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Offline Rolling Stone

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Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #260 on: March 28, 2016, 12:00:51 pm »
Many of the pics from the Baja show a plethora of bike tracks criss-crossing the veld. This is what I was afraid would happen and in spite of asking you nicely it seems that many riders really didn't care. I'm sure that these same riders would never do this in ordinary life, but somehow being part of a Rally gives them licence.

Rallying will have to face up to the new eco-realities. We cannot gooi at will all over the countryside.  So I'd really like to see a drastic tightening up of the track log examination. One where the competitor's track-log is overlaid on the "ideal" track, and penalties are applied for deviations beyond a certain tolerance. This should be for the whole track and not just the waypoints. Existing tracks off the correct track could be included so that wrong turnings only incur their own time penalty. There must be some mathematical way of doing this so that it's the same for everyone, and is never subjective.

If there is to be a future for rallying, and this applies to them all, they are going to have to find ways to minimise the impact on the environment. The global eco-lobby gains strength and us hooligans need to fit in or fuck off.
I agree 100%. these arid regions are super sensitive and take more than a lifetime to recover.
It will not take too long for the environmentalists to have us banned from these regions if we are not going to be more careful.
The worst of all is that we bring the proof  back and post it on U Tube :xxbah:

 

Offline Kamanya

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Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #261 on: March 28, 2016, 02:27:09 pm »
Many of the pics from the Baja show a plethora of bike tracks criss-crossing the veld. This is what I was afraid would happen and in spite of asking you nicely it seems that many riders really didn't care. I'm sure that these same riders would never do this in ordinary life, but somehow being part of a Rally gives them licence.

Rallying will have to face up to the new eco-realities. We cannot gooi at will all over the countryside.  So I'd really like to see a drastic tightening up of the track log examination. One where the competitor's track-log is overlaid on the "ideal" track, and penalties are applied for deviations beyond a certain tolerance. This should be for the whole track and not just the waypoints. Existing tracks off the correct track could be included so that wrong turnings only incur their own time penalty. There must be some mathematical way of doing this so that it's the same for everyone, and is never subjective.

If there is to be a future for rallying, and this applies to them all, they are going to have to find ways to minimise the impact on the environment. The global eco-lobby gains strength and us hooligans need to fit in or fuck off.
I agree 100%. these arid regions are super sensitive and take more than a lifetime to recover.
It will not take too long for the environmentalists to have us banned from these regions if we are not going to be more careful.
The worst of all is that we bring the proof  back and post it on U Tube :xxbah:




Whilst I agree to some extent, I would like to propose doing this a bit more scientifically. Taking a photo of places like that big dune soon after the guys went up it, asking some enviro students to measure the damage and then going back in 6 months and again a year later to assess just how quickly the environment forgets we were even there.

Of course there are some places like the lichen beds in Namibia that carry their scars for centuries, but I have personally seen places in the Richetersveld where even after making a meal of some tracks, it was hard to see we'd even been there a few months later.

Anecdotal and alarmist "proof" does more damage to our reputation and can never be countered. Enviro groups are going to have a go no matter what. Rally is by its very nature not very green. Having some proper data to refute the more rabid opinions of those who want to shut the sport no matter what we do. Just the mere fact that we are scientifically measuring our impact would be a huge positive for the sport. But, even if we only used sun/wind replenished batteries with high floatation soft tires and speed limits of under 40kph, they'd still be up in arms.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2016, 03:12:43 pm by Kamanya »
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Offline Kamanya

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Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #262 on: March 28, 2016, 03:11:42 pm »
Another undedited video of Stage 2 first part upto before the dune.  Directly into the sun at first, couple of navigation mistakes, some nice speed towards the end.  Sorry if it's a bit long.....I will post my rolling down the dune at a later stage.  Which App is best for editing these videos?  Enjoy!!

https://youtu.be/kDWzqy_mmhI

Windows Movie Maker works quite well.

You were making less mistakes than others and you had some pace. That's not easy to do.

How many gears on your bike? I was wanting another gear at times!
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Offline Rolling Stone

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Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #263 on: March 28, 2016, 03:41:02 pm »
Many of the pics from the Baja show a plethora of bike tracks criss-crossing the veld. This is what I was afraid would happen and in spite of asking you nicely it seems that many riders really didn't care. I'm sure that these same riders would never do this in ordinary life, but somehow being part of a Rally gives them licence.

Rallying will have to face up to the new eco-realities. We cannot gooi at will all over the countryside.  So I'd really like to see a drastic tightening up of the track log examination. One where the competitor's track-log is overlaid on the "ideal" track, and penalties are applied for deviations beyond a certain tolerance. This should be for the whole track and not just the waypoints. Existing tracks off the correct track could be included so that wrong turnings only incur their own time penalty. There must be some mathematical way of doing this so that it's the same for everyone, and is never subjective.

If there is to be a future for rallying, and this applies to them all, they are going to have to find ways to minimise the impact on the environment. The global eco-lobby gains strength and us hooligans need to fit in or fuck off.
I agree 100%. these arid regions are super sensitive and take more than a lifetime to recover.
It will not take too long for the environmentalists to have us banned from these regions if we are not going to be more careful.
The worst of all is that we bring the proof  back and post it on U Tube :xxbah:




Whilst I agree to some extent, I would like to propose doing this a bit more scientifically. Taking a photo of places like that big dune soon after the guys went up it, asking some enviro students to measure the damage and then going back in 6 months and again a year later to assess just how quickly the environment forgets we were even there.

Of course there are some places like the lichen beds in Namibia that carry their scars for centuries, but I have personally seen places in the Richetersveld where even after making a meal of some tracks, it was hard to see we'd even been there a few months later.

Anecdotal and alarmist "proof" does more damage to our reputation and can never be countered. Enviro groups are going to have a go no matter what. Rally is by its very nature not very green. Having some proper data to refute the more rabid opinions of those who want to shut the sport no matter what we do. Just the mere fact that we are scientifically measuring our impact would be a huge positive for the sport. But, even if we only used sun/wind replenished batteries with high floatation soft tires and speed limits of under 40kph, they'd still be up in arms.
very good idea Andrew.
 

Offline SteveD

Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #264 on: March 28, 2016, 04:32:52 pm »
Steve the loading of the waypoints made that part easier but the known waypoints weren't indicated on the roadbooks so you couldn't scroll down the roadbook to see at which tulip the next WP was you had to search the waypoint name on gps to see which is the next available WP.  With only getting the gps in the morning there was no time to put this manually on the roadbook. So I would prefer still having WP indicated on the RB.

???
The tulip number and the waypoint number on the GPS were the same, and each tulip for which you had a GPS waypoint was indicated with a WPE.
At least that was the plan, did I get it wrong?!
 

Offline Crossed-up

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Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #265 on: March 28, 2016, 05:28:04 pm »
Many of the pics from the Baja show a plethora of bike tracks criss-crossing the veld. This is what I was afraid would happen and in spite of asking you nicely it seems that many riders really didn't care. I'm sure that these same riders would never do this in ordinary life, but somehow being part of a Rally gives them licence.

Rallying will have to face up to the new eco-realities. We cannot gooi at will all over the countryside.  So I'd really like to see a drastic tightening up of the track log examination. One where the competitor's track-log is overlaid on the "ideal" track, and penalties are applied for deviations beyond a certain tolerance. This should be for the whole track and not just the waypoints. Existing tracks off the correct track could be included so that wrong turnings only incur their own time penalty. There must be some mathematical way of doing this so that it's the same for everyone, and is never subjective.

If there is to be a future for rallying, and this applies to them all, they are going to have to find ways to minimise the impact on the environment. The global eco-lobby gains strength and us hooligans need to fit in or fuck off.
I agree 100%. these arid regions are super sensitive and take more than a lifetime to recover.
It will not take too long for the environmentalists to have us banned from these regions if we are not going to be more careful.
The worst of all is that we bring the proof  back and post it on U Tube :xxbah:




Whilst I agree to some extent, I would like to propose doing this a bit more scientifically. Taking a photo of places like that big dune soon after the guys went up it, asking some enviro students to measure the damage and then going back in 6 months and again a year later to assess just how quickly the environment forgets we were even there.

Of course there are some places like the lichen beds in Namibia that carry their scars for centuries, but I have personally seen places in the Richetersveld where even after making a meal of some tracks, it was hard to see we'd even been there a few months later.

Anecdotal and alarmist "proof" does more damage to our reputation and can never be countered. Enviro groups are going to have a go no matter what. Rally is by its very nature not very green. Having some proper data to refute the more rabid opinions of those who want to shut the sport no matter what we do. Just the mere fact that we are scientifically measuring our impact would be a huge positive for the sport. But, even if we only used sun/wind replenished batteries with high floatation soft tires and speed limits of under 40kph, they'd still be up in arms.

And I agree with you, Andrew. We both know that the eco-fascists run an emotion-based campaign. Regrettably, science has little to do with it.
 

Offline SteveD

Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #266 on: March 28, 2016, 06:27:06 pm »
One where the competitor's track-log is overlaid on the "ideal" track, and penalties are applied for deviations beyond a certain tolerance. This should be for the whole track and not just the waypoints. Existing tracks off the correct track could be included so that wrong turnings only incur their own time penalty. There must be some mathematical way of doing this so that it's the same for everyone, and is never subjective.

Hmm, penalties for riding off-piste when the route is not off-piste?
It would be interesting to code, but not impossible.
We could call it Crossed Up Piste Off penalties.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2016, 08:13:59 pm by SteveD »
 

Offline seankriel

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Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #267 on: March 29, 2016, 07:57:54 am »
I saw in one of the videos there was no countdown at the SS start? Was this just a bad observation or ?

Nope Bluebull, I did not do a finger countdown, your observation is right. I had the usual start time list for all riders and with the bikes arriving from bivouac in a motorcade, the start line up was in start time/number order.(Renette was assisting with line up before the riders entered SS stamping zone). This gave me a minute to release each batch after calling them to the start position; checking goggles/GPS/roadbook/bike/neckbrace/tracker/spirit/wishing well and my usual smile away before letting them go. I had 01:17 to dispatch 68 riders on day 1.... any further delays meant some might be stuck after dark and we wanted to avoid that at all cost.
Any rider that missed his spot - I wrote down his actual time on the list. On day one there was only one such case.

With longer uncontrolled liaisons, riders are suppose to know their start time and be ready 2 minutes before entering SS stamping zone. The actual start times are on the stamp card. We trailed this without the stamp cards as VERY few rider actually look at this card and only 5% takes out the card and hand it to the start marshal which then has to fill in check that all good and then count them off.

I think for the BAJA the start list vs stamp card worked perfect - but for the Amageza later in the year the stamp card will be better! Normally Start times are 2 minutes apart vs one minute on the Baja.

I hope this answered your question??


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Offline Ash001

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Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #268 on: March 29, 2016, 08:02:06 am »
my 2 cents, when kevin and i made our way back to the end of the race on day 2 we were the last guys back and the wind had picked up i was surprised to see how quickly the wind covered the tracks in the sand and at one stage you could not tell that anyone had been there. then again we got so f$king lost maybe no one had been there hahaha
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Offline SteveD

Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #269 on: March 29, 2016, 09:35:56 am »
Interesting, two riders say that manual timecards are a schlep and not having them was an improvement, and one marshall saying that having them has advantages.

We have used manual timing cards twice. the first time we printed them on normal paper, and that was a flop. They were just too flimsy.
Second time around we printed them on 3"x 5" index cards, and that worked better.

The advantage of the cards is that it is a manual backup to the GPS logs. In Baja, we relied on the marshalls writing down SSStart and SSSend times, and sending them to me. It worked perfectly, and I was able to score riders whose GPSs had failed.
 
The real advantage of the manual timing cards is that they are a perfect record of whether a rider has arrived at the bivvy, what their status is (DNF/WD etc), and by implication whether or not they are still out there and need recovering. At Amageza we were anal about getting the timecards back to me at the end of each day, and it worked brilliantly.
They are a huge schlep to print, and a pain to fill in, but I think we may well have them at Amageza again.
 

Offline Geel Kat

Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #270 on: March 29, 2016, 10:01:27 am »
The way the Baja was started and controlled with the "convoy" start and cutoff times worked well and timecards were redundant in my opinion.

In the Amageza where long liaisons can result in riders not arriving at SS start in perfect marching order for various reasons and the days are much longer with riders possible out there all night timecards make sense.

The only time they are a schlep is when you start and end the special and you do not have a convenient place to store the card with easy access.
 

Offline seankriel

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Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #271 on: March 29, 2016, 12:25:50 pm »
Interesting, two riders say that manual timecards are a schlep and not having them was an improvement, and one marshall saying that having them has advantages.

We have used manual timing cards twice. the first time we printed them on normal paper, and that was a flop. They were just too flimsy.
Second time around we printed them on 3"x 5" index cards, and that worked better.

The advantage of the cards is that it is a manual backup to the GPS logs. In Baja, we relied on the marshalls writing down SSStart and SSSend times, and sending them to me. It worked perfectly, and I was able to score riders whose GPSs had failed.
 
The real advantage of the manual timing cards is that they are a perfect record of whether a rider has arrived at the bivvy, what their status is (DNF/WD etc), and by implication whether or not they are still out there and need recovering. At Amageza we were anal about getting the timecards back to me at the end of each day, and it worked brilliantly.
They are a huge schlep to print, and a pain to fill in, but I think we may well have them at Amageza again.
The way the Baja was started and controlled with the "convoy" start and cutoff times worked well and timecards were redundant in my opinion.

In the Amageza where long liaisons can result in riders not arriving at SS start in perfect marching order for various reasons and the days are much longer with riders possible out there all night timecards make sense.

The only time they are a schlep is when you start and end the special and you do not have a convenient place to store the card with easy access.

Thanks Steve - Thanks Geelkat - this made me think.....

How about using something similar to the RaceTec tag?? I know it's another cost..... but!!! These things are super! If we have a screener at Start; somewhere on the route; at the end as well as the bivouac.... on the person - then we can always know, when tracker has failed if the rider started, got to the middle point, got to the end and got to the bivouac....??

What do you think?? This will give time of point always!! Steve?

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Offline Geel Kat

Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #272 on: March 29, 2016, 12:28:53 pm »
Thanks Steve - Thanks Geelkat - this made me think.....

How about using something similar to the RaceTec tag?? I know it's another cost..... but!!! These things are super! If we have a screener at Start; somewhere on the route; at the end as well as the bivouac.... on the person - then we can always know, when tracker has failed if the rider started, got to the middle point, got to the end and got to the bivouac....??

What do you think?? This will give time of point always!! Steve?



 :thumleft: and I do not think the additional cost will be excessive in the bigger scheme of things.
 

Offline Geel Kat

Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #273 on: March 29, 2016, 12:31:00 pm »
???
The tulip number and the waypoint number on the GPS were the same, and each tulip for which you had a GPS waypoint was indicated with a WPE.
At least that was the plan, did I get it wrong?!

Never needed the WP's but did spot check and from what I can see the tulip numbers are part of the waypoint numbers.

One part which could be a touch confusing is the fact that we shared part of the routes and also crossed but it would still have been possible to get home safely in an emergency.
 

Offline EtienneXplore

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Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #274 on: March 29, 2016, 01:52:06 pm »
Maybe I am talking nonsense here, but won't a simple hand held bar-code scanner work? You just stick a little bar-code sticker on the rider and the bike and scan them, this will record a number of data points....

 ???

 

Offline seankriel

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Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #275 on: March 29, 2016, 02:40:23 pm »
Maybe I am talking nonsense here, but won't a simple hand held bar-code scanner work? You just stick a little bar-code sticker on the rider and the bike and scan them, this will record a number of data points....

 ???



KnopKop, I was thinking of that as well.... more to the label on the person/helmet.... I don't really care for the bike so much as for the rider (a bike can get home without rider and that means we would not go look for him) lol ....  I know after 15 hours or more in the field no rider wants to hand in a little paper he can hardly take out of his pocket - plus the delay etc.... a scanner or so would work much better.... just having 5 scan points to scan throughout a day could become a bit tricky.... most important would be leaving bivouac, SS Start, SS end, enter new Bivouac... one at cross roads? maybe - I was thinking more of a remote system than a manual one? Just in case someone like me would forget to scan.... lol....  uploading to Steve could also be done in a few seconds..... anyone have a idea?
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Offline EtienneXplore

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Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #276 on: March 29, 2016, 02:58:09 pm »
Maybe I am talking nonsense here, but won't a simple hand held bar-code scanner work? You just stick a little bar-code sticker on the rider and the bike and scan them, this will record a number of data points....

 ???



KnopKop, I was thinking of that as well.... more to the label on the person/helmet.... I don't really care for the bike so much as for the rider (a bike can get home without rider and that means we would not go look for him) lol ....  I know after 15 hours or more in the field no rider wants to hand in a little paper he can hardly take out of his pocket - plus the delay etc.... a scanner or so would work much better.... just having 5 scan points to scan throughout a day could become a bit tricky.... most important would be leaving bivouac, SS Start, SS end, enter new Bivouac... one at cross roads? maybe - I was thinking more of a remote system than a manual one? Just in case someone like me would forget to scan.... lol....  uploading to Steve could also be done in a few seconds..... anyone have a idea?

Surely someone can develop a small app where you (the marshal) can scan the rider with a smartphone, and this data can then be immediately uploaded to a central database kind of thing where the guys at HQ can access the info in real time. Yes I know that data connectivity may well be a problem, but these things can work via sms as well, we used a similar technology here in Zambia to sell mobile airtime, all that is needed is a cellphone signal to basically send an sms, no data connection is needed. We used the bar-code scanning with a cellphone extensively in Qatar, also in the scratch card distribution industry, it was used to track machines and keep up to date on what is happening in 1000's of retailers scatted all over the place. Sorry, a little off topic here, but I am sure this type of thing exists out there somewhere.



 

Offline seankriel

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Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #277 on: March 29, 2016, 03:08:17 pm »
Maybe I am talking nonsense here, but won't a simple hand held bar-code scanner work? You just stick a little bar-code sticker on the rider and the bike and scan them, this will record a number of data points....

 ???



KnopKop, I was thinking of that as well.... more to the label on the person/helmet.... I don't really care for the bike so much as for the rider (a bike can get home without rider and that means we would not go look for him) lol ....  I know after 15 hours or more in the field no rider wants to hand in a little paper he can hardly take out of his pocket - plus the delay etc.... a scanner or so would work much better.... just having 5 scan points to scan throughout a day could become a bit tricky.... most important would be leaving bivouac, SS Start, SS end, enter new Bivouac... one at cross roads? maybe - I was thinking more of a remote system than a manual one? Just in case someone like me would forget to scan.... lol....  uploading to Steve could also be done in a few seconds..... anyone have a idea?

Surely someone can develop a small app where you (the marshal) can scan the rider with a smartphone, and this data can then be immediately uploaded to a central database kind of thing where the guys at HQ can access the info in real time. Yes I know that data connectivity may well be a problem, but these things can work via sms as well, we used a similar technology here in Zambia to sell mobile airtime, all that is needed is a cellphone signal to basically send an sms, no data connection is needed. We used the bar-code scanning with a cellphone extensively in Qatar, also in the scratch card distribution industry, it was used to track machines and keep up to date on what is happening in 1000's of retailers scatted all over the place. Sorry, a little off topic here, but I am sure this type of thing exists out there somewhere.






See - NOW you talking..... lol!! Thanks!! I will investigate...... STEVE STEVE kom in!! What ya think???
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Offline SteveD

Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #278 on: March 29, 2016, 03:12:13 pm »
KnopKop, I was thinking of that as well.... more to the label on the person/helmet.... I don't really care for the bike so much as for the rider (a bike can get home without rider and that means we would not go look for him) lol ....  I know after 15 hours or more in the field no rider wants to hand in a little paper he can hardly take out of his pocket - plus the delay etc.... a scanner or so would work much better.... just having 5 scan points to scan throughout a day could become a bit tricky.... most important would be leaving bivouac, SS Start, SS end, enter new Bivouac... one at cross roads? maybe - I was thinking more of a remote system than a manual one? Just in case someone like me would forget to scan.... lol....  uploading to Steve could also be done in a few seconds..... anyone have a idea?

Uploading to Steve, that's funny.
I think we may be onto something here.
http://www.specialstage.com/forums/showthread.php?37553-Active-RFID-Control-Timing-System discusses something very similar, but at $1000 per checkpoint that is eina.

A major factor is the lack of connectivity. The millibits-per-minute speeds that we get have bitten us many, many times, so any solution would have to be buffered, with Upload-to-Steve happening when connectivity is restored.

I think Dakar used RFID tags that look like wristbands?
Interesting.......
 

Offline Geel Kat

Re: West Coast Baja 2016 Updates
« Reply #279 on: March 29, 2016, 03:16:44 pm »
The size of the uploads should be very small, it should be possible to transfer via satellite phone if need be where there is no mobile phone signal.

Either RFID or a simple barcode can work, you need rider number and date/time stamp, very little data.

$1000.00 per checkpoint seems expensive, it should be possible to do something cheaper.

What about using SPOT?

Every rider has one, it uses satellite and can send messages...

I used mine at times to let my wife know I am still sort of OK, even if it was not always technically true...