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UrbanKnight

Daytona with NASA SE- Great time, but Jon does it better!

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UrbanKnight

Started running with NASA earlier this year knowing that there was going to be a Daytona event in the fall. Daytona has been a bucket list sort of item since I was a kid. Decided I was going to make it happen, so I started running events so that I would be smooth/fast/comfortable enough to run solo for this event. I just started doing HPDE last summer, so....

 

Had a great time despite some nuances. Jon definitely runs a much "smoother/better organized feeling" event. Once underway, things went relatively well, I just think there are a few things that could of been done better. Constructive criticism below(I think)

 

1- They combined group 3 and 4 into one group.... 80 cars on the grid makes for a packed track. I am sure some of the guys in 4 and I know this guy in 3 got held up plenty by some of the folks slow with the point by. (To NASA SE's credit, they have a yellow #4 you can put on your back bumper that allows you to pass any car with that tag without a point by... One big tip here though, that number is hard to see on white cars...) They did have 3 runs where the groups were split, but would of been smoother if all were split. Group 1 and 2 were split.

 

2- PA system- Daytona is huge. There is a PA system, would of been smoother if it was utilized. When run times were off, you have to use your smart phone to keep up to date, and then just show up when its your time to grid. Now a lot of us are pretty into the smart phone thing, but the PA would of been easier.

 

 

One item of praise- I heard from some of my buddies in Group 2 that a certain viper driver was being a real prick on the track, and ultimately, got the boot because of it. Kudos to NASA-SE for stepping up and dealing with it!

 

Overall, I had a blast, and have memories to last me a--- well, until I do it again! or the dementia takes over!

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TowDawg

They usually combine 3 and 4 every now and then when the schedule has slipped due to accidents or clean-up delays so the races don't get shortened too badly.

 

Any idea who the Viper driver was? I'm sure I probably know him, and would love to give him some shit.

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UrbanKnight

Towdawg,

Don't want to throw anyone under the bus, but on the registrant list, there is only one black viper listed for HPDE 1. J. Currie.....

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SDunlap

I have to say, I really enjoyed the combined groups. I've only done 1.5 weekends in HPDE3 and coming into this weekend I was very nervous about running with the 4s. However, for the most part I had no problem managing the traffic (both pointing cars by and being pointed) and by the end of the weekend I actually looked forward to catching up to the cars with the yellow 4 on the bumper and passing then without needing a point. I am very happy I was forced out of my comfort zone - that's the best way for me to learn. Part of moving up the HPDE ranks is being comfortable in traffic while driving at/near the limit, and this weekend was a great exercise for me.

 

Yes, there were a few instances where I got held up by slower cars, but that was a good opportunity for me drive my line and try to 'earn' the point by staying in the car's mirrors and being obviously faster. I'd probably be more frustrated if I were trying to set a fast lap, because I don't think I got any laps where I didn't get held up a little, but overall I think I grew a lot as a driver this weekend.

 

Agreed on your other points - they really should have made better use of the PAs. It was annoying to pull up to grid when I'm scheduled to go out and have the grid workers tell me it's not even close to my time, and that it'd probably be 15 or 20 minutes before we were up.

 

What happened with the red/black flags on Sunday? I saw several cars getting yelled at when we came in, but I never heard why we all got black flagged.

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phastafrican

The traffic issue was very tough to mitigate from an admin perspective. Unless a specific driver is singled out and reported as being a nuisance on track, it's tough to ask someone to give a point by in any sessions. One thing I noted about Daytona is that the oval allows the slower drivers with the faster cars to get around the faster drivers before the infield. That was ultimately the root of the traffic issue with large groups.

 

Took us a while to get the PA system going. Once we did, things got smooth. The lack of announcements was definitely a downside on Saturday morning. #newtrackproblems

 

That viper got reported and was taken care of. I'm glad someone noticed that.

 

There's almost always a red flag drill on Sunday for DE 1-3. The drivers being yelled at are all those who completely ignored the flags for multiple corners and passed a completely stopped field.

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SDunlap

There's almost always a red flag drill on Sunday for DE 1-3. The drivers being yelled at are all those who completely ignored the flags for multiple corners and passed a completely stopped field.

 

Ah! I guess I passed the test then

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jedimario

I ran DE2...sheer curiosity, what did this Viper driver do?

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sixshooter
I ran DE2...sheer curiosity, what did this Viper driver do?
The driver spun it on the out lap in front of my student, for one thing, but we didn't complain to anyone. I also think I overheard there was a problem with passing without being pointed-by, but I cannot recall for certain. I do think there was also an issue with not attending classroom sessions as required, according to my student.

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sixshooter

And I agree with the comment about the PA system being an underutilized tool that always helps NASA-FL events operate very smoothly.

 

Jon does a great job in so many ways.

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