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Safety Car Procedures


At Cadwell, in 2 of the 3 briefings (I attended all three), the clerk gave a particularly good explanation of why it was in everyone’s interests for competitors to close right up to the ‘crocodile’ if a safety car came out. "Reduce speed but all bunch up quickly", he said.

Standing in race control for each of these ‘pre warned’ grids races there were situations where the Clerk had to call for the safety car. The safety car picked up the leaders, the recovery snatch was on standby, everything in race control went like a well oiled machine and the incident could have been sorted in minutes... EXCEPT the Mono field spread out all round the track with people going quite slowly and making no effort to catch up to form the neat ‘crocodile’ behind the safety car that would have allowed the recovery to take place.

As a result there was no choice but to ‘throw a red flag’ ... however this was completely unnecessary if Mono had cooperated.

Please be aware this will be the topic of future drivers briefings.

FOR CLARIFICATION

Safety Car does not mean slow right down and have a Sunday afternoon drive around the track, it is the same as yellow flags – CAUTION, reduce your speed appropriately, no overtaking. One of the drivers described the required pace to me as "briskly but safely".

I have never seen anyone go through a yellow flag zone at the low speed some people were driving under safety car flags but with no safety car in sight. At our ‘reduced’ speed we should all close on the ‘crocodile’ behind a slow safety car very quickly. The Clerk needs all the cars in one group under the control of the safety car or he can’t deal with an on track snatch. Driving round slowly acknowledging the SC boards doesn’t actually help... close up into one group as quickly as is safely possible.

To reiterate the other point made by the Clerk in the briefing, racing re-starts when, and only when, you have passed a green flag and the start/finish line.

The MSA Blue Book section on safety cars can be found here here section Q4.9 and Q Appendix 2.

Comment re Classic/1800/DTec Restart

I thought the decision to re-start under safety car after one of these red flags was very good. There were 4 mins left on the clock and the decision was taken to start the clock as soon as the first car, at racing speed, crossed the line after the safety car lead the formation lap... so we got the full 4 mins at racing speed.


Steven Connor

Disclaimer: The above represents only the unofficial view of the writer and not of the Monoposto Racing Club in any way whatsover. Subheadlines and captions are not originated from the named author. We are unable to reproduce results due to copyright reasons. If any pictures are copyright and the owner wishes them removed please email us.

     

 

 

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