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Old 08-15-2004, 06:41 PM   #1
jetfan2207
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Default stupid noob WRC question

This question is related to the WRC. I don't get the whole "co-driver" thing. What do they tell the driver that he doesn't know?

Thanks,
Steve
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Old 08-15-2004, 07:16 PM   #2
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One thing is that he/she keeps up a commentary of what turns, jumps, etc are imminent and how fast they are. I imagine the driver would have no hope without them.
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Old 08-15-2004, 09:07 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leecea
One thing is that he/she keeps up a commentary of what turns, jumps, etc are imminent and how fast they are. I imagine the driver would have no hope without them.
Definately too much to memorize so they take 1 preview drive of the course and make notes. Without these notes they would have to drive so much slower than they do. The co driver has a very difficult task in that he must vary the speed he is reading the notes to match the driver's speed and that he must convey the most important information very quickly.
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Old 08-15-2004, 09:29 PM   #4
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The co-driver makes a previous run through the intended course and makes his notes, too. 70 over crest, 100 ..
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Old 08-15-2004, 10:04 PM   #5
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naah...yer all wrong...the co-drivers job is too spot any taco bells, and for any hot girlies in the spectator areas!
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Old 08-15-2004, 11:07 PM   #6
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and to balance the weight of the driver when the car gets airborne
PS; leecea's got it right.

Last edited by WRCar; 08-15-2004 at 11:08 PM. Reason: punctuation
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Old 08-15-2004, 11:12 PM   #7
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How does he know what is the correct speed for a turn or jump? Is he really that in-tune with the car's abilities, or is it more of a generalization? Since every car is somewhat different, would it be hard for him switch teams?


thanks again,
Steve
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Old 08-15-2004, 11:17 PM   #8
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The co-driver makes those calculations based on what he saw from his run, and knows his driver's abilities and how he drives. Co-driver has to mostly anticipate to the driver what's coming, not much as to react as to what he's seeing.
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Old 08-16-2004, 12:05 AM   #9
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Not to mention that some of the notes are actually wrote by the rally coordinators, and given to all the teams, just so that they're all on a level playing field. Usually though the co-driver estimates the speeds, the radius of the turns though "5 right over crest 90" the 5 in that refers to how sharp the turn is, they actually have a guide for that.

It's a very efficent language if you learn it, just those 5 words tell the driver that there's a sharp turn to the right, going over a hill that should be taken at about 90mph (kph depending on the driver's nationality).

Also, a co-driver is like the portable pit crew. His job is to flip the car over, change the tire, fix the radiator or body work, etc. when their not close enough to a service to fix the car.

There are other reasons too (to hit the fire switch, to help if the driver is knocked out, etc.) but i'm sure that some other website has this info somewhere!
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Old 08-16-2004, 12:14 AM   #10
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Amazing job the co-driver does.. what amazes me is that they can actually *read* their pace notes (with their head bobbing all over the place) and to do it without getting motion sickness.

(ie. ever tried to read a novel/newspaper in a car? gives me a headache just thinking about it.. )
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Old 08-16-2004, 12:19 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dendrobium
Amazing job the co-driver does.. what amazes me is that they can actually *read* their pace notes (with their head bobbing all over the place) and to do it without getting motion sickness.

(ie. ever tried to read a novel/newspaper in a car? gives me a headache just thinking about it.. )
I know what ya mean, but if you watch the in-car camera, you can see that they flip the page every 6 corners or so, this is because they write REALLY BIG, lol. Anyway they do do an amazing job of keeping pace!!
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Old 08-16-2004, 01:43 AM   #12
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From the swrt.com website:

Quote:
Phil Mills - Pace Notes Explained
6 June 2004
Phil Mills - Pace Notes Explained

It's well known that top WRC drivers need accurate pace-notes in order to win - but it's not just as simple as telling them which way to go. Look at a co-driver's notes on paper and they look like hieroglyphics. Hear them read out and instructions like 'left tightens', 'right plus' and 'over crest into short' don't make much sense either. So we asked current World Rally Champion co-driver Phil Mills to translate a bit of the language that's used by professional rally drivers and co-drivers.

Pace notes from Acropolis Rally 2004: SS4 / SS7 Pavliani

1. Start, 30, Keep left over a crest into short 4 right plus opens, 60, crest and 6 right plus and don't cut short 6 left minus

2. 60, line into 2 right minus over a bump tightens to a hairpin over a ditch

3. Into 6 left long opens over a crest, 30, 6 right into 3 left plus long don't cut tightens to 1, into a short 1 right plus and short 2 left minus tightens at junction (junction 2 at 0.6kms) 20

Translation

1. Start, drive 30 metres then keep left over a crest into a fast fourth gear right-hand corner, accelerate for 60 metres to a crest, then stay in the middle of the road for a sixth gear left hand corner in half throttle

2. Drive 60 meters, keep to the left hand side of the road for a second-gear right-hand corner, which tightens very badly over a bump, at the same time brake hard for a hairpin over a drainage ditch
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Old 08-16-2004, 01:46 AM   #13
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(hits head on wall) I knew i was wrong somewhere!!!
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Old 08-16-2004, 02:51 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tensen
naah...yer all wrong...the co-drivers job is too spot any taco bells, and for any hot girlies in the spectator areas!

Naw...they whisper sweet nothings in the Driver's ear!!!

Last edited by sunnynw; 08-16-2004 at 12:31 PM.
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Old 08-16-2004, 03:37 AM   #15
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From what I understand, WRC allows the teams to drive the stages ahead of time to make notes. This is called recce. The driver calls his notes to the co-driver who writes things down. Further, most of the stages throughout the season are the same as previous years, so they usually modify their notes from the previous year. Of course they watch the videos from the in car cameras.

Other rally series do not allow recce. In that case the drivers are usually driving cold. Neither the driver nor the co-driver have ever been on the stage. In that case the co-driver is reading the route instructions written by the rally master. In this case it should be pretty obvious how important it is to hear exactly what the co-driver is saying.
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Old 08-16-2004, 05:21 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ultrasonic
From what I understand, WRC allows the teams to drive the stages ahead of time to make notes. This is called recce. The driver calls his notes to the co-driver who writes things down. Further, most of the stages throughout the season are the same as previous years, so they usually modify their notes from the previous year. Of course they watch the videos from the in car cameras.

Other rally series do not allow recce. In that case the drivers are usually driving cold. Neither the driver nor the co-driver have ever been on the stage. In that case the co-driver is reading the route instructions written by the rally master. In this case it should be pretty obvious how important it is to hear exactly what the co-driver is saying.
the rally matster? are we playing D&D now? hehe the good ol days
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Old 08-16-2004, 07:13 AM   #17
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In addition to reading/creating the notes, which is a larger topic, consider also that the co-driver is often the statagy/scoring/time management/place management person on the team. At the WRC level this role is somewhat diminished, but otherwise it's usually the case. Fast riving is essential, but it's far from the only thing that you will need to get to the podium. The sport of rally is very complicated.

To *truely* understand this, you need to actually be involved with a rally team. A driver without a codriver, or a bad codriver, will get nowhere.

Cheers
Anders

(My qualifications to answer this question: it's my sixth season competing in rally, as a driver and codriver)
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Old 08-16-2004, 11:26 AM   #18
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WRC teams are allowed Recce. THis is where the teams are allowed a certain number of passes over the stages to create thier "pace notes". Pace notes are direct information as you can read in the above posts. They are generated by hte driver AND codriver during recce. This is VERY important for WRC, as one missed rock or kicker, and you have what happened to Markko Maritn(Ford Focus) at the last rally, where they were flat out in 6th(about ~130 mph) and cartwheeled because they missed something in recce.

Here in the US, we are allowed "Stage Notes". These are generated by a single, unbiased crew a couple weeks before the event, using GPS & G meters & cool stuff. It measures the geometry of the each turn & the crew notes all nasty objects & jumps & whatnot. We purchase these stage notes at the time of registration. They are the same format for all competitors in the rally, and the same format for every US SCCA ProRally.

The Codriver must not only read these notes in varied speeds (to give drivers like me time to react to the corners coming up), but also emphasize the really scary stuff, like triple cautions & things like "300 into L5+ > L2-" which means "300meters straight(flat out) in to a 4th gear Left(pretty darn fast), that CLOSES to SUPER SHARP Left(almost a switchback, slow 2nd gear-ish)".

All of that while I throw the car all over the road, bouncing & banging about. He cant call it too early, cuz then I get lost in his directions & forget it or get confused, and he cant call it too late, cua then we'd be off in the woods(or worse).

Add to his task list running the rally computer/odo/clock to get us to each special stage on the correct minute, also add getting us in/out of services on the right minutes, and also confirming our scores/times & our correct place in running order throughout the rally.

And then they also push the car back over when we roll, help change spare tires & repair stuff on stage, keep us calm after a roll or "off"(that's when you go off the road & may or may not wreck), answer questions like "how long to the end of the stage?" when we drivers need to make decisions on letting someone faster by or to drive out a flat.

Famous quote: "A CoDriver cant win a rally, but they can lose it."

Codrivers do ALOT, and are an essential part of the team. I am glad I have a good one.


JC
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Old 08-16-2004, 03:34 PM   #19
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And not to detract from co-drivers, but did you guys see when they tested Petter on his memory of the various stages for an event? I forget what rally exactly, but they had Mills read off a series of like 10 instructions and asked Petter what stage and what DAY they ran it, and he got it every time!

Hell - it took me 2 years to learn how to get to Route 95 from my house and it's 15 miles away!!!
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Old 08-17-2004, 12:22 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CirrusWRX
And not to detract from co-drivers, but did you guys see when they tested Petter on his memory of the various stages for an event? I forget what rally exactly, but they had Mills read off a series of like 10 instructions and asked Petter what stage and what DAY they ran it, and he got it every time!

Hell - it took me 2 years to learn how to get to Route 95 from my house and it's 15 miles away!!!

Yeah, I have that one on tape..it was great...they both kinda thought about the questions about eachother...bt when the rally questions came, they knew instantly.

Like they say, it's a marrige between the driver and co-driver.
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Old 08-17-2004, 07:29 PM   #21
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thanks for the answers. One more thing, maybe it's just because the TV makes the car's hood scoop look different, but why does the WRC car have a normal WRX hood scoop, rather than the STI's more pronounced/longer scoop?

thanks again,
Steve
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Old 08-17-2004, 07:35 PM   #22
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Drag? That's all i can come up with from the top of my head
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Old 08-17-2004, 11:01 PM   #23
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on the wrc car the intercooler is a front mount. the rad is above that at an angle and the air intake is where the top mount intercooler would be. the turbo also sits at a different angle.
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Old 08-18-2004, 02:19 AM   #24
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aren't the intercooler and the radiator in opposite places?
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Old 08-18-2004, 02:40 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ultrasonic
From what I understand, WRC allows the teams to drive the stages ahead of time to make notes. This is called recce. The driver calls his notes to the co-driver who writes things down. Further, most of the stages throughout the season are the same as previous years, so they usually modify their notes from the previous year.
Not only that, they continue to make changes as some stages are run twice and the gravel crews (when they had them) would even help make further changes based on surface condition.

All in all quite a team effort. The driver places ultimate trust in the co-driver to deliver the right note at the right time.

Quote:
Of course they watch the videos from the in car cameras.
They don't help at all with pace notes.

Quote:
Other rally series do not allow recce.
Not true. I just did a pace note event in Canada, and many other series have them. The US in fact is the last hold out for pace notes, instead using stage notes for some events which are organizer supplied, no recce pass, and describe the road rather than how to drive it.

Glenn
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