Oval Racing Etiquette

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  • Do not block faster cars: If someone is clearly faster than you and there is more than 10% of the race session remaining let the overtaking vehicle go as quickly as possible allowing you to lose as little time as possible. 

  • Pass with care: Do not assume the car you are passing knows you are there.  If they clearly give you the line take it.  If they do not then use care to set up your pass.  If you cannot get up beside the car (at least to their door) before the corner entry then the corner is not yours and you need to be mindful that they may turn down into you.

  • Passing a lapped car: If you are overtaking a lapped car do not put them in a bad position, often times these cars are ill handling and putting them on a bad line through a corner could cause a wreck.  They will not do it intentionally but cars don’t handle well wrecked or on old tires.  Try to pass them on the straight or exiting a corner or coordinate with them to find out where they are most stable.

  • Pass with authority: Once you pass do not hold up the car behind you.  If you were fast enough to pass then be fast enough to get clear and don’t hold up both cars.  If you are holding them up then you may not have been fast enough to pass.  There are times someone just had a bad lap and you caught them. 

  • Be Visible: Let cars know when you are pitting, or if you want them to pass you or if you are going to pass a lapped car.  Use your mic or hot keys.  This will ensure you do not cause other a problem.

  • Be a good lapper: Its not ideal to end up laps down or off the pace but should you find yourself in this position be mindful of lead lap cars.  Do not “race” them for positions that you cannot gain.  Let them go and fall in line.

  • Watch 4 cars ahead: This means keep an eye out up the track.  Not just at the car your following.  Be ready to check up for cars that are spinning or just off the pace and be ready to alert the guys behind you to check up if needed.  Don’t always rely on your spotter or the other drivers. 

  • Don’t fight for early positions: Do not put up a big fight for a position or two in the opening laps.  Let the race sort itself out.  More often than not the guys going 100% in the opening laps will not have anything left later in the run.  And there is a very high chance these cars will cause a wreck and you do not want to be in it.  Save the fight for the closing laps.

  • Race how you want to be raced:  If you do not want someone to do it to you then don’t do it.  If your in doubt don’t do it.  Good example is dive-bombing someone.  Yes it looks tempting but you have a 50/50 shot at wrecking both cars and a 100% shot at making the other driver mad at you. 

  • Pit Road: Drive on the right side of pit road, do not block the view of the cars behind you and do not drive through pit stalls.  This will only upset your competitors and is just not a courteous thing to do.  Poor race etiquette at its finest.  Hold your speed and turn in to where you only drive through one or two stalls to make sure your car is straight in yours.  No more.

  • Do NOT scrub or warm your tires once you are double file:  Yes I know the pros do it but they are in real cars on real tracks.  This is iRacing and there is on gain in it however you can certainly wreck other cars or yourself doing this.  If nothing else your going to make the guys around you nervous.  Just drive straight and get a good start.

  • More Pacing: While pacing catch up to the pack or pace car.  Usually other want to hurry around to get damage fixed and if the pack is lagging half a track behind the pace car they will not be able to get much done on pit road so drive around, catch up to the field and then you can relax. 

  • Stay close to the car in front of you:  Do not hang back to try and jump the start.  This action alone causes more yellow flags on restarts than anything else. And most likely will get you protested by others in the race.  If your car is fast enough you will make your passes. 

  • Black Flags: If you receive a black flag that must be served under green, drive through the pits with one to go so you are at the back of the field.  This way you can pull down towards pit road just as the field is taking the green, serve your penalty and not cause others a black flag.  Doing this from the middle of the field will most certainly get competitors penalized with you. 

  • Old Tires: If you decide to stay out on old tires while the field pits, weigh your options and actions carefully.  This usually does not end well for you or the field, however there are times this can work out in your favor, but usually not.  Use situational awareness and be very mindful of how much fall off you have and how much time is left in the event.

  • Wrecks Forming: If you see an accident forming ahead of you be aware of the cars behind you but start taking evasive action by lifting off the throttle and also taking a line that will not only keep you out of danger but that will also keep you from getting into other cars around you.  Key the mic and let drivers behind you know you are checking up as well.  DO NOT try to use this opportunity to gain position.  You will only make things worse.

  • 3 Wide Racing: First just like passing, make sure the guys around you realize your 3 wide.  Do not make a situation bad by pulling between two cars already in the corner.  This will end badly.  If you are on a big wide track and around competent racers 3 wide racing can be done safely.  If you are in a low SOF race with racers you do not know this will end badly.  Even if you do know the racers 3 wide is a last resort and in my opinion should be saved for late race heroics, not lap 1 passing.

  • Take Ownership: If you make a mistake on the track take responsibility.  We all make mistakes; we all contact other cars on accident from time to time.  If you do, key your mic and let the other driver know it was a mistake and that you are sorry.  No it will not fix their broken car but it could go a long way towards keeping the situation calm and mending their ego.   They will remember this later and if nothing else it will keep everyone’s emotions in check.

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