This years Champs was going to be very interesting, there were many
contenders and the scene was set up with a pre-contest the weekend
before, to get organisers and the jury going.
Unfortunately that contest rained away, but we still got some flying done and the new 'foreign' teams got a lot of practice. The championship was well attended with 51 teams, many having the potential to win. At least ten teams doing a genuine below 18 sec/ten for a two stop race.
Before the racing, a little leaflet was given to the TEAM MANAGERS,
explaining the way rules are interpreted. The problem was that the
team managers did not explain the rules properly to the contenders.
This was seen as a large number of warnings given for mechanics not
standing erect at the start, etc.
In my excel file some of the warnings given to teams are not fully correct due the stress of writing down comments/warnings at the same time as watching/commenting the races.
In the jury we have the practice of one doing the announcing (The bad
guy) one doing the lamps and one writing down warnings.
The safety aspect was also given a high priority, even if it is difficult to tell a team before the race, that they are dangerous to others. We have a veto right on decisions and normally two in agreement before a warning is given. With the language/understanding problems involved, I sometimes wonder how we can agree to anything in the four minute period given.
I strongly believe that we are on the limit with regards to speed. Many newcomers cannot cope with it, and at the other end some older pilots with limited experience, but very fast models, have problems as well when getting into a fast race, where the other pilots are there to win and will not give way to less experienced teams. Potentially this is very dangerous and we nearly had a couple of fatals.
The practice of lying down into the circle, to retrieve a model, was
very close to two mortal mistakes and should be disallowed, you have
lost the race anyway, so why risk your life?
Many teams made silly mistakes, by landing into other teams lines, some even after their race was over.
Another unusual thing was, that twice a starting model caught the lines of the model in front of it on take of.
But it was great racing.
I'll try to get a video made of all the races done (Around 70) When you try to watch it all, not looking away, you'll understand why some decisions seems a little hard as a single incident. But try to understand that sometimes things happening a little time before the actual warning is given will influence it. Also there is the time from the infringement to the agreement between three jury members, till the warning is given. We also try not to distract pilots when they are doing a pit stop. The warning will be given maybe three laps later, when all flying is fair.
So next time, you as a spectator comment on the jury being
inconsistent, (Many of us are now near incontinence) look at the
reality of racing and lower your national flag.
The sport needs more active pilots in the jury.
The official circle will normally not be available for practice between the end of the official training and the end of the round. If the official circle is made available by the organisers after the end of each round for further practice, then this will be open (which means not on a draw basis or with time limits applied. No more than three teams may practice simultaneously for safety reasons). A gentleman's agreement will apply that 'No team flies more than ten minutes' if other teams are waiting to use the circle.
Schedule for eliminating races
In case of re-runs, there will a redraw for starting positions, unless it is a full (same 3 teams) re-run of a previous attempt. Drawn two up races, being filled up with a third team, will be redrawn for starting positions.
Race start. A warning will be applied if mechanic is not standing 'at the three' of the five seconds countdown (See note 4.3.7 Rule change) i.e. erect at the start signal (No leg splitting allowed) If the model is touched before the signal, an additional penalty of 5 seconds will be added to the final time.
The flying circle is marked as follows: 3 meter radius is INSIDE the red line. This means that pilots are outside when they step on the line. 19,6 meter circle is inside the red line. This means that pitting inside the red line/area is NOT ALLOWED.
Handle on the ground rule. Due to the surface texture, it will be permitted to have the handle knee high. This however, does not allow pilots to stand erect during the start and pit stops (crouching position). Keep low at the edge and do not lift the handle into the air at the start, catching other pilots lines, this is a potentially dangerous behaviour and can cause a warning to be applied.
When your race is finished.
Please get your model and yourself out of the way of the remaining competitors (Team could be disqualified for obstructing other pilots). This means outside the pilot circle and if possible, not in an occupied sector.
Announcements from the F2C jury.
Unfortunately we do not cover all the competitor languages. The warnings will be put forward in simple English terms like:
'WHIPPING' is the application of physical force to increase the speed of the model. This occurs when the model is behind the line perpendicular to the pilot's body (4.3.7.f). See also figures 1 and 2 at the end of this guide. This is a function of the position of the pilot's handle (H) relative to the centre of the circle (or centre of rotation CR) and the model M. The CR can be determined as illustrated in figure 2 by observing the rotation of the pilot's handle and taking the midpoint of the maximum left and right movement of the handle.
'BLOCKING' is defined as obstructing another pilot either by body position or arm position, preventing the other pilot taking his correct piloting location and thus slowing down his model. See figures 1d and figure 4. Blocking is caused by the position and attitude of the blocking pilot. With the body between lines 3 and 4 blocking can be caused, rotation of the shoulders can cause more (a) or less (c) blocking action. Warnings should be given as soon as the overtaking pilot is impeded, delays can lead to more serious and potentially dangerous situations occurring. Pilots being blocked by a slower opponent will frequently attempt to clear the situation by crossing lines. Where the blocking pilot has received a warning for this but remains in the same position, then the overtaking pilot should not be penalised for line crossing for a short duration whilst he clears the obstruction. Excessive blocking to directly prevent being overtaken is an elimination offence (4.3.9.m).
'PIVOTTING' is defined as keeping the handle in the centre of the circle with the pilot's body behind the centre.
'TAKING CENTRE' is defined as the pilot physically keeping his body in the centre and forcing the other pilots to walk around him. This can also occur when a pilot does not return to walking forward after completion of his overtaking manoeuvre. (See 4.3.9 in rule amendments)
'LINE SHORTENING' occurs when either:
a) the centre of rotation is in front of the pilot's handle, or
b) the handle is pulled back from its correct position in front of the body.
'ILLEGAL HANDLE POSITION' occurs when the pilot does not fly in accordance with rule 18.104.22.168. This is frequently the precursor to a blocking situation.
'PILOT INTERFERENCE' is defined as holding or pulling another pilot such that his normal activities may be impeded. Warnings should not be given when a pilot touches another pilot only to help his orientation.
'RED TEAM DISQUALIFIED, PLEASE LAND YOUR MODEL' The pilot does not
have to wait for the mechanic to translate and approve the jury's
It is the responsibility of the team to have an interpreter inside the fence if required.
'Advice from the jury'
'PILOTS GO TO CENTRE'
Due to the 'dark/light' background around the jury tower area, pilots tend to move away from centre, causing problems for the other pilots when landing. Pilots should 'guide' each other back to the centre as in a 'block'
Recent changes to the rules (Since 1997)
4.3.6. Organisation of the races (2000 CIAM Plenary Meeting)
- Add at the end of the paragraph a): " ... Qualifying races with less than 3 teams will be put at the end of the draw, in order to allow a three team race utilizing team(s) which have been granted an attempt."
- Amend the paragraph c) as follows : "When it is not possible to organise a reflight for a team which has been granted an attempt, the judges will ask for volunteers (from different countries in the case of Continental Championships and World Championships) to fill up the qualifying race. The jury will organise an appropriate draw for the race among the volunteers and the team with the attempt. If there are no volunteers, the team will be allowed to fly alone to complete their qualifying race reflight during the same round. Commentary : this also requires an exception in corresponding rule 4.3.8 which says that the race is null if only one team is still flying at 50 laps).
- Add at the end of the paragraph d) : "Mechanics are not allowed to walk with a running engine".
- Add at the end of the first line of the paragraph e) : "The chosen pitting areas are considered occupied until the race itself is finished. "
- Add at the end of the paragraph e) : "unless allowed by the Circle Marshal. (Allowing engine running in the circle before official start)"
4.3.7. Race from Start to Finish (1998 CIAM Plenary Meeting)
Replace paragraph d) by :
d) The starting signal is given by the Circle Marshal through a visual signal (flag) and a sound signal. For the last 3 seconds of the countdown and at the starting signal the mechanics must be standing erect close to their model and the pilots must be crouching on the border of the centre circle, with their control handles as close to the ground as defined by the F2C Jury. The starting signal must be "sharp" to enable accurate timing.
4.3.7. Race from Start to Finish (1999 CIAM Plenary Meeting)
- Replace paragraph g) by :
g) Overtaking must be done by overflying. The model is not in any case allowed to fly over six metres height when overtaking. The pilot being overtaken must on no account carry out any manoeuvre to impede the overtaking competitor and must leave space for the overtaking pilot when the overtaking is finished.
- Replace paragraph k) by :
k) After the mechanic has caught the model, he must go to the nearest free pitting area from the point at which the model was stopped. A pitting area is occupied if a mechanic is standing at such an area, even if his team's model is still in the air.
- Delete the paragraph l)
- Renumber the existing 'm' to 'p' as 'l' to 'o'
4.3.9. Warnings - Eliminations (1999 CIAM Plenary Meeting)
- Add a paragraph h) as follows :
h) If the pilot does not leave space for an overtaking pilot when the overtaking is finished.
- Renumber the existing 'h' as 'i'.
4.3.10. Team Qualification and Classification (1999 CIAM Plenary
Replace paragraph a) by : Each competing team must take part in at least one eliminating race to qualify for the semi-finals. For World and Continental Championships, the elimination races will be three. The other contests will be organised on two eliminating races and when it is decided by the organiser of the contest, on three.
4.3.10. Team Qualification and Classification (1998 CIAM Plenary
Replace paragraph g) by :
g) The competing teams which have participated in the final race will be placed at the head of the classification, only taking into account the times of flights during the final race, after checking tank capacity and the general characteristics of the models. The teams which have participated in the semi-finals will be placed next in order of classification, only taking into account the times of flights during the semi-finals. All teams not participating in the semi-finals will be classified according to their best time in any single eliminating race. Classification of any team that retired from any race, or exceeded the official time limit for any race but was not disqualified, shall be ranked according to the number of laps completed.
If more than one team in the final race is disqualified, they are placed in the order of the number of laps completed. A disqualified team is always placed after any team that has retired without a disqualification.
Note: The Jury decision must be communicated to the lap counters to ascertain the number of 'legal' laps.
4.3.12. Jury and Timekeepers (1999 CIAM Plenary Meeting)
Replace paragraph a) by :
The organisers must appoint a panel of at least three judges who shall be selected from a list of persons proposed by the National Airsports Controls for their proficiency and experience and approved by the CIAM. The judges must have at least one language in common. At World Championships and other limited entry international competitions, the judges must be of different nationalities. In open international competitions, the judges must be of at least two nationalities and only two of them must be approved by CIAM.
Good racing for everyone, the F2C jury.