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Author Topic: Rookie training  (Read 2957 times)
Thomason
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« on: November 11, 2010, 10:00:21 PM »

In some of the off season discussions that I have been involved, the idea of changing the rookie training to a two step program that each new driver must pass has been proposed.  All new drivers, from 5 to 16, start at the same point in a red restrictor and must advance then to the blue restrictor, then to their racing class.  The red restrictor class would be to learn the flags, lineup and establish a decent racing line.  The blue rookie class is to learn passing and the basics of racing.  The older kids would probably advance through the red class in a race or two, while the younger kids might spend more time there.  Once kids get comfortable with the blue plate racing, they advance to usually Jr. or Sr. Honda.  Kids advance by skill level without regard to age.

The thought behind this is that often times there may be a bunch of Jr. rookies, but only a few Sr. rookies.  A two car Sr. rookie race teaches them nothing.  Segregating red and blue classes let the advanced kids learn more quickly, whatever age, without the trials of having another kid, unsure of where they should be on the track, possibly causing accidents and frustrating them with numerous restarts and lineup issues.  They are all trying to learn the same skills.  The Sr. rookies now use the blue plate and the Jr. rookies often go through a blue plate 'move-up' class before they move to Jr. Honda.  Any comments?
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wesracing
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Posts: 84


« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2010, 04:08:29 AM »

I think it is a good idea because sometimes you have an 6 or 7 year old that is advanced enough to run the blue plate and I have seen some sr. rookie that need to be in a red plate.
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RBurns17
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« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2010, 11:44:42 AM »

As if there isn't enough hoopla about teams sticking around and cherry picking now and you propose we add that dynamic to points paying classes. I can just imagine the first year ten year olds that are going to sweep the Jr Honda season but just aren't comfortable enough to take the plate out.....
« Last Edit: November 12, 2010, 02:47:51 PM by RBurns17 » Logged
wesracing
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« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2010, 12:54:37 PM »

RBURNS,
            It would not be to a points paying class. Basically it will have the same classes we have now, just instead of having a jr. rookie and sr rookie class, every rookie, reguarless of age, will start in a red plate and then graduate to a blue plate. This has no effect on any of the points paying classes. I think that this scenario will definately take some dedication from each tracks rookie committee to make sure kids advance at the proper time. Once you graduate from the blue plate rookie class, you will then go to your respective class based on your age.
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RBurns17
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« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2010, 02:46:50 PM »

Ok. I see where I misunderstood his comment about moving up. Now that I see that I'm all for it. I know that this year there was some talk about a super rookie class for the more advanced juniors that was proposed to run the blue plate to help usher them into Jr. Honda. I don't know how serious the talk about it was as I wasn't at the track much, but I thought that would have been cool.

This structure could work out very well.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2010, 02:49:20 PM by RBurns17 » Logged
sfreitas20
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« Reply #5 on: November 12, 2010, 04:09:26 PM »

I would think this would be a great way to go for the rookie classes.
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Scott Freitas
Patriot Motorsports Inc.
Balmer boys
Rookie
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« Reply #6 on: November 12, 2010, 09:52:19 PM »

At our track we have an "Intermediate" rookie class where the Jr rookies run a blue plate for a few races to get them ready to move up to Jr honda.  They race with the Sr rookies during that time.  We did if for about three races it was a big help for me and my driver to get us and our car ready for Jr honda.
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Kendall42
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« Reply #7 on: November 13, 2010, 11:46:25 PM »

I would be somewhat in favor of something like this.  I think maybe with some tuning.  I have been the Rookie director at Toledo for the last few years and have enjoyed working with some great little drivers that have worked hard and moved up, doing very well, like Hayden Dickerson, Zeb Wise, Zack Cullen, Hayden Sprague, Jacob Minor, and others.  I have been fortunate that my last few classes have been all Jr. Rookies.  I work hard with my rookies and put in a lot of time to get them up to speed.  My son did not have much of a rookie director...so I have strived to make our rookie program top notch!

I hate it when you have 1 Sr. Rookie at a club and 4-5 Jr. Rookies.  The Sr. Rookie really has a tough time learning anything being alone on the track!  However, I am not sure putting an 11 year old rookie on the track with a red plate and a 5 year old rookie on the track with a red plate is exactly a good idea either.  The problem is weight.  The Sr. Rookies are going to weigh more in most cases.  So giving them equal restrictor is going to make them slower.  It is amazing how much weight affects these cars.  I would be more in favor of just allowing us to run Sr. Rookies and Jr. Rookies together with thier respective plates...if we do not have enough rookies to make up a 3-4 car race. 

I DO absolutely agree with the "step" of having Jr. Rookies start with a red plate, then run a couple "rookie" races with a blue plate as a "phase two" of a rookie class, maybe running with the Sr. Rookies.  Then be ready to move up.  Problem is...they will be lighter then then the true Sr. Rookies running blue plate. 

In the end, it is NOT a points paying class.  But I like to see the kids really be ready to move up before they move up and affect the points of those in the competitive classes at mid season.
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CrewChief6
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« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2010, 04:06:53 PM »

Great idea for the new rookie structure.

Also would be great if the drivers can try out their respective future classes during fun races without having to move out of the rookie class. That way they can get some experience before moving up officially, and won't affect points.
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Lyra Solochek
isaaksolochekracing.com
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wesracing
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Posts: 84


« Reply #9 on: November 14, 2010, 10:29:10 PM »

Crewchief,
            That is 100% up to your home club on the fun races! At Kokomo, for the fun races we would throw all kinds of cars together to make a class due to the low car counts at the fun races! Usually this makes it more interesting and exciting because the kids get to run against kids they normally wouldn't see on the track!
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miketsmith
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« Reply #10 on: November 16, 2010, 06:36:29 PM »

Sounds like a great idea Mr. Thomason. We had a Senior Rookie at our club just running around learning nothing. The great idea behind this is the learning process of flags, lining up, and etc. As I have told you personally, I respect everyone's position a USAC regardless of what goes on at the tracks. I challenge anyone that thinks they can do a better job than what the whole USAC team did last year. Keep up the good work and lets keep improving for our kids.

Thanks,
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RBurns17
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« Reply #11 on: November 17, 2010, 08:11:23 AM »

Crewchief,
            That is 100% up to your home club on the fun races! At Kokomo, for the fun races we would throw all kinds of cars together to make a class due to the low car counts at the fun races! Usually this makes it more interesting and exciting because the kids get to run against kids they normally wouldn't see on the track!

Have to agree with this. It was fun to see our five year old battling a 12 year old for the win. Made enormous gains as a driver over the course of this race and weekend also.
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