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stafford1500
stafford1500 Dork
10/29/19 8:03 p.m.

OK, so I was a judge again this year. I did enter a car in the competition, but agreed with Tom and Nancy that I would not try to have it judged in the concours, to avoid any conflict of interest. I did have some very tangential connections to a few of the cars in the competition, but it was mostly cases of what direction do I need to head down to get this particular issue sorted. Mostly I gave some generic advice and tried not to get caught up in being "part" of any team. I did however see my name on a build book or two. That should cover the potential questions about being impartial.

The concours scoring is difficult with the number of cars involved and the wide range of preparation styles/levels. Three minutes is nowhere near enough time for every competitor to give just one person a complete idea of what went into their build, much less six of us in a noisy/hectic atmosphere. Some folks are natural salespeople, others are much too shy to really shout out their accomplishments. Some of the cars draw your eye with dazzling details, while others are really subtle but still contain significant effort. Everyone should be proud of what they have built and presented. This being my second year judging, gives me a little more knowledge/insight than I had last year, since I was able to see the progression of several cars. I tried to approach prior entries with an open mind and not dwell on what did not change in the past year.

To be up-front, I was the toughest judge last year. This year, with a more explicit example of the "perfect 12 point car" in front of us right before the judging started, it looks like my scores were more the middle ground. Of course there is variability among the judges, so sometimes I was highest and other time lowest of the scores. I can only give my breakdown for the scores I provided.

BigBen was the first to ask to have his car's concours score deconstructed. His car number was: 71, the Blue Opel GT with the engine swap, and eventually the broken u-joint on the drag strip. The car received a concours average score of 15.83 (73.2 percentile, nearly top 25%). I scored the car a 17, the highest of the concours scores from the judges. My breakdown was as follows: Innovation - 8 of 10, Execution - 6 of 10, Presentation - 3 of 5. The car was a collection of parts from several different marques and models, from the engine right out to the wheels. I liked the creativity of mixing and matching all of the different bits to get a really competitive car (90.24 of of 100 on the dynamic scoring). The car showed very nicely from the outside, but the interior and the suspension showed that the car was used as a tool and not the cleanest/shiniest under the skin. The presentation was average as you tried to show/describe all of the mods without any sort of highlighting features, but ran short of time. My favorite detail is the fact that the Nissan engine gauges were tucked into the Opel gauge cluster with no obvious issues. Overall, I think you could increase you concours score by making a more compact list of the major changes and perhaps highlighting the others with eye catching labels/signs.

Byrneon27 was the second to ask for critique. His car was number 27, a black CRX. The car received a concours average score of 11.33 (17.8 percentile). I scored the car an 11, the scores ranged from 8 to 15, so the car was not easy to judge. My breakdown was as follows: Innovation - 5 of 10, Execution - 3 of 10, Presentation - 3 of 5. The car was competitive (90.75 of of 100 on the dynamic scoring). The story of the car was the biggest selling point. This car had been a previous Challenge car in 2001 and then fell into the hands of dirt track racers and the car was modified to fit it use. The car showed its battle scars from all that abuse, but it was not exactly pretty. The innovation was middle of the road as the car has been a race car for a while and it has been modified to whatever suits the conditions, but nothing really over the top. Overall, I think you could increase you concours score by showing as much history of the car as you could find (there might be a magazine that could help find old pictures!!). Relating how you had to work with the remnants of a piece of Challenge history could tip the presentation and execution in your favor. As a last-chance build, you could have pushed the limited time in your presentation as well.

FlaDriver64 and his band of high-school students/scouts approached me after the town hall meeting and asked me to give them the skinny on how they did. Being able to talk directly to the team (face to face) helped me recall what parts of the build each was involved in from the presentation. I will always try to make time for one-on-one questions at the Challenge because it is the best way to keep encouraging folks to come back and step up their game. If FlaDriver64 wants me to break his score down online I will.

The 12 point option is an underused option in my opinion (12 out of 57 entries). The difficult thing to do is objectively compare your build to the example 12 point car. If your car is mostly stock and in need of some cleaning and bodywork, then the 12 point option may be your best best. My car falls directly into this category, it needs paint work, the drivetrain was unmodified, and only some small aero bits were added to the car. There is a reason to present if your car is not likely to score better than a 12 and that is to get better at it and try again next time with more feedback, like that provided by this thread.

If you have questions about your scores, post them up and I can hash them out in front of everyone, you know for the sake of informing everyone.

Later, Steve.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
10/29/19 8:13 p.m.

I would love to know the scoring breakdown for Betsy, #24, since I actually felt I scored higher than I had expected and want to know what to do/not do for next time.

pimpm3
pimpm3 UltraDork
10/29/19 8:13 p.m.

If you don't mind telling me how I did with the NX2000  (67) and the Camaro (9). 

I would love to know what could be improved upon next year.  Both cars I felt were well executed but were not very innovative since most of the modifications were presented when I purchased them.  I was happy with both scores I received and felt they were appropriate.

Fladiver64
Fladiver64 Reader
10/29/19 8:21 p.m.

We would like to hear the scoring breakdown, especially since we are planning to return next year with that car, and maybe a second.

Dusterbd13-michael
Dusterbd13-michael MegaDork
10/29/19 8:40 p.m.

I was going to wait until later to ask about mine

 Would love a breakdown as well.

stafford1500
stafford1500 Dork
10/29/19 8:47 p.m.

Nonack #24, the red Mazda B2300 with the factory looking engine swap and bed full of drum kit received a concours average score of 14.00 (60.7 percentile). I scored the truck a 16, the highest of the concours scores from the judges. My breakdown was as follows: Innovation - 7 of 10, Execution - 6 of 10, Presentation - 3 of 5. My favorite detail was the really factory looking engine swap. If you had not pointed it out I don't think anyone would have spotted it. The discussion of lowering it just enough to pass the height/width rule added to the score because it means you are reading the rules and trying to take advantage of them. Describing the amount of stuff delivered in the bed of the truck helped as well . Overall, I think you could increase you concours score by doing something that makes the truck stand out from a typical truck on the street.

pimpm3 #67, the black/red NX2000 with the period correct mods received a concours average score of 13.17 (53.5 percentile). I scored the car a 14. My breakdown was as follows: Innovation - 4 of 10, Execution - 6 of 10, Presentation - 4 of 5. You presented the car as basically a clean car that had most of the mods in place as they would have been when the cars were more common. My favorite part was how clean the car was and the red wheels do make it stand out. Overall, I think you could increase you concours score by trying to relay your enthusiasm for the car to the other judges, there were some very middle of the road scores because they did not see the car with your eyes and emotion. One judge gave you a 16 and I suspect this car may have reminded him of his past.

pimpm3 #9, the red Camaro received a concours average score of 14.33 (66.0 percentile). I scored the car a 13. My breakdown was as follows: Innovation - 3 of 10, Execution - 5 of 10, Presentation - 5 of 5. The car was not modified much beyond stock, but you did note that it was built in the parking lot. My favorite detail had to be the costumes for the presentation. No detail seemed to be missing. The car was clean but did not have much other than itself to tie to the costumed presentation. Overall, I think you could increase you concours score by detailing some of the modifications that were made in a simpler way than telling us (the costumes drew our attention from the message, perhaps). Two judges gave 16/17 and were obviously excited about the car.

stafford1500
stafford1500 Dork
10/29/19 8:49 p.m.

Fladriver64 and Dusterbd13-michael, you will have to wait until tomorrow's episode to get your breakdowns. It's been a long day and I need some rest.

pimpm3
pimpm3 UltraDork
10/29/19 8:56 p.m.

Thanks for the feedback its really helpful to get some insight into the judging

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
10/29/19 9:03 p.m.

In reply to stafford1500 :

Thank you!

For some further clarification for others, the things I leaned on when giving the presentation were the stock-appearing engine bay and ability of the truck to haul stuff while also being lowered enough to autocross (primarily for execution points) and the use of a bolt on steering rack swap nobody had done before, Hyundai Veloster bumpstops trimmed to fit, and Jeep Comanche front shocks repurposed and modified to fit the rear (for innovation points).  The only thing special that I did presentation wise was put the drum kit in the bed, otherwise I just stood there and talked.  I also got really lucky with the time limit, and finished talking exactly when the timer went off.

Patrick
Patrick MegaDork
10/29/19 9:28 p.m.

I got berkeleyed by Jonny's watch not changing time zones with him, negating his status as a judge.  I kissed his ass Thursday and Friday only to have him be late to the track and get kicked from his judging duties 

surfshibby07
surfshibby07 Reader
10/29/19 11:03 p.m.

I would like my breakdown just to know what to do different next year. Silver foxbody #54

bigben
bigben Reader
10/29/19 11:46 p.m.

In reply to stafford1500 :

Thank you. That's exactly the type of constructive feedback I was looking for. 

I displayed the car with the front wheel off to point out the custom suspension and brake mods but didn't think about the adverse effect of showing off dirty undercarriage.

I'm already planning a killer multimedia presentation for next year!

poopshovel again
poopshovel again MegaDork
10/30/19 7:09 a.m.

In reply to stafford1500 :

Thank you so much for taking the time to do this. While I know we likely got little to no points for innovation (I don't think we even pointed out our nifty 3-D printed, functional brake ducts to replace fog lamps,) and our "presentation" SUUUUUUCKED, I'd still love a break-down when you have a moment. Car #1

stafford1500
stafford1500 Dork
10/30/19 7:56 a.m.

5 down, 4 more on deck. Getting my notes ready and should be able to post by end of day.

white_fly
white_fly HalfDork
10/30/19 8:18 a.m.

Patrick here with the #88 Jaguar. I think I understand why I got scored where I did, but could you give me some advice on making my score higher? Were the stickers on Brian's car the whole difference? Would a welded diff have helped? If there's something I can do that doesn't ruin the awesome street car I have, then I need to do it next year.

bobzilla
bobzilla MegaDork
10/30/19 8:57 a.m.

since we're here.... #33 the Tuberon. I at least didn't score less than 12. 

stafford1500
stafford1500 Dork
10/30/19 6:42 p.m.

Alright – Round Two!!

FalDriver64 #76, the blue MR2 with the wing built by the scouts received a concours average score of 18.67 (87.5 percentile, in the top 15%). I scored the car a 20. My breakdown was as follows: Innovation - 7 of 10, Execution - 9 of 10, Presentation - 4 of 5. You and your team of scouts/HS students did an excellent job preparing the car. It included an engine swap, lots of body work modifications, fresh paint, and attention to detail. My favorite details were the front radiator exhaust and the rear wing (I am an aero engineer in my daily life), especially the blackened tips that mimicked the black tip sharks that were part of the presentation. You and the boys did a great job of dividing and conquering the presentation. This is one reason the Georgia Tech team always scores well in Presentation. You all had team shirts on that helped to tie the whole package together. Overall, I think you could increase you concours score by making the engine swap (or future modifications) stand out as much as the body modifications. Noting that it was done helped, but without showing it off, we could not see the results of your work.

Dusterbd13-michael #13, the green Miata with the GM v6 engine swap and rising sun spoiler received a concours average score of 20.17 (91.0 percentile, top 10%). I scored the car a 19, there was a 23 in the averaging as well. My breakdown was as follows: Innovation - 8 of 10, Execution - 8 of 10, Presentation - 3 of 5. This car jumped out at you with the hood open, just by the nature of the contrasting engine bay to the exterior paint. The mirror under the rocker, allowing the judges to see all of the bright red painted bracing was a good way to show it off. Every detail seemed to have been attended to for the judging. My favorite detail was that as the list of modifications (a long list) was being read, you were doing your best imitation of a “The Price Is Right” model and pointing out the items. Overall, I think you could increase you concours score by trying give the bigger mods more weight and letting some of the smaller (hard to see) details fall to the end of the list. Since you touched so much of the car, it makes sense to try and group the show-and-tell to regions so that you are not bouncing back and forth, walk us through the car front to back or side to side. Wally did a great job of reading the list and making sure we could hear it, but he did not have the same passion for the list of changes that I know you have. Excitement is contagious, use it.

Surfshibby07 #54, the gun metal Fox-body Mustang received a concours average score of 14.67 (67.8 percentile). I scored the car a 14. My breakdown was as follows: Innovation - 4 of 10, Execution - 6 of 10, Presentation - 4 of 5. The car was presented as a fighter jet, including our flight suit and mirrored sunglasses. The aircraft details came through nicely with some of the smaller details like the shifter. My favorite detail was your explanation/demonstration of how you got the brushed metal look to come through. The car had plenty to push the execution score up, but did not really show off too many innovation directions. The judges scores were pretty scattered for your car which shows that it really some of the judges, but others may not have seen the effort or creativity. Overall, I think you could increase you concours score by highlighting any modifications and walking us around the car instead of standing at the front and letting us tour the car after your three minutes were up.

Poopshovel_again #1, the Cadillac CTS-V with the world challenge livery received a concours average score of 17.50 (80.3 percentile, top 20%). I scored the car a 19. My breakdown was as follows: Innovation - 6 of 10, Execution - 9 of 10, Presentation - 4 of 5. The livery set the stage for a great concours result. I had heard questions about how you could possibly get a CTS-V for challenge money and the story of collecting the car explained it all to me. The detail involved in making the door cards and cleaning up the dash (on a stripped car) really helped the execution score. The innovation seemed to revolve around trying to get weight out of the car, rather than adding power or suspension work. You mentioned that you did not even show the 3D printed brake scoops, and that would have pushed the innovation score at least a point higher in my scoring. My favorite detail was the accurate (to my memory) of the livery, the car just stood out and looked the part. Overall, I think you could increase you concours score by making a more effective list to point out to the judges for the items that you worked on. The “gang of friends” approach to the presentation worked, but could be a little less off-the-cuff to be more effective.

White_fly #88, the maroon Jag XJR received a concours average score of 12 (21.4 percentile). I scored the car a 14. My breakdown was as follows: Innovation - 3 of 10, Execution - 7 of 10, Presentation - 4 of 5. The car was beautiful, if not modified much or at all. It is tough to bring a car like this for something like the Daily Driver class. Your costume and theoretical back-story of getting lost on the way to the links was a fun take on the event. Keeping the car stock is probably the best way to keep the car running right, but it hurts your innovation score. Execution was increased when you noted that the aluminum body had to be repaired, and showed almost no signs of damage. The car was clean in all the right places. My favorite part of the presentation was your insistence that you intended to keep using the car as your daily and not modify it just to increase performance. Overall, I think you could increase you concours score by temporarily modifying the car for the Challenge in some way that would benefit the performance (more tire to get the power of the engine down, or trying to lower it). It would be tough to increase the score much however. Your car was the last one to be judged and it was out in the sun, but I do not think that affected the judging.

Bobzilla #33, the silver Hyundai Tiburon received a concours average score of 12.33 (48.2 percentile). I scored the car a 13. My breakdown was as follows: Innovation - 3 of 10, Execution - 6 of 10, Presentation - 4 of 5. Your plan to use the car for next year’s One-Lap and detail of the driving distance to attend the event helped with the presentation score. The car was not modified much, but it was in good shape. My favorite detail was the sign board you had showing the plan for the car and your enthusiasm for the car. Overall, I think you could increase you concours score by going a little over the top by making sure it comes back with One-Lap stickers and some pictures of the travels the car makes as you compete and build miles, basically show the history you are making with the car.

That covers about 20% of the entire field so far (11 of 54 that collected concours scores). If anyone else wants to tag in and get my thoughts, post your car number up and any special requests for analysis.

It was noted above that the Georgia Tech team nearly always dominates the concours. Mazdeuce planned to have a few of them answer questions about how to approach the presentation, but since he had to stay in Texas, I picked up the baton. Unfortunately, there were really no takers, which is a shame. The Tech team is in the middle of learning how to effective put information in the heads of other people that are not intimately familiar with their project. These cars begin to lead lives of their own and they become part of us as we build them. Taking the time to stand back and approach your build like you have never seen a modified car before will help you decide what sorts of things need to be presented and in how much detail. The fallback for most of us it to say we threw this engine code in that chassis code and mounted some alphabet soup tires/transmission to the car. That can leave some folks lost.

My final thought this evening (time for a cold beverage or two) is: practice what you are going to say to someone that doesn’t know your build (use a toolbox/table/whatever for a stand in if the car is still being built). One of my earliest professional presentations was practiced in front of the company president, vice-president and several department managers until I could do it with no prompts other than 5 bullet points on a 3*5 card to keep me on subject. Don’t forget the timer – the three minutes flies by.

Byrneon27
Byrneon27 Reader
10/30/19 8:42 p.m.
Patrick said:

I got berkeleyed by Jonny's watch not changing time zones with him, negating his status as a judge.  I kissed his ass Thursday and Friday only to have him be late to the track and get kicked from his judging duties 

Same. Damn Texas time

 

Our score was exactly what I expected and the breakdown even more so thank you

 

Stampie
Stampie UltimaDork
10/30/19 9:09 p.m.

I have a question. Pimpm3 pointed out on the Camaro that he didn't do many mods but obviously it has a built engine. I've always assumed on something like that you "claim" PO mods as a mod to the car from stock. In my mind it doesn't matter if the PO did it as that just means you made a good purchase. 

stafford1500
stafford1500 Dork
10/31/19 8:13 a.m.
Stampie said:

I have a question. Pimpm3 pointed out on the Camaro that he didn't do many mods but obviously it has a built engine. I've always assumed on something like that you "claim" PO mods as a mod to the car from stock. In my mind it doesn't matter if the PO did it as that just means you made a good purchase. 

I honestly do not recall if Jeremy mentioned the built engine or not, regarding the Camaro. It was certainly a strong performer, but the dynamic performance was not something we were asked to consider. I did mention that there seemed to be some distraction and I could have very well missed any mention of the engine mods.

It is tough to present in 3 minutes, and it is difficult to comprehend the scope of most builds in that time too.

bobzilla
bobzilla MegaDork
10/31/19 8:53 a.m.

In reply to Stampie :

I agree, my car's PO did all the legwork on making the 6-spd clutch not suck like stock. He had already installed the single mass flywheel, new slave without restrictor and braided line. That was a selling point for me. 

poopshovel again
poopshovel again MegaDork
10/31/19 8:55 a.m.

In reply to stafford1500 :

Thanks very much for this! Yes, the "presentation" embarrassingly "off the cuff," and we definitely should've pointed out a lot more of the little details on the car. Not "ground breaking innovation," but we did "W's" on the doors (instead of "V's") for "White..." or "Wayne" (depending on who you ask.) To match the World Challenge car, we needed hood scoops, which were procured from the hood of the "Boss Hong." (The 85(?) Dodge 600 turbo we ran in 2005 or 2006.) And the brake ducts, while unnecessary for auto-x, really were pretty badass and required a fair amount of engineering & cad skills (from Matt.)

Thanks again. We've got some cool, cheap/free stuff in the works for more innovation/creativity points, and our presentation will be ON_POINT!

surfshibby07
surfshibby07 Reader
10/31/19 12:36 p.m.

your feedback was awesome, this is whats i appreciates abouts you. 

Greg Smith
Greg Smith Dork
10/31/19 8:16 p.m.

In reply to stafford1500 :

#16 would appreciate a breakdown when you get a chance. Looking to improve for next year. 

 

stafford1500
stafford1500 Dork
11/1/19 8:27 a.m.

In reply to Greg Smith :

Greg, I will try to get this posted up this afternoon.

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