2016 RULES OF RACING
The following rules will apply to all formulas that race at ORCi Sanctioned Tracks. Any variation to these rules must be agreed with the Oval Racing Council, and then, only in exceptional circumstances.
At all times while at a race meeting, a driver shall be deemed to be under Racing Rules. Any driver guilty of any act prejudicial to the sport, including comments on social media sites etc, shall be reported to the appropriate Board of Control or Formula Organiser, for disciplinary action, and may be called upon to appear before the Board or Control or Formula Organiser, to answer the charges.
The interpretation of these rules pertaining to race procedures or lap scoring positions will be decided by the appointed ORCi officials at the race event.
Drivers must start in positions laid down by the Steward of the Meeting and in their correct grade (where applicable) at all times. Special dispensation to start at the rear of the grid will be made, only on application to the Steward of the Meeting, in the case of a driver wishing to test a new car on the occasion of its first meeting or at the Steward of the Meeting’s discretion.
At all clutch starts the Start Marshal shall satisfy himself that all drivers are ready on the yellow flag and are in a position where they can see the start signal before dropping the green flag. Any driver moving before the green drops will be liable to immediate exclusion.
In the case of a rolling start the drivers shall drive a preliminary lap, or part lap as directed by the Steward of the Meeting, keeping abreast in their proper positions and at a speed set by the inside driver at the front of each grid and/or grade and shall maintain the allotted gap between grades where applicable.
The race shall be started by the Start Marshal causing the starting flag to be dropped at any time after the leading cars have passed the 4th bend. The lead car may slowly increase speed between bends 3 and 4. All drivers must keep rank, and must wait for the starting flag before commencing racing. No car must accelerate beyond the rolling lap speed set by the lead car until the Start Marshal has shown the starting flag.
Any car unable to maintain the pace lap order due to clutch problems must start between the leader and the last car in order to avoid upsetting the start / restart.
Prior to the start, or re-start, a driver being too far in front or reducing speed on approaching the starting line, may be excluded or docked places at the discretion of the Steward of the Meeting.
START AND FINISH POINTS
The start and finish of a race or an attempt at a record shall occur when any part of the car passes over the starting or finishing line. In the event of a blocked track, the finishing line shall be deemed to extend a reasonable distance in to the infield. In formulas where transponders are used, the Steward of the Meeting’s decision is final.
RACE PROCEDURE and DISCIPLINE
No work may be carried out on any car at any time on the race circuit without the permission of the Steward of the Meeting. This permission may be communicated via the Clerk of the Course. If a driver wishes to carry out work on a race car and that work can be completed within the regulations specified in these rules, the car must first be removed to a safe area within the arena. The driver must not under any circumstances, leave the confines of the race circuit during a race to perform this work.
After the first green flag of a race has been displayed, any car, having entered that race or any re-run/restart thereof, cannot receive attention from anyone other than the driver and then only when this can be achieved without assistance, i.e. the handing of tools or parts over the safety fence / the carriage of spare parts or tools within the race car / the use of implements from within the arena whether they be part of another car or stadium items is forbidden. It is not permitted to transfer parts from a disabled car within the arena.
In the event of cars becoming entangled, the track staff are permitted to disentangle them during a caution or stoppage and permit them to rejoin at the discretion of the Steward of the Meeting at the rear of the re-formed grid – this is not considered to be ‘outside assistance’. In all cases the primary cause(s) of the suspension/stoppage, shall be excluded for any re-run or re-start of the race and may be officially disqualified from the race.
In addition, cars being push started will not be deemed as outside assistance provided they were not the cause of the caution or stoppage.
Please note that after the first green flag of a race, no additional cars are allowed to take part even if the race is a complete re-run In addition, a car will only be eligible for the re-run/re-start if it was part of that particular race suspension or stoppage.
Drivers who use their car to shield and protect an upturned or damaged car, will not be excluded when the race resumes at the discretion of the Steward of the Meeting, and whenever possible will be re-gridded accordingly.
Please note that the above Race Procedures may be varied via Supplementary Championship Regulations. These are only applicable to the following Championship races: World, British & European. The Supplementary Championship Regulations must be submitted to the ORCi Secretary at least 14 days prior to the event and will be published on the ORCi website and any formula specific website. The regulations must also be circulated in writing to all competitors within the event.
The following flag signals will apply in all races unless otherwise stated. At some tracks traffic lights may be used to further emphasise the flag signals. The Start Marshal, Steward of the Meeting and Flag Marshals shall apply the following rules to the use of flags during racing:–
The GREEN FLAG indicates the start of the race and will remain until all competitors have passed the start line.
The YELLOW FLAG indicates danger as described below.
a) During the rolling lap the Start Marshal will show a yellow flag (covering the green flag).
b) The Start Marshal will begin the race by showing the GREEN FLAG.
c) (b) Waved yellow flag i.e. Race Suspension:
A Flag Marshal, wishing to inform the Steward of the Meeting of a serious incident or the presence of hazardous objects or material on the track shall do so by using their radio and/or an ‘open’ yellow flag held above their head, whereupon the Steward of the Meeting may introduce a Race Suspension. Co-ordination between the Steward of the Meeting, Start Marshal and Flag Marshals in these circumstances is critical.
In the event of a major incident (which includes a car rolling onto its side or roof on the track and in the line of racing) or where loose objects or material on the track may constitute a hazard to spectators, competitors or officials, the Steward of the Meeting may bring the whole circuit under RACE SUSPENSION conditions, without the race being stopped (red flagged) by introducing waved yellow flags.
In the event of a wheel becoming detached from a car, immediate race suspension will be invoked.
On introduction of a race suspension. ALL CARS MUST SLOW TO ROLLING LAP SPEED (or stop where the lead car is so instructed) and get into single File. THERE WILL BE NO OVERTAKING. The single file grid may continue to circulate at 5mph (some circuits will implement the use of a Pace Car to control this speed). In some circumstances it may be necessary to bring the single file grid to a temporary halt under a race suspension (for example, to ease the movement of recovery/rescue vehicles). Such a temporary halt does not constitute a Red Flag Stoppage. Any driver unlapping them self or breaking rank from the single file, without authorisation, will be immediately excluded from the restart of the race. In this situation, drivers are not permitted to leave the seat of their cars or have anyone touch their car.
It is essential that drivers are aware and make their mechanics aware that they will be excluded should their mechanics enter the arena at this time whether or not they receive assistance. Cars must restart in the same condition as before the Race Suspension.
In certain circumstances for safety reasons, the Steward of the Meeting may authorise an official to remove metal etc from a car during a race suspension. In this case this is not considered to be outside assistance.
In preparation for the restart, cars will be lined up in the order prevailing prior to the introduction of race suspension (yellow flags), lap down cars must remain in the position they occupied on the track at that time (not in positional order). The Steward of the Meeting is empowered to re-instate any driver being in his opinion, accidentally taken out of the race during a race suspension.
During a rolling Race Suspension, manual lap scoring is suspended, and electronic lap scoring will utilise the 'non- counting' yellow flag system, to ensure that the appropriate number of racing laps are raced.
The race can only be restarted by the Start Marshal showing the green flag to the Race Leader. The green flag will be withdrawn after all cars have passed the Start Marshal.
The RED FLAG is used to denote that the race has been stopped. All drivers must, with care, slow down immediately and STOP as soon as possible. Cars will then remain stationary until the Clerk of the Course gives instruction to reform on the grid or leave the track, (see rule STOPPAGES).
The CHEQUERED FLAG indicates completion of the required number of laps. It will be the intention for all races to be run to their full published distance, wherever possible. The Chequered Flag shall be waved at the first driver to complete the race distance and held out until cars for paid and/or points places in the race have completed the race distance. Drivers having received the Chequered Flag must continue at race speed until the red flag in conjunction with the chequered flag is displayed, otherwise they may incur a penalty. Race conditions and rules apply until the red flag is shown with the chequered flag.
RED & CHEQUERED FLAGS (waved together) means the end of the race. All cars to slow down with care, to make their way to the Pit Gate. Any offence committed on track after this time will render the driver liable to a penalty.
The BLACK FLAG is shown to a car that has been disqualified and which must retire from racing immediately to the infield, with care.
The BLUE FLAG indicates to a driver that they must hold their line (inside or outside) as there is a much faster car behind that is trying to overtake. (Non Contact Formulas only). This flag will be given to a driver a maximum of 3 times. Thereafter, a BLUE & WHITE STRIPED flag will be shown which will indicate that the driver must give up their position to the car behind. Failure to do this will result in a black flag being shown – driver disqualified.
The WHITE FLAG WITH a RED CROSS (X) is a TECHNICAL DISQUALIFICATION FLAG. This is used to signal to a driver that they have a problem with their car and must immediately retire to the infield, with care.
The WHITE FLAG WITH BLUE SPOT. Used to warn drivers that there is oil or slippery fluids on the track. However racing may continue.
A LAP BOARD indicating the number of laps remaining to be completed must be displayed by the Start Marshal over a minimum of the last three laps.
STOPPAGES (Red Flag)
A race may only be stopped on instruction from the Steward of the Meeting, in the interests of safety or other contributory factors (Time Limit) etc. It shall be the intention, whenever possible, to run all races to a conclusion over the published race distance. The Promoter reserves the right to call a result AT ANY TIME.
The race may be stopped if the pits gate has to be opened to facilitate entry to the track of either an ambulance or breakdown vehicle, although this can also be done under a yellow flag at the Steward of the Meeting’s discretion.
a) If any race is stopped after the first 3 laps then the race shall be restarted and run over the balance of laps outstanding to the leading car.
b) In preparation for the restart, cars will be lined up in the order prevailing prior to the introduction of the race stoppage (red flags), lap down cars must remain in the position they occupied on the track at that time (not in positional order). The Steward of the Meeting is empowered to re-instate any driver being in his opinion, accidentally taken out of the race during a race stoppage.
c) In the event of no cars having completed more than 3 laps of the total distance, the race shall be re-run. Note that a temporary halt under yellow flags (caution) is not the same as a stoppage under red flags.
d) The only cars permitted to take part in any re-run shall be those having taken part in any/all other restart(s) immediately prior to the stoppage. A car missing taking part in a restart shall not be eligible to compete in any subsequent restart of the same race.
e) A driver is permitted to leave his car during a red flag period but any work performed must be authorised by the Steward of the Meeting.
It is an offence for a driver to push, or work on his car within the arena while a race is in progress. It is the driver’s responsibility to ensure that current health and safety legislation is adhered to when in the pits area.
DISQUALIFICATION and PENALTIES
Drivers will be penalised (and may be disqualified) for unnecessarily cutting across the infield or for gaining advantage by leaving the track to pass an opponent. A penalty will be imposed for:-
a) Unnecessarily cutting across the infield.
b) Gaining advantage by leaving the track to pass an opponent. This will include the illegal use of kerbs.
c) Breaking the rolling lap to gain advantage either by gaining places or by deliberately holding up the start.
d) Leading a Start or Re-Start at too fast a speed.
A driver suffering a flat tyre may receive a technical disqualification (see above) at the discretion of the Steward of the Meeting, having due regard to the number of laps still to run.
If a driver is penalised for more than one incident during a race or a meeting, the Steward of the Meeting may, at their discretion, disqualify the driver from the rest of the meeting and/or report the driver to the Board of Control or Formula Organiser.
The offending driver may be fined or suspended from driving at future meetings, the amount and period to be decided by the appropriate Board of Control or Formula Organiser.
If a driver, convicted of an offence has a period of their ban suspended, that suspended ban is automatically triggered if the driver is found guilty of an offence of the same nature – i.e. On Track/Racing; Technical; or Behavioral.
A car shall be deemed to have been deliberately ‘fenced’ when one car has been in contact with the other when it hits the safety fence. This is also known as a ‘Follow In’. The offending driver will be disqualified from the race and will be reported to their Board of Control or Formula Organiser for further action. This rule does not apply to full contact Banger racing.
Different classes of oval racing may have their own formula-specific rulings on Fencing.
END OF RACE
A race shall be deemed ended when the cars for paid and/or points places in the race have completed the race distance. Drivers must continue racing until the Red and Chequered flags are displayed together before slowing down. They must not slow down when only the chequered flag is shown. Drivers who do this may be penalised.
INTERPRETATION OF RULES
Decisions of Officials on interpretation of the rules pertaining to race procedures or lap scoring positions, shall be considered Final. At all times, while on the track, a driver shall be deemed to be under Racing Rules.
AGE LIMITS Junior Formulas In Junior Formulas the upper and lower age limits are set by the organising Promoter or Association. I.e. in ORCi Ministox the lower age limit is 11 years and drivers must leave the formula prior to their 16th Birthday.
Other junior formulas may have other upper and lower age limits determined by the organising ORCi Promoter or Association.
NB. All drivers under the age of 18 years must have their Licence Application guaranteed by the parent or legal guardian - proof of guardianship may be required.
Senior Formulas - Lower age limit
All competitors in a Senior Formula must complete a Medical Self Declaration which is included in their Licence Application Form.
In all Senior Formulas the minimum age for competitors is set at 16 years. No competitor may participate in a Senior Formula prior to their 16th birthday.
NB. All drivers under the age of 18 years must have their Licence Application guaranteed by the parent or legal guardian - proof of guardianship may be required.
Senior Formulas - Upper age limit
All competitors in a Senior Formula must complete a Medical Self Declaration which is included in their License Application Form.
Drivers who reach the age of 55 may, in certain formula, be asked to pass a Medical Examination conducted by their General Practitioner (GP) before applying for their License. Subsequent annual License applications do not require these Medical Examinations up to the age of 65 unless specifically requested by the ORCi.
All ORCi sanctioned Senior Formulas require drivers to pass a Medical Examination when applying for their License at the age of 65 years and over on an annual basis.
Any fees due for these Medical Examinations must be paid by the applying driver. The Medical Examination should be carried out to a standard similar to that required for Life Insurance. Competitors holding a current HGV license may use this as proof of Medical Condition.
Applications for a License by competitors over 55 years of age who have not held a license in the previous 5 years in the same or similar formula would not normally be granted.
In all cases the ultimate decision as to whether a driver is fit to hold a Competition License resides with the ORCi Promoter or Association.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What should I do if I am stationary on track during a race?
Firstly, look out for a marshal and signal that you are not injured with a “thumbs up”. If you are injured and need assistance give the thumbs down signal, if possible. If eye contact is made with the marshal, and no signal is given, then the marshal will assume that you're injured and this information will be relayed to race control.
Don't give a thumbs down signal if you are not injured but feel that you're in a dangerous situation - this decision will be taken by the Steward in Race Control.
Any driver who is the cause of a caution or stoppage cannot take part in the re-run. Drivers who sustain injury or suspected injury must be passed fit by the medical team in order to take further part in the event. Drivers who feign injury in order to get a race stopped will be loaded up from the event.
During a race, you must not exit your car whilst on track or on the infield. The only exception to this is when you are in extreme danger within the car, for example in the case of fire. In this case you must exit the car with extreme care, always remembering that there is a danger of other competitors on track. You should then make your way to the nearest Safe Area. These designated ‘Safe Areas’ will be identified at the driver’s pre meeting briefing or written Drivers Instructions.
When you remain in your car on the track, keep your harness and helmet on, until the end of the race or until the race is cautioned or stopped. You should then make your way to a designated Safe Area as noted above
What should I do if I need to stop my car because of mechanical failure during a race?
Retire to the Infield as soon and as safely as possible. When you have retired to the infield, remain in your car, keeping your harness and helmet on. You must not get out of your car even under yellow or red flag stoppages, just remain in your car, until the end of the race. ORCi 2016 Rules of Racing – Dated 5th February 2016
Well with the F1 world final looming and no notification on the ORCI website; lets see if these rules will be applied. There does seem to be a lot of leeway when it comes to rule interpretation and who can interpret and alter them.....rules can only be altered by the ORCI council in exceptional circumstances / by meeting steward / by clerk of the course / by ORCI representative or races stopped at any time and result declared by the promotor!
Fingers crossed they have all read the rules and interpret them the same way.