Qualifying and Assigning Classes
One of the reasons we started AER was because we wanted to race in a series where everyone gets a fair shot at a podium. We don’t care what kind of car you bring or what you’ve done to it—based on its actual performance, we’ll group it with similarly performing cars.
How does qualifying work?
- Qualifying will usually be open all day on Friday.
- Your team can use this time to practice, too.
- Practice/qualifying is included in your entry fee.
- Where you qualify is based on how fast you and your team are.
- We’ll set the classes approximately 1 hour after the track closes on Friday.
How do we set the classes?
- We’ll base it on the fastest lap for each car.
- We’ll group cars that have similar qualifying times together.
We want you to be competitive in your class, which brings us to…
If cars are borderline between two classes, we’ll make a decision based on all drivers’ qualifying times on that team.
What does that mean?
For instance, if all the drivers were considerably faster than one class but just a little slower than the next class, we might bump them up into the faster class and start them with a few extra laps. Basically, we won’t penalize anyone for going fast, but we might give a slightly slower team a little help to tighten up a group. Plus, if we make any adjustments, we’ll let you and everyone else know why. Hell, we’ll even show you the math.
If one driver is significantly faster than his teammates, we’ll decide their class based on the team’s overall performance (our barcode system really helps all of us know who turned what laps).
The main question we’ll ask to determine the best qualifying position: Will this team and its drivers be competitive in the class we’ve assigned them?
What are the advantages to how we run qualifying and assign classes?
- Everything will be out in the open.
- We won’t assign subjective values to cars, use complex formulas or rough estimates of performance.
- Because qualifying is based on the teams that are at that race and how well everyone’s car and team perform, there’s no way to anticipate where you’re going to qualify. This method makes sandbagging difficult and unpredictable and reduces the likelihood of cheating.
- This system rewards consistency, which—along with reliability—are the hallmarks of endurance racing.