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Crowded on VIR Grand Course?

Old 03-12-07, 04:14 PM
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Crowded on VIR Grand Course?

I recall hearing that a HPDE on the Grand Course typically leads to long trains of cars on the course. Has anyone else heard this? On the Full course there are at least 3 sections to pass but I believe the Grand Course eliminates or partially effects one them leading to backups.

Trying to schedule my track events for 2007...
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Old 03-12-07, 04:21 PM
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ive heard the same.. hopin someone would chime in on this
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Old 03-12-07, 04:34 PM
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there's still 3 places to pass

Front straight

Bridge straight

Back straight

Run with the BMW Mercedes and Audi combined school in June. There's usually some pretty fast cars so you won't get held up too bad.
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Old 03-12-07, 07:58 PM
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Fritz how did I know that I would get a politically correct answer from you?
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Old 03-12-07, 08:00 PM
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I also thought that the back straight was severly truncated because of the layout?

So do people prefer the grand over the full course ?
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Old 03-12-07, 09:44 PM
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From what I've seen, the "backups" on HPDE's is common at pretty much all tracks with the lower 'learner' groups. You'll always have a few that don't care to 'test their cars and/or nerve' and hold up a bunch of cars. It makes it worse in the lower groups as they don't know when/how to let people pass and the other people don't know how/when to pass.
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Old 03-12-07, 10:56 PM
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I think the trains were due to many drivers had never been on the grand course. I didn't have any issues with it last year.

Fritz, I just signed up for Mazda at Shenandoah- do it! I'll be in the FC this time
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Old 03-13-07, 07:49 AM
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Originally Posted by patfat
I think the trains were due to many drivers had never been on the grand course. I didn't have any issues with it last year.

Fritz, I just signed up for Mazda at Shenandoah- do it! I'll be in the FC this time
I'm going to VIR with NASA around the 31st and then again with Audi later in April so I doubt I'll be able to squeeze it in. Hopefully I'll get a chance to run the Shenandoah course later in the year because it looks like big auto cross course which I would love.

I got a PM from Deke saying he's coming for a visit is he going to be there?
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Old 03-13-07, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by rceron
I also thought that the back straight was severly truncated because of the layout?

So do people prefer the grand over the full course ?

The back straight is great for passing if you have a high HP car because you're coming out of the slow oaktree turn and climbing the hill. The turn in point is right at the top of the hill on the back straight so you have plenty of time to pass.

Here's the link to the BMW event which I plan on going to: http://www.nccbmwcca.org/index.php?id=137,933,0,0,1,0
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Old 03-13-07, 08:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Fritz Flynn
I'm going to VIR with NASA around the 31st and then again with Audi later in April so I doubt I'll be able to squeeze it in.
I'll be flagging and camping at the track for the NASA event. Looking forward to seeing you out on the track!
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Old 03-13-07, 09:25 AM
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I was going to go to VIR on the 31st but I guess nascar is in town that weekend so the hotels were all full and most of my friends waffled about it so I bailed. I'll be at Mazdadriver's in April tho.

Regarding the topic question though... I think it depends on the club and how they run the grid. NASA queues everyone up and then releases everyone in a long train. It takes multiple laps for that initial train to sort itself out. Other clubs I've run with seem to stagger the release of cars out of the grid which makes for a much cleaner getaway. Also the size of the run groups the particular club allows can impact the formation of trains. I remember one time I was at an event and for whatever reason most of the people went home early so I had a session with less than 10 cars on the entire track. It was a little creepy not seeing anyone for laps at a time.
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Old 03-13-07, 09:30 AM
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My issue is, how many laps are you realistically going to get in olne 20 min. session? 4 or 5? You get caught behind one miata or mustang, and 25% of your session is blown.

Clubs ought to extend to 30 min. sessions w/ fewer cars/run groups if they're going to use that layout.
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Old 03-13-07, 09:36 AM
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Originally Posted by ptrhahn
My issue is, how many laps are you realistically going to get in olne 20 min. session? 4 or 5? You get caught behind one miata or mustang, and 25% of your session is blown.

Clubs ought to extend to 30 min. sessions w/ fewer cars/run groups if they're going to use that layout.
Yea, running with a club like NASA has the drawback of having to share the track with the race groups so you get shafted on long sessions. Last couple events I went to though, people were really good about getting you by. I can't remember really being held up at all. Guess it's hit or miss...
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Old 03-13-07, 09:44 AM
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made a little reference vid on my first time out at the grand course...
warm up lap.. discount the line work... specially right before oak tree..


check here
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Old 03-13-07, 11:23 AM
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Originally Posted by ArmitageGVR4
I was going to go to VIR on the 31st but I guess nascar is in town that weekend so the hotels were all full and most of my friends waffled about it so I bailed. I'll be at Mazdadriver's in April tho.

Regarding the topic question though... I think it depends on the club and how they run the grid. NASA queues everyone up and then releases everyone in a long train. It takes multiple laps for that initial train to sort itself out. Other clubs I've run with seem to stagger the release of cars out of the grid which makes for a much cleaner getaway. Also the size of the run groups the particular club allows can impact the formation of trains. I remember one time I was at an event and for whatever reason most of the people went home early so I had a session with less than 10 cars on the entire track. It was a little creepy not seeing anyone for laps at a time.
lol........I'm staying in Clarksville which is about 45 minutes away.

The local hotels want 229 or so per night and that makes my wallet look

NASA is the best run/organized race HPDE group there is but they try to squeeze too much in however I can't think of another group that could pull off what that organization is able to fit into a day. With hot pulls, letting the cars leave before the others pit and open passing in the advanced group it's not too bad. Also instructors are allowed to drive in atleast one session of the advanced group and sometimes all of them depending on the # of students signed up so the track time isn't that bad. Basically I'm going to watch some racing and just watch all the chaos that errupts in all the various happenings It's like a 10 ring circus.
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Old 03-13-07, 11:27 AM
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Yea, normally I'd camp at the track but it's still a little early in the season I think.

As far as NASA organization is concerned, I wasn't attacking it. They put on an awesome event and there's never a dull moment from start to finish. I was just saying that if someone's #1 concern is seat time, the smaller club events without racing that give you 3+ hrs of track time and smaller run groups are a good alternative.
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Old 03-13-07, 12:56 PM
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Looked at the June BMW event.....it's on a Thursday & Friday. Not good for me. Need to use the weekends as much as possible.

Heard the Audi events were good but I don't want to pay another fee to join a club just so I can attend their events. I already have PCA and BMW under my belt.

I guess it is Mazdadrivers for me in June. Hope they let me in considering I won't have a rotary engine in the FD anymore.
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Old 03-14-07, 08:54 PM
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No worries. Mazda drivers really has become Subaru drivers. Saw more dang STi's last year.
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Old 03-14-07, 10:09 PM
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Originally Posted by patfat
No worries. Mazda drivers really has become Subaru drivers. Saw more dang STi's last year.
Sounds like what rallycross has been for the last 4 years or so... At last weekend's DC region event, there were 8 wrx/sti's and a lone 323gtx in the AWD class (small turnout compared to most events). I was the only Mitsu. No problem, just more cannon fodder to take down that's all
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