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Old 01-31-08, 03:11 AM   #1
Falchoon
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Working out finishing order

I compete in local club races and it seems nearly every time a race finishes there is mass confusion as to who finished where. It seems it is mostly up to the honesty of the riders to work out where they finished as the officials for the most part have NFI. To be fair to the officials it is hard for one or two of them to take down numbers instantaneously as 30 odd riders sprint past at 50km/h. In a sprint finish I am concentrating on not crashing into other riders/scenery while putting in max effort to beat other riders across the line so I am a little preoccupied to work out who came where. I usually know who the immediate rider in front of me was, beyond that I'm lost. Is there a better way of doing it? Like some sort of (preferably low cost) electronic tag that could be pre-programmed or something with a rider's number?
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Old 01-31-08, 03:50 AM   #2
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Finish line camera, or digital chips would solve the problem.
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Old 01-31-08, 05:14 AM   #3
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Over here we have a digital video camera on the finish line and raised up nice and high so it can see the numbers on each of the riders as they go past. We still have occasional problems with people's numbers being obscured, but 90% of the time there is no doubt who came where in the top 10.
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Old 01-31-08, 06:07 AM   #4
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I suggest they only count the first three. Who gives a toss about who finishes 10th?
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Old 01-31-08, 06:53 AM   #5
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I suggest they only count the first three. Who gives a toss about who finishes 10th?
my interest in where i placed runs as deep as the placings that pay out.
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Old 01-31-08, 06:58 AM   #6
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Exactly.
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Old 01-31-08, 08:03 AM   #7
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http://www.amb-it.com/

They make personal transponder for tons of sports. I own a bunch of their transponders for R/C Car Racing and have used a bunch of their other products. All super top quality.

I think it would be wise to be used at races although if you have tons of people racing it could get costly although it is still fairly cheap in the grand scheme of things.

They are real simple too. They would be able to tell you lap times, average speed, overall time, and other info. They would be great for crits as you can set up a time limit + x amount of laps.
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Old 01-31-08, 08:28 AM   #8
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The problem with transponders is that placings are determined by front wheel crossing the finish line.
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Old 01-31-08, 10:23 AM   #9
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The problem with transponders is that placings are determined by front wheel crossing the finish line.
Do like they do in the tour. They are all a set distance back from the front wheel.

Granted there could be a change in position from when the front wheel crosses to when the rear transponder does so thats why in the tour they also have the photofinish.

For regular racers I am sure it is way better then a person trying to watch 30 guys cross the finish at 35+ mph
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Old 01-31-08, 10:27 AM   #10
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They use cameras around here. Usually. I've also seen some races with the chips.
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Old 01-31-08, 10:39 AM   #11
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As a promoter who had no budget (and still only budgets based on what we got the prior year), we've worked out a good system using a camcorder and either a TiVo or nothing.

Here's how it evolved for us:

Camcorder will get jerseys, bike colors/sizes, helmet, etc., on its own. Costs very little ($300? + a tape or two). We started out when camcorders were $800 so that's what it cost us - we were looking for one with shutter speeds 1/4000 or faster. But you need to have some knowledge of who is who, or have the riders look at the screen with you. Hand held works but it's better to have a tripod or something.

To make things easier we bought a small screen TV (at that point we had a generator). The 15" screen or so was enough to pick out things better, versus the 2" LCD or whatever.

Then we got the TiVo. This allowed us to record "full time" and review what we wanted to review. The generator obviously made it easier. We didn't buy the TiVo, one of the guys brings his to the race after reprogramming it (not sure what's involved but takes time). This way we don't forget to hit record or run out of tape (both of which have happened). TiVo also helps as it has freeze frame, slo-mo forward and backwards.

What's funny is we initially got a lot of "I think I placed 7th but you guys don't have me listed in the top 10".
"We picked out the numbers, I didn't see you there."
"I swear I was 7th, maybe 6th."
"Well, let's look at the tape."
"Okay."
"There's the winner... second.. third.. tenth... fifteenth (guy is fidgeting by now).... twenty first, and there you are, twenty second."
"Um... thanks."

We rarely get them now.

To make things easier on your club race promoter, if everyone pitched in $5-10, you can buy a $250-300 camcorder and a tape and then hand it to the promoter. No more complaints and probably costs less than the race itself.

cdr
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Old 01-31-08, 01:14 PM   #12
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All of our races in OBRA use a finish line camera. I believe it is owned by OBRA and the use is part of the race fee. It usually does a very good job as long as people have thier numbers pinned on correctly.

In one race last year, the camera didn't work properly for the Cat3 sprint finish. The racers all lined up how they thought they finished to get the top 10 (the race was part of a series with points for the top 10). All the racers sorted out the top 10 without a single disagreement - it was really quite surprising.
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