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Data Analysis Fundamentals: Setting up Track Maps and Sectors

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Setting up Track Maps and Sectors


00:00 - One of the things that's really useful when you're just getting used to either a new track or also a new data analysis system is using a track map.
00:07 This is where we'd have a small track map shown on our data analysis system which correlates to where the position of the cursor is on something like a time/distance plot in our analysis software.
00:19 The reason this is really useful is it gives us a little bit more context about where we are on track when we're looking at a particular event in the log data.
00:26 Taking a look at a relatively typical layout that I'd be using when I was analysing basic driving technique so here we've got just our speed, throttle position, brake pressure, steering angle and gears.
00:38 Now if you're familiar with a certain track, if you move through the speed trace in particular it gives you a lot of context about where you are on track.
00:45 You can see the dips here represent the positions on track where we're apexing corners and the peaks are the end of the straights where you are seeing the brake pressure come on and speed drop off for the following corner.
00:57 So once you're really used to a specific track, you do tend to be able to understand where you are on track just by knowing the shape of these speed traces but if you're not familiar with that track or particularly if you're just getting used to a certain data analysis system, it can be really helpful to have a track map.
01:14 I just want to go through the basics of setting up a track map and this is pretty generic, regardless of the type of system you're using, obviously I'm using MoTeC in this case but the process is really similar regardless of the system.
01:26 So if I just come up here to the track manager.
01:29 It's already got a default track map in here that's built for me but I just want to go through the generation of a track.
01:36 So if this was the first time I'd been to this track and I hadn't really set it up inside my analysis package, you see we've got two different options for generating that track map which is what we discussed in the course body as well.
01:46 Based on either GPS or lateral G and speed.
01:50 So all the system will need to know what the channels that are being logged are there to be used for GPS latitude and longitude and the rest of it with the default settings is usually good enough to give you your basic track map.
02:04 If you don't have GPS or you weren't using it for some reason then you can also do that by lateral G and speed and this is also where you'll usually have the ability to invert the lateral G depending on the lateral G convention you're using because obviously if that's reversed, you're going to have the track map inverted.
02:21 So you want the track map to represent reality so I'm going to stick with GPS here.
02:26 That's what we've used to generate that track map and because of the position of this racetrack, it's always got really good satellite coverage it's a really good way of generating a track map.
02:36 So once you've generated that track map, if we just add that into the display here, now you can see as I move my cursor through the window, you can see we've got this cursor also highlighted our positioning on track so as we move through the data, if we want to look at a specific section of the track, let's say the braking for this hairpin turn we've got up here, we can really clearly see that that's represented both in the log data here and our position on track so it just gives us a little bit more context what's going on.
03:06 And a similar thing, if you zoom in on a specific part on track to see what's going on in the log data, you can see that there's some highlighting on the track to show the position on track that we're zoomed into which is also quite a nice feature.
03:19 And really that's pretty generic for most analysis packages, shows something pretty similar.
03:25 So the next thing I want to talk about is track highlighting for our sectors.
03:29 So that's something we dove into a little bit in the course but I just want to show you an example of actually breaking a track up into sectors and how we might go about this.
03:37 So one of the things I discussed in the course body was not getting carried away with adding too many sectors into your track.
03:45 It's really tempting and easy to get carried away with this and you end up with generating a huge amount of data that becomes a lot more difficult to wade through.
03:54 So for something like a track in the 3-4 km length, I would typically be using no more than 3 or 4 sectors, I'd be breaking that down into.
04:02 And like I said in the main course body, we want to be distinguishing those sectors somewhere along some section of straight.
04:10 Ideally long straights, that just tends to get rid of more discrepancies with differences in cornering techniques, differences in braking points.
04:17 You don't want the braking points to overlap or be particularly close to the sectors as a different braking poing is going to have a bit of an artificial effect on some of your sectors, particularly when it comes to looking at eclectic lap times and the like.
04:31 So if we go back into our track manager here, we've got some default sectors that the software is trying to define for us already.
04:37 We don't want to use anything that complicated to start with so if we just make a new category for our sectors, I'm just going go call this the main sectors and we'll start by defining that there.
04:51 So now automatically it's split the track up into two pieces so there is usually a way of graphically doing this, you can usually just grab these handles and move them around.
05:01 I'm going to type them in manually.
05:02 Different systems, you can do it different ways, in this case you can do both, in a lot of systems you can do it both ways, I'm just going to stick with typing the numbers in manually.
05:11 Depending on the sector that we select here, or the way the track is broken up, we can see that it highlights differently here and we can also see that the context down here changes so the first part that I am going to modify is, I'm going to make sector 1.
05:25 So if we come down to, we can see the start distance is set at 0 and the end distance is set arbitrarily at 1968 metres.
05:35 So let's say I'm going to try a number here, say 1000 metres.
05:41 So we can see that's sort of at this corner exit, I really want it to be somewhere along here, along the straight somewhere between where we're in full throttle and before we get to the braking point for the next corner.
05:51 So I'll just try another distance there.
05:54 1100 metres.
05:57 I know from experience in this track that that's well before the braking point here.
05:59 If you're not sure, you can use the time/distance plot to go through and figure out the actual positions that are well between braking points and points where you're at full acceleration.
06:10 So that's the definition for the first sector that I want to use.
06:13 Now if I go back to the second sector, what I want to do is I want to split this up.
06:18 I'm going to make 4 sectors here so I'm going to split this up again and I want to put it somewhere along this straight section here so it's going to capture this series of track.
06:26 So if I split this up again, and I highlight the section of interest that I want to use.
06:35 So I'm just going to try a number here 'cause I want to put it in about this point on track.
06:41 So that I want to be a little bit further along than that so I'm going to say 2050 and that looks good, that's where I want the definition of the end of my second sector to end.
06:50 So I'm going to put one more sector in here and I'm going to put it along this section of straight which is going to give me 4 sectors total.
06:56 So I'm going to go ahead again and split that up.
06:59 So if I go back to select the right sector that I want, I just want to move this section back so I'm going to, put this maybe back like 2500, see how that ends, it's too far back, 2700, yeah that's exactly where I want it.
07:16 So now we've got our 4 sectors broken up, track broken up into 4 sectors which is as far as I want to go with analysing that.
07:26 So I'm just going to start by renaming these sectors to make, giving them more meaningful names so I'm just going to call them sector 1, sector 2, sector 3 and sector 4.
07:46 Which will just make things a little bit tidier in my project.
07:48 OK so now I've got the track broken up into the 4 sectors that I want to use.
07:52 So one of the things that you'll often have the ability to do is to define different types of sectors that you want to annotate within your software.
08:02 So if we go to the properties here of this display we can see here by default it's going to be broken up with the main sectors, I want to use my main sectors definition.
08:16 And now we can see highlighted at the top, we've got the main sectors showing up on the time/distance graph which again just gives me a way to see how those sectors are broken up in terms of my actual log data which is helpful.
08:29 You can usually also add them onto the track map.
08:32 So if I select the sectors I want to highlight here I'm going to select my main sectors which is the one I just defined.
08:39 It's going to also show and label those for me just to give me another indication of where I am on track with respect to my sectors.
08:47 So one of the uses that we talked about for breaking the track up into individual sectors like this was to use it in terms of a channel report.
08:54 So I just want to show how that shows up in terms of the channel report.
09:00 So here in this case I've got the ability to choose between the different sector definitions 'cause you can often have different sector definitions depending on what you want to set up inside your software so I've got my main sectors here selected which is what I defined before.
09:15 And we can see here for each of the laps I've got loaded, I've got the times broken up for each of the main sectors.
09:23 So we can see in this case the convention that MoTeC uses by default and you have got the option to override this is the absolute best of each sector is highlighted in this blue colour here so we can see on lap 7 I had the best sector 1, on lap 5 I had best sector 2, lap 24 I had best sector 3 and lap 8 I had best sector 4.
09:42 So that's where he eclectic time is coming from.
09:45 So we've got the eclectic time showing down here which is just summing up of my absolute bests so that means my best theoretical time was a 1:46.503.
09:54 We've also got some highlighting here for lap times within a certain percentage of the best sector time.
10:00 So if I go into the properties again, you can see it says by default there's some colour bands here.
10:05 So dark green is anything that's within 2% of the best time for that sector and light green is anything within 1%.
10:14 You've also got the rolling lap time set up here which is indicated by this red bar.
10:18 So we can see for this rolling lap time optimum, we finish the 4th sector and then carrying through from lap 4 and then carrying through from lap 5 up to the end of the 3rd sector was the best rolling lap time that we got.
10:31 So that's how we can make use of sectors in something like a channel report.