Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Car Navigation

Road Rally Car Navigation

As a Road Rally driver, I would never be competitive without a skilled Navigator to handle the car navigation duties.

In my car, navigation is mostly about time keeping. I keep my route instructions mounted on a roller board so I can read them and keep us on the right course. I want my navigator to have the general instructions ready in case I have a question. Also, I want him to keep any lettered or optional instructions posted in my view as well. We usually use sticky notes on the mirror.

When running equipped class with a computer, my navigator is more free to help me watch for signs and tricks. When running stock or "B" class, I am pretty much on my own for route following as the calculation take most of my navigators mental effort.

One very important thing I learned long ago is to divide the duties as equally as possible between the driver and navigator. If either of you is overloaded, you will make errors. It does not help to be on time on the wrong road or on the right road at the wrong time.

Many novice teams start out having the navigator do too much work: Reading the instructions, reading the generals, calculating the time and trying to watch for signs. Divide up the responsibilities to who has the best skills and opportunity to handle the task.

When competing in my car, navigation is about things inside the car and driving is about things outside the car. If looking at a spelling trap for example, it is the driver's responsibility to read the road sign while the navigator reads the route instructions to assure a match.

Rally car navigation can get confusing when two drivers or two navigators try to run together! So talk in advance about who will do what job before you start the odometer calibration run.

And be absolutely sure you know whose job it is to turn the roller board!



Post a Comment

<< Home