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Lots of talk about rulebook differences lately. Would anyone like to opine about what a list of the top ten problematic differences between RA, CARS, and NASA rule books might be (add Mexico if you are feeling energetic)? Please include rules for organizers also.

Jim Cox
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Since the RFOs aren't generally available, how about just the rule book for competitors first...

http://www.rally-america.com/info/2005_Rules.pdf
http://nasarallysport.com/rules-forms/2005_General_Regulations_for_Rallies.pdf
http://209.250.151.132/CARSRally/Default.aspx?tabid=92

(although I'm not sure that the CARS book is complete)

Although one might argue that since the problems are so severe, no one will need to check the rulebooks, only recall their own horrible memories. *smirk* ;)

Cheers,
Anders
 

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Can't make any inputs on the RFO's.

As for car safety prep, the only significant diffs I can readily think of are:
1) Sidesill bars for RA
2) Catalytic converters for RA

The rules may read a lot different, but when you boil it all down, that's all I think about when moving from one body to the other. SInce we run G5 or Open, we don't have much insight on the diff in stock class rules.

Mark B.
 

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There are few more:

NASA requires FIA Cert. seats
RA requires those spill kits
RA requires fuel sampling ports
NASA requires alll batteries in a battery box if in the cabin and RA only requires this for wet cell batteries.

I am sure there are others but as Mark mentioned these are trivial other than the seats.



Matt Smith
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So from the looks of it, a combination of the two would be best. One car that rolled this weekend at Cog had their rear window smashed out by there battery. It was securely strapped down prior to this as well. Boxes should be required. FIA seats should also be required. I've been in a few seats that I would never even consider sitting in in race conditions. Cats bad for racing, good for environment means good for public view and noise. Though means us CO kids have to remove and reinstall between hill climbs and rallies.
 

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Thansk Matt. Forgot the seat certification.....though there is no time limiation on the FIA seats for NASA.

I agree the rest is pretty trivial. And, if you show up at NASA with an SCCA/RA logbooked car that meets the RA rules, then you're in. RA has not shown that degree of rules reciprocity in the past, but maybe this will change??

Regards,
Mark B.
 

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>One car that rolled this weekend at Cog had their rear
>window smashed out by there battery. It was securely strapped
>down prior to this as well. Boxes should be required.

A standard battery box would have made no difference in that case, they are not designed as a structural piece to keep the batter in place, they are there to contain the fluids from a wet-cell battery. The battery still must be secure or it will simply destroy the box.

If you want to require something different, like full-blown steel structural box, then the issue still remains that the box must be secured the the vehicle chassis in such a fashion that it will not come loose. And then we're right back to where we'd be in the battery was properly mounted in the first place.

That said, a battery box is such a simple thing that I would not mind seeing it required for all batteries. On the other hand, it's such a simple thing that if you really, really want to run your R-A car in a NASA event, you can just bit the bullet and put the thing in.

--
Mark Holden
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One significant difference between RA/NASA and CARS is that the Canadians have more, um, liberal rules regarding P4/PGT cars. ECUs are free in Canada, and antilag is also OK. Not so in US. In Canada, upper end production cars are basically "Open Lite" class. Wicked quick, fun to watch. Not that the US PGT cars ar exactly boring!

NASA's normally aspirated Open class (P2) is also much appreciated by people running older Imprezas built up with newer internals. This would be a great starter class for "spec sube" type cars where overall costs would be contained in AWD cars really well suited to running lots of events at modest cost (relatively) on the hardware side.

Timing differences remain, and should all migrate to FIA type. Speed factors/start order issues remain...wait, did I just kick that beehive again!!??


Dave G
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"...Embrace loose gravel, beware big trees..."
 

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Dave G said
>Timing differences remain, and should all migrate to FIA type.

Are you referring to the "how to calculate allowed transit time" difference, or something else?

Cheers,
Anders
 

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Christian,

I fully agree with what you're saying about the FIA timing system. Just for clarification for those that may not be aware, the NASA Rally Sport rules allow organizer to choose the timing system that is best for their event. This Includes the system the Canadians use which is a hybrid of the FIA system like the one you refer to in the UK.

Ray Hocker
Chairman, Rim of the World Rally
 

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>FIA transit timing leads to speeding when people have issues.
> The only way I support FIA transit timing is if we allow 15
>minutes per leg penalty free, as they do in the UK.
>
>- Christian
>
>Bjorn Christian Edstrom
>www.christianedstrom.com

Note that the canadian timing system allows for the full transit time, even if you are in the stage for longer than the 'slow' time, and in the regular course of things virtually eliminates cars checking in on the same minute at the next control, which is something I think we did almost every stage at Oregon Trails.

As for rule book differences, there is also a main hoop difference in the cage specifications, with the CARS spec being 1.75 for all cars ...

"SCCA" and presubably RA logbooked cars are allowed to run if the competitor is entering under a "SCCA"/RA license - but you can only scor championship points if you are running under a cars license (then your car has to meet cars rules)
 

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RE: CARS timing system

>Christian,
>
>I fully agree with what you're saying about the FIA timing
>system. Just for clarification for those that may not be
>aware, the NASA Rally Sport rules allow organizer to choose
>the timing system that is best for their event. This Includes
>the system the Canadians use which is a hybrid of the FIA
>system like the one you refer to in the UK.
>
>Ray Hocker
>Chairman, Rim of the World Rally

To clarify, the CARS system works like the FIA system until you exceed the bogey time for the stage, at which point it reverts to the RA system. For a start control to start control section, you are given a stage slow time and a transit time. Assuming you are faster than the stage slow time (you should be if you had a problem-free stage), you add the stage slow time and the transit time to your start time to determine your arrival time at the next control. If you took longer than the stage slow time, you add the transit time to your finish time (dropping the seconds) to determine your arrival time. This ensures that you always have a reasonable time for the transit. The downside to this system (and the FIA system) is that you always start in the same order (unless you have a problem), so start order and reseed order can be critical.

Adrian
 

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>Note that the canadian timing system allows for the full
>transit time, even if you are in the stage for longer than the
>'slow' time, and in the regular course of things virtually
>eliminates cars checking in on the same minute at the next
>control, which is something I think we did almost every stage
>at Oregon Trails.

Right, which is actually the downside of the Canadian system. In the US, if you are catching someone, and finish on the same minute as him, you can pass him on the transit and check in as normal in front of him in the next ATC. In Canada, you have to arrange the switch inside the ATC/Start control.

Aside to Ray: As I understand it, the UK national events that use FIA timing actually use strict FIA Start-ATC timing, not the Canadian timing. But they also allow all competitors to take up to 15 minutes of road penalty between any two MTCs. So basically, you can have 15 minutes extra service any time you want, etc.

- Christian

Bjorn Christian Edstrom
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I've only raced once in the RA series ... so excuse me if I don't follow you.
I can make up 56 seconds on a car in a stage, and if he finshses at 0:58 and I finish at 1:02 I still check in a minute after he does at the next control ... So passing a car that is slower than you is far from a given (target finish time will vary for class to class by over a minute - you'll run into the top of the minute issue no matter what you do)
If the rally is running smoothly and there are no back-ups in the stage start (not that this ever happens) ... can this also not lead to 'holes' on the road? (the car ahed finishes at 0:59 and I finish at 2:01)

At least with an orderly check in you have time to deal with passing requests ... I seem to recall one control at oregon where we had 3 cars checking in on the same minute ... it was all the marshals could do to deal with the three crews
 

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Christian said
>Right, which is actually the downside of the Canadian system.
>In the US, if you are catching someone, and finish on the same
>minute as him, you can pass him on the transit and check in as
>normal in front of him in the next ATC. In Canada, you have
>to arrange the switch inside the ATC/Start control.

My own preference as a competitor is that the two teams would mutually decide to switch places based on their scores. I suppose up at the top end of the field there would be some resistance to that sort of gentlemanly behavior (letting someone faster in front of you). As an organizer I would rest easier knowing that rally cars weren't passing (or 'racing' in the local's view) on the public roads, and had _no_ reason, desire, or excuse to do more than putt around at well below the speed limit.

Cheers,
Anders
 

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>
>
>At least with an orderly check in you have time to deal with
>passing requests ...
>

This setup works pretty well. I've been involved in a number of passing requests this way, and there's time to work things thru without strerssing the marshals too much. Further back in the field, you can get by cars witout hazardous passing on stage. Toward the front, where speed differences between cars are generally less, passing requests may involve a bit more negotiation/diplomacy/intimidation. But if you're in a fast car that's got a bum turbo or a sick gearbox, it's rarely a problem to work out being switched at a control to avoid blocking crews who need to do their full-bore thing.

YEs, the CDN system does allow gaps in the order if someone DNFs ahead of you. Sometimes you get a little luck-of-the-draw gap to deal with dust or snow this way. Often the marshals will hurry you thru a control to close up the field, especially late in an attrition-filled event. Being aware that you may have this sort of gap and then suddenly lose it is something you need to be aware of when running in Canada

Dave G

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Anders,

Of course you'd talk to the other car. I just meant you don't have to do it in the control. You can discuss it with the other competitor outside the control and don't have to bother the control worker.

When I said "pass on the transit," I meant, "With mutual agreement, pull ahead when parked before the yellow board."

- Christian

Bjorn Christian Edstrom
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