Video, data etc -what's allowed

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mandalman
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Video, data etc -what's allowed

Hi Guys

hoping to do some track days with my nw Caterham later this year and just wondering what's allowed in terms of filming/data logging. Years ago when I tracked my TVR lap timers were an absolute no-no and I understand and agree with the reasons why (there was little point anyway because the TVR usually broke down before completing a lap). It's still fun to be able to look back at footage afterwardsto see where improvements can be made so I'm just wondering what is actually allowed. I've been trying to read up on the subject on pistonheads and some people go into meltdown at the very mention of the word 'timer' and others seems to say "well everyone else is doing it these days so...". That's a poor defense in my book and I want to stay on the right side  of TDOs but what options are allowable? Would something like a Racelogic Vbox lite been allowed if it didn't have an OLED linked to it or perhaps even just a GoPro linked to HLT or Race Chrono on the phone? on that subject are GoPros good enough or do people use Aim Smartycams? Interested to know what everyone is else is using. I'm not particularly techy so an easy plug and play solution would be preferred to something that needs lots of complicated hard wiring

Shaun_E
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I would suggest a GoPro with built in GPS (e.g. Hero 7 Black) and it will do everything you need unless you go racing. I rarely look at my Race Technology data logger output but often look at my GoPro footage which will show speed, G-Force, track position. It's fairly easy to use and the video output is very good quality with built in image stabilisation. 

BTW my data logger is for sprints/hill-climbs and circuit racing - I wouldn't be using it on a track-day.

mandalman
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Hi Shaun

That's the way I was leaning to be honest. Vbox seems a little over top but I was prepared to be convinced of its worth. I have been looking at the Hero 8 (if you search a bit its almost as cheap as the 7 and I assume it's better being the latest model) -  what software/app do you use with the GoPro?

garybee
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The GPS in a gopro is pretty good, I believe the sample rate is about 15 Hz which is plenty for any of our needs.  It's also nice to have a track overlay on your videos which the gopro does without any syncing of files afterwards.  

I also have a separate GPS receiver which pairs with an android phone/racechrono app.  This has sector times, lap times etc etc with all the major tracks (and lots of minor ones).  You can use this app to start logging and start the gopro all from one place.  I figure it's all ok so long as it's fitted somewhere where you can't see it whilst driving.

jimh
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I too understand the ban on lap timers but in reality lots of people are just taking this information from their onboard videos, so in reality it's a pointless ban. I have just purchased a second hand Vbox system for my car and I'm wondering if I will need to cover or disconect the oled display.
JonT
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The point is to stop people on track chasing lap times and making unsafe decisions (mostly around overtaking). Analysing at home - or even during lunchbreak is probably reasonable, but if you want to be chasing seconds or milliseconds, it's time to take up sprinting or racing. TDs are supposed to be a bit of fun. Sure, there might be lots of loopholes about what counts as timing, but ultimately if too many people take the piss they will spoil it for everyone because the TDO won't be able to get insurance to operate (which is where I understand the no-timing requirement comes from).

Ironically the faster laps may well be the ones that feel slower because you're smoother.

It gets even harder to avoid when some modern cars have built in data loggers and recording systems.

Golf Juliet Tango
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The obsession with lap times puts me off trackdays. In my naivety I thought trackdays were about fun.

I have promised Simon and the team that I will join them at some point in my low-powered Crossflow. But it isn't quick and has covered 130,000 miles over the past 24 years.

Stephen

Democratic dissent is not disloyalty, it is a positive civic duty

James B
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Come on down, Stephen - our Club trackdays are all about having fun!

I hope I'm not treading on Simon's toes here but, as far as Club trackdays are concerned, the ruling that we apply is "no real-time timing" is allowed.  

As has been said, trackdays are meant to be about fun and there is a danger that an over-eager obsession with improving sector or lap times might encourage driving styles that are counter to this objective.  Think it through; if you can see from your real-time display that you're on target for the fastest lap of your day and you're coming up behind a slower car in the braking zone of the final corner, do you simply fall into line behind that car (as trackday rules - and etiquette - require) or do you keep your foot down, become the last of the late brakers or maybe even go for an overtake mid-corner?  At the end of the day, it's a trackday, not a competitive event.  There are also insurance implications, too, for both the circuit owners (eg: MSV) as well as for the event organisers (eg: the Club).

All of that said, the march of technology means that it's much easier today than it used to be to record lap (and sector) times, whether that be using a GoPro or a Vbox or other devices and, of course, there is no objection to those recordings being studied once the session or event is over - but not (please, Jim, you lucky man with your swanky OLED display!) at any time when the car is in motion.

If I've got any of that wrong, I'm more than happy for Simon to come along and put me back in my box.

James

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Thanks James. Absolutely right.

Simon 

 

Simon Maitland - Lotus Seven Club - Trackday Co-Ordinator

Shaun_E
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I just use the software that comes with the GoPro. It allows you to overlay speedo, g-force and track map. Just remember to switch the GPS on first - it isn't always on by default! I bought the Hero 7 Black when it came out - I guess the 8 has some new features.