Proposal – All-Racing Fantasy Game

I have a proposal for a new competition to be hosted on this blog. The idea is that you submit a selection of drivers every week as a comment on the blog, and score points based on their finishing positions.

I’m sure most of you will be familiar with the idea, it has been around forever in various forms, and I think most of us take part in at least one such competition already (I play at SofaF1 and plan to play at F1Wolf too).

So why set up a new one? Well, instead of being just about F1 or IndyCar, I plan to open it up to cover both. I’m not sure of the level to go to yet but I want to include sportscar races and NASCAR – I’d welcome some thoughts in the comments.

Some background –  I play in Andy The Speedgeek’s All-Racing Fantasy League. This is a game where you ‘own’ 14 drivers and each week you nominate 5 oval racers and 5 road course racers. You can trade drivers between weekends. It is a tricky game and I enjoy it, and it looks like being an even closer contest this year than last.

Recently Andy was looking for team owners and while a cross-motorsport game was well received, some were put off by an email game limited to 13 teams, or baulked at the attention it may demand. I happen to enjoy the format but can see their point, so I suggested a simpler version of the game hosted on a blog, without the trading/ownership rules.

Thankfully Andy didn’t evict me from the game or dock me 50 points for corrupting his idea, and since his family has recently welcomed a baby in to the world (congrats again!) he’s a bit short on time, so has generously allowed me to go ahead with it here.

Proposed Rules – All of these are up for discussion and I hope to hear your thoughts!

1: The game will run every week from the Daytona 24 Hours until the final NASCAR event of the season.

2: There is no requirement to retain the same drivers, just pick the ones you think will do well that weekend.

3: It will include the following series/events:

– Formula 1   – IndyCar
– NASCAR Cup   – Daytona 24 Hours
– Le Mans 24 Hours
– Sebring and Petit Le Mans from the ALMS (maybe the full season but I’m really not sure?)
– I’d like to find a way to include WRC if possible

4: Original rule: Pick 5 oval and 5 road drivers per week
Proposed modified rule: Pick up to 10 drivers, with no more than 7 from one series.
7 could be made 6 or 8, I’m fishing here really. For example I’d imagine most of the SPC visitors will only want to pick F1 guys with the odd exception (I may be wrong?). And why yes, this is a shameless attempt at bumping up participant numbers!

5: The original game has a carry-over rule. If you forget to make changes, your team from last week is entered for this week. Shall we retain that rule or remove it?

6: If a driver is racing in more than one event that weekend you may nominate them for one event only, the entry must specify which event you are choosing.

7: The scoring system will be the one used in the original ARFL game, that is:
50-40-35-32-30-28-26-24-22-20-19-18-17-16-15-14-13-12-11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-2-1-1-1 (and 1 down to 43rd).

I’m aware that this means an F1 win is equal to a NASCAR win, but this is just a bit of fun and not an allegedly definitive ranking system, so it doesn’t matter! It probably means you need to be picking NASCAR in the non-F1 non-IRL weeks.

The ARFL system also awards 3 for pole, 2 for FL and 2 for most laps led – will that be too complicated or is it fine? Shared drives score equally, so if Kristensen and McNish win Le Mans both would get 50.

8: Penalties. If a driver is awarded a points / position penalty after the event, it will be applied to this game retrospectively. Deductions will be made to the same fraction of a win as the actual series. e.g. a 10 point deduction in F1 is 10 pts divided by 25 pts for a win  x 50 points for a win in the game = 20 points deducted in the game.
Penalty = 10 / 25 * 50 = 20.
Penalty = ((actual penalty) / (points for a win in that series)) x (points for a win in this game)

9: The game is free to enter and the prize is to proclaim to the world, that “I Watch Too Much Racing”!

I plan to post an entry blog post every Wednesday or Thursday, with entries to close every Friday at say 6pm UK time (1pm US Eastern). Le Mans week may be a bit earlier because qualifying is on Thursday.

I think that’s it. I have attempted to balance the rules of the original game with the expected preferences of my regular visitors (and myself, if I’m honest), and the need to make a pick’em game easy to play. I’d appreciate any thoughts you may have, and thanks again to Andy for his help.

The point of the game is to get people interested in more than their own little world, and hopefully one or two will like the idea enough to join the original ARFL game in 2011, where there is prize money on offer.

All being well, the first entry post will be posted on Wednesday for the Daytona 24 Hours. There are a lot of IndyCar, NASCAR and ex-F1 drivers taking part so it should be easier than it sounds, and I’ll go through that on Wednesday.


13 thoughts on “Proposal – All-Racing Fantasy Game”

  1. Firstly, I’ll throw my name onto the provisional entry list.

    As for feedback, bear with me, this is a little long.

    I think you’ve hit a pretty good balance. Offering different point scales for different series would become too complicated, and is bound to disadvantage one over another. The same with the championships involved, include too many and it’s likely to get overcomplicated, no matter how much I like Touring Car racing.

    I think having the carry-over rule should be kept, it’s been a constant in just about every pick ’em/fantasy game I’ve seen, so it should work here, though not every driver will be racing every week.

    Only a few questions.

    Would points for the multi-class races – Daytona 24, Le Mans, ALMS – be awarded just for the overall win, or for class wins as well?

    Also, what would happen in the weeks where only one event is taking place, obviously these are few and far inbetween once the season gets going, but the Daytona 24 hours is the only thing that weekend.

    Are all drivers still considered as part of their separate series, or do they all become Grand-Am drivers for that week, in that case, can only 7 drivers be picked that week?


  2. Fantastic, welcome aboard!

    Thanks for the input, doesn’t matter about the long comment. I’d love to include touring cars! But even aside from the issue of including so many events I can’t quite square the circle of scoring two races per meeting (half points each?).

    For sportscar races I’ll take the overall position only.

    To explain what happens in the original game when there is only one event, you can still only nominate 5 drivers. At the Daytona 24 that would be 5 road course drivers. If you have a bunch of IRL and NASCAR drivers in your team and filled up your 5 road course spots for the 24, and then nominated some more as oval drivers, even if those are racing in the 24 those drivers wouldn’t score because they aren’t taking part in an oval race.

    Therefore if I’m following that principle I would say you could only pick 7 (or however many are decided). And yes any drivers in the Daytona 24 would count as GrandAm drivers even if they aren’t really.

    I’m not sure what the best maximum is. 6 could make it tricky and 8 could be too easy so I went with 7, but then 6 could be the level of difficulty we’re aiming for. I’m not really sure.


  3. I’m so glad to see you going forward with this! If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then consider me incredibly flattered! 🙂

    Really, I think that this can be a great game as well. I could go either way with the 5 road/5 oval vs. 7 drivers overall. Each way has its merits. Having to do 5 of each forces people to follow a few different series (NASCAR and IndyCar, really, for the oval portion), but 7 drivers overall will make it a little easier to participate at a base level (you can do 7 F1 guys and 3 people from other series, probably attractive to a lot of people who read you). Your choice, I really don’t know the best answer there.

    I was going to suggest touring cars as well, since I’ve been plowing through DTM and BTCC races this winter on Speed Channel, but you are correct about the klunkiness of scoring multiple races per weekend. That just won’t really work. V8 Supercars are multiple races per weekend, right? For the same reason, GP2 and F2 wouldn’t work very well either, and those were going to be my next two suggestions. Indy Lights, maybe? That gets into minor league racing, though. LMS/AsLMS? WRC is a must, though. That was almost included in my inagural ARFL season in 2007, but it’s just too hard to follow in the States. For the sake of this league, though, it is a must.

    Oh, and the “carryover” rule is also a must, in case you miss a week. In the games where your picks reset every week, one missed week is a death penalty.

    Keep us all posted!


  4. This is cool – I’m in. I always love an opportunnity to meet new folks and talk racing. Pat, if you don’t mind, I will post a link to this in my meager (new) blog site. Can’t hurt!




  5. DTM only has one race every meeting.

    For series with multiple races why not award fantasy points on the total “round points”.

    As for the pole, fastest lap and lead the most laps points, that’s going to be a bit trickier, only NASCAR and Indycar really pay any attention to how many laps someone leads.


  6. I think going for the easy-to-play option would work better for this game. I like the challenge of oval/road but I think many of the people I hope will be playing, from hopefully a variety of places, will tend to specialise in their area at first. Not everyone is as geeky as us yet, so baby steps 😉

    DTM would be interesting to include. I’d like to put in WTCC as well although it seems to be going downhill this year and there’s the issue of 2x races per weekend. V8 Supercars has 3 races sometimes I think?

    I’d really really like to include GP2 but that’s a can of worms leading to including the Nationwide Series and I don’t want to go there.

    Since Raikkonen is playing in WRC I have to include it! Trouble is there aren’t many front-running drivers at the moment so everyone will pick similar teams, unless there are lots of other series running that week.

    The other issue to consider is motorbikes – do we go for MotoGP? I’ve left it out for now as my tendency is to keep it four-wheeled.

    Carryover is in then, good point.


  7. DTM is a good plan, and since it may have DC and/or Davidson in it that’s possibly an added attraction – unless they do as badly as Brother Ralf.

    I agree on the pole/FL/most laps. Not only is the information really hard to find, it’ll probably confuse a few people, not least me when I’m knee-deep in spreadsheets..


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