Racecraft and Courses

scudderbowon

Racecraft

Most races use the class of float ship that the City Dwellers call a Skud’arr, usually rendered in English as a Scudder. These nimble small craft are named for their erratic flight and especially known for a maneuver that can have them change their direction of flight 180° in a moment. A Scudder racing crew includes a Pilot and a Gunner (even in an unarmed craft, the second in command is known as “Gunner” while serving as captain of the sidemen) and three Sidemen. Sidemen are sometimes also known as Snatchers for their role in the race. This makes for a quite crowded small craft.

They are Watching You

Each Racing Master can call upon a cadre of Inspectors and Monitors. These trusted souls are charged with enforcing the rules and regulations of racing.

Inspectors examine the racecraft before a race, looking for safety issues and contraband. These are the fellows that a racer’s agents will sometimes bribe to get a Ploy aboard a racecraft.

During the race, Monitors distribute themselves around the course, often in single-man Flitters, but sometimes in Scudders. They watch for safety issues and infractions to the rules.

Some Racing Masters authorize their Monitors to summarily punish racecraft seen committing an infraction. Monitors charged with summary punishment pilot craft armed with battering ball weapons that can shoot at the miscreants.

Fortunately for devious racers, Inspectors and Monitors do not share the All Seeing Eye of Belsiash and racers can sometimes get away safely with using their Ploys.

 

Float Buoys

gate buoysA pair of float buoys, each bearing the gate’s number, defines each gate.

The buoys have projecting arms which offer a ring for the passing racers to snatch as proof of having completed that portion of the race.

When a racecraft passes near enough to a float buoy, one of its Sidemen attempts to snatch a ring from the arm. If the first Sideman fails, a second may try, but a scudder does not have enough space for more than two of them to wield their snatching poles.

If a racecraft hits a float buoy, the buoy will bob away from it, returning to its place after the craft has passed but the impact may cause trouble for the crew of the racecraft.

Here’s a shot of two float buoys (S-010) painted as a gate pair. Each buoy, including its base, is 2.25 inches tall.

The fitting at the top can be drilled out to mount a gate number flag.

The blue bottom is an integral base. It can be cut off to allow you to “float” the buoy by drilling both pieces and re-attaching them separated by a support wire.

 

Racing Pylonsracing pylon

Each racing pylons is clearly marked as to which side craft should pass.

The pylon is fitted with ring arms on the side to which the racers must pass.

When a racecraft passes near enough to the correct side of a pylon, one of its Sidemen attempts to snatch a ring from the arm. If the first Sideman fails, a second may try, but a scudder does not have enough space for more than two of them to wield their snatching poles.

An immovable object such as a pylon is not as forgiving as a float-buoy when a racecraft runs into it.

To the right is a picture of a painted pylon. It is 6 inches tall.

The faceted green ball near the top represents the scoring target for R-gun shots.

The green disk dispenser further down clearly shows the side to which a racer should pass, assuming the racer wants to snatch a ring.

The fitting at the top can be drilled out to mount a number flag for showing the pylon’s position in the race course.