Am I a Jerk? Moral Incident Analysis #2. In which I question my gamesmanship


From here to finish, basically, if you have the patience.

Context: I have the pace, relatively. I put myself in a dumb position at the start, hanging a half lap back, thinking it was quali. It wasn’t. They went straight to Pre.

So, I am pushing to catch up. I start letting the fella know I have the pace with tippy taps. The fun starts lap 7 or 8 actually, but it got more urgent towards the end, as laps were running out.

While he’s not a new driver (pretty good actually) but he’s my son’s age and I am the responsible adult in the room, supposedly.

I question whether I was a total jerk pushing him prior to high speed corners etc. In retrospect, I might have scared him, which is really not what I want to be doing. In the closing lap, I give him a pretty significant bonk in 3. It was basically intentional (we had no brake pads to speak of and I wanted the momentum). It wasn’t savage but it was definitely using his bumper to slow down, is how it played out.

What do you guys think? Was this OK racing or was I being a bully? Should I find the kid and apologize next race? I really hope I didn’t panic him.

Edit: I sad this last time. Apparently I am full of crap:

He is a pretty good driver, definitely not new. He is a young person though, and I am supposed to be an adult. I remember watching my son get tapped by a faster driver and feeling pretty conflicted about it. I’d like to say “red mist” but I was totally calm and deliberate here. I was pretty careful to not break his traction (much), though.

Was there an incident in this video? All I see is extremely minimal bumping, and even helping him get going and through gaps.

As iRacing streamer Matt Malone says all the time, “I signed up for a race!”

Until you start actually intentionally trying to move him off line, you’re not even close to being “dirty”.

The pushing. Particularly the push into 1. Was that ok or mean?
I wasn’t ever trying to break traction. I felt after the fact that the sum of them plus the push into 1 might have been excessively “get out of my way”.

These are fun races so I don’t want to spoil someone’s fun by making it stressful.

You tapped him well before the braking zone it looked like, so I don’t see any issue with that. If you were worried you had rattled him, just go ask him if it was all good!

Yah he seemed like he was thinking about talking to me after the race. It occurred to me that maybe he meant to say something but didn’t because I’m an old guy.

I’ll talk to him next time to be sure. Thanks. I know it seems like making a big deal out of nothing. It didn’t seem like much to me at the time.
After the fact, watching the video, would I have pressured Nick like that? Nope but he’s my son. Shouldn’t the same rules apply or am I good to race hard?

I would race anyone the same way, even my son. When my kid is old enough to get in a kart (should he want to), I’m going to be out there running laps, pounding on his bumper, and I would hope he would do the same to me if we were competing. That’s part of racing.

But yeah, if I think I might’ve wronged someone on accident or did something I wasn’t proud of, the first thing I do in the scale line is walk back and apologize and try to clear the air.

Or if they deserved it, I walk back and tell them why they deserved it. :wink:

Thanks. :call_me_hand: Useful perspective. Appreciate it.

Odd question but how do I deal with a dirty driver? Do I say anything? Give it back?

Hard to say, as it will be up to you how you want to handle it and what the dirty driving in question consists of.

I can only speak to how I handle it. If I feel someone is doing my dirty, I take it up with them after the race usually. If it’s blatantly malicious or an ongoing problem, I dish a little something back, just to let them know I’m not happy with it, but that’s pretty rare. Trying to de-escalate is my first tactic but in the heat of a battle at a high level of competition, sometimes you need to get your elbows out and not let the other guys push you around.

Club and regional racing is friendlier.

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You had a small bump mid turn which I think in general is a no no but it actually helped him out and it wasn’t huge. Seemed legit

After the race, I would have gone up to him and said, “Great race”, which it was and even if he was pissed off, a bit of congrats seems to settle things down in the scales. It seems like he was less experienced because you’d bump him pretty hard but if were the him, I’d be happy moving up a place because of a bump.
More concerning was the condition of the rear fascia it looked it was ready to come of anytime.

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I didn’t see any dirty driving here. Close racing, but nothing dirty.

I don’t see anything dirty either. I might have gone over after the race and apologized for the last hard shot and explained that I was out of brakes. But other than that it was just close hard racing.

Actually what you were doing was more like bump drafting. You could’ve worked together for mutual benefit, fairly common practice in team events

I hadn’t considered that the Intentional hard push in 3, while not fun, was beneficial to him as well. All the other times I tapped him was to try to let him know he was being pursued. But yeah, it did get him through the turn better, for sure!

Once the helmet is on, age and gender leaves the equation. I saw nothing out of place here really.

OK thanks everyone. After the race, I don’t know why but I was worried I was too aggressive. Thanks.