One of the things that makes racing so challenging is that there’s a constant conflict between being aggressive and being careful. Finding the appropriate balance depends on a lot of variables that are constantly changing. When should you push hard and when should you hold back? If you’re being held up by the car in front for what feels like too long, you may get impatient and do something unwise. The most common form of impatience is trying to steal the apex of the car in front. Let’s see what that looks like.
Another area where people get impatient is when a car spins in front of them. It looks like a great opportunity to gain a position, but spinning cars have a way of changing directions and crossing the track multiple times.
There’s almost always time to brake and come to a complete stop if necessary. But the urge to get past is strong, and driving around the trouble should be faster, right?
Cars reacting to spinning cars can be just as dangerous as the spinning car.
Late post this week because I was racing with ChumpCar at Thunderhill. Lots of fun. The clips this week come from the race. In the first clip, the action picks up after several laps of full course yellow (in order to deliver lunch to the corner workers). Upon the release of that yellow, the exuberant RX-7 driver is so excited that he drives off course. I’m sure it didn’t help that his tires had cooled. I decided to keep my distance until he sorted things out.
That E36 and RX-7 that passed me? We finished above them in 3rd place. The next day, I encountered them again…
The 3 oldest games on the planet are race, chase, and wrestle. Every puppy, kitten, and child knows these games. The unwritten rules are that everyone has fun and nobody gets hurt. Adult life is a bit more complicated and the games adopt hundreds of rules and the event sometimes ends with frustration and pain. One of the adult racing rules is that intentional contact (wrestling if you will) is forbidden.
The first clip is from the 2015 NASA Spec Miata Eastern States Championship. Watch the black Miata nudge one car off track and then try to do the same to the POV car. Although the black car appears to win the race, it was later disqualified.
While it isn’t very sporting to intentionally hit another driver, it does make for some entertaining viewing. It seems half the reason people watch NASCAR is for the wrecks (the other half is for the fistfights in the paddock). The POV driver in the next clip has a laugh at the two cars in front. Watch as the yellow Miata gets nudged and decides that chase just turned into wrestle. Puppies…