Checkpoint Activities

You have been working at a hectic pace and finally, after 45 minutes, you've arrived at a checkpoint. Time for the navigator to take a break? Not a chance! Here are some of the things that you should be doing.

Make sure that your driver is getting the checkpoint sticker and hurrying back to the car. If a checkpoint is scored to the minute, your time out will be as soon as the second hand next passes the twelve. If you are perfectly on time, you have 60 seconds. If you have been early or late, you could have as little as one second until it is time to leave! If the checkpoint is timed to the second, you have a little more time - 60 seconds plus the time remaining in the minute that you arrived.

After you have guided the driver to the checkpoint (on time, of course!) make a note of the exact time that you pass the checkpoint board. Give that information to the driver as he is about to get out so that he can confirm the time that the checkpoint crew has recorded on the sticker. The navigator should also note the distance from the start of section based on the in-car data. If you are running with a resetable odometer and have not had any off route excursions, your distance should match that shown on the checkpoint sticker. If it doesn't, there is a possibility that the checkpoint crew is misplaced. This can be confirmed with other experienced navigators at the finish of the rally and, if necessary, an inquiry submitted.

If you have been off route, use the distance on the sticker to reset your Terratrip (adjustable odometer). If you found the checkpoint by chance (or by following another rally car), the sticker will also let you find your place in the instructions so that you can get back in the game.

Mark the checkpoint location on a map. If you are mapping the rally route, knowing where the checkpoints are will help you zero a checkpoint if you find that you are completing a loop and are heading down the same road segment for a second pass.

Calculate your elapsed time to arrive at the checkpoint and compare it to the "E.T." (Elapsed Time) on the sticker. This will allow you to keep a running tally of your score to ensure that you are not into maximum lateness (more than 30 minutes behind the time for Car 0 plus your car number). Showing your calculation of your score in small, neat printing on your route card also helps speed up scoring at the end of the rally!

If a bottle neck of cars at a checkpoint gives you an extra minute or two pause, work ahead in the instructions. It is much easier to sort out a column of numbers if the car is parked and the driver isn't asking for the next instruction.

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Last Updated: 2001-04-05
Copyright © 2001 Gail L. Walker, reproduction forbidden without written authorization.