Sporting Regulations (Project CARS)

2018 Season

The goal of the CanAm Virtual Racing League is to promote fun, competitive racing with a spirit of respect and integrity. Our focus is on realism, with an emphasis on Driver Etiquette.

In order to achieve this goal a set of specific Sporting Regulations has been defined to govern all aspects of competition within the league. This document outlines the sporting regulations and procedures for a race weekend. The document covers General Regulations, Practice Sessions, Qualifying Session, Race Day and Penalties. Any questions regarding these regulations should be directed to a League Panel member.

Due to regular patching and updates of the Project CARS platform, these Sporting Regulations are considered a Living Document and are subject to change at any time. It is every driver's responsibility to ensure they stay up to date on the Sporting Regulations. Failure to remain current will not be considered an excuse in the event of an infraction.

Please note that due to network limitations, any drivers outside of North America will need to provide network performance test results. While we welcome all drivers, we do need to be aware of latency and lag issues which would hinder yourself and others.


General Regulations

This section outlines the basic regulations for our league. Car specific regulations are detailed in the Technical Regulations section.

TeamSpeak Client - Use of the TeamSpeak server during events is considered mandatory. Drivers must be able to communicate with others on the track. Failure to use TeamSpeak with a headset may result in a driver's suspension.

Driver Aids - Driving Aids will always be set to REAL. This means that if a particular car has a specific Aid in real life, it will be available in the game. Other non-performance impacting aids such as Driving Line will also be permitted for those that need them.

Pitting - Each track has clear markings indicating the pit entrance and exit lanes. On most tracks, this is a solid white line. Drivers entering or exiting the pits may not cross outside this white line and drivers racing on the track may not cross inside this white line. Doing so in a race may result in a penalty.

Basic Room Settings

For all official events we will utilize our Dedicated Server. The room will have the following settings:

  • Practice Session = 50 Minutes
  • Qualifying Session = 40 minutes
  • Weather = REAL**
  • Weather Progression = Sync to Race (same as Time Progression)
  • Tire Wear = Accellerated (2x)
  • Fuel Consumption = REAL
  • Damage = FULL
  • Pit Stop Errors = YES
  • Mechanical Failures = YES
  • Time Progression (Practice/Qualifying) = Real time
  • Time Progression (race) = 2x,5x or 10x*
  • Rolling Start = NO
  • Force Realistic Driving Aids = YES
  • Force Manual Formation Laps = YES
  • Force Manual Pit Control = YES
  • Force Manual Cooldown lap = YES
  • Pit Lane penalites = YES
  • Drive Through Penalties = YES
  • Track Limit Penalties = NO
  • Allowable Penalty Time = 0 Seconds
 

*Each race will have its own time progression depending on the race location/real world equivalent race. Check Calendar details for specific event.

**If you are unfamiliar with the mechanics behind how REAL weather works in Project CARS 2, please read this Forum post Real Weather

Practice Events

Informal Practice Events will be governed by the same regulations as a race day session. The following exceptions will be in effect for practice sessions:

  • Practice and Qualifying times will be shorter, or eliminated altogether
  • Our Dedicated Server will be configured with the correct Practice setup for the 2-week period between each event. On the Morning of Race Day, the full Race specific settings will be configured.

Technical Regulations

The current season is being run as a Multiclass season. The eligible classes are LMP2 and GT3. Eligible cars for each class are: 

  • LMP2:
    • All cars in the class are eligible
  • GT3:
    • All cars in the class are eligible

NOTE: The panel reserves the right to impose Balance of Performance regulations, or outright bans, on individual cars if a car is found to have clearly dominant performance. This decision will be made based on data gathered from previous races as well as independant panel member tests.

Race Registration

With more than 32 drivers registered for the season, it is imperative for organizers to know how many drivers intend to race at each event. As a result, drivers will be REQUIRED to register for each race. Failure to register may result in the driver not being able to race due to a lack of grid spaces. The registration form can be found here Race Registration The form will be available for the 2 week period prior to a race. The form will lock down and stop accepting registrations at 01:00 AM Eastern TIme on the Thursday prior to the race to allow us time to inform all drivers that will need to participate in the Qualifying heat as outlined in the next section.

  • If a driver has registered for the race, but has become unavailable for race day:
    • Notify a panel member of the change, and the registration can be removed.
  • If a driver expected to be unable to make the race, but now that it's race day, the driver is available afterall:
    • As per our existing Qualifying process drivers who registered, raced in the Qualifying race, but did not advance, will have priority to the open slots.
    • Any driver who did not register, but is then available on race day may be allowed to race IF there are additional spaces available.
  • If a driver registered, but at the last minute something came up and the driver was a "no show":
    • Sometimes in life things happen unexpectedly. A one off situation can be excused
    • A repeated pattern of this situation by any individual driver may result in some form of intervention by the panel as it does create issues for other members

Qualifying Procedures (Reduced Grid tracks/More than 32 drivers)

All drivers must regsiter for each race event via the Race Registration Form. This is being done so that organizers can determine if a Qualifying Heat is required. In the event that we have more drivers wishing to participate than there are Grid Spots, we will utilize the following Race Qualification procedure:

  • LMP2
    • Top 6 drivers in points standings will automatically qualify for the main event of the next round
  • GT3
    • Top 13 drivers in points standings will automatically qualify for the main event of the next round
  • Remaining drivers will participate in a qualifying heat to determine which drivers will advance to the main event
  • The top finishers in the Qualifying heat will advance to the main event and make up the remainder of the grid.
    • This number for each class will vary by venue and the number of spots available.
  • All drivers who participated in the Qualifying heat, but who do not advance to the main event will receive Driver's Points based on finishing position
    • If a class has a total of 8 spots in main, then drivers who did not advance will be scored as 9th and up based on finishing order in qualifying race.
 

The Qualifying heat will be an abbreviated version of the main event, but will use all of the same rules, regulations, and settings as the main event. The Qualifying heat will take place on the Firday evening of the event weekend, exaclty 24 hours prior to the main event. See the Calendar for specific details of each event.

Race Day Procedures

For each scheduled event, the lobby will open at 9:30PM Eastern Time. Drivers who join the lobby prior to this time are asked to NOT use the Vote to Start button.

At exactly 9:30PM Eastern Time, the session will be started. Drivers not yet in the lobby will still be able to join the event until part way through the Qualifying session. During the last 5 minutes of the Qualifying session drivers will no longer be able to join the race. In order to ensure you are able to participate, make sure that you are in the room no later than the start of the Qualifying session (10:20 PM ET)

Under no circumstances will the event be restarted for individual drivers/issues. Once the event is started all elements are automated and cannot be interrupted. Any driver who is not in the room in time and is therefore unable to join the race and will be scored as a DNS (Did Not Start). Drivers can join the room until the last 5 minutes of the Qualifying session.

Qualifying Procedures

For the Multi-class season, we will have a split qualifying session. The Qualifying session will be set for a total of 40 minutes. 

  • During the first 20 minutes, ONLY GT3 cars will be allowed on track
    • At the 20-minute mark, GT3 drivers will be notified of “Checkered Flag” by designated flag person
    • Once Checkered Flag is announced, GT3 drivers will finish the lap they are on and then return to Pit Stall.
    • Senior Panel member present or designated delegate will record GT3 Results
  • During the final 20 minutes of Qualifying session, ONLY LMP2s will be allowed on track.
    • LMP2s will run until end of session.
    • Senior Panel member present or designated delegate will record LMP2 Results 

Race Starting Procedures

Although for the most part the in game Rolling Start procedure works well, it does have one flaw in regards to the grid formation. Namely that the cars are sorted on the grid purely by their qualifying lap times. The main issue with this is that it creates separation between class competitors as well as not allowing us to allow for a gap between classes for the actual start as is normally doen in real life. As a result, we will revert back to our tried and ture process of a manual rolling start as follows:

  1. Room will be set for STANDING start
  2. At the green lights, drivers will remain in the grid spots in their current order.
  3. All LMP2s will roll off the grid, but retain their order within their class
  4. LMP2 pole sitter will set the pace of 75MPH
  5. After the last LMP2 has passed the GT3 pole sitter, the GT3s will roll off the grid maintaining their order.
  6. The Pole sitter for each class will call "GREEN, GREEN, GREEN" as they hit the START/FINISH line.

The following rules apply to the formation lap:

  • Tire and brake warming during the pace lap is permitted
  • fuel saving measures such as shutting off the engine are not permitted.
  • Drivers may NOT pass until they have crossed the START/FINISH line.

Additional time will be added to the duration of each race in order to allow for the above manual procedure. Because the timed races can only be set in 5 minute intervals, all drivers must accomodate for this extra time in their pit strategies. For example, a 90 minute race will now need ot be configured as a 95 minute race. This means that additional laps will be run under timed conditions.

Caution Periods

During the first 5 Green Flag laps of every race (laps 2 - 6) any driver that is involved in a multi-car incident may call for a caution. Cautions may only be called for incidents involving 2 or more cars, and there will only be one caution period per race. The caution procedure will be as follows:

  • Driver involved in multi-car incident calls for caution
  • All drivers immediately reduce speed to 60MPH (100KPH)
  • All drivers maintain their position at the time the caution was called
  • Pits are CLOSED until all drivers are on the same lap
    • If the caution is called after any cars have already passed pit entrance the pits will be closed and we will do an extra caution lap.
    • Once all drivers are on the same lap, the pits will be opened
  • Caution period will last for 2-3 laps as follows
    • Lap that the caution is called on
    • If any cars have already passed the pit entry when the caution is called, then the pits will be declared CLOSED and we will complete another lap, so that all cars pit on the same lap
    • Pit exit lap
  • After the pit stops, drivers will maintain the positions they returned to the track in and will maintain 60MPH (100KPH). Tire warming is permitted; fuel saving is NOT.
  • Restart procedure is the same as the Rolling Start procedure above.
 

Once a caution period has been called for during a race, no further caution periods will be permitted. Local yellow flag rules will apply from that point on.   Once all cars have started lap 7 no caution periods will be permitted. The caution period is only available during laps 2 - 6.

Local Yellow Flags

As in most forms of road racing, we will utilize the Local Yellow Flag rule from lap 6 until the end of each race. Drivers are NOT permitted to overtake any other drivers in a local yellow zone. When an incident is observed on track, or announced via TeamSpeak, the section from the corner before the incident to the corner after the incident are considered to be the Yellow Flag Zone. The process will work as follows:

  • Incident occurs on track
  • Drivers involved announce “Yellow Turn X” (where “X” is corner name or number where incident has occurred) via TeamSpeak
  • All drivers on track treat section from Turn X to Turn Y (where X is corner announced, and Y is the next corner) as a Local Yellow zone.
  • Drivers involved in incident announce “Green” once they have safely recovered to the track* 

*Drivers who have damage and are limping back to pits must make this clear via TeamSpeak, and must remain well off of the racing line.

Any driver who overtakes another driver under a Local Yellow condition must give back the position immediately or face points penalties post-race.

Red Flag

In the event of a server impacting issue, or an issue that impacts a significant number of the field (25% or more), we will institute a Red Flag procedure as follows: 

  • As soon as a server/session impacting situation is identified the event will be Red Flagged by the most senior panel member in the event.

  • Once the Red Flag is issued, all drivers will stop immediately and remain on track in their current positions.

  • The senior panel member present will record the current running order via a screen shot

    • Press ESC to bring up the Monitor

    • Press F12 to take a screen capture

  • Once the screen capture has been taken, drivers may leave the server, but remain on TeamSpeak

  • The Server Admin will adjust the server configuration to the conditions of the track (date, time, etc) when the Red Flag was issued. The server admin will calculate an approximate track time based on the leader's average laptime and laps completed.

  • Server Admin will restart the server

  • Drivers will rejoin the server

    • Drivers who may have been disconnected previously will be allowed to rejoin, but will be scored numbers of laps down based on when they dropped from the previous session.

  • Host will start the event

    • When the race officially goes GREEN all drivers will REMAIN in their grid positions.

    • The most senior panel member will call drivers out one by one in the order listed in the screen capture

    • Any drivers that were previously disconnected will join on the back of the grid in the order they were disconnected (most recent disconnect first, first disconnect last)

  • Once the grid order has been reestablished we will continue on the first lap as a caution lap and follow the Restart Procedure as listed in the Caution Period section.

  • With the exception of the "formation" lap, there will be no caution periods following a Red Flag condition.

Racing Surface

The racing surface is defined as the paved area between the solid white (or yellow) lines. Drivers MUST keep 2 tires on the racing surface at all times. 

  • If there is a permanent curb, the curb is NOT considered part of the racing surface. Two tires MUST remain inside the white lines as indicated in the example images below
  • It is forbidden to gain an advantage by reducing the length of the circuit. 
  • It is forbidden to gain an advantage by increasing the length of the circuit.
  • If a driver is unable to keep their tires on the racing surface, then they are required to lift off of the throttle for at least 2 seconds before returning to racing speed. Failing to do so will be considered a short cut.
  • Paved areas outside of the solid white or yellow lines are Run-Off areas and are NOT considered part of the racing surface.
  • All pit lane markings must be observed. Drivers entering or leaving the pits must keep all 4 tires below the pit exit line so as to avoid causing an incident with on track cars.

Not all in game track limit penalties will be in use. Only the pit lane limits:

  • Pit lane exit
  • Pit lane speed limit

Track limit violations will be reviewed by the league Panel Members using the post race replays. Any driver deemed to be exceeding track limits will face a post race points penalty. Panel members will be looking fo rthe following when determining if a penalty is warranted:

  • Repeated patterns of exceeding track limits in same sections of track
  • Clear indications of gaining an advantage

Panel members will also take the following into account when reviewing:

  • Accident avoidance actions
  • Weather conditions
  • Traffic conditions (relates to accident avoidance).

Rules for Overtaking

  • Passing General
    The responsibility for the decision to pass another car, and to do it safely, rests with the overtaking driver. The overtaken driver should be aware that he/she is being passed and must not impede the pass by blocking. A driver who does not watch his/her mirrors or who appears to be blocking another car seeking a pass may be black-flagged and/or penalized. The act of passing is initiated when the trailing car’s (Car A) front bumper overlaps with the lead car’s (Car B ) rear bumper. The act of passing is complete when Car A’s rear bumper is ahead of Car B’s front bumper. “NO PASSING” means a pass cannot even be initiated. Any overlap in a NO PASSING area is considered illegal.
  • Punting
    The term “punting” is defined as nose to tail (or side-of-the-nose to side-of-the-tail) contact, where the leading car is significantly knocked off of the racing line. Once the trailing car has its front wheel next to the driver of the other vehicle, it is considered that the trailing car has a right to be there. And, that the leading driver must leave the trailing driver enough “racing room.” In most cases, “racing room” is defined as “at least three quarters of one car width.” If adequate racing room is left for the trailing car, and there is incidental contact made between the cars, the contact will be considered “side-to-side.” In most cases, incidental side-to-side contact is considered to be “just a racing incident.” If, in the case of side-to-side contact, one of the two cars leaves the racing surface (involuntarily) then it may still be considered “a racing incident.”
  • Right to the Line
    The driver in front has the right to choose any line, as long as they are not considered to be blocking. The driver attempting to make a pass shall have the right to the line when their front wheel is next to the driver of the other vehicle.
  • Blocking
    A driver may choose to protect his or her line so long as it is not considered blocking. Blocking is defined as two (2) consecutive line changes to “protect his/her line,” and in doing so, impedes the vehicle that is trying to pass with each of the two (2) consecutive movements.
NOTE: Rules for Overtaking have been taken directly from the NASA (National Auto Sports Association) rule set (section 25.4). For their complete rules, please see http://www.nasaproracing.com/rules/ccr.pdf

Lap Traffic

CanAm VRL utilizes a "Blue Flag" rule philosophy regarding lap traffic. This means that drivers who are being lapped by higher placed cars must yield way to those faster cars. This is the same approach and philosophy that is used in all real world forms of road racing. Every reasonable effort must be made to allow the faster car to pass within 3 corners. The lapped car should yield the inside line of the corner to allow the leading car by.

Although lapped cars are expected to allow lead cars by, lead car drivers MUST be aware of any positional battles that the lapped cars may be involved in. Every reasonable effort must be made to NOT interfere with these battles. Ensure that you can clear both cars as quickly as possible. The above mentioned Rules For Overtaking still apply as well. It is the passing driver's responsibility to ensure the pass is completed safely.

The in game Blue Flag system will be in use, including any penalties applied automatically by the game for failing to heed the blue flag.

No Passing Zones

Each track will have designated "No Passing zones". These no passing zones are areas where there is a high risk of incident between cars of different classes due to the speed differentials, as well as handling and performance differentials between these cars.

  • These zones will be identified prior to each race. In these zones, cars of different classes will be prohibited from overtaking one another.

  • Cars within the same class are free to race each other in these zones.

  • The purpose for these "no passing" zones is to prevent faster class cars from causing an incident, or forcing the slower class cars off track.

  • Any driver ignoring the designated zone and causing an incident in one of these zones with a car from another class will be subject to disciplinary actions.

 

Points System

CanAm VRL uses a single points system for both the Driver's and Team's Points standings.

Each driver earns points based on their finishing order in the Main Event race. Drivers who must participate in a Qualifying Event but fail to advance to the Main event will be awarded 1 Driver's Point.

Team points will be based on a combination of Drivers points. Driver's points earned by the two highest placing placing drivers on the team will be totaled to create the team points for the event. The third driver's points will not be included. This minimizes the negative impact to a team should one of their drivers not be able to participate on a given weekend.

The points allocations are as follows:

 

Position Points
1st 35
2nd 32
3rd 30
4th 28
5th 26
6th 25
7th 24
8th 23
9th 22
10th 21
11th 20
12th 19
13th 18
14th 17
15th 16
16th 15
17th 14
18th 13
19th 12
20th 11
21st 10
22nd 9
23rd 8
24th 7
25th 6
26th 5
27th 4
28th 3
29th 2
30th 1
31st 1
32nd 1

 

In the event that a driver is able to start the weekend event, but is unable to complete the race (technical or network issues) that driver will be scored based on his/her position at the end of the race. In other words, if the driver is disconnected early and everyone continues on, that driver will earn lowest place points. If however the driver is disconnected near the end of the race then laps completed by all drivers will need to be looked at. If the disconnected driver has completed more laps than another driver then he/she will be scored appropriately.

The above Points are subject to change if/once the game allows for the Online Championships.

Teams

Along with the Drivers’ Championship, we also have a Team Championship. Drivers are not required to be part of a team, however any drivers who do decide to form a team must all use the same class of car, i.e. all team members must be in GT3, or all team members must be in LMP2. Since Project CARS does not currently support the use of multiple Custom Liveries online, Teams are NOT required to use the same/similar liveries.

Post-Race Reviews

All races will be reviewed by the panel members via the use of the game’s replay. Panel members will use the week following the race to review any issues or concerns.

Any driver wishing to report a concern to the panel must do so no later than Midnight Eastern Time on the Wednesday following the race. This allows the panel members time to review and investigate as needed before meeting on Sunday night. Review requests can be submitted to any panel member via the Private Message function on the website, Private messave via Discord, or via email to @.

In order to accommodate this submission and review process, no official points will be posted until the Sunday of the weekend following the race event (8 days post-race).

Penalties

For the majority of situations, we will rely on the in game penalties system to provide enforcement of rules. As an example, for minor infractions such as exceeding track limits the game itself will force the penalized driver to slow down and give back time gained. Based on the "Allowabale Penalty Time" setting, you will have 15 seconds to give that time back, or be automatically handed a Drive Through penalty. 

Each race will also be reviewed by members of the league leadership panel (Race Control). If necessary, Race Control will issue penalties to drivers who fail to adhere to the rules of the league. Any penalties received by a driver will only apply to the Driver's Points standings and will not impact the Team's Points. Penalties can be awarded for the following:

  • Minor Infractions - Most are now applied by the game automatically
    • Short cutting the track (Exceeding track limits)
    • Jumping the start
    • Jumping the restart after a caution
    • Failing to observe the pit lane lines (not resulting in an on track incident). This is considered equivalent to short cutting the track, as well as being a potential safety hazard
    • Fuel saving during a caution (not resulting in an incident)
    • Pitting while pits are deemed to be CLOSED.
  • Major Infractions - Applied by Panel following post race review
    • Overly aggressive driving resulting in an on track incident
    • Hindering or interfering with the progress of another car in any manner other than normal racing between competitors (for example, a back marker holding up a leader).
    • Blocking - A driver may choose to protect his or her line so long as it is not considered blocking. Blocking is defined as two (2) consecutive line changes to “protect his/her line,” and in doing so, impedes the vehicle that is trying to pass with each of the two (2) consecutive movements.
    • Failing to observe the pit lane lines, resulting in an on track incident
    • Fuel saving during a caution (resulting in an incident)
    • Failure to acknowledge or abide by the Caution period
 

For the context of these penalties an incident is defined as anything that risks the safe progression of a driver during the race. This could include, but is not limited to:

  • Contact that cause a driver to leave the racing surface
  • Contact that causes damage to another driver's car
  • Forcing another driver off track
 

The minimum penalties that the panel will award are as follows:

  • Minor Infractions
    • Minimum Penalty = Verbal or written warning.
    • Maximum Penalty = 1 Driver's point deduction per incident
    • Additional non-points penalties as deemed appropriate for the severity/number of the incidents
  • Major Infractions
    • Minimum penalty = 2 Driver's point deduction per incident
    • Maximum Penalty = 5 Driver's point deduction per incident
    • Additional non-points penalties as deemed appropriate for the severity/number of the incidents
 

These are the minimum penalties the panel may issue. The panel reserves the right to issue more severe penalties for more severe infractions or to a driver committing multiple infractions.

Car Change Penalties

Once a driver has selected a car they are committed to that car for the entire season. Drivers can change cars at any time prior to the first race of the season without restriction, however once the first formal practice session for the first event of the season has started any car changes will result in a driver points penalty. Penalties will be as follows:

  • Each driver will receive a 10 point Driver's Points penalty.
  • Points penalty will apply to Drivers Standings only and not Team Points earned.
 

***Due to regular patching and updates of the Project CARS platform, these Sporting Regulations are considered a Living Document and are subject to change at any time. It is every driver's responsibility to ensure they stay up to date on the Sporting Regulations. Failure to remain current will not be considered an excuse in the event of an infraction.***