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Keep Drifting Fun! Is this Fun???

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  • #31
    I think getting rid of the pace cone completely would do more harm than good.

    The low-torque/low-power cars would almost never be able to create a gap on the more powerful V8s when they're in the lead and they would be hard pressed to keep up with one when chasing.

    Even if the judges factor for this in their decision it would certainly take away from the experience for spectators. Watching the V8s constantly run away and also chase down the 4 bangers would look so one-sided.

    The only way teams would be able "find that balance" is to shoe horn a big V8 in the front of whatever their driving. Many people already think that the only way to be competitive in Formula Drift right now is to run 8 cylinders. I think having no pace cone at all would just solidify that sentiment.

    I vote perminant pace cone.


    • #32
      I'd just like to see some consistency in the series. In the judging and rules. It would just be nice to see what's in the rulebook applied to every team/driver fairly and consistently.

      Keep the pace cone or not, but don't make it optional. That just leads to inconsistency. Make the decision then let everyone adapt to the situation.

      Judge the runs fairly and impartially. Stop having so many decisions which leave so many people saying "WTF?"


      • #33
        I keep hearing over and over FD talking about that drift is not about speed or who gets to the finish first, but i also keep hearing over and over the judges say "well this driver had a huge gap on his lead run so he advances"

        Sounds like a lot of BS to me. i guss Taka will never win unless he drop a LS on that little corolla.
        And when you get the underdogs to out drift one of the big guys, the judges just dont care and give the win to the biggest sponsors. I think is so disrespectfull to the public and fans. If the next couple of rounds keep like the last one, i rather just watch YOUTUBE drift videos from japan or other countries that have more legitimate drifting and traditional drift teams/cars


        • #34
          Interesting points being brought up here for sure.

          Here's my take on it, be it right or wrong. Because our team (and many others) are paid to compete, its our obligation to the people that pay us to figure out how to be as competitive as possible. That's true in any professional motorsport, including FD.

          I don't make the rules, but its my job to ensure I'm at no disadvantage because of them. Drifting is still a speed contest, even though its drifting, because the judges are looking for close tandem. So, if I engineer a car fast enough to create a gap in a lead run, and my driver can still follow closely with same angle and line, current rules and judging say my driver should have the advantage. Not my rules, but the rules I'm bound to compete by.
          Hence the invasion of the V8's... reliable big horsepower numbers for fast drift cars.

          The rules in any motorsport are created to try and bring parity between different cars and teams. Hence the pace cone rule, because as I understand it judging doesn't start until the cars initiate into the first turn.
          And if the rules are in place to create parity and fairness, those same rules should be applied equally to all drivers and cars. It shouldn't matter if a driver has 800hp or 250hp, or any other factor. Rules should be (and have been rather well I think) applied equally to all drivers.

          The goal of the pace cone is to attempt to get both cars initiating at the same time into the first turn, because thats where the judging begins.
          If a pace cone is in effect, I believe its fair for anyone to use it (should both drivers agree). A horsepower limit or other factors can't be placed on if the pace cone is allowed - our sport is subjective enough without adding that.

          Its true that at some tracks we ignore the straight line speed capability of some of our cars (within reason) and make that compromise to improve the chassis balance while in drift. We only do that when a pace cone is in effect. But its not like when we do that our cars are slow in a straight line. They just may not be the fastest car in a straight line anymore.
          In qualifying at Seattle for example, our data showed Tyler entering the bank at 62mph and Kearney at 66mph. Bonnie was down there all weekend taking bank entry speeds from the infield. Thats why Tyler asked for the pace cone.
          But Tyler's 62mph bank entry placed him exactly in the middle of the qualifying field for bank entry speed, so he wasn't slow. Kearney was just 4mph faster in a straight line, Tyler was faster in drift.

          I personally think any driver or team who enters turn one after a drag race start with 3+ car lengths on the chase driver is setting himself up to look stupid. Judging starts at initiation of the first turn, and if the chase car closes that gap during the run while maintaining angle and line, the chase car will have an advantage from that run.

          How fast your car can be down the straight before turn one is not the point of drifting. Drifting is about how fast and how much angle can be held after the first turn initiation, when running the correct line.

          I don't intentionally slow our cars down in a straight line. But if the result of a better chassis in drift brings that compromise at times, I shouldn't have to care with current FD rules. The drag race isn't judged, because as I understand it, judging begins when the cars initiate into the first corner. And our cars are still not SLOW in a straight line - even if a really fast straight line car makes them look like they are.

          I think most of (but not all) the complaints about FD judging would not be an issue if more people fully understood the judging criteria for that particular event. Most complaints I see about this or that run being judged unfairly are based on someone not fully understanding what the judges are looking for. Most people are not in the drivers meetings where those topics are often very well discussed. Other complaints, like the gaps between cars before initiation and how that is looked at by judges are often not fully understood either - even by some drivers and teams.
          FD judges are human, and can make mistakes. But they make a lot less than some people seem to make out, have a very difficult job, and all in all I think are doing very well.

          I don't expect everyone to get this, understand it, or agree with me. Just my opinions guys

          ASD Inc.


          • #35
            FD are you there? Its important not to underestimate or insult your fans by assuming they don't or can't understand what's happening on the track. There are many who post here and elsewhere who DO know and SEE. From the stands, trackside, judging tower and now on Live Feed as well. Many who HAVE been around and involved long enough to understand that what we are seeing isn't working out like it should.
            Understand also that, at least for myself , these issues and posts are made because we care and feel its important enough to say something. I'd rather not have to say anything but I will if I feel the need to.


            • #36

              When one drivers violates the pace cone, the run immediately stops and is called a "scratch" and they do the run over. No Driver is penalized or looked down upon due to the "scratch". Why? because they don't want to penalize a driver that's being "overly competitive" .

              Every now and again we gotta take some notes from out buddies in the far-east.


              • #37
                Sorry for the long post.... but I think we're digging at a very important issue in FD.

                Originally posted by Yoitsjdm
                Tyler McQ asked for a pace against Dean K, knowing that his car has DOUBLE the horsepower of Dean, and were within .3 mph on their entry speed according to the qualifying speeds (69.4 for T McQ, 69.7 for Dean K).
                I believe this data was pulled from the actual qualifying information, and the "official" speeds at the exit of the bank.

                Originally posted by ASD Ian
                In qualifying at Seattle for example, our data showed Tyler entering the bank at 62mph and Kearney at 66mph. Bonnie was down there all weekend taking bank entry speeds from the infield. Thats why Tyler asked for the pace cone.

                But Tyler's 62mph bank entry placed him exactly in the middle of the qualifying field for bank entry speed, so he wasn't slow. Kearney was just 4mph faster in a straight line, Tyler was faster in drift.
                You said "bank entry speeds", I assume that means at the end of the straight. Correct? I would be interested to see if FD has any similar measurement to judge runs like this. As much as I hate the drift box, this is the EXACT situation where it might be beneficial - you can establish different "sectors" and find out the min / max speed for each sector. FD only has 2 radar guns, and on a big track like Seattle, sometimes you need more measurements of speed.

                Right or wrong, I think everyone wants to see side-by-side competition, and everyone wants to see the lower-budget teams compete against the bigger budget teams. On paper, this run seemed like a great matchup, but watching the run live, I didn't understand why it was such a problem that Dean was so fast. In talking with Dean, he has the same "foot to the floor, never lift" attitude that many of the D/A guys have, and I think that's what makes him fun to watch. We all know that the SR20 motor has its' limitations against the V8's with more torque and much more power "under the curve" for throttle control mid-drift, and I'd consider Dean to be the "underdog" in this matchup (he also qualified lower). The fact that he was able to pull away from the higher-qualified, higher-powered McQuarrie should have favored him in that run, not punished him.

                Originally posted by MonkeySlide
                Even if the judges factor for this in their decision it would certainly take away from the experience for spectators. Watching the V8s constantly run away and also chase down the 4 bangers would look so one-sided.
                Remember, this whole argument is about a 450 hp S14 which is FASTER than a 700 hp V8, and entered the bank 4 mph faster. Even Ian admitted - Dean K was FAST! IMO, if that's the case, LET IT BE! If Dean wins with a car that was cheaper to build and much lower horsepower, but setup better for the particular track (remember, this is Intec's home track so it isn't a HUGE surprise that he's actually faster here than other teams that have much less testing), so be it. I like rooting for the underdog, and for someone like Dean who has hit a lot of tough breaks (literally in the case of his axles in Long Beach), I'd love to see him take down a gorilla like Tyler McQuarrie at his home track, even though Tyler is a good friend of mine. Tyler deserves to do well, and this season hasn't been his best, but Dean was ripping it up in Seattle and I thought he might have deserved the win, if it weren't for the 'gap' on entry that Jrod announced he was punished for.

                I think everyone wants to see side-by-side driving. Nobody wants to see Tanner put 5 car lengths on Taka before initiation. However, if Taka has "more straight-line grip" than a V8 in a certain run, should that V8 be allowed to ask for a pace ? Is that fair to Taka ?

                We all agree that these situations are relative, and it takes human judgment to determine what the best call is for a certain situation. I don't think we need a black-and-white "pace cone always counts" or "no pace cone" rule, but we have to be prepared for the situation should it come up. The pace cone has been a point of contention all year (IE JR in Atlanta saying "why the hell would I give someone the pace cone if it doesn't matter? i'm going full throttle the whole way, if they can't keep up, tough" in so many words), and now is the time that the foot needs to be put down by the officials.


                • #38
                  Slapshotnerd, you missed my point. Kearney was faster in a straight line, right up to the bank entry. None of that section is judged by FD rules, and in my opinion shouldn't be. Who should care about judging a drag race in drifting?

                  The data I quoted was bank entry speed, collected by Bonnie on the ASD team. FD data was bank exit speed. Its obvious if you see Tyler was 4mph slower at bank entry but had the same bank exit speed... Tyler is faster through the bank.

                  This isn't rocket science, anyone with half a brain should realize they need to know how fast their competitors will be ENTERING the bank. That simple fact sets up the entire bank run, the biggest impact zone of the entire course.

                  If Kearney, his team, or anyone else doesn't bother to collect bank entry speed data like we do, and drive foot to the floor down the straight leaving the chase driver behind before first turn initiation... this is what can happen.

                  Tyler was faster in drift (where the competition is judged) and chased him down.
                  Kearney was faster down the straight (where the competition is not judged) but slower through the course, allowing Tyler to reel him in.
                  My guess is that's why Tyler moved on. Dean Kearney set himself up.

                  If you think FD should change their thinking, and allow everyone to run full speed down the straight regardless of how close the two cars will enter turn one, I disagree. Tandem drifting would suffer severely, because V8 cars will have drag race set-ups (trust me, mine would) and win the round with a 6 car gap before turn one.

                  Thats not what any of us want, and shows FD is already doing the right thing here.

                  I think I've made all my points, and will now humbly go back to my Miller Tig welder and fix Tyler's car

                  See you all in Vegas

                  ASD Inc.


                  • #39
                    Ian thank you for taking the time and interest to post with your information and explanation.
                    I think there are a few different points being contested here simultaneously. If you feel the judging has been fair and consistent and the rules enforced fairly then that's good.
                    I'm seeing a bit of the D1 over FD debate here too. That's fine in regards to comparison of regulations and how they're enforced.
                    Also there is the underdog vs. major sponsor backed team viewpoint.
                    All I've tried to point out is that unless there is a clearcut rule regarding, specifically in this discussion, the pace-cone then it leaves too much to interpretation and subject to differing opinions. Any number of arguments can be made if its optional. So by making it a clearly defined rule you can eliminate that particular variable and therefore one less thing for speculation.


                    • #40

                      Resume sent.


                      • #41
                        I just read my post and I should be more clear on one point. JR didn't have to pace me but he did. We rolled off together in first like I asked then he charged into the bank like he should. The gap there was from my car being slow in a straight line.
                        I just thought some people may read it like I was saying JR didn't wait for me, which was not the case. Word!


                        • #42
                          I just read this thread for the first time and I wanted to chime in. I am a big fan of the pace cone. Personally whether there is a pace cone or not I pretend there is ESPECIALLY against lower powered cars. This is because I understand what drifting is just as most of the drivers in Formula D and we want to enter as close as possible to each other. It is a fact that Some drivers will just run as hard as they can for some reason. I'm not going to get into a long drawn out discussion on car setup etc... I think Ian already did a great job of explaining that. The bottom line is respect and communication, All drivers need to respect there opponent almost until the point where they are risking getting to the speed they need to enter the first turn properly, the pace cone pretty much forces this to happen and I feel is required until everyone offers that respect without it. Drivers should also communicate more with there opponents especially if they don't have the data to know what the speeds are.

                          Originally posted by Slapshotnerd View Post
                          . The pace cone has been a point of contention all year (IE JR in Atlanta saying "why the hell would I give someone the pace cone if it doesn't matter? i'm going full throttle the whole way, if they can't keep up, tough" in so many words), and now is the time that the foot needs to be put down by the officials.

                          Please don't misconstrue what I said here. what you wrote is completely the opposite attitude I have towards the situation, ask anyone that has ever run against me especially Taka or even Hiromi in Corollas. I respect slower cars and have since day 1. What I said was "why would anyone give the pace cone if they are not forced to" I said that because I was trying to get it enforced due to being blown away after seeing video of other drivers in Long beach and I thought it was kind of ridiculous to see a few drivers run away the way they did on the first turn and get away with it.

                          Also I think everyone needs to stop throwing the budgets in every sentence. Yes Team Falken and other teams have great cars and crew BUT it has been proven time and time again that budgets don't win in drifting. There is a lot more variables to the success of the larger teams then just $, Ian touched on quite a few of them without even purposely pointing them out. Data and setup to suit each track is very important, just like any other pro motor sport. If you are still only just changing tire pressure between rounds your not going to be competitive.ALSO if you can afford a 500hp SR20 you can afford a 500 or 600 Hp V8. The decision to put a high powered Sr20 does not come based on budget, it's personal preference at that point. When motor sports become more competitive and your goal is to be a front runner personal preference gets thrown out the window.

                          Lastly.... everyone talking about Judges let the big sponsor win are simply out of there mind. Have you met our judges especially Tony Angelo, do you think they give a sh*t who is sponsoring the car that wins....I don't think so. that excuse and argument is used up and time to put it to rest. Tanner won Seattle. What has his sponsor ever done for FD? I'll give you the answer. Nothing.... he earned his win.

                          I think its cool that everyone cares so much to start a discussion. We all appreciate the support and opinions, Thank you.
                          Last edited by j.r.; 07-24-2010, 09:57 AM.
                          TEAM FALKEN


                          • #43
                            ^ Very well said J.R.

                            I have this conversation with people pretty much after every FD event when they make the same claims about the judges prefering the big name guy over the underdog but most of the time I side with the judges calls. Sometimes people are blinded by their own bias for or against certain cars and overlook mistakes in runs that the judges are counting. If their driver made a small mistake and the big name driver did not and the the big name driver wins all of a sudden their driver "Got robbed". I am not saying that every call the judges make is 100% right but most of the time I feel its on point. Also most people are not seeing the action from their[the judges] point of view either and that makes a Huge difference right there.
                            Last edited by Piner; 07-25-2010, 06:49 AM.


                            • #44
                              Couple things to consider here for some y'all that are dumbfounded Tyler's car can't keep up with Dean's.

                              A couple of well-documented and e-famous comparisons will hit this point home.

                              Remember the Dodge SRT-10 truck versus the Ford Lightnings? The Lightning would stomp the SRT-10 at drag strips all over the country, with 100 less horsepower. Traction.

                              GTR vs 700hp Shelby. Same weight, Shelby has almost twice the power. GTR wins, traction. Now this is obviously AWD vs RWD but it still reinforces the same basic principle.

                              You cannot alter the laws of physics, and one car putting down all 400rwhp versus a 700rwhp car blowing the tires off will normally yield the same result.

                              I know this would work at Seattle, Irwindale, Atlanta, and maybe some other places. How about during tandem a rolling start to a pace cone, set somewhere where both cars can honestly just roll up to speed till about mid second gear. Add 100' of runup or so, maybe even into the bank a bit, and just have both cars gently roll away, then lay on it. Obviously this would take some trial/error during practice to see where everyone should be.

                              The disadvantage I see with the pace cone at a track like Seattle with Dean's car is, Dean's car possibly doesn't have the torque, and possibly not the power to just roll into the bank 10mph slower than he was during qualifying waiting on Tyler's car to hook up, which is causing him to be at a disadvantage due to him needing the momentum to bomb the bank and keep it on the high line using the extra momentum. Momentum he wouldn't have going 10mph slower waiting on Tyler.

                              Now we move the start back (mystery increment)', have the following car roll out, and have an accelerate cone (obviously Tylers car can run down Dean's car all day from a 30 roll), Dean is allowed to go balls-out, Tyler in the lower inside lane has a slight lead or is next to him, and is responsible for tucking back in behind.

                              This keeps the cars close, allows Dean to keep his entry speed/consistency to throw down a true qualifying type run, as well as Tyler.

                              Just an Idea, I know in the past I've always tried to stay in the back of the starting box knowing I'd be fighting for traction when playing with my Ls13. I know at a lot of traction-limited places I'd just stage in the grid area, and get a nice 5-10mph roll thru the starting gate and would have a way easier time backpedaling thru 1-2 gear than I would if I just tried to dig my way outta the whole.

                              Just an idea, wouldn't require any sort of revolution to the venue or driving or anything, just a pair of orange pylons and moving the cars in grid back a couple feet so people can roll thru and get some traction.

                              Only reason I used Dean/Tyler is for theoretical purposes and since it was the point of this. I'm sure Dean's car has enough balls to rape the bank from a 5mph entry, but just for theoretical situation I threw that out there. I know some cars like Taka and probably some others need every ounce of entry speed they can get to make it around that bank.


                              • #45
                                I always thought and felt initiating at a high rate of speed took skill.

                                Damn Ive been fooled.