The Motor Racing Game

March 19, 2012

Week Ten

Filed under: Uncategorized — Sebastian X @ 5:38 pm

Welcome to Week Ten. More details below, but the quick version is that this is a three-event week, with Indycar in St Petersburg, F1 in Malaysia and NASCAR at Fontana, so please pick ten drivers (no more than seven from one event) in a comment on this post before 6 AM GMT Friday 23rd March (1 AM ET) (essentially late Thursday night).

General

For those that missed it, some have had problems leaving comments, as if WordPress recognise the e-mail address, they have been making people log-in first. Filling in a different e-mail address is one solution.

Scores

Results – Top Tens

    WEC/ALMS     F1     NASCAR
    Sebring Melbourne Bristol
         
1    #2 Audi Button Keselowski
2    #3 Audi Vettel Kenseth
3    #44 Starworks Hamilton Truxex
4    #055 Level 5 Webber Bowyer
5    #24 OAK Alonso Vickers
6    #16 Pescarola Kobayashi Burton
7    #49 Pecom Räikkönen McMurray
8    #016 Dyson Perez Montoya
9    #41 Greaves Ricciardo Johnson
10    #21 Strakka di Resta Menard

Having missed the race, I am not sure how the LMP2 cars did so well at Sebring. The #1 Audi had recurring electrical problems (16th). The #22 JRM HPD was delayed by a puncture (17th). Muscle Milk were on course for third but were unable to re-fuel the car with a fuel-rig problem (28th). The #12 Rebellion also looked strong for a podium, until within the last two hours damage to the left-front caused the car to stop out on the track (32nd).

I thought it was an exciting Australian GP, suggesting a more open season than last year. A bad day for Mercedes, with Schumacher losing all drive early on (20th), and Rosberg falling back to 12th after making contact with Perez on the last lap.

Ouch, Bristol is often one of Sprint Cup’s most predictable events. Biffle finished 13th. Kasey Kahne’s early spin triggered a few cars colliding, including Kyle Busch (32nd) and Carl Edwards (39th).

Player Scores

    You might want to try full-screen (F11), or
click here to open table as an image in a new window.

Non-entries get 223 according to the 90% rule.

Congratulations aplenty to RubberGoat; his second consecutive win and third of the season. Well done to Maverick who did easily the best out of NASCAR, and also to Pat and Chris for 300-plus scores.

We all had the Sebring winner plus the top-two at Melbourne. The topsy-turvy fates of the petrol-LMP1 cars at Sebring, along with two of the Bristol favourites, Kyle Busch and Edwards, being both caught out by the same crash, effected almost all of us.

Leaderboard

Pos  Pre  +/-  Name Prior    Wk 9   Total   Differences
1    3    +2   RubberGoat    1144     335     1479    0   -  
2    2       Pat W.    1164     311     1475    4   4  
3    1    -2   Jackie    1169     279     1448    31   27  
4    5    +1   Chris W.    1139     308     1447    32   1  
5    4    -1   Sebastian    1139     287     1426    53   21  
6    6       Drewe    1107     287     1394    85   32  
7    10    +3   Maverick    997     322     1319    160   75  
8    8       The Speedgeek    1016     290     1306    173   13  
9    11    +2   iomracer    985     308     1293    186   13  
10    7    -3   Ryan    1039     248     1287    192   6  
11    9    -2   Matt    1002     253     1255    224   32  
12    12       Jay    886     223     1109    370   146  
13    13       James    817     223     1040    439   69  
14    14       New players    798     223     1021    458   19  

Two consecutive wins has RubberGoat vault two places to become as our new leader (well done, sir), by a slim four points over Patrick. Jackie falls back two slots after a difficult week. Chris over-takes myself for fourth-place. Maverick’s strong week sees him gain three places. iomracer gains two places. Ryan and Matt lose places, both after two unlucky weeks in a row.

This Week

Roster

· Formula One – Kuala Lumpa, Malaysia
· Indycar – St Petersburg
· NASCAR – Fontana

The deadline is 6 AM GMT Friday 23rd March (1 AM hours ET). Beware that the deadline is very early on Friday so treat it as late Thursday night. Also be aware that the countdown widget rounds up on days.

Pick ten drivers to a maximum of seven in any one event.

The points system is

50-40-35-32-30-28-26-24-22-20-19-18-17-16-15-14-13-12-11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-2-2-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1.

Guide

The Formula One circus moves to Malaysia. It will be hot and may rain very heavily. After Australia, McLaren and Red Bull look strongest, but behind that all but the ‘new’ teams look in with a shout.

St Petersburg is a sreet-circuit. All the teams are running the new Dallara DW12. For the first time in many years there will be engine-competition, between Honda, Chevolet (Ilmor), and Lotus (Judd). If you do not feel up to speed on Indycar for this year, there is a lot of useful information on the Wikipedia page for the 2012 season. It will be interesting to see how Barrichello does with KV, a solid team. It is quite a shock to see that Newman/Haas have shut their doors, so rising star, Oriol Servià, has joined Dreyer & Reinbold, a Lotus-engined team.

Also worth a look are the times for the group-tests at Sebring. The field was split in half with two days each, and I link below to the Autosport reports for the second days for both groups. Penske and the Ganassi A-team (Franchitti/Dixon) look strong. Lotus look to be behind with their engine. I suspect the bigger-budget teams will have the engineering depth to get to grips with the new chassis quicker than others, and that engine failures will happen more frequently than recent seasons.

Fontana is a two-mile oval, and I assume will be a typical NASCAR event in that picking top-ten finishers with confidence will be difficult. The rule of thumb with NASCAR is longer ovals are less predictable.

It is the usual advice of after picking what suggest themselves as the more obvious choices, that the ten might be filled out with those considered most trustworthy to get top-ten finishes, although with so many teams in F1 looking closely competitive plus some danger of rain, a new generation of cars and engines in Indycar, plus NASCAR being NASCAR, easier said than done.

The points-system for TMRG is based approximately on that for Indycar, which makes that series’ standing more useful for reference. It is well to be aware that some drivers do better on ovals and some on non-ovals. Annoyingly, it no longer seems possible to click over on last year’s standings-page to view separately oval and non-oval results, but last season Franchitti won the main title, with Power winning the road-course title and Dixon winning the oval title.

Formula One links:

2011 Championship points-table
2012 Australia Result
2011 Malaysia Result
2010 Malaysia Result
2009 Malaysia Result

Indycar links:

Entry List (PDF – from More Front Wing site)
2012 Indycar Wikipedia page
Summary of 2011 Indycar road/street results (No longer available)
2011 Standings (You can click on buttons to view road and oval standings separately now. Might be worth making a copy of that information just in case it disappears after this first race.)
2011 St Petersburg Result*
2010 St Petersburg Result*
2009 St Petersburg Result*
(*Following the overnight launch of the new Indycar site, previous links were rendered broken, and I have replaced them with Wikipedia links. Scroll down to the race-result. Beware that the qualification result may be above that, so do not mistake that for the main result, as I have done myself in the past.)
Recent Sebring test Autosport report group one
Recent Sebring test Autosport report group two

NASCAR links:

Entry List (Page usually turns up by Tuesday.)
2011 Fontana Result
2010 Fontana Result (second visit)
2010 Fontana Result (first visit)
2011 Championship points-table without Chase
2011 Championship points-table
2012 Championship points-table
Driver stats page (Tony Stewart) (Use the ‘SELECT DRIVER’ menu towards the top-right to reach the other driver-pages (or click on their name in non-Chase points-table).)

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32 Comments »

  1. Congratulations Gavin on a well deserved win.

    I didn’t do as badly as I feared (I hate the sports car picks). I have absolutely no clue what I’m looking for and tend to pick by drivers names I know rather than on how that car has done in the past. Maybe that means I should start looking at stats before chosing my 10 if I want decent points but I fear that taking to the books might spoil my enjoyment of the game.

    This will be another difficult week for me, especially as there is little scope to score more highly in F1 picks than others because we are all so knowledgeable of the field but I feel I am getting better. Onwards and upwards! :-)

    Comment by Jackie — March 19, 2012 @ 6:19 pm

  2. Having avoided all the sports car traps, that’ll teach me not to give Webber the benefit of the doubt.

    Malaysia looks it could be very, very wet at the moment – this could be a very interesting week. Will leave it as late as possible to get a better handle on that forecast but at the moment, not that confident about going F1 heavy even if the alternative is NASCAR and an uncertain IndyCar field.

    Comment by maverickpf — March 19, 2012 @ 6:36 pm

  3. wordpress’s changes are a nuisance – it’s not as if they give you much choice over username if someone has already taken it!

    Comment by maverickpf — March 19, 2012 @ 6:38 pm

  4. Even rain aside, behind Red Bull and McLaren, it looks like Ferrari, Lotus, Mercedes, Sauber, Torro Rosso, Williams, Force India all have top-ten shouts. I expected more of Caterham. They were still about two seconds off the teams in front, although Melbourne can be misleading.

    Comment by Sebastian X — March 19, 2012 @ 7:03 pm

  5. “Even rain aside, behind Red Bull and McLaren, it looks like Ferrari, Lotus, Mercedes, Sauber, Torro Rosso, Williams, Force India all have top-ten shouts.”

    If they can stay on the track.

    Comment by maverickpf — March 19, 2012 @ 7:37 pm

  6. What are the red-flagged race game rules by the way, half or full points if the FIA only award half points for a race?

    Comment by maverickpf — March 19, 2012 @ 7:43 pm

  7. As long as a result is declared, then full TMRG points. After all, drivers that go off at the first corner still count for full TMRG points for whatever position that gives them, even though in some series they would not be classified. Therefore TMRG-points generally ignore official series guidelines on how distance completed effects results.

    The exception is races run to Le Mans rules. They exclude cars not running at the end from the results even if they have covered more distance than some (or all) cars still running. I disaprove, but this year have decided to follow that, as Pat and I found it difficult to remember and apply last year when it was decided to do it on distance, and someone might be miffed if officially their choice finished perhaps third but was reduced to lower.

    I believe this may apply to WEC events, but not ALMS events. I have failed to find an official result for Sebring on either the Le Mans or ALMS sites. I now wonder if this is because they may not agree on which rules to apply; maybe not. Was the Muscle Milk car running at the end? Anyway, I think I will take a head-in-the-sand approach to that, and stick to the results I did find whatever.

    Comment by Sebastian X — March 19, 2012 @ 9:26 pm

  8. Actually, the rules are not very clear about following ACO classifications, but the introduction-post makes that policy clear. I might amend the rules later to clarify that.

    Comment by Sebastian X — March 19, 2012 @ 9:33 pm

  9. Tough week again :D

    With the new Dallara’s in Indy, that won’t help a lot either. Oh well, get the dice out…

    Congrats to those that did well – it’s tough to get a good result right now!

    Comment by Drewe — March 19, 2012 @ 11:29 pm

  10. Thanks guys, I got a bit lucky with the F1 I think.

    No NASCAR again, so here’s my picks:

    F1:
    1. Button
    2. Hamilton
    3. Vettel
    4. Webber
    5. Alonso
    6. Rosberg
    7. Raikkonen

    I’m picking these guys based on pace in Australia as it’s a bit of a lottery with the rain in Malaysia.

    IndyCar:
    8. Franchitti
    9. Dixon
    10. Power

    I’m picking these guys based on their previous form and the fact that they are in the big teams (who have more resources to develop the car).

    Comment by rubbergoat — March 20, 2012 @ 1:37 pm

  11. Now having had the chance to look at the driver stats for Fontana, it looks like one of NASCAR’s more predictable tracks, but bear in mind I said that last week about Bristol.

    Jimmie Johnson has had his Daytona 25-point penalty rescinded, so the seven players effected will have their TMRG-point back by next week.

    Comment by Sebastian X — March 20, 2012 @ 9:46 pm

  12. Formula One:
    Sebastian Vettel
    Mark Webber
    Lewis Hamilton
    Jenson Button
    Kimi Räikkönen

    Indycar:
    Will Power
    Dario Franchitti
    Ryan Briscoe
    Rubens Barrichello

    NASCAR:
    Jimmie Johnson

    Again, I find myself making an unforced NASCAR choice, but the Auto Club (Fontana) speedway is fairly flat which makes it more a drivers’ circuit, and there is so much uncertainy elsewhere. I feel Rubens might be helped by everyone else being as unfamiliar with the new cars as he is.

    Comment by Sebastian X — March 20, 2012 @ 11:44 pm

  13. If I were to be asked now I would award half-points for red flags, but checking past scoresheets for both TMRG and ARFL that doesn’t match the precedent, which is to award full points. The exception is for races abandoned very early which were not scored (e.g. Las Vegas IndyCar last year).

    LM-rules sportscar races have always been debatable and I don’t think there is a right answer as long as the ACO insists upon the ‘finish at the flag’ rule. I still think an endurance race should be about completing the most laps of anyone, not parking for a few hours and wheeling out a shiny car at the end. I can see why they did it though – under my preferred rule it would be possible for cars with a huge lead to DNF in the last hour with not enough time for chasing cars to beat the lap total, meaning the winner of the race wouldn’t take the chequered flag which wouldn’t look very good in the newspapers the following day!

    This should be a good week: Potential rain at Sepang and a mixed up order with possibly unreliable cars at St Pete. This game requires unpredictability else it’ll be boring.

    Comment by Pat W — March 20, 2012 @ 11:51 pm

  14. It is still zero points for such as LV last season. I agree there are arguments both ways on ACO rules, and remember myself in the past supporting doing it on distance instead as was done last year. What put me off partially was that we had to consider cars no one had picked, with one race when we both mentioned having to re-add the scores because it occured to us late to check if any retired cars effected the distance-results.

    Comment by Sebastian X — March 21, 2012 @ 1:37 am

  15. Ooh… Malaysia could be a doozy if it’s wet. Schumacher has always been a wet-weather star and he may now have the car to do something with that talent. Presumably somebody is going to crash out but no telling who. Button is also a dynamo with the variable weather (not necessarily strictly wet) so we’ll have to see.

    And St Pete… ohmeohmy. No telling who is going to do well with the new car. The only real assumption we can make is that the Lotus powered teams may struggle with reliability.

    Mmkay… preliminary picks:

    F1:
    Vettel
    Webber
    Button
    Hamilton
    Schumacher
    Raikkonen

    Indycar:
    Franchitti
    Dixon
    Power
    Kanaan (I know… Lotus engine. My left brain is shouting down my right).

    Fingers crossed.

    Comment by Chris W — March 21, 2012 @ 3:57 pm

  16. Very quick pick in case I miss this week entirely.

    F1
    Button
    Hamilton
    Webber
    Vettel
    Raikkonen
    Alonso

    Indycar
    Franchitti
    Power
    Rubens :-)

    NASCAR
    Biffle

    Comment by Jackie — March 21, 2012 @ 7:30 pm

  17. Chris: Kanaan has a Chevy this year.

    Comment by Pat W — March 21, 2012 @ 7:38 pm

  18. Is that so… it’s no longer KVRT-Lotus?

    Comment by Chris W — March 21, 2012 @ 7:42 pm

  19. F1
    Button
    Hamilton
    Vettel
    Webber
    Alonso

    IndyCar
    Power
    Franchitti
    Dixon
    Castroneves
    Hunter-Reay

    Comment by Pat W — March 21, 2012 @ 7:42 pm

  20. Lotus was only ever a sponsorship and KVRT realised which way the wind was blowing with the engines for this season. IndyCar.com is in the midst of a redesign and they haven’t got around to doing an entry list but you can find one in the Event Summary at http://www.morefrontwing.com

    Comment by Pat W — March 21, 2012 @ 7:52 pm

  21. A minor change of plan. I forgot Briscoe existed and I’m sure he’ll do better than Helio at this one (watch as Helio now wins it).

    F1
    Button
    Hamilton
    Vettel
    Webber
    Alonso

    IndyCar
    Power
    Franchitti
    Dixon
    Briscoe
    Hunter-Reay

    Comment by Pat W — March 21, 2012 @ 7:55 pm

  22. Tough picks. I am hoping that this years indycar has something (i’ve been struggling with it for a while – it was good in the last few years of Champ Car (but in decline), but I haven’t seen much worth watching with those old cars. Oh well, here we try again). Hopefully we don’t get late storms in Malaysia and get a 4 hour telecast for half a race!

    F1
    Button
    Hamilton
    Alonso
    Raikkonen
    Schumacher
    Rosberg

    Indycar
    Power
    Franchitti

    Nascar
    Johnson
    Edwards

    I went for 2 NASCAR – unpredictable as it is, but I think indy is more of an unknown this weekend! I wanted to vote for the other Aussie Briscoe too, but he has a yoyo reputation sometimes. Who knows :D

    Comment by Drewe — March 21, 2012 @ 9:54 pm

  23. Thanks Pat for the entry-list info.

    Comment by Sebastian X — March 21, 2012 @ 11:33 pm

  24. Huh, I was like 3rd two weeks ago.

    F1:
    Lewis Hamilton
    Jenson Button
    Seb Vettel
    Mark Webber
    Kimi Raikkonen
    Romain Grosjean
    Michael Schumacher

    IndyCar:
    Ryan Hunter-Reay
    Dario Franchitti

    Comment by Ryan — March 22, 2012 @ 4:43 pm

  25. The Indycar web-site re-design has been launched, causing many of the links I provided to fail. Sorry if that caused inconvenience. I have now updated them.

    Comment by Sebastian X — March 22, 2012 @ 5:16 pm

  26. I’m starting to think I’m contributing to my own downfall now. I’ll also add Scott Dixon to the list.

    Cheers Sebastian for telling me.

    Comment by Ryan — March 22, 2012 @ 5:30 pm

  27. Makes sense that endurance racing is judged the way it is, really – after all, it’s the Le Mans 24 Hours, not the Le Mans 23 and Half Hours But We Did More Laps

    Comment by maverickpf — March 22, 2012 @ 7:47 pm

  28. Switching it up a smidge…

    F1:
    Vettel
    Webber
    Button
    Hamilton
    Alonso
    Raikkonen
    Schumacher

    Indycar:
    Franchitti
    Dixon
    Castroneves

    Comment by Chris W — March 22, 2012 @ 9:01 pm

  29. F1
    Button
    Hamilton
    Vettel
    Webber
    Raikkonen
    Alonso

    IndyCar
    Power
    Franchitti
    Dixon

    NASCAR
    Harvick

    Go on, I’ll stick a NASCAR pick in – it’s more fun that way

    Comment by maverickpf — March 22, 2012 @ 11:28 pm

  30. Better last than never (hopefully)…

    Button
    Hamilton
    Vettel
    Webber
    Alonso

    Dixon
    Power
    Franchitti
    Barrichello

    Jimmie Johnson

    Comment by iomracer — March 23, 2012 @ 2:38 am

  31. F1:
    Sebastian Vettel
    Mark Webber
    Lewis Hamilton
    Jenson Button
    Nico Rosberg

    IndyCar:
    Will Power
    Dario Franchitti
    Graham Rahal
    Ryan Hunter-Reay
    Scott Dixon

    Comment by The Speedgeek — March 23, 2012 @ 2:46 am

  32. F1
    Vettel
    Hamilton
    Button
    Rosberg
    Raikkonen

    IndyCar
    Castroneves
    Power
    Hunter-Reay
    Briscoe

    NASCAR
    Biffle

    Comment by Matt — March 23, 2012 @ 3:58 am


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