Course Navigation Feedback

J Prich

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Reading and engaging in some recent conversations here and elsewhere has spurred my interest in course navigation tools (course markings, GPS files, and danger notes). It's a topic that I don't see discussed very specifically, just random comments from time to time when someone makes a passing comment. Looking to gather some feedback and insight based on your personal experience in a race vehicle, either seat. (No offense bike dudes but I'm mostly fixating on car/truck/utv stuff here because most bike orgs seem to have fairly consistent and well established protocols already).

Would love to get some constructive feedback from you regarding what you think is working well, and what is not. It's anonymous so feel free to be honest (but again...ideally constructive!) Not race series/promoter specific. Don't care where you race, in fact the more places you've raced the better. Just trying to figure out how we might be able to take specific feedback and improve what we do to make race courses safer. Appreciate your time in taking a few minutes to share your thoughts. If you're motivated, please feel free to share this with others who might have useful insight as well.

Click the link for the survey: Race Course Navigation Tools Survey


Thanks for your time!
 
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J Prich

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Can only influence what I’m around but would like to make an effort to see if we can tweak some things to do better with.
 

MTPyle

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Great job on taking action to learn more about this topic. The Survey was good and I am sure will give you a lot of data. It was fast and simple to take so hopefully many do.

Thanks for doing this.

Mike
 

Baja Bryan

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One thing not mentioned is would this be for a non prerun race? That makes a huge difference. By best advice is to allow at least one lap pre running for safety. To race without prerunning can be a very dangerous thing.
 

J Prich

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One thing not mentioned is would this be for a non prerun race? That makes a huge difference. By best advice is to allow at least one lap pre running for safety. To race without prerunning can be a very dangerous thing.
Yeah I should have clarified that more directly. Specifically referring to no pre run races here.
 

J Prich

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Just wanted to quickly say thank you to everyone who's taken the time to respond so far. It's helpful to get a general gauge of attitude and read through the specific feedback about what people "like" and what they think should be done better. Again I can't change or fix these things for everything but I do have the opportunity to incorporate the feedback in to a couple of events for this year and next and we'll use this to help shape how we work this stuff going forward.

A lot of great ideas already floated to consider if we can pull off. Please feel free to continue to share it with anyone you think might have helpful input...the more feedback the better.
 

kyle_pc_75

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What, no option for BOR? jajaja. Anyway, I think the most valuable input I can give is to standardize markings and communicate between the org and the racers what their marking practices are. I have a document I prepared a few years ago that attempted to do just that, but I don't think we (BOR) have done a good job of actually sticking to what's in that document. I can dig it up and post it later tonight.

As for dangers, we do pretty much all loop races, usually have a pre-run, and so don't provide danger info other than the markers on course (nothing is given out with the GPS files), and only talk about the worst of them at Driver's Meeting. We always tell people not to drive off their GPS, it's basically a map to watch for turns and keep you from getting lost if markings have been eaten by cows. Kind of old school, I guess.

It's also hard to communicate the difference between a Class 11 danger and a TT danger...
 

J Prich

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What, no option for BOR? jajaja. Anyway, I think the most valuable input I can give is to standardize markings and communicate between the org and the racers what their marking practices are. I have a document I prepared a few years ago that attempted to do just that, but I don't think we (BOR) have done a good job of actually sticking to what's in that document. I can dig it up and post it later tonight.

As for dangers, we do pretty much all loop races, usually have a pre-run, and so don't provide danger info other than the markers on course (nothing is given out with the GPS files), and only talk about the worst of them at Driver's Meeting. We always tell people not to drive off their GPS, it's basically a map to watch for turns and keep you from getting lost if markings have been eaten by cows. Kind of old school, I guess.

It's also hard to communicate the difference between a Class 11 danger and a TT danger...
Totally my fault Kyle, I should have included BOR for sure! Different animal for you guys given you're able to have a pre run. With that capability I totally agree with your process...org gives you the basic file and YOU go out and mark your own GPS notes...knowing that what the org is giving you is just the bare minimum with the expectation that you as the racer need to fill in the gaps. With no pre run races the dynamic changes IMO to put the primary onus on the org, not the racer.

In every situation, prerun or no prerun course, I think the "Use your own good judgement and don't expect ANY of these things to be your savior" should be an expected disclaimer.
 

y2kbaja

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Missed Vorra too.
Course markers and dangers all depend on what class and speed. We can go around all day long marking course (which I have done since I was a kid) and mark every danger, hole, g out, rock etc. It all matters on what class you're racing. When I was racing 7s we slowed for everything, 7 open we slowed for nothing. You'd actually slow for the dangers then realize it wasn't there in for that car. Marking or not marking dangers put the course marking personnel in liability. I only mark the super dangers that can end your day.
 

jon coleman

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short,multi loop races are REALLY the safest if your scared, p2p races are a different mind set, & should have a better notes/gps/markings system, therefore if your starting out in desert racing, a 7s truck at Barstow is King!( heck, dont need any markers or gps there
 

critter81

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Don't take this the wrong way, but Desert Racing in North America is outdated as it relates to navigation.... Dakar uses a specific set of instructions with Dangers included, it does not matter whether you are Moto or Car, same instructions... All you need to do is include a good road book from the organizers at the time of a GPS file and BAM you are good to go. There is really no need for course markings of Dangers with the use of 1) Pre running 2) Dangers marked in a book 3) OPen GPS file. Course markings get ruined or removed all the time. If you are racing and relying on course markings and then those markings get removed or torn down by the car in front of you. It is 100 times worse than not having them at all.

If you are interested in learning how you can incorporate Road Book files into GPS and marking dangers I am happy to show you. There are APPS out there that would do all this for you and make life way easier. If you gave a GPS file to put into the GPS and a road book at the same time it would be very very fast and the need to pre run would be significantly reduced saving time and money for the teams./
 

J Prich

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I should have foot stomped this in my original post but keep in mind this survey is anonymous so I don't know who wrote what. IF you want to discuss further and share input directly, I'd love to hear from you. Feel free to DM me here with your preferred contact details and I'll touch base with you.
 

jon coleman

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are you gonna post a pie/ graph chart, maybe break down the survey in a week or two?, thanx.jc
 

joshmx88

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Don't take this the wrong way, but Desert Racing in North America is outdated as it relates to navigation.... Dakar uses a specific set of instructions with Dangers included, it does not matter whether you are Moto or Car, same instructions... All you need to do is include a good road book from the organizers at the time of a GPS file and BAM you are good to go. There is really no need for course markings of Dangers with the use of 1) Pre running 2) Dangers marked in a book 3) OPen GPS file. Course markings get ruined or removed all the time. If you are racing and relying on course markings and then those markings get removed or torn down by the car in front of you. It is 100 times worse than not having them at all.

If you are interested in learning how you can incorporate Road Book files into GPS and marking dangers I am happy to show you. There are APPS out there that would do all this for you and make life way easier. If you gave a GPS file to put into the GPS and a road book at the same time it would be very very fast and the need to pre run would be significantly reduced saving time and money for the teams./
[/QUOTE

That is how some of us like it, not all of us want to be looking at two or three navigation devices or a road book while riding/racing through the desert, it takes away the talent and fun of having to look up and see where you are going and reading terrain. No amount of markers and gps files and dangers is going to save you from the desert at the end of the day.
 

michael.gonzalez

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That BOR doc is a great start! Include a corresponding GPS symbol next to each course marking for added clarity in the GPS file.
 

J Prich

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Hey all, just pushing this forward again. I'm shooting for a triple digit response rate and somewhat surprisingly we aren't that far from that. Been a lot of good feedback so far and I'll be happy to share some general trends that I've seen in reading through what has been shared.

I appreciate your time and help in sharing this with anyone with relevant input and experience that can help shape how we view these things.
 

C.J. Hutchins

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I should have foot stomped this in my original post but keep in mind this survey is anonymous so I don't know who wrote what. IF you want to discuss further and share input directly, I'd love to hear from you. Feel free to DM me here with your preferred contact details and I'll touch base with you.
Ha Ha I was trying to think of good stuff to put on there anonymously, lol did you know which one was mine?
 

J Prich

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Ha ha Im not sure I could tell for sure, there were a few with "creative" input, lol.
 
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