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Pit Rule Changes

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  • Pit Rule Changes

    The 2003 racing season has continued to show that changes are dictated within the pit rules to provide safety to all involved in pit stop participation. We have recently seen crew members injured at the Brickyard 400 (where the pits are large enough to accomodate about anything) and at Gateway (where the pits are somewhat smaller).

    The pit rules in IndyCar racing under USAC rules at Indy stated no pit crew member was allowed over the pit wall until the car was actually in the pit box. Today, pit members go over the wall, take equipment, tires and etc. before their cars are even in the pit area. Even with reduced pit speeds as compared to those previously where there was no speed limit, the pits are an extremely dangerous area. No one, except racing officials, should be allowed over their respective pit walls until the race cars are within their own pit box, or even better, before the race car stops.

    If action is not taken immediately to remedy the situations seen at Gateway and the Brickyard, injuries will continue and will worsen perhaps leading to a fatality. Prior to the introduction of the IRL and IRL rules, and this can be verifiied through USAC, no pit members were allowed over the wall until the race car was in the pit box nor was equipment allowed to be placed within the pit box prior to the car entering the pit box.

    Please consider an immediate change to the IRL pit rules to increase the safety for everyone involved in the pits during race action pit stops.

  • #2
    I think another measure would be to NOT close the pits when the caution comes out - bringing 20 cars in at once is nuts. If you don't close the pits they'll be more spread out. Think about it. Are pits any safer now with 60mph speed limits than they were in the days of no speed limits and no closing of the pits? Seems to me like there are just as many, if not more accidents now.
    "Promote what you love instead of bashing what you hate."

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    • #3
      No crew over till the car stops -
      sounds good!
      budget neutral
      protects our guys

      carl s
      Indio, CA
      Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati

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      • #4
        As a ticket-buying fan, please initiate the "no crew over the wall until the car stops" rule.
        "You people worry too much. Strive for change. Root for your favorites. Enjoy the racing. Drop the flag." rev-ed, 3/04

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        • #5
          I agree with this wholeheartedly. Change the rule before there is a real tragedy.
          Proud to be a complainer.

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          • #6
            There is equality in the rule, enhances safety in many situations, good idea!!

            Related idea that has been talked about before: Integrate the operation of the jack with the fueling system. Still fueling--still on jack. No accidental drive-offs. Modifications like this will likely cost money, but given that teams have been put on notice to start prepping for turning right (you don't want my opinion...), this would be an incremental cost in the interest of safety.

            http://harm.net
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            • #7
              This makes sense!!!!!
              "If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice."
              - RUSH, Freewill, Permanent Waves (1980)

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              • #8
                This idea is purely common sense and it should be put in place before the cars take to the track at Lexington.
                You've worked so hard on the kidney. Very special -- the kidney has a very special place in the heart. It's an incredible thing. Donald John Trump

                Brian's Wish * Jason Foundation

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                • #9
                  PLEASE don't wait until someone gets killed to change this rule.

                  Must we always wait until there is tragedy.

                  PLEASE protect the guys and gals on pit lane.

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                  • #10
                    The ideas expressed herein officially have the endorsement of the D.

                    Thumbs up.

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                    • #11
                      Please protect our IRL crew members!!!
                      So Many Drivers, So Little Time!!!

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                      • #12
                        Do it.
                        "I didn't hear a single comment about airboxes, "carbashians", or how terrible the car looked. I did see dozens and dozens of little kids in awe of the speed and how cool the cars looked. We should learn from our children."
                        --Danny Noonan

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                        • #13
                          I agree with this.

                          Also consider this: no fair helping by tossing the crew their tools or tires once they go over the wall. They have to carry their own tools and tires.

                          Also consider: assign a crewperson or official to watch behind each crew that is actively working on a pit stop and give a radioed alert if collision danger is approaching.

                          Also consider: give the pit crewperson who stands at the right front tire and gives the GO signal training in common IRL rules for when to let the car free if traffic is approaching. For instance if the car from the pit ahead of them is within 50 feet or some certain distance, the crewperson should have to wait until that car comes in before letting their car go out. Or if any car is within 25 feet or some distance, they should not let their car out at all until it is past. This needs to cover all scenarios for cars approaching both in the low speed and high speed pit lanes.
                          Last edited by STAND E; 08-12-2003, 08:09 AM.
                          Barney Oldfield - AJ Foyt - Jim Clark - Dan Gurney - IMS - IMS YT - INDYCAR - INDYCAR YT

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                          • #14
                            I agree. This rule should have been in effect a LONG time ago.

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                            • #15
                              I agree. I don't know what the answer is but there IS a serious problem and it needs to be addressed NOW! As long as the rule applies to everyone it will be fair.

                              Please, please do NOT wait until there is another serious accident or, God forbid, someone is killed.

                              In racing there are many true accidents....things that cannot be prevented or foretold......but many of these pit road injuries are not pure accidents because we can see how there is a high percentage chance of them happening and there ARE measures we can implement to drastically reduce both the frequency and seriousness of these "events". These are good people, many of them weekend warriors. They have families & children.....please....we CAN do a better job of protecting them from needless injury.

                              Respectfully,
                              Barb
                              In Memory of Brian Hall (Brian's Wish) - Racing for Kids - Dreyer & Reinbold Racing

                              Cheever's still "My Guy"

                              "How's this for a political platform? Don't lie or cover-up!"

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