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Thread: Opinions requested re: overlap rule

  1. #1
    rossdbos
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    Default Opinions requested re: overlap rule

    I have been having a discussion with several officials regarding our current OPC overlap rule, it's interpretation and possible alternatives as many of us think we are heading for a major problem -both boat wise (incidents) and insurance wise (as a direct after effect of the incident) which for those that don't realize is what drive's this sport- the ability to get reasonable insurance premiums to do what we love to do.

    Note: these are just ideas and open to constructive criticism, not bashing and for the purposes of this discussion only.

    Some ideas that have been thrown out are as follows:

    It is the responsibility of the overtaking boat to navigate a safe line when establishing the overlap.

    The overlap is established when the overtaking boat has:
    For Sport C, SST45 & SST60- a minimum of 20 feet or 1½ boat lengths -between the midsection of the overtaking boat and the tip of the picklefork of the overtaken boat.

    For SST120,Champ, Mod U: a minimum of 45 feet or 2½
    boat lengths between the midsection of the overtaking boat
    and the tip of the picklefork of the overtaken
    boat. The overlap must be established prior to the
    overtaking boat moving into the overtaken boat line on the
    course.

    If the overlap is established within 50 feet of a turn, commitment, or “bend buoy”, then the overtaking boat must leave the overtaken boat a minimum distance of one lane in which to negotiate the buoy. A lane is considered one (1) boat width.


    Note: both distances for each group are subjective and will be judged by the turn judge or referee as such.

    I would like to see what the consensus is on this issue. I am trying to find out if there anything that can be done to keep the racing but reduce the amount of incidents caused by strict interpretations of the existing overlap rule, which there have been plenty. I am also akin to the notion that the current rule may be the best rule given it's history and validity. This thread is mainly for discussion of thoughts, ideas, conjecture, etc.

    One last caveat of this thread is I would like to hear from those that have driven capsule boats. If you have never driven a capsule boat I don't know that your opinion will best reflect what an encapsulated driver goes through. It's not that your opinion doesn't count it just doesn't give an accurate reflection of what the driver thinks might make HIS/HER sport better.

    Last, Please be forewarned, if this discussion becomes a bash fest in any way the negative post may be deleted.

    Thank you for your help.
    Sincerely,
    Ross Wallach, RPM RACING ENT./SCSC

  2. #2
    Team Member cnunez55's Avatar
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    Default Overlap rule

    It seems to me that the only people that have a problem with the rule are rookies or only raced for a couple of years! In my oppinion if you have a problem with the distance on the overlap rule then get a hydro. Opc have adapted their safty regulations on the boats to keep the tight deck to deck racing that we love so much.
    We could always install 20 to 40 foot min. and have a min. of 3 turn bouyes in each corner and watch the crowd yawn! I have had the privilage of watching almost every type of boat racing and find tunnel boats to be the best show hands down! We depend on the crowd to enable the sites to raise enough money for us to return the following year!

  3. #3
    Team Member john miffco's Avatar
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    hey folks
    there is a 2 way street with the overlap rules
    not just rookies to blame,,,veterans,,,,,,,,that know better,,,,,,

    instance
    chattahoochi fl 2008
    i started last on dock,,,went to 2nd on 1st lap
    after passing(named driver) down straight with 1-2 boat length distance before bouy (overlap established) from turn 1 to 2 i swept corner to hold speed,,,trailing boat chopped bouy tight,,,at turn 2 bouy,,,trailing boat
    went into my path and i had to steer right and still had light contact,,,
    me the leading boat got an overlap penalty,,,,,,,,,,huhh,,,,,,,

    rule states
    a)lead boat has right of way
    d) trailing boat cannot force an overlap,,,or alter the path of the leading boat has begun to negociate a turn

    so how does the leading boat get that penalty?
    by not being from that region,,,,,,,,,

    also that ignorant charge by the veteran driver to create an incident
    should have gotten penalty

    so re writting the rules is not it
    its the drivers to be driving with a brain
    and inspectors and officials calling calls fairly,,,,,,,,,,,,

  4. #4
    Team Member cnunez55's Avatar
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    You guys who think it's a problem now would have never made it 10 years ago when I started! When you got back from a race it was how much you had to fix not thats not fair he took my pickel fork off! You say it's insurance but we are one of the safest motorsports there is! I'm sorry I just can't handle the whining! Thats why the boats are going composit to handle the rubs and bumps! Your right it is the drivers! It's about respect! If you know the other person will let off then you take it from them thats just human nature. If you know there going to ram you, you give them room! Well unless your Terry Rinker!lol. Know your fellow drivers and what they do in those situations and you can almost always bring your boat home in one piece!

    IT is racing not driving, and what goes around comes around! does that sound like NASCAR?

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    RULE 9 • OVERLAP
    1. An overlap is established only when two boats are on the same course, or approximately the same course, and the cockpit of the overtaking boat, if overtaking from the inside, is even with the cockpit of the overtaken boat. When overtaking from the outside, an overlap is established when the overtaking boat has passed the overtaken boat sufficiently to change lanes without contact. The following rules shall apply to an overlap:
    A. The lead boat has the right of way until an overlap is established.
    B. A safe overlap is the responsibility of the overtaking boat.
    C. Once an overlap is established, the overtaken boat must give the overtaking boat room to clear any course markers.
    D. The overtaking boat cannot force an overlap after the lead boat has begun to alter course to negotiate a turn.
    E. An overlap can occur from port or starboard.
    2. Bearing away as defined in the General Racing Rules is defined as occurring from either port or starboard in OPC racing.

    Seems to me that the rule covers almost every situation fairly thoroughly.
    This is what I've told those who asked me.

    I think the boat lengths mentioned are excessive. It's already too hard to pass on the outside. That will make it impossible, kinda like Inboard or Unlimiteds, yawn.

    Paragraph C only makes sense to me for overtaking from the inside so that the outside (overtaken) boat can't take the bouy.

    Maybe the same "room to clear course markers" should be imposed against a boat overtaking from the outside if the pass is made within 20' of a bouy.
    But I don't think "room" needs to be a defined so specifically.
    In my mind, as others stated, doing this is just respect and payback is a b***h.
    My fear is that a specific rule will encourage "forcing the overlap" by inside boats, which already happens too much.

    I think it may be more effective to force the referee to review the rule and his "interpretation" at that course so everybody's on the same page goin in.

  6. #6
    Team Member DKL's Avatar
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    :Ross,My opinion ,,,,,,,,,The rules are good as is , I agree with John that we are all responsible ,but ultimately can only be for ourselves. It's up to the race officials to decide who did what and enforce the rules equally,,,most of the time it is difficult to guess distance during a race on the water moving at race speeds,,,,,,,,some can't do it on dry land accurately. I think any rule with a specified distance would only make things worse.* I understand racing Curtis as this is my third type of motorsports to be involved in , I wish it was 98 cause there's alot I would like to DO over but unfortunatly It's not happening. I realize what your saying,,,probably most directed at me and a few others. For the record I have been the overlapee numerous times alot of them not according to the rules,,,,,,,had boats veer into my lane on the start,,,force me into the buoy ect ect ect. and never once did I point it out or say anything to any official , or say anything negative to any driver,,, I knew that's racing and thats it. I have discussed privately issues with other drivers ,,,as they have with me when I did something they had issue with,,, 99% of the time it was unintentional ,,I got no problem with that, Iv'e had several* come up and apologize to me for unintintional stuff after a race,,that's who I can respect ,one that can own up if they know they screwed up. And not make a habit of it,,,If I need to change my way of thinking and run over or hit some one to prove a point and earn a little respect that way,,,45 guys send me a little note letting me know,,,cause I can play like that too!!!

  7. #7
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    Default AT Long Beach???

    Hopefully that rule wouldn't apply at long beach???
    Richard KCMo

  8. #8
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    Default Sounds Like !!!

    Sailboats to me, but curiosity has got the best .
    Richard kcmo.

  9. #9
    lil timmy tthibodaux's Avatar
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    I think it all comes down to common since and trust. A driver has to trust the guy he's racing with before he will slam the door on him. As the lead boat, your not going to turn in on a guy that you don't trust to let off and not hit you. As the boat getting passed, your going to let off when you know that driver is fixing to turn on you.

    You can't tell me that with everything going on in one of these boats that a driver is calculating boat lengths or feet when he turns. A driver is thinking "ok, thats Tim and he won't hit me". Thats the way it should be. TRUST..

    The case with Tiffany and I at Port Neches is a good example. She and I had been racing for several laps and when she got ahead of me she knew I was going to give her room and not hit her so she took the corner away. NO PROBLEM. The contact we had was my fault because I didn't let off. She didn't force me inside the pin or hit me to get me out of the way she just moved over to warn me and then turned.

    I'll tell you what alot of the problem is. Drivers who aren't aware of whats going on around them. Drivers who don't use their mirrors and only rely on radios. We don't need guys on the bank driving these boats. I hear it at every race a crew member is calling out turn or shut the door. STUPID if you ask me.

    Fact is 25 years ago before the capsule this overlap sh!t wasn't an issue. Why? Because guys would get hurt and these days we are safe in our capsule and seat belts and feel like anything goes when racing. I can't afford to buy a new boat so as for me, I'll race again in a couple weeks and give up a position if I have to to keep from hurting someone or trashing my boat. We race for trophies guys!!
    THIBODAUX RACING... Timmy Thibodaux

  10. #10
    rossdbos
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    Default Some good feedback

    Pretty much what I thought that is why I wanted to open it up. DKL, when I posted this thread it was in NO way aimed at one particular person. It has been an observation from the judges stand for some time now and in speaking with other officials from around the nation they too have felt/seen the same type of "driving" (I'll refrain from type of driving). So far the consensus is definitely leave it alone as it currently stands, just have the ref's and turn judges be more on top of their game, which I totally agree but as a former driver, I know that the driver see's things that the ref's/turn judges can't/don't so therein lies the problem.

    I just don't want to see a major incident that destroys boats, sends drivers to the hospital which in turn has a two fold effect- driver's out for the season or for good and insurance goes up.

    I don't think there is an easy solution to this other than what we discussed above so I would not look to change anything with regards to the overlap rule. I do however think the "yellow" card will make more appearances as it is set up for any bad driving on the course and someone who forces someone intentionally (that is the deciding factor and it is very subjective) into harms way by hiding behind the overlap rule should/will face censure.

    Thanks a lot for the constructive feedback and again this was not aimed at any one in particular.

    Regards,

    Ross Wallach, RPM RACING ENT./SCSC

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