COPYRIGHT AND REQUEST TO 3RD PARTY EDITORS
This Dundrod track is released for the personal use of my friends in the GPL community.
All original work in this release, including track file, 3do and original textures, is copyright Jim Pearson October 2004. All rights reserved.
These files are not to be copied, used in full or in part for any commercial purpose, converted to other simulations, or mirrored on other sites without my specific written permission.
This is an attempt at an accurate recreation of what Dundrod is really like to drive AND look at on a partially cloudy late summer day. So please, refrain from producing add on's/ upgrades/ CLN and groove files/mips or horizons that dont improve authenticity and/or disturb the the carefully crafted overall harmony of the textures.
DUNDROD, NORTHERN IRELAND
11.91 km of public country roads west of Belfast, closed for race meetings. Narrow, bumpy, blind apexes, sudden dips and drop offs, roadside ditches. Very fast and very dangerous.
A circuit which hosted several rounds of the World Long Distance Sports Car Championship and the British TT in the 1950's, with works entries from Jaguar, Maserati, Mercedes, Porsche and M.G.
Stirling Moss won the 1955 race in a Mercedes 300SLR from Juan Fangio in another Mercedes and Mike Hawthorn's Jaguar D Type. However tragedy struck during that race with two separate fatal accidents at Deers Leap and Cochranstown, in which three drivers died. Road racing in sports cars was subsequently abandoned at Dundrod, but the bikes and sidecars continued to race and still do so twice a year in the Ulster Grand Prix and Dundrod 150 with hay bales in front of poles and fences their only protection!.
My GPL Dundrod is a representation of the public road circuit used from 1965 onwards, which differs slightly only at Leathemstown and at the Hairpin from the circuit used between 1953 and 1964. There is no historical connection to 1965 F1/65 GPL Mod. I may release a '53 version at a later date if there is substantial interest.
This offering comes complete with [ and at no extra charge :) ], the classic Deer's Leap combination which, if contained in a set of rally notes from Derrick Ringer, would probably sound something like this.
"...medium fast right...camber change over blind crest to dip...plateau with bump...drop off...then second drop off with jump # "
# for 65 F1 add "maybe" :)
I wish to thank my three testers from the Racesim Central forum;
Ken Murray, who has raced bikes at Dundrod and knows the risks inherent in the real track all too well - see memorial plaque at Ireland's bend.
Phil J, a local resident who has driven many private 'laps' here in real life; and
Thanks also to PhilJ and John Black in particular for providing valuable archive and current images as reference material.
Special thanks to Paul Jackson and SPEEDGEEZERS for hosting the downloads.
A FEW QUICK NOTES THAT SHOULD BE WORTH YOUR WHILE READING, PERHAPS WHILE YOU ARE DOWNLOADING
1] AVAILABLE DOWNLOADS
a) DUNDROD Zip.......the default textures in this are optimised for D3d, and wont really be sharp enough for Open GL.
b) OPEN GL TEXTURES Zip.......selected close to track textures with reduced sub-images to improve sharpness in Open GL. Place in Dundrod track folder AFTER using the self installer.
[ CARE Not suitable for D3D as they will 'sparkle' too much, so be warned :)
These wont permanently 'overwrite' the D3d textures in the main zip, which are captured in the track 'Dundrod.dat' file, so you can try these in your Dundrod track folder and while in there, they will override their D3d equivalents in the 'Dundrod.dat' file. You can then revert to the D3d textures contained in the 'dat' file at any time if you wish, by just removing the loose Open GL Mips from the Dundrod track folder.
c) DUNDROD JRP SETUPS Zip.............NB:The track default setups are my own 67 "stable" F1, F2 and F3 setups.
This Zip contains additional faster F1 setups of mine for those who have good car control and prefer enhanced throttle steering through fast turns, and a set of both 'Stable' and 'Fast' 65 Mod F1 setups.
d) ALTERNATIVE A.I. Pack. Substitute Track.ini for easy tuning of the AI to your own speed.[ BTW The AI will leave you room to pass, if you are good enough, in several spots, despite the narrow circuit ]
e) ON LINE SERVER HOST/ HOTLAPPER TRACK.INI..to enable you to start your first lap at speed on warmer tyres.
2] GROOVE, TRACK SHADING, ETC
This is a long 'public roads' track that doesnt 'mark up' much, so the groove I have made is fairly light and generally broad. It has been made to look as historically correct and natural as possible with varying width and a specially designed groove texture that will show replica tyre marks.
The groove file has also been manually edited extensively in width and intensity to add complexity to / complement the tree shadows painted on the asphalt and add 'exit marks' to road junctions etc etc..
Furthermore, the groove has also been edited in places to add large broard patches of graduated shade over extensive distances, such as you would naturally see on a partially cloudy summers day in Northern Ireland.
So please do not ask for a regroove for this track or use a different groove mip. If either is done, much of the immersive atmosphere would be lost and the careful blend of light and shade between all these elements will be degraded.! In other words it will look like .... : )
Lastly, the asphalt is made up of lots of subtly different small textures, with crazing, shiny strips, dusty parts for inside corners etc, rather than use of one texture that looks the same all around the track. This was to try to replicate the natural changes in road surface that occur on these public roads.
3] TELEGRAPH LINES
These are a feature of this track in real life and a good sample is included. They also cross the road in four places, but unfortunately if you are using Open GL all you will see will be the poles.. The wires only show in D3d.
4] DRIVING 'AIDS'
A long, fast, narrow, bumpy, track with several blind turn ins and apexes can be challenging. So I have placed marshalling stations [ hay bales and flaggers ] at the point where you SHOULD start slowing for all the difficult corners, plus a life sized road direction sign at the approximate TURN IN POINT to help you line up the apex at those corners.
5] FRAME RATES
Textures are 99% small 4 bit. Medium resolutions, nothing over 256pixels. While draw distances are pared down as much as possible without getting scenery pop ups, some long draw distances are inevitable here.
So there may be some frame rate hits especially in D3d, but Open GL seems to show exceptionally good frame rates at this track for some reason, up to 10 FPS better than D3d on my P3 1.7 GF3 500ti rig. [ See notes on Open GL texture Zip above ].
6] HOW TO APPROACH DRIVING IT?
Three tips from me....
a) DONT BE CONCERNED BY TRACK WIDTH - It looks very narrow to start with, and the bumps and roadside ditches/field drop aways are a little unsettling if you have been driving wide 'billiard table smooth' tracks, but learn the few tricky corners, DRIVE SMOOTHLY and you will find there really is a lot of room. GPL tends to make tracks look narrower than they actually are to drive. Have a look at a replay in 'chase' cam to see. Have a look at the included replay to see how much fun you can have here, even in the tricky Brabham BT 24 F1.
b) BRAKE EARLY, never using more than 2/3rds brake pedal, especially in the three bumpy downhill braking areas; and
c) TURN IN EARLY toward the apex of all the medium to fast corners.
ABOVE ALL, THIS IS A TRACK THAT REQUIRES VERY PRECISE STEERING AND USE OF ALL THE AVAILBLE ROAD WIDTH.
DONT JUST FLING IT AROUND AND EXPECT TO STAY ON THE TARMAC. BUT CONCENTRATE AND YOU WILL STILL BE ABLE TO DO DELICIOUS LONG DRIFTS THROUGH THE MANY MEDIUM/FAST TURNS HERE.
BE DISCIPLINED AND YOU WILL DO OK AND ENJOY THE CHALLENGE, but watch out for those roadside ditches!
There are selected [not all by any means] places in the shrubbery where you can drive straight through it. Usually in spots where you could hit it fast and almost head on, like outbraking yourself into Quarterlands for example.
Why did I make it like this?
I had a choice. The traditional 2055 collision value for hay which makes a car stop abruptly and invariably traps it if hit at that big angle. The alternative was to remove the collision and allow the car to drive through into the field beyond then return the same way, only penalty being time lost.
In reality what happens when a 1000lb car plus driver hits a small roadside hedge or flimsy two strand wire fence head on at even 50mph? It goes straight through it.
So I maintain that removing the collision in these spots is closer to reality than leaving it in, having the car come to an abrupt stop, then become trapped, with Shift.R the only way to release it !
8] HOW DO YOU PRONOUNCE DUNDROD?
DunDROD....... with much greater emphasis on the second syllable.
Thanks for reading this. I hope you can now enjoy some 'Almost Real Road Racing' on this classic Northern Irish Circuit.
PLEASE DO NOT LINK DIRECTLY TO THE DOWNLOAD OR TO ANY PAGE OTHER THAN THE MAIN INDEX PAGE OF THIS SITE
16 October 2004.