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Last Post 02 May 2008 05:24 PM by  brgmcs
Suggestions for next event
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DRAG
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27 Apr 2008 07:38 PM

    I'm going to go ahead and be the one to say something about this because tons of people want to, but no one wants to be the bad guy. I'm ok with being the bad guy. I have good intentions and I know this was the 1st event of the season and we can all help to improve things.

    The driver's meetings are WAY too long. I'm bringing my truck and trailer next event so that I can hide in it and sleep. We are starting meetings late (about an hour late today), then they drag on and on with 15 minutes chatter about personal things between friends. That may add to the fun and humor for a few people, but when we know there are 120+ drivers, it makes it not fun for more than 100. The rules need to be explained to the new people at the END of the meeting so that the 110 other people can go about their business and get into the staging area. If we would have followed the schedule we could have saved an hour + and run more than 3 runs. Three runs in a 10 hour day is rough. We were told 3 runs because the 1st run group was over 2 hours of run time. At that point in time we were actually at 1 hour and 5 minutes of run time...2+ hours over the schedule.

    Last year at Mt. Comfort we were getting well over 100 people on a 50+ second course and getting 5 runs...sometimes 6. The difference? At 10:20am...cars were running.

    It is just a suggestion. I still had fun, but I know a lot of people were disappointed and some were downright angry LOL!! That many people in that small venue is tough. Thanks for all the hard work and I think you guys are doing a great job. The course layout was outstanding today!!!

    Luke

    turbohappy
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    27 Apr 2008 08:10 PM
    DRAG wrote:

    Last year at Mt. Comfort we were getting well over 100 people on a 50+ second course and getting 5 runs...sometimes 6. The difference? At 10:20am...cars were running.

    I hear exactly what you're saying Luke and I'm sure it will be discussed at the next Solo Steering meeting if you'd like to attend. But you are forgetting a HUGE variable in comparing 16th street to Mt. Comfort. At 16th street, we have 2 cars on course for about 5 seconds out of 50. At Mt. Comfort we could have 2 cars on course all the time, which nearly doubles the amount of runs that can be taken in a certain amount of time.

    Let me use this to advertise our other sites to everyone. Looking for lots of runs? Make sure to make it to the Grissom and Terre Haute events as well. Those sites are large and due to the site, we run at least as fast as Mt. Comfort. Take into account the typically lower car count and you can count on getting plenty of runs.

    Bobzilla
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    27 Apr 2008 08:17 PM

    Last year we NEVER got cars on the course at 10:20. EVER. We were still teching cars then, I know because I was doing it. Today's course, high numbers and the 16th st site didn't mix. I loved Phil's course to drive, but it required too much lag time between cars because of the late/early crossover. 16th st site is tough to manuever that many cars around, especially with the high numbers we had today.

    Mt Comfort was a completely different ballgame, both in logistical problems and course design. IIRC, one of the course we had put 3 cars out at once. It's pretty easy to get 4-5 runs with 120 people when a car is leaving every 20-30 seconds. Compare the high numbers to the same location and last year we had 4 runs at 16th with 100+.

    If you really want to speed things up, get people here EARLY. None of the show up at 9:30 and rush through to get people in. Firm cutoff, 9:30 we're closed. Sorry, but you could get up a little earlier and be there when you SHOULD be there. drivers meeting at 10, and people on course no later than 10:30.

    This is my personal opinion, but I think with the site, the course and the high numbers everyone involved did a fantastic job. Remember, this is a VOLUNTEER organization and you can step up to volunteer anytime you like. It's always appreciated.

    turbohappy
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    27 Apr 2008 08:22 PM
    Bobzilla wrote:

    I loved Phil's course to drive, but it required too much lag time between cars because of the late/early crossover. 16th st site is tough to manuever that many cars around, especially with the high numbers we had today.

    Honestly, there's no way to do it that helps much. The difference between a "fast" crossover section and a slow one wouldn't be more than 5 minutes total time on the day. I thought Phil's "no off camber turns" approach was unique and inspired confidence in the surface.

    brgmcs
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    27 Apr 2008 08:30 PM

    Very good points from both Luke and Brian (and Bob who posted while I was typing). First and foremost, I think the new Solo Chairs are off to a good start for their first year in the role. I'm sure they're stressing about the events and the "job', as I've been there and done that too. I was one of the ones that was pretty unhappy about the 3 runs today, but thrilled with the course (it worked MUCH better than I thought it would on my first walk - khudos to Phil). One of the things I always struggled with as a Solo Chair was asking others for help. I tried to do too much on my own. For the good of all, please don't hesitate to ask lots of folks for help at the events, in the interest of sharing the workload and helping us all get more runs.

    If things are running later than Will and Mike want them too - grap folks and assign short, specific tasks as needed. That certainly includes myself, if I'm not doing something that you'd like help with. I would hope that you'll find that most of the folks there will be willing to help once they understand that it probably means another run for them.

    Be creative. Would registration benefit from an additional window? Do you need someone (or two) to stand by the registration line and pre-check to make sure folks have the cards filled out right, have their id, know their class, etc? Close the course for walking earlier? Send out more than one novice walk? Revisit the work/run sequence so that the 2nd and 3rd heat drivers aren't working the heat before they run (gets cars to grid faster)? Re-script (or script) the Drivers' Meeting? For example, there's a little less to cover there but the CSCC meetings are 10 minutes. I'd bet the Indy meetings could be cut down to 15 minutes or less with some practice. Doing the novice part after announcing the run/work order is absolutely the way to go to get the first heat started faster.

    I'd like to be able to attend the Solo Steering meetings and Board meetings, but unfortunately my work schedule / geography no longer allow me to. Still, I'm very interested in the continued success of the Indy Solo program. Again, if you need help at the events don't hesitate to ask.

    Thanks for all the work guys.

    DRAG
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    27 Apr 2008 08:38 PM

    I expected an invitation to volunteer. It was just a simple suggestion and should be taken as that and not an insult. I don't think there is any big pow wow meeting that needs to happen to discuss this. Start on time, speed the meeting up, and it will work better. We started running today after 11am.

    There were lots of challenges today and I understand that. I am just relaying some comments I heard from lots of people. At the fun run and this event I heard people making cash bets on how long the meeting would last.

    DRAG
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    27 Apr 2008 09:00 PM
    brgmcs wrote:

    Very good points from both Luke and Brian (and Bob who posted while I was typing). First and foremost, I think the new Solo Chairs are off to a good start for their first year in the role. I'm sure they're stressing about the events and the "job', as I've been there and done that too. I was one of the ones that was pretty unhappy about the 3 runs today, but thrilled with the course (it worked MUCH better than I thought it would on my first walk - khudos to Phil). One of the things I always struggled with as a Solo Chair was asking others for help. I tried to do too much on my own. For the good of all, please don't hesitate to ask lots of folks for help at the events, in the interest of sharing the workload and helping us all get more runs.

    If things are running later than Will and Mike want them too - grap folks and assign short, specific tasks as needed. That certainly includes myself, if I'm not doing something that you'd like help with. I would hope that you'll find that most of the folks there will be willing to help once they understand that it probably means another run for them.

    Be creative. Would registration benefit from an additional window? Do you need someone (or two) to stand by the registration line and pre-check to make sure folks have the cards filled out right, have their id, know their class, etc? Close the course for walking earlier? Send out more than one novice walk? Revisit the work/run sequence so that the 2nd and 3rd heat drivers aren't working the heat before they run (gets cars to grid faster)? Re-script (or script) the Drivers' Meeting? For example, there's a little less to cover there but the CSCC meetings are 10 minutes. I'd bet the Indy meetings could be cut down to 15 minutes or less with some practice. Doing the novice part after announcing the run/work order is absolutely the way to go to get the first heat started faster.

    I'd like to be able to attend the Solo Steering meetings and Board meetings, but unfortunately my work schedule / geography no longer allow me to. Still, I'm very interested in the continued success of the Indy Solo program. Again, if you need help at the events don't hesitate to ask.

    Thanks for all the work guys.

    You posted this while I was posting and I completely agree. If things are slow and you guys need a hand, feel free to ask me. I will help with whatever I can and try like hell at whatever I can't [:D]

    You are all doing a great job.

    RonConrad
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    27 Apr 2008 09:07 PM

    Pre-Registration is the key to an early start. We are only getting about 1/3 to pre-register. I would like to see a 8am to 9am Registration window, and shoot for a 10am first car off.

    We got a lot of flack at first in Fort Wayne when we implemented this, but eventually 80% would pre-register, and everyone got more runs.

    The Pre-Registration line was great! It took me about 30 seconds to get checked in. Hopefully everyone took notice, and will pre-register.

    I was impressed how the region pitches in, and gets things set up in the morning.

    Driver's meeting DID go long, and folks in the back couldn't hear a thing. I would add the Novice walk to the schedule so Novices know when to meet up. We could even have a seperate Novice meeting before the actual Driver's meeting. Do we have Novice handbooks to hand out? If not, that would be a nice touch.

    The Nebulizer
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    27 Apr 2008 11:27 PM

    First off, it needs to be repeated that Will and Mike and Phil and everyone taking on responsibilites are doing a great job. Admittedly, most of us have no idea what all goes into it - but, all the work is appreciatedly greatly. (I too am available to take on some duties to help out if needed)

    The event was a lot of fun - so much fun that I think a lot of people just wanted a little more of it. I was worried when I saw what time we finally got going that we were only going to get 3 runs, but it was especially painful for the guys in the first run group to find out after their 2nd run was done that they just had 1 more. While 3 is all you are supposed to be guaranteed, there is a huge difference between getting 3 runs versus 4, especially if you are relatively new.

    But, as has been said, I am not sure what could really have been done to speed things up much. The meeting did get started late (not sure why as I think reg closed just shortly after 9:30 as scheduled - but there was probably an issue we all don't know about.). The meeting ran maybe 15 minutes or so long, but in the end that is not so much (it feels like a while when you are anxious to get out there, but really didn't matter too much). We had a delay getting started, but I assume there was another problem somewhere. The main thing though is we just had too many drivers. (The easy solution there is just make a no Miatas or 4WD cars rule. That will clear out all the riff-raff and we can get to real racing. [:P] )

    Aside from trying to start even earlier (yikes, I had enough trouble with 9:30...[:S]), I am not sure what could really be done to significantly speed things up. Perhaps we could speed some things up by putting all the novices in run group 2 (or 3) and have their meeting during the first run group (that puts more demand on the ride alongs though - and probaly makes other problems like worker assignments with a majority novices).

    I don't know - I am pretty much just rambling on here... Its hard for us to know what all was going on behind the scenes. I suspect they were working hard to get things moving, but had unforeseen issues to deal with. Personally I don't care too much how late we run - I would have been happy to stay until 8 to get my 4th run, but I am perhaps in the minority there. So, about the only thing I can say in the end is, I too would be happy to lend a hand to help get things moving along. So, if more hands would help, feel free to ask away.

    Bobzilla
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    28 Apr 2008 06:29 AM

    Something to think about, people showing up at registration at 9:35. GEt their paper work filledout, money handed in and classed logged in at 9:40. Then they walk to the backlot, get their car and come back up for tech, with the other 5-10 people who waited until the very last second and now it's 10am. . .get everyone back to the bus for the meeting, get run groups figured and it's 10:30.

    Personally, if you want it to happen earlier, be sure to get yourself and your frineds there earlier. Pre-register and get your annual tech. That's like hitting the carpool lane through Atlanta at 5pm.

    DRAG
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    28 Apr 2008 09:27 AM

    Ok....so the 8 people that read this forum now know to get there earlier, but they are the guys that are there early anyway. That doesn't help a thing ha ha. This event brings a lot of people who aren't regulars and won't be at other venues. There is no way to tell them to get there earlier without changing the schedule. The schedule doesn't need to be changed...it just needs to stay on track.

    What happens if there are 140 or 170 cars at the next 16th St. Event? Two runs? One? Every person that I take for a ride says "I'm driving in the next one this is great!!" I also know of a handful of guys that would have normally been at this event but had other conflicting events. It is very probable that this grows to 140+ cars.

    Maybe it will help pre-registration for this particular event if we say the first xxx people to sign up will race. After that you are SOL. That site can not accomodate more than what we had.

    The Nebulizer
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    28 Apr 2008 09:37 AM
    Bobzilla wrote:

    Something to think about, people showing up at registration at 9:35. GEt their paper work filledout, money handed in and classed logged in at 9:40. Then they walk to the backlot, get their car and come back up for tech, with the other 5-10 people who waited until the very last second and now it's 10am. . .get everyone back to the bus for the meeting, get run groups figured and it's 10:30.

    Personally, if you want it to happen earlier, be sure to get yourself and your frineds there earlier. Pre-register and get your annual tech. That's like hitting the carpool lane through Atlanta at 5pm.

    Was tech really going until 10?[:O] (Sorry about being one of those 9:35ers... I was pre-registered and annual teched at least so hopefully I didn't slow things up much.) For future events, we ought to follow the letter of the law more closely and really close the reg and especially tech (since it ran 30 minutes over) on time (plus or minus 5 minutes [A]). A little leeway is nice, but 30 minutes is too much (unless the line was running since before 9:30 - in that case we need to see about getting more tech help maybe). Or, maybe we need to take Ron's suggestion and bump the close up even earlier - like 9am close? What is traffic like at the earlier times? Is the time crunch at the end based on everyone showing up late or traffic that has built up due simply to the volume of cars?

    What about a late fee? Or rather phrase it as, 'early bird special' for those who show up before a certain time - like 8:30, and don't have to pay the extra fee. Those after, like 8:30, pay an extra $5 maintenance fee. Is this legal in SCCA? A $5 fee would get people to show up earlier. Or, maybe a similar strategy with pre-reg/annual tech - make it less expensive if you have done both (or more expensive if you haven't). I am not sure if these ideas are reasonable or even legal under SCCA rules, but just throwing them out there.

    Hey, but look on the bright side - literally.... at least there were no rain delays!

    jww
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    28 Apr 2008 11:48 AM

    There was no traffic when I got there at 6:45 or so to help kick out the cones and help set up the event.. So I don't see why you would have a problem with traffic before 9:30. It isn't like the 16th street site is near a large mall during the holiDaze, so my question is.. what traffic!!??

    As far as you showing up at 9:35, I was more than willing to cut off registration right at 9:30 and hand you back your $20. However, Will is much much nicer than I am.

    As Bob pointed out, registration got slammed in that half hour or so.. probably all my fault it didn't go as well. So go ahead and blame me. We had a ton of new folks that showed up and it took longer to enter those than expected as well as folks not having a clue what class they were in as well as folks coming up to reclassify themselves, change numbers and ask tons of questions at the window.. Then we found that we had more in the system than we had cards. That took awhile to figure out. ...and that was probably my fault as well.

    Thanks so much for showing an interest in helping us out, however your consistancy of showing up late or at the last second more than speaks volumes of the support you offer. If you really want to help... show up earlier and pitch in.

    I don't think it should be that difficult to see folks need help. Not sure? Just ask! Remember, this is an all volunteer ogranization. There are many of us that simply do the work because we see that help is needed, or want to help, not because we are invited. We even have folks that show up to help us out that aren't even running that day!!!! Those folks have my undying admiration and thanks.

    I personally would like to get home at a decent hour as Sunday is now the only day I can spend time with my girlfriend. ..as much as folks would be happy to get an extra run even at 7pm... the rest of us that do show up early would like to go home and have dinner and enjoy the last little bit of the weekend.

    This time I unfortunatly had to leave early as I had an emergency at work and had to go lend a hand there.. or I would have again stayed to help clean up and load the bus.

    My thoughts... charge an extra $5 for those that DO NOT pre register online. :)

    The Nebulizer
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    28 Apr 2008 01:34 PM
    jww wrote:

    There was no traffic when I got there at 6:45 or so to help kick out the cones and help set up the event.. So I don't see why you would have a problem with traffic before 9:30. It isn't like the 16th street site is near a large mall during the holiDaze, so my question is.. what traffic!!??

    I meant traffic in the Tech line.

    I do like the pre-registration discount idea (or, rather non-prereg fee). If it is against SCCA rules, maybe give the money to charity or something - have it be a nonvoluntary donation.

    duck_hunter_117
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    28 Apr 2008 02:08 PM

    The Nebulizer wrote:

    I do like the pre-registration discount idea though (or, rather non-prereg fee). If it is against SCCA rules, maybe give the money to charity or something - have it be a nonvoluntary donation.



    IIRC I've seen event flyers for other regions that show on-site registration to be $5 more.

    Edit:

    Found one example http://sbrscca.org/solo/2008_points...oflyer.pdf

    Bobzilla
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    28 Apr 2008 02:19 PM

    Children play nicely. Don't make me give you big wet sloppy kisses in front of everyone. I'll do it too.. . . [:P]

    Tech stayed fairly steady from 8:15 to about 9, with a little lull in the action for about 10-15 minutes and then we get slammed for the ext 45-50. It's not a big deal, but if people want to start earlier, we need to get the message out to show up earlier. I had about 3 cars come in at 9:45. Only reason I remember is I checked the phone and had goneup to the bus to see when/who was last registered. So we officially locked it down at 10am, no different from last year.

    jww
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    28 Apr 2008 03:24 PM

    Sorry... I was in a bad mood and should never have posted. I was mostly posting to explain what was the cause of things being backed up with registration and got carried away. It is not your fault that you got there late just as it wasn't my fault I had to leave early.

    Please forgive me Jason.

    ...and Bob... if you kiss half as good as Steve... mmmmm... I can't wait. ;)

    Bobzilla
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    28 Apr 2008 03:46 PM
    jww wrote:

    ...and Bob... if you kiss half as good as Steve... mmmmm... I can't wait. ;)

    Aw crap. . . I was afraid one of you two would take me up on that! If it helps, Steve says I'm too "sloppy". . .

    The Nebulizer
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    28 Apr 2008 04:02 PM
    jww wrote:

    Sorry... I was in a bad mood and should never have posted. I was mostly posting to explain what was the cause of things being backed up with registration and got carried away. It is not your fault that you got there late just as it wasn't my fault I had to leave early.

    Please forgive me Jason.

    ...and Bob... if you kiss half as good as Steve... mmmmm... I can't wait. ;)

    Thanks, John. I appreciate the follow-up. No hard feelings, dude?[{][}]

    John, I do have to give you a little advice though...... Bob kisses like a 'swine' (Will can confirm this)... Steve is much better. It all comes down to proper tongue action. [:D]

    Bobzilla
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    28 Apr 2008 04:30 PM
    See. . .now everyone feels better because they got to pick on me. . .great. Can we get back to topic now?
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