Circuit Racing Driver Notes


The Motorsport Australia Circuit Race Standing Regulations are developed to promote competitive and fair racing throughout Australia. With everyone driving within the rules, within their car's and their driving limits, there should be very little car-to-car contact in circuit racing. 

The goal of this document is to assist Motorsport Australia circuit racing competitors in attaining a better understanding of the Circuit Race Standing Regulations with a more detailed explanation of some of the important points from that document. Motorsport Australia expects all drivers to be respectful of fellow competitors and to drive within the regulations.


Motorsport Australia's Code of Driving  Conduct. 

The Motorsport Australia Circuit Race Standing Regulations (CRSR) is a document which contains the Code of Driving Conduct. This Code of Driving Conduct sets out the racing rules to be used when  participating in most Motorsport Australia circuit racing categories. The original document can be  found here on the Motorsport Australia Website. It is worth reading the full CRSR document from  time to time to check for updates to these regulations. 

It is important for drivers to understand that some racing categories have developed their own  version of the Code of Driving Conduct which defines the driving standards for that specific category.  

An example of this is the Formula 1 and Supercars Codes of Driving Conduct. These codes apply only  to their category specifically and do not apply to other racing categories. The only Code of Driving  Conduct that applies to most circuit racing in Australia is found in the CRSR document. 

Due to the differences in driving standard regulations across categories, it is important for all drivers  to understand that just because you saw a driver race in a particular way in another category, this does not mean that you are permitted to do the same thing in your Racing. 


Key points from the CRSR for Drivers  

The points listed here are a short summary of the key take away points from the CRSR for drivers.  Further details and more detailed explanations follow through the rest of this document. 

  • Causing a collision is a breach of the Code of Driving Conduct. 6J7DQFDBE3XMi7Dwsusp4xRcUz9f0Iitnx0PVjZgrWbellpzJx-Z5rltZxT-FfoUUyAcsS1ThnHShFve-etVdwq4BG_CvjvKqy7vA-mBJ1VvGYTM0itsjbLc5uq7jp6_YHC8_9Xe73LUXRM4s4Tahq8
  • If another automobile has ANY overlap on your automobile at any part of the circuit, then  you must leave them racing room at all times. 
  • More than one change of direction to defend a position is prohibited. 
  • If, in the braking area, another automobile has ANY overlap on your automobile, then it is  not permitted for the defending (leading) vehicle to change the trajectory of their  automobile once in that braking area. 
  • If you lose your position exiting the marshalling area, or during the formation lap, you are  permitted to overtake cars on the formation lap to regain your position in the field. If you  are still out of position by the time your automobile reaches the safety car control line, then you must immediately enter pit lane and start your race from the end of pit lane.  


How the Code of Driving Conduct is used. 

It is expected that all drivers will have read and understood the CRSR Code of Driving Conduct. If an  incident occurs on track, you may be called up to the event stewards to explain what happened.  When your actions are being examined, this Code of Driving Conduct is used as the rules to  determine which driver, if any, is at fault.  

In this document, the important passages from the Code of Driving Conduct have been copied  verbatim (shown in Blue). The document will explain in more detail how it is expected that you  comply with these regulations. Keep in mind that only the actual words (in Blue) contained in the  Code of Driving Conduct have a regulatory effect.  

The explanation provided by this document is intended to help drivers understand that section of  the CRSR. As each incident is different, the stewards are the final arbiter in the determination of  fault in an incident.


CRSR Regulations related to THE TRACK SURFACE  

  • Any painted line defining the Track edge is considered to be part of the Track but a kerb is not.  
  • Each Driver may not leave the Track without a justifiable reason. 
  • If an Automobile leaves the Track for any reason it may re-join. However, this may only be done  when it is safe to do so and without gaining any lasting advantage. A Driver will be judged to have  left the Track if no part of their Automobile remains in contact with the Track. 
  • A Driver who performs any act which results in debris being brought onto the Track may be reported  to the Stewards.

This part of the regulations explains how much of the track you are permitted to use.  

To be considered to have left the track, all four wheels need to be beyond the painted lines bordering the track, but if you run two wheels off the racing surface and bring debris into the track  you may still be penalised. 

These regulations also explain that you can drive two wheels onto a kerb, but if all four wheels are  on the kerb, then the vehicle is considered to have left the track.  

You are not permitted to leave the track without a justifiable reason. 

If you leave the track for any reason, it is your responsibility to re-join only when it is possible to  do so safely. You are required to wait to re-join even if that means losing places, or in some  instances, for the whole field to pass.  

It is not the responsibility of any car still on the track to make room for you to re-join the track, and if  you attempt to re-join and cause an incident, then the incident is likely to be deemed to be your  responsibility.



Each Driver must comply with the requirements of the Circuit Race Appendix, Track Control and Flag  Signalling which form part of this Code of Driving Conduct. 

Causing a collision, repetition of serious mistakes or the appearance of a lack of control over the  Automobile (such as leaving the Track) will be reported to the Stewards and may entail the  imposition of a penalty/ies up to and including Disqualification of the Driver concerned. 

The following driving standards will apply;  

i. Careless Driving: Departing from the standard of a competent Driver.  

ii. Dangerous Driving: An action by a Driver which creates serious risk to others


If you are deemed to be the cause of an incident or collision, either intentionally or unintentionally,  you should expect to be penalised. Motorsport at this level should be considered a non-contact  sport and as such you should always drive with avoidance of contact being a priority. 

If the code of conduct is breached, there are different levels under which a breach may be judged.  

A low-level breach is considered Careless, and a high-level breach Dangerous. The level of breach  will usually influence the severity of the penalty. 


CRSR Regulations regarding BEING LAPPED 

An Automobile alone on the Track may use the full width of the Track, however as soon as it is  caught by an Automobile which is about to lap it, the Driver must allow the faster Driver past at the  first possible opportunity. If the Driver who has been caught does not seem to make full use of the  rear-view mirrors, flag marshals will display the waved blue flag to indicate that the faster Driver  wants to overtake. Any Driver who appears to ignore the blue flags will be reported to the Stewards.  


The regulation requires that a driver being lapped must allow their vehicle to be lapped at the first  possible opportunity. This does not mean that the automobile being lapped must stop racing and  pull over to let the leaders through immediately when they are caught but must let them pass at the  first possible opportunity.  

Not letting the leader's past is appropriate if the driver being lapped feels it is unsafe to do so at that  point of the circuit. It is generally considered to be best for a lapped car to hold the racing line when providing passage for the lapping car to get through, but to leave a clear gap for the passing cars. 

It is the responsibility of the lapping car to pass safely, and you should not assume the car being  lapped has seen you. The lapped car does not have to immediately move over for you, so be  prepared to take the necessary time to overtake safely.



CRSR Regulations regarding OVERTAKING 

Overtaking, according to the circumstances, may be carried out either on the right or the left.  

If an Automobile leaves the Track for any reason it may re-join. However, this may only be done  when it is safe to do so and without gaining any lasting advantage. 

It is prohibited for a Driver to unfairly gain an advantage as a result of contact with another  Automobile. 


A driver may overtake another vehicle on either side of the other automobile. The overtaking  vehicle may not leave the racing surface to complete an overtake, as doing so would normally be  considered to have gained a lasting advantage from leaving the track. 

It is not permitted to gain an advantage (such as passing an automobile) as the result of contact with  another automobile.


CRSR Regulations regarding DEFENDING A POSITION 

More than one change of direction to defend a position is prohibited.  

Any Driver moving back towards the racing line, having earlier defended their position off-line, must  leave at least 1 Automobile width between their own Automobile and the edge of the Track on the  approach to the corner.  

Any manoeuvre liable to hinder another Driver such as crowding of an Automobile beyond the edge  of the Track or any other abnormal change of direction, is prohibited. 

A Driver defending their position on a straight, and before any braking area, may use the full width  of the Track during their first move provided no portion of an Automobile attempting to pass is  alongside their Automobile.  

Any movement to defend a position in the braking area is prohibited and once in the braking area  the trajectory of the defending Automobile must remain parallel to the solid line defining the Track  edge.  

For the avoidance of doubt, a Driver must leave at least 1 Automobile width between their own  Automobile and the edge of the Track if another Automobile has any overlap with their Automobile. 


The important points to take away from these statements are:  

You must at all times leave at least one automobile width between your automobile and the edge of  the track if any overlap exists with another automobile (see image below to show what overlap  means) 

In the CRSR's there is no concept of an automobile having to be a specific distance alongside another automobile to be required to be left racing room. An automobile does not have to be up  to the A pillar, the B pillar or any other point on another automobile. Any overlap is all the overlap  that is required for another automobile to be required to be left racing room.

Sometimes it is difficult to be sure if an automobile has overlap with you or not. If you are not sure if you have overlap with an automobile near you, it is recommended that you assume overlap and  leave the required racing room.  



This image shows the difference between a car having overlap, and one that does not. In the two images on the left side, there is no overlap between the green and the white car. In the two images on the right side, the Green car has  overlap on the White car, and the white car has to give racing room to the Green car at all times. 

It is only permitted for a driver to make one change of direction when attempting to defend a position, weaving to block another competitor is not permitted. 

You are not permitted to change your trajectory to defend your position once you are in the braking  area. You must remain parallel to the edge of the track in the braking area when fighting for track  position. Braking across the track or weaving under brakes is not permitted.


CRSR Regulations regarding DANGEROUS DRIVING 

It is prohibited to drive an Automobile unnecessarily slowly, erratically or in a manner deemed  potentially dangerous to other Drivers at any time.  


This regulation prohibits driving actions such as brake checking another driver, intentionally drifting  the car, or trying to limp home a damaged car that's speed has become a danger to other drivers. 


Getting to the Grid 

Types of race starts. 

Motorsport Australia circuit racing events have one of two different start types. Championship starts and Non-Championship starts. Each of these two types of start can also be either a rolling or a  standing start.  

A Non-Championship standing start is the most common type of start used at state level events.  This type of start is where the automobiles are gridded up in the Marshalling area. From the  Marshalling area, the automobiles are released onto the track and drive around the track to the grid  on a formation lap. When the grid is set the race is started. 

A Championship standing start is longer start type and used more commonly at the higher profile  events. In this start type, the automobiles leave the marshalling area on a Reconnaissance lap to the  grid. The automobiles form up on the grid at the end of this Reconnaissance lap. After some time,  the grid is cleared, and the automobiles then start from the grid on their formation lap back to the  grid again. When the grid is set, the race starts.  


During the formation lap:  
  • each Automobile must maintain its starting order led by the pole position Automobile;  • passing is only permitted in order to maintain formation; and  
  • any Automobile out of position at the Safety Car line at the Pit Entry (SC1) must enter  the Pit Lane and may start from the Pit Lane under the direction of an official after the  field has passed;  
  • if an Automobile does not start, or stalls:  
    • the Driver must raise one hand high or indicate by waving to the nearest official;  • after the commencement of the formation lap and when it is safe to do so, an  Automobile which remains may be push-started or moved to the Pit Lane by officials or  by the pit crew if directed by officials; and  
    • if the Rules require an operative starter motor to be fitted to an Automobile and it is  started other than by its starter motor, that Automobile must return to the Pit Lane on  the next lap to demonstrate to a Scrutineer that the engine can be self-started after  which it may join the race under the direction of an official after the field has passed.  
  • a Driver must not stop to carry out a practice start including when leaving the marshalling area  and/or at the exit of Pit Lane. 

Most drivers would be familiar with this process, although it has changed slightly for 2022. The  change mostly applies to what a driver must do when an exception to the normal start process occurs. The most common issues here are: 

a) A car does not reach their position in the marshalling area before the 1-minute board is  displayed. 

b) A car is unable to move out of the marshalling area when requested to do so (For example  the car won't start or won't go into gear)

c) The car loses its position on the formation lap. This is commonly due to a mechanical issue  with the car on the formation lap, or that the driver loses control of their car on the  formation lap and loses their position.  

If any of these issues occur, from the start of 2022, drivers are permitted to overtake other  automobiles during the formation lap to regain their original starting position. Other drivers  already in position on their formation lap should remain alert that during your formation lap, as you  may be overtaken by a car attempting to regain their starting position. Drivers are permitted to  overtake on the formation lap for this purpose only. 

When attempting to regain your allocated starting position, it is the responsibly of the driver doing  the overtaking to do so safely. When overtaking on a formation lap, high levels of caution should be  taken. It is best to assume that the driver being overtaken isn’t expecting you to pass them. 

If you are attempting to regain your original grid position, you must be back in your allocated  position before you reach the Safety Car line at the Pit Entry (SC1). The safety car line is commonly  found just before the entry to the pit lane at most circuits. 

If you are not in your allocated grid position as you approach this Safety car line, you must enter  the pit lane and start the race from pit lane. 

You are not permitted to overtake cars once you have passed the safety car line and must start only  from your allocated grid position. 

Example image of the safety car line from Phillip Island.



Practice starts  


Practice starts are an important part of learning the technique required to race a vehicle in a  standing start event. Stopping on track at any time (practice, qualifying or a race) to perform a  practice start can be dangerous, and is prohibited. The following statement applies to practice starts: 

PRACTICE STARTS - Unless specifically authorised, practice starts are prohibited except those made  from the pit lane exit during practice or from the grid at the start of any formation lap. 


Practice starts are only permitted during practice sessions, and then only from the end of pit lane.  You cannot perform a practice start leaving the marshalling area, nor at any other time on track.  Practice starts are also not permitted at any time during a qualifying session. The only exception to  this rule is if your event has a championship standing start, and your formation lap starts from the  grid. In this instance, you are permitted to perform a practice start as you leave your grid spot for  the start of your formation lap. 


Yellow Flags, Red Flags and Safety Cars.  

Motorsport Australia CIRCUIT RACE APPENDIX – Track Control and Flag Signalling 3.1 FLAGS Red flag:  

This will be shown waved only on instruction from the Clerk of the Course when it becomes  necessary to stop a practice session or the race by other than the chequered flag. Each Driver is  required to slow down immediately and proceed to the pit lane (or the place foreseen by the  regulations of the Event) and must be prepared to stop if necessary. Overtaking is prohibited.  

Yellow flag:  

This is a signal of danger and will be shown to Drivers in two ways with the following meanings:  

A. Single waved: Reduce your speed, do not overtake and be prepared to change direction.  There is a hazard beside or partly on the track.  

B. Double waved: Reduce your speed significantly, do not overtake and be prepared to change  direction or stop. There is a hazard wholly or partly blocking the track and/or officials  working on or beside the track.  

Yellow flags will be shown only at the flag post immediately preceding the hazard. In some cases,  however the Clerk of the Course may order them to be shown at more than one flag post preceding  an incident. Overtaking is prohibited between the first yellow flag and the green flag displayed after the incident. 


All drivers should already know and understand these common flag regulations. The problem is that  sometimes a driver might not initially see the Red or Yellow flag and overtake one or more cars  whilst the Red or Yellow flags are being waved. These are the important items to note in that  instance: 

  • If you have overtaken a car and then realise that you have done so under either a Red or yellow Flags, then you should now hold your new position until after the yellow flag section  has ended. Letting the overtaken driver back past or trying to force them back past within  the yellow flag section is not permitted in the CRSR. The CRSR does not recognise the concept of redressing a flag infringement. 
  • If you have been overtaken by another car under either red or yellow flags, do not attempt to overtake them back within the red or yellow flag section. Nor should you overtake the other car even if they try to slow down and let you get back past within this area. Overtaking another car under red or yellow is not permitted, even if it is an attempt to redress a mistake made by the other driver.  
  • The concept of Redressing a flag infringement does not exist in the CRSR – if you Overtake another driver under Red or Yellow flags for any reason, then you are likely to be  penalised.


Protesting the results.  

At times, you may feel that the actions of another driver during an on-track session may have affected your results or have contravened the regulations. If this occurs, it is the responsibility of the competitor, to bring this to the attention of the officials. Keep in mind that not all incidents are seen by officials, and that you should not rely on the officials to have reported your incident.  

Any protest must be submitted to the clerk of the course (or the chair of the stewards if the clerk of course is unavailable) within 30 minutes from the time that the provisional results have been published. 

The process shown above is the most common method of protesting, but some race meetings may have different investigation processes in place. 

It is recommended that before submitting a request for investigation that you re-read this document and ensure your understanding of the rules is in line with the incident that you are reporting.