid/lineup and HPDE1/2 track sessions. My instructors typically ran in HPDE3, which is nice because they could take me for ride-alongs (not allowed in the HPDE4/TT combo sessions).

 

Mark

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kbrew8991

bit of a chicken-and-egg argument, but the initial factor afaik was the racers skipping sessions to fix cars instead of teach - then barred from instructing - then scheduled to give space between instructing and driving sessions

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Shawn M.
thats why racers shouldn't instruct (and don't in most regions), but thats another thread

 

 

We have an inderstanding that the racers and TTers in socal know they have an obligation to their student before their race or TT session.

 

Thats how we roll in SoCal.

So, the other regions pay their instructors or they can only drive in 3?

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kbrew8991

DE4 or TT out here

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Robnie0723
You just have to sit thru that DE1 class....

 

Agreed -- after a couple of times in "beginner" classroom I developed a big time motivation to get out of DE 1

 

Otherwise I could care less if it's a DE 1 or 2 group, especially when given the OK to solo the second day. The after session downloads are usually pretty effective getting everyone in sync.

 

If there is a train, pit in for space. Or just back off, point by the traffic behind you and try some diffferent lines or some no braking laps to make space in front.

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Robnie0723
thats why racers shouldn't instruct (and don't in most regions), but thats another thread

 

 

We have an understanding that the racers and TTers in socal know they have an obligation to their student before their race or TT session.

 

Thats how we roll in SoCal.

So, the other regions pay their instructors or they can only drive in 3?

 

All my instructors in MA either did 3/4 or TT and it's never been a problem. I particularly appreciate they are always willing to give a ride which at this point is more instructional for me than several sessions with them in the right seat.

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