Vaca Valley Raceway (1958-1972)
created by RudyD (Raido), 2011
Track Infos :
This is a rendition of the now-defunct Vaca Valley Raceway road course in California. It’s a resurrected ‘Ghost Track’, a real track gone to waste, now reborn to run in race simulators. I developed it during 2010.
If you’re wondering why this track is so flat and there’s so little scenery around: that’s ’cause the real track was, too 😉
If you’re wondering why you’ve never heard of this track before: that’s ’cause it’s been closed and left to crumble since 1972 😉
It’s a road course developed initially for the rFactor simulator, later ported to GTR2 and hopefully other sims. Vaca Valley existed from 1958 to 1972, as one of the first ‘multi-purpose’ race facilities in the US: A road course, with an infield oval and its main straight also in use as the local drag strip.
After 1972 the racing stopped here, partly due to lack of funding and an ever more bumpy road surface, as well as the lure of nearby Riverside. Its remains then were left to waste for over 30 years. Only part of its asphalt is still there, now in a nameless field.
But one faint shadow of the past remained: its outline is still visible on Google Earth. For a while, anyway, since it’s likely that even this will evaporate under more building developments. Since the faint outline of this track on satellite pics is just about all that’s left, I wanted to take this as its “DNA” (before it’s completely faded away even from Google in a few years) and put that in a simulated approximation of this bit of now-lost Americana.
It’s basic, since I’m no master trackbuilder like ComX or the VLM guys, but the track’s main features are there. I hope it will bring back some memories for the people who ran there and a new experience for the drivers who’d like to race some historic cars in a historic location.
The track was mainly developed and tested for rFactor (running on a Mac) using Bob’s Track Builder as a first exercise in trackbuilding, but there’s also a version for GTR2 and perhaps more variants for other sims will appear not too long after the rF version. Tests were mainly done using Vintage Formula Vee, HistoriX, Lotus Elise, Plickbadger’s Spec Miata, Vintage Formula Ford, rF Caterham and other lower-powered mods.
The track is a road course, but incorporates the infield oval (Turn 1 is part of it and is slightly banked) and the drag strip on the straight. The oval and the strip are driveable, but not as separate tracks at the moment. (If people pester me enough, I may look into making separate oval and drag versions.)
As a road racing track, it looks pretty easy, but it’s trickier than it looks, due to its flatness and lack of brake markers (hint: Brake early, earlier than you would want(!), and note the bumps in the road). It’s pretty easy to slide off in the hairpins, and that’s without dust and dirt on the track! In real life, it was also bumpy as heck towards the end.
If you’d like the AI to speed up or slow down a bit, raise or lower the Worst/Mid/Bestadjust values in the .aiw file by about 0.1 at first and experiment a bit until you’re happy with it.
Conversions of this track are expressly allowed, as long as proper credit is given.
I plan to release the BTB ‘project file’ of this track later on, so that people will be able to make their own improvements and additions. As a result of this “GNU GPL-style” kind of release, people who make new versions should release their new add-ons to the public as well, though. This track or its conversions may not be sold for profit without permission.
Installation Instructions :
To install, extract and copy the track folder to your GTR2\GameData\Locations\ folder.
(Ignore any _MacOSX folders – they’re a byproduct of the Mac’s file system)
Credits and thanks go to:
– Piddy/ Bob’s Track Builder
Frank Sheffield, Mike Summers
Jbspec7, JasonG77 and others
– The dudes and dudettes at Racedepartment.com for Xpacks
(Barbje_Keller, RSoul, Martinez, Parlesportes, Jay_P666, Ennisfargis et al) and for helping out.
(Thanks for these and all the other stuff you’ve released for rF and other sims chaps.)
RudyD (The Netherlands)
Dedicated to the staff and drivers who pushed the limits at Vaca Valley Raceway