On Monday I was able to look into both the Fixed and Open series Stats pages. Not to see where in the standings I was, we have not run the first race! I was there to see what Division I would be in. For some odd reason last season the division I was in did not match between the two series. This year I found that I will be in Division 4 in both series – a good division or two higher than I was expecting.
I am hoping to get in a few races prior to the start of the season to give my iRating a boot. With all three of the top series at Daytona, there could be a good chance to do just that. I have few oval wins, but two in each of the trucks and Nation-oops, I mean XFINITY cars at this track.
I have issues with running all the time frames this year for the first time. My wife is deep into her accounting degree classes and many of her classes are online. As she also works full time, the Friday and Saturday night races just will not be on the schedule for some time. Also the Saturday morning and Sunday night races are a scratch. This leave me with the Wednesday and Thursday night races as my main schedule with the Saturday and Sunday morning races as the backups. For me the Saturday race is a 2AM affair with Sunday being a fine 9AM deal.
OK, Daytona is as good a place to start the season off with a WIN. Lots of testing and my setup is good, fast and stable. There are guys that are faster, but I think the race will come down to a thinking man’s race. This is what I am good at and I feel that this is a track I can win again at.
I have my fuel man in the pits working the numbers as the race goes on. He also has a look at the oil and water but this should not be a problem here. All the testing has said that 50 or 60% tape is not going to be an issue. How much tape to run on the final stop will depend on just how spread out or pack racing is taking place around lap 160 to 170. We know that running alone we can make it home with no issues from lap 160 even running all by ourselves.
The fuel window on the left is the key window here. He is my fuel man. He tells me how many laps I can run before I have to stop (on the left). He also have me up to date on how many stops will be needed from this point in the race (on the right). He is always working the numbers and the large number at the bottom is his handy work on just how close to making it or not that final tank is. The needle moves with the calculation each lap. Note that any place from five laps short to half a lap to the good is in the Red Zone. This means that there is a fear I could run out prior to the finish line. Between half a lap to the good and three laps to the good is the Yellow Zone. This means your close, but don’t push too hard or you could burn too much and come up short. The fuel man feels good when he sees that the numbers show I have three laps to the good or more and he gives me the green light to Go Go Go. But he updates the calculations as I cross the line each lap and the numbers game can change as the laps click by. For most races he works the numbers based on the last 15 laps. As the fuel run here is 40 to 43 laps I can ask him to use the last 20 laps, but 15 has worked well for me in testing at a number of tracks.
I have two screen, one large and one smaller. I run iRacing full screen on the larger 32 inch screen. On the right is my smaller 18 inch screen. I put the Pit Boss in the upper left corner so it is easy to see. Note that the oil and water gauges change color to match the colored bar as the heat increases and they even blink red if the temps get to hot. Blinking lights even on the screen next to me get my eye quick.
I have a new software package called Open Broadcast. I do not plan to stream my races as I live out in the country and my old DSL line cannot support such things. I do plan to save the save the sim races on the spooler and then attempt to learn to clip in parts of the race with comments about how the events effected the race both for me and overall.
OK, on the news regarding the Class C and Class B Open series I have much too much to say for one blog. I will wait and see how it plays out, but I must say, it is not what I would have done. I am only one guy and I have not been in the countless meetings regarding this change so there is information I do not have. I will say that I hope it works out well.
James Falcon Pratt