Voici un petit guide pratique des règles de course en Oval (Nascar , Indycar) publié par Studio 397 : Stock Car Guide Part 1: The Full-Course Caution STUDIO 397 Guide As novice stock car simracers quickly realize, oval racing isn’t just about turning left, it consists of a complex interplay of many intricate parts! As a genre, stock car is highly dependent on a unique set of “rules” that must be implemented to properly simulate the strategy and “controlled chaos” that make oval racing exciting. Key elements like full-course cautions, special penalties like EOLLs, and rewards such as the “Lucky Dog” and “Wave Around”, are all very specific to stock car racing – and rFactor 2 simulates all of these! The rules of stock car racing can be difficult to grasp, especially for someone starting out, and without at least some prior knowledge, it might seem a little intimidating just to dip your toes into oval racing. To fully experience stock car racing, you need to do more than just try to take a fast line on track. There’s a whole host of things you must be aware of and keep track of, all at the same time! To let you get the most fun out of racing, we’re writing a series of short guides that will explain the basic rules of stock car racing. This first article will look at the “full-course caution” and how it works in rFactor 2. The Full-Course Caution: The basics Although you might think of a caution in terms of laps behind a safety car (aka the pace car), we decided to break the process down into 10 “phases.” These phases do not necessarily coincide with laps, but important changes take place at every phase. Also, before we get started, there are two very important classifications to understand during a full-course caution: “Lead Lap” and “Lap down” cars: A “lead lap” car is a car that does not have any other cars on track ahead of it by +1 full lap. A “lap down” car is any car on track that has other cars +1 or +multiple laps ahead of it. Phase 1 – Yellow flag: Pit lane is closed A yellow flag is called following an incident somewhere on track, for example after someone has spun their car. Immediately after yellow is called, the pit lane will be closed to all cars on track. The LSI (Low Speed Information) screen will alert you that pits are closed. The name is somewhat misleading because you will still be able to enter the pit lane and make a pit stop during “closed pits,” but doing so will result in an end-of-longest-line penalty (EOLL) (see explanation in Phase 9). Phase 2 – Frozen field Next, and almost immediately after the yellow drops, the entire field becomes “frozen” – this means all cars should now slow to a reasonable pace and retain the order they are in. You’ll need to pay attention to the LSI and follow the car you are told to stay behind. Phase 3 – Safety car joins the field The safety car will start to slowly make its way out onto the track and attempt to collect the leader behind it. Once it has collected the lead car, the caution laps will start counting, and cars will start to bunch up behind the safety car in “single file.” Important: Keep a close eye on the LSI screen, it may say “Please Pass the Safety Car.” If you see this message you should promptly pass the safety car and continue to follow behind the driver you are told to stay behind. Phase 4 – First lap of caution behind the safety car: Pits will open shortly During most of the first lap behind the safety car pits are still closed, and no cars are allowed to pit without receiving a penalty. Phase 5 – Lucky Dog: You regain one lap in the standings The reasons for this rule might not be obvious, but it all goes back to “safety” in real life. The rule prevents cars from racing to the start/finish line in an attempt to regain laps lost after the yellow has dropped. The “Lucky Dog” or “Free Pass” is a reward given to the first car in the order that is one lap (or multiple laps) down at the time the yellow is dropped. If you get the “Lucky Dog,” the LSI screen will alert you. All you need to do is pull to the left, pass the entire field of cars, pass the safety car, and rejoin the field at the back of the line – and you regain one lap in the standings. If someone else gets the “Lucky Dog”, you will also be alerted by the LSI screen to allow them to pass. Important: If you yourself cause the yellow flag and would have received a “Lucky Dog” based on your place in the standings, no one will receive a Lucky Dog in this caution period.