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Old 07-19-2007, 05:35 AM   #1
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Default Handicapping

This topic could be in on-road or more general, but I only do off-raod, so this is where I normally read.

I have heard that some racers get discouraged when they are too many laps down from the top guys. I have seen it theorized that 1/8 nitro is more popular because the slower guys are fewer laps behing the fast guys. Etc.

So many other "sports" (which I don't really play) such a bowling, golf, drag racing, etc. have a "handicap". I even use the idea myself when I am racing. For example, if there is at least one very skilled (could finish in top few mains at a nationals) racer at the track, I normally go about 75% as fast as him. So, I usually look at my times and see if I am doing better than or worse than my benchmark (like a handicap). I hope the math and notion of a handicap is very obvious to everybody -- if not, ask.

So would it make people happy if they could be racing against there handicap (as well as keeping all the normal scoring in place)? For example, modify the race-scoring software so that when you finish a race day, it prints out all your normal info, plus a "handicap number", say mine number is 75. Then when I sign up for my next race at any other track with the same software, I tell them my handicap number is 75, then they type it in. Then at the end of that race, I see what my new handicap number is, and how it compares to my normal numbers.

Have at it.
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Old 07-19-2007, 06:47 AM   #2
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Hrm.. anyone for a round of golf? lol jk good idea in theory but it would require implementation and co-operation on a fairly large scale between racing organizations and clubs which i doubt is going to happen in all honesty.

When i race i know there are going to be guys that beat me (usually sponsored drivers) but i accept this fact. I prefer to look at my own lap times and compare it with my previous efforts and find that a personally satisfying and enjoyable way to race.

I do however like your idea but i think its probably something that's easier done on a personal basis.

I don't think a handy cap system will ever put you on the drivers stand next to Andy Moore or Adam Drake. I believe that if your putting too much pressure upon yourself to win races you have probably lost sight of what RC is about.. having fun.

My $0.02
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Old 07-19-2007, 07:39 AM   #3
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Yeah. I would not suggest that people actually get prizes or anything for performance relative to their handicap. For scoring software, it would be a simple change. It could be done manually (some people aren't math people, though). Maybe a little on-line calculator would let folks take notes at the race, come home, then compute -- calculator would let you enter your laps/time and the fastest guy's laps/time and spit out a value.
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Old 07-19-2007, 09:15 AM   #4
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This is actually something we practice to an extent for our club races at our track. There are 2 or 3 of us "fast" guys at the track who normally win. So we generally start the races in the back, and depending on what kind of day we're having we may start up to a half lap back.

In many ways this helps us out quite a bit, since we have to do a lot of passing, while still fighting for our position with the other fast guys that start with us. Meanwhile the guys up front get some "1st place" time which with experience calms them down and improves their driving. Also, it gets the newer guys some excitement when they see us on their tail waiting for a passing opportunity. It's funny how many times new drivers crash right after the RD says "Bobby is in 1st place!" Once they get used to hearing their name it becomes easier for them.

Now for big events, it's all out. But something that we've noticed since starting this practice. We've had fewer first turn pileups.

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Old 07-19-2007, 10:04 AM   #5
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That is a really cool way to make everything work.

When I go to tracks, I just use this formula
100 * (myLaps * fastGuyTime) / (myTime * fastGuyLaps)

So if the fast guy does 11/5:16 and I do 8/5:10, then I get a
100 * (8 * 316) / (310 * 11) about 75% [note: 316 = 5:16; 310 = 5:10]

My normal score these days is about 75 if there are really fast guys there.
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Old 07-19-2007, 10:13 AM   #6
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I think its a great idea for club level races.

Everyone wants to believe they have a chance to win. I know alot of guys who got out of classes because they really didn't have any chance to win. More people are like that then they would hate to admit.

How it would be done effectively don't know, maybe start guys with a certain second penalty (assuming a series here) based on how they finished in the main in the last race.

So basically if you were X amount of seconds faster than everyone else (or whatever you can use to measure), you start with that penalty tacked on for your main, assuming you get to the same main again. Maybe apply it to all top 3 A-main finishers from the previous race.

Anyway, again like I said, probably a much better way to do this, but, whatever keeps guys raicng is what matters!

I wonder if this could be used somehow to eliminate any need for stock or 19T classes? just run them all together and seperate out based on this "handicap" thing?
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Old 07-19-2007, 02:07 PM   #7
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I race to see how my driving compares to others. It's taken me 3 or 4 years but it feels really good to have a good shot of making the A when there's multiple heats. I know I'm not in it for the win, but it's fun to see if I can stay on the same lap or within one lap of the top dogs. I wouldn't want it any other way. But that's just my personal opinion
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Old 07-19-2007, 04:43 PM   #8
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handicapin is lame you should be able to run whith people you singend up to be with
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Old 07-19-2007, 10:57 PM   #9
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Not sure I like the idea.

If you eliminate the stock and 19t classes then where do the newbees start? mod....that would just make all the mod guys mad, they would run over the back of us stock guys. causing the stock/new guys to get mad....

But that is just mt opinion
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Old 07-20-2007, 06:59 AM   #10
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I can see your point on this about seperating people out, though I think its more of a skill issue than a speed issue.

I am curious how this is handling in nitro as they don't really have a stock or 19T style engine versus the mod engines. They just run them together, and seperate by skill level like novice versus sportsman.

Maybe the handicap thing is kind of like that.
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Old 07-20-2007, 07:23 AM   #11
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We usually only get about 6-8 drivers in the electric classes, so everyone has to run together. The fast guys will sometimes run a stock motor and let the newer guys run whatever they want. The fast guys still win, but it does show the new guys that you don't need the fastest motor to be fast.

Another option:
Seperate out the newer guys from the "fast" guys on the race printouts, but still race them together. This keeps from having 2 and 3 car races when there's not enough to make full heats of stock and mod.
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Old 07-20-2007, 07:41 AM   #12
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There is already a system in place for skill level placement. The races are seperated by A, B, C, and lower mains. If your down 5 laps from the fastest driver in the class YOU choose to race in, then your handicapp is 5 laps.

Everybody has a chance to win, you just need to practice alot, get experience and learn how to drive smart, clean, and fast. If you not willing to put in the effort and make the time to do that, then you shouldn't win. If your not happy placing in the C-main, you have two options, practice and learn and get better results, or quit racing. If you decide to quit racing then this wasn't the hobby for you. You should be in the hobby because you enjoy playing with remote control cars with others, winning some races should just be icing on the cake.

Don't reward slow drivers to keep them in the hobby, it just makes winning worth less for the fast guys who deserve to win.

Last edited by Scrubb; 07-20-2007 at 08:03 AM.
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Old 07-20-2007, 08:37 AM   #13
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I think that handicapping and systems like that make for unnecessary complications. The tracks in my area are doing Sportsman classes and one even did an intermediate class. The idea of A, B, C, etc. mains went out the window because there were less than 10 people per class despite the track being full of people. Instead of giving people the chance to be competitive it made the racing so that nobody was competitive. You knew you would make the main and that you'd be racing the same 4-5 guys you did the week before.

I'm finding more and more that care needs to be taken in what a track chooses to offer and not offer. In our area right now there are fully 3 off road race series happening and the turnout is just so-so. There is usually an A and B main for buggies and truggies and one heat/main of MT and 1/10. A year ago we had much better turnout than this at our weekly club races. With the series races happening all the time it is thinning out the club races while the the "big" races aren't big enough to be "big".

I say keep it simple. It's toy car racing and most guys don't need to win, just to race and enjoy it.
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