line up procedures

Why do so many short tracks line up the fast cars in the front? Don’t they realize this is supposed to be a SHOW? Winning a race is supposed to be a contest, not a gift to the fastest time trialer. If we want to see a parade, we’ll go downtown on MLK day.

How can any short-track that time trials and starts straight up, then complain about fan attendance? That shows nothing but contempt for the fan. Several of the traveling races at Orlando’s Winternationals appeared to start straight up, or they started in the same order as they finished the heats. Either way is not an acceptable way to entertain fans.

Real racers want a contest. They want to start in the back, pass the competition and put on a SHOW for the fans.

I’ve always known that the World Series and Winternationals type events are primarily presented for the racers. There can be no other explanation for so many race winners coming off the front row, night after night, year after year, with so many repeat winners. Don’t the tracks realize that catering to the racers like this hurts the fan count all year? How many fans want to come back after they see every February race won from the front row?

TBARA is widely considered the best show in Florida short tracking, and they ALWAYS invert 10 or 12 cars. (BTW they have no mirrors or spotters, but that is for another rant).

Some racers complain that my suggestion “tears up too much equipment”. My response is that they need to learn how to race. Racing is about passing, defending and still finishing. Good racers can do it in cars that are much faster than our local junk. We need to do it too.

In some ways, Winternationals type events point to the future of the sport: tracks supported by high pit pass fees, lots of traveling racers and nearly empty grandstands. Can anyone argue that this approach is the direction we want to go in? It may be an economic reality today, but can’t we continue to try winning back fans in the front gate?

That is SCCA’s model. They don’t even open the grandstands: it is entirely supported on the backs of the racers who pay big money to run and don’t win a penny.

In summary, a consistantly better show will draw fans eventually. Fast cars starting toward the rear will yield a consistantly better show.

not disagreeing with you but haven’t we all been saying this ever since we’ve had an internet board to whine and complain on?

Real racers want a contest.

the heck with the racers, what about the fans? ( oh that’s right, we don’t have any to speak of :anim_pound: )

you know the Winston Invitational where they always used to poll the fans for the number of cars that would get inverted between segments?

you notice the don’t do a poll anymore?

you know why?

because the fans always picked the most cars inverted they could vote for.

Real simple, either they dont know how to handicap or dont care to do it plainly put…

They say they care about a show… But rather it’s the same ole same ole. Very little effort put into the racing FORMAT hence FORMAT!!
I give you the track you put the show on Mentality.
Ignorance is bliss in Florida Race Track Operator’s

Or maybe they dont want their rich friends who use the race track as a playground of disposible cash=I mean racing their Super’s, Modifieds and Trucks.
Hell, if those people (you know the ones) would go to driving school instead of dumping 250K into a hauler for a 18K race truck then they might be able start from the back and RACE their way to the front.

Now before every HOLY RACING ROLLER jumps on me think about it!!!

At Ocala we have sent the top 3 from the previous week to the rear. In the late models and mods we always redraw a certain number.
Now on dirt we will still send the top three to the rear every week and half the field up to 12 in the late models and mods will redraw. On dirt this should be very exciting.

I went to Limalamd in Ohio last year. It is a dirt track. THey actually had fans roll a giant pair of dice for the inversion for each feature. They did it buy rows. If they rolled a ten, they inverted ten rows. Of course they could only use one die at most tracks here in Florida.
I have always thought that inverting the entire field from the week before and having all the new cars start behind the previous weeks winner. would be the way to go. It would allow the guys that run in the middle of the pack to possibly get a top 5 or even a win on occasion and get a better payday than usual. It would probably tighten up the points races and they might mean something again rather than being an attendance record.
For the touring series, I like the rolling the dice idea, or at least have a fan pull a number 1-10.

how about 1 dice with numbers 3-8 then invert that many rows. This would put the fast qualifier somwhere between 6th and 16th.

I like the tracks that line up by points. Highest points start in the back/lowest in the front. New cars behind everyone. Some tracks use points from the last 3 races and that works well also.

Thank you guys… I sure hope some of these track owners and or promotors read this and can understand what you guys have just said. I’m from Ohio, drove sportsman car myself, son still drives super-lates in Ohio, Pa., Michigan and have always raced at tracks with inverted starting line-up. In the 70’s thru to the 90’s we raced with total inverts, 18 to 24 cars, 30 or 50 lap features and myself and my son even more so have won a lot of races starting last. Now the common line-up at many tracks in Ohio is a 10 or 12 invert. Besides being great for the fans to see guys come through the field to the front, this also brings more cars to the track. All those guys for one reason or another that knows they don’t have a chance with the fast guys on the front row, and now pull there cars out, dust them off and head to the track because now the fast guys have to start behind them. I’m so glad you guys started this tread, now lets hope a owner , promotor reads this. If anyone wants any help with how to get more cars to your track and show the fans some real racing PLEASE just ask… Rick

I have to dis agree with this. I am on the other side of this one and here is the reasoning. MANY time we went to a track that dose this, we start in the heat race and battle past the back markers and generally get damaged doing so. Then we finish the heat race in the top 3 and end up starting the feature behind all of the squirrels that beat on the car during the heat race. There are several tracks we would not run because of this and only returned when no one within 150 miles was running. If you took the heat races results and inverted then decent cars have a chance. There is absolutely NO reason a driver that won his heat race should have to start the feature behind a on the track obstacle that did not even finish there heat race because the ran over cars and damaged theirs to the point it could not finish. I personally watched a car in a heat race take out 4 cars in 2 laps and pull off then come feature time he started in the top 5. This WILL run off racers.

Ego, I agree with you to a point. The problem is, that Heat races do not determine the line up anymore. They are basically a glorified practice session. (at least at FASCAR tracks). My point on the inversions is to eliminate heat races all together and add 5 or 10 laps to the features. This would also allow the “faster” cars to get back to the front and RACE for the win, shorten the night by an hour or two and hopefully provide an entertaining race for the fans.

I’ll agree to a point also. I understand what you’re saying. A lot depends on car count and type of track. Dirt tracks, as a rule, have better luck with this than asphalt. Also, heats should mean something. Maybe extra points and bucks but you should have to finish your heat in order to start up front. If you don’t finish then you should have to qualify via a consi/B main if there are enough cars. If you don’t finish a qualifying race then you shouldn’t start. Period. But I know tracks start them because of car counts. In this case these cars (that don’t finish a qualifier) should start in the back. You can play with the formula to make it work for your track. i.e. determine initial lineup via points then handicap actual starting lineup via a handicapped/weighted point system determined by heat finish. Don’t make it too complicated though. :slight_smile: But some sort of inversion is needed to eliminate the freight train races. More than just the top 6 too.

Ego if your car is getting wrecked coming up to the front, I think the problem is with your driver, not the invert. So you like the fast guy on the pole? I have always felt it was a race when you can pass cars for a win, not starting up front drive around for a while and say you are a winner. I really think this mentality(fast guys up front) is what is killing racing in Florida. Just my opinion…Rick

Ego if your car is getting wrecked coming up to the front, I think the problem is with your driver, not the invert.

if we had a lot of good race drivers around here i would agree.

however, there’s far too many guys who think that being in front gives them the right to ride you into the wall or off into the grass. they don’t grasp that being in front of a faster car leaves them at the mercy of the guy behind them and so they don’t show any respect. most of them are under delusions that they should do it because “that’s the way Earnhardt woulda dun it”. well, right or wrong about Earnhardt, they need their cars destroyed until they figure out that they’d better give a lane on one side or the other.

A driver going a alp or more down in a heat race bouncing off of the wall and coming across the track still at wide open throttle is NOT the fault of the driver in the car that just got run over! I have seen it happen WAY more than anyone would admit! I NEVER said not to invert I said NO the the consecutive points line up joke. Here you go 20 cars starting the feature you have 2 10 car heat races for 10 laps and invert 1/2 the field! If you do not finish the heat you do not start up front PERIOD!! If you have 30 cars have 3 10 lap heat races and invert 1/2 again or 16 cars. Now ad $400 or so if any of the heat race winners also win the feature.
I used to go to a dirt track the qualified everyone in the top classes. They took the fastest time and the slowest time (that completed the laps competitive so a spinning car did not come in and change anything) and inverted anyone faster than the average.