To find out which GPS devices are allowed and the Red Bull Romaniacs Rules and regulations for GPS please read 5.6 and 5.7 of the regulations. http://www.redbullromaniacs.com/for-riders/regulations-2013/
This section is about learning how GPS works and how competitors can use it at the Red Bull Romaniacs hard enduro rallye
1. GPS – How does it work?
Your GPS device receives signals from satellites around the world.
To tell you the exact position, your GPS device needs signal from at least 3 satellites. So, if you get good signal from more satellites your GPS device will give you more accurate information.
You should keep in mind, that the antenna of the GPS needs a direct view to the sky!
The quality of the signal depends on many factors like weather or surroundings. If you are riding through a forest the signal will not be as accurate as it would be in an open field, bad weather like snowfall, clouds or fog affect the quality of the signal as well.
GPS Tracks - What’s that?
A track is a series of connected GPS points which form a virtual road. Tracks can be up and downloaded from and onto the GPS device, recorded and saved. At the Red Bull Romaniacs you will navigate on tracks which we upload onto your GPS device.
While you are riding, your GPS device will record where you are driving, so when you reach the finish we will be able to see if you stayed on the course.
Waypoints – Possible lifesavers
Waypoints are points with exact coordinates. At the Red Bull Romaniacs we use waypoints for fuel points, rescue points and even for media camera points. In case of accidents or emergencies the easiest way to tell someone where you are is by creating a waypoint and giving these exact coordinates to the rescue teams
(by pressing and holding the MARK/ENTER key, on most Garmin GPS devices, you automatically create a waypoint!!!)
- when you create a waypoint, the GPS displays your exact position.
2. GPS - Why use it?
If marks are missing or visibility is low
Riders use the GPS as a navigation backup and aid. In case you are confused about which track to take, or the marks are missing, a quick look at the GPS display gives you which direction to go.
Know the track in advance
A GPS device can help you drive more intuitively because they show in advance which way the track goes, showing when a corner comes or where you can maintain speed because you see a long straight line.
In case of problems, know where help is located
Also we use GPS devices for safety (see Waypoints) - in case of problems, you can see where our rescue point vehicles are located beside the course.
If you go a wrong way, you can still find the right track
If you miss a turn or leave the racing track you will not see any more marks on the display. The safest way to find the track again is to return to the point where you left the course track.
Now that you know how it works, practice how to create a WAYPOINT.
Rescue operations are possible! and faster if we know your exact position.
You WILL be asked to demonstrate how to make a Waypoint and how to read it at scrutineering.
3. How does GPS navigation help?
GPS Navigation – How do I use it?
GPS Navigation helps you know where you came from, where you are going and gives a direction line to follow to get there.
The GPS Team will upload each night the new race track on you GPS device. Before the start, you will need to turn it on and get a GPS signal. You will then see the day's race track (a line) and a little man/arrow (that's YOU).
In order to navigate using the GPS, all you need to do is to keep the little man/arrow on the line (the track).
The zoom level is important
The trick is to set a zoom level that fits your driving:
- a zoom level (120m) will tell you your position on the track more exactly, but you will not see much of the track that follows.
- a zoom level (above 500m) won't tell your position on the track as exactly, but you will be able to anticipate the track and see what is coming ahead.
If you want to ride fast - watch the markings
Ride by watching the banners & marks on the track and check your GPS to see if you are still on the right track. Riding only with GPS makes you slower because you look too much at the LCD screen, miss the markers and cannot concentrate safely on driving.
4. How should I use the GPS at Red Bull Romaniacs?
At Red Bull Romaniacs the GPS device is important because it is a very usefull important safety device and keeps riders on the course.
During Red Bull Romaniacs you navigate by following the markings on the track. These markings are usually well placed and visible but it can happen that the markings get stolen or are moved.
This can cause some riders to get lost or to go on the wrong track, so check you are following the right track by checking your GPS display especially before crossroads or wher you see signs.
Tracks – How are they named?
The tracks you will be navigating on at Red Bull Romaniacs are named in a specific way so that the organizer or the riders can’t make mistakes.
The tracks which are uploaded to your GPS device are composed of a number of parts, each of 500 points. The number of parts depends on the length of the day's course.
A track at Red Bull Romaniacs is named as follows: first the initial of the class you are riding at, followed by the number of the day and the part of the track. For example the name of the 2nd part of the track for the Experts class for day 3 would look like this: E3PART2 (E = Experts, 3 = 3rd day, PART2 = 2nd part of the track).
Parts of tracks – Where and how do I change to the next part?
According to the length of the daily course, the track will be split in a number of parts. The changing of the parts will be done only at the fuel points so you don’t lose precious time on the racetrack doing it.
To see what tracks are saved to your GPS device enter the menu, then select TRACKS and then LIST SAVED. Here you will see a list of the tracks saved to your GPS device and a section which tells you how much memory you are using (this memory is only for the track called ACTIVE LOG which is what your GPS is recording).
At some Garmin® GPS devices you have to select the next part of the track (as described above) and select NAVIGATE. On the next screen select TO END. You have to change to the next part of the track at every fuel point.
At some Garmin® GPS devices you have the option to select “SHOW ON MAP”. If you select this option for all parts you don’t need to change the parts at the fuel points anymore because all parts are shown on your navigation screen at once.
Recording – Why does my GPS needs to be set to record?
When you are riding at Red Bull Romaniacs your GPS will be set to record where you are riding. This allows us to check at the end of the day if you stayed on the right track. It also enables the TrackBack® function, that also show you on the map where you have been.
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