This week in Racecraft & Driver Development News, Tips & Techniques is filled with more advice that will help you both on and off the track. Enzo Mucci gives you tools and tips for how to improve as a race driver, there are tips on racing at Watkins Glen, Laguna Seca, Mosport (sorry Canadian Tire Motorsport Park) and more tracks. I also bring you an analysis of the various endurance series racing in the United States, the importance of a mental coach, Michael Andretti’s plans to develop American F1 drivers and more.
Racecraft Tips & Techniques
- In the video above, Enzo Mucci explains “this is how you improve as a Race Driver.” Make sure you check out the YouTube link to both subscribe to his channel and to download the self-coaching Excel sheet he created. He also notes that “you can apply this to other sports, business and anything else that has human performance at the centre of it.”
- Ross Bentley at Speed Secrets answers the question: Should I adjust brake bias during a race? How do I know when to adjust brake bias? You will want to read his answer for as he says, “there is no one-way-to-do-it answer to that question.”
- As a follow-up to the letter Eric Prill recently released in response to concerns from members on the growing number of on-track incidents they (the SCCA) were noticing, Blayze tackles the issue in their article on how to solve the crashing problem in grassroots racing. “Reducing the amount of crashes that occur in our sport is the single best way currently for grassroots racing to grow. Less crashes mean less money spent on repairs, and more green flag run time for everyone. The more enjoyable the sport, the more drivers will want to participate in events year over year.”
- On Episode 43 of the podcast Inside the SCCA, host Brian Bielanski chats with SCCA’s Vice President of Road Racing Eric Prill about the new Green-to-Checker movement that was born out of the recent letter he wrote that I mentioned above. “Many racers have expressed concerns about the limited amount of green-flag time during some SCCA road race weekends. As a result, Eric has begun collecting and analyzing incident data from recent Hoosier Super Tour events, and he’s opened the conversation about what can be done to keep track sessions green. On this episode, Brian asks Eric questions sent to him from podcast listeners, as well as some of his own.” You can listen to the podcast here.
- In latest edition of “Know the Track” on Racer.com, Ferrari Challenge driver Matt Kurzejewski (Ferrari of Westlake) takes them through the tricky and technical Turn 9 at Watkins Glen International. Notable as the slowest corner on an otherwise high-speed track, Matt explains how the tricky cambers and sightlines of the corner require a specific approach to be successful. It is certainly a corner where a lot of time can be gained or lost. You can watch the video above.
- While this article originally ran in the February 2013 issue of Grassroots Motorsports, it is still worth a read. Go Faster: Laguna Seca, Sebring, VIR, Road Atlanta, Mosport, Road America, Mid-Ohio and Watkins Glen.
- The ability to find time can be the difference between starting on pole and in the mid-pack. Learn from top drivers in the Safe is Fast tutorial above on where to find extra tenths.
- With the Indy 500 coming up, the Indycar website has an interesting article on why ‘one-off’ drivers face unique challenges and preparation racing in the 500. “It’s hard to train when you’re not racing all the time. So, I’ve kind of learned what hasn’t been working, what has worked and what I need to improve on. I’ve worked on that over the years. I feel like I have a good formula for what I know going into that race physically and mentally. Yeah, it’s a lot of experience and laps around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to figure all that stuff out.” Sage Karam
- Christine Giampaoli Zonca, better known as Christine GZ, talked to the Extreme E press team about the accident she suffered in the first race of the season, at NEOM. There, she detailed the event in addition to reaffirming the importance of mental health in athletes, a factor much talked about in recent months within the sports world. “Every athlete should have a mental coach. People get a little scared when you say psychologist, but all this time has given me the opportunity to think and see how to improve in a different way,” she concluded.
- WRTV, the ABC affiliate in Indianapolis takes a closer look at the Hyundai Drivers’ Camp. This annual camp, presented by Bryan Herta Autosport, is an intensive four day program focusing on fitness, mental health and sports psychology, media training, as well as engineering and data acquisition coaching. The program is offered to all Hyundai racing drivers in North America.
- If you think that you have no time for Instagram, you are making a mistake. Sign up and follow the Performance Physixx Instagram feed. Their Off Track Tips gives the race driver some excellent tips and techniques for off-track training that is well worth checking out regularly. Highly recommended.
- Your Data Driven has released part 2 of Sam’s talk with F1 vehicle dynamics engineer Richard Frith. “In part 1 we discussed Richard’s early career, how to go testing and using data to improve your driving. In part 2 you’ll learn about how F1 teams developed great driver feedback, where that fits in their development priorities, how to use that to develop the best setup. We also discuss what to change on your setup for the wet. If you’ve not listened to part 1 yet, I suggest popping back and giving that a listen first. But if you’re all set with that then, grab a pen, grab a coffee, sit back and lets get back into what Richard had to say.” You can listen here.
Driver Development News & Resources
- In Today’s endurance racing series offer lots of laps and lots of racing, Grassroots Motorsports takes an in-depth look at the amazing amount of endurance racing series currently running in the United States. “At least four sanctioning bodies have sprung up since the 24 Hours of Lemons, a series that welcomes $500 cars, rekindled interest in the format. The SCCA and NASA have independently come up with budget enduro series, along with a very permissive licensing procedure to make it easier to get into the sport. We’ll look at all those series as well, but first let’s hear from the ultra-irreverent Jay Lamm, the creator of Lemons, which helped get us here in the first place.”
- Monica Boulton Ramos and Deagen Fairclough have the chance to race in British F4 for free in 2023 after winning the ROKiT Racing Star contest. A five-round Esports series on the RaceRoom software ran from February to April, with separate races for boys and girls. The scheme was in part masterminded by Bob Fernley, who was then the FIA Single-Seater Commission president. Formula Scout has all the details.
- The Lotus Driving Academy (LDA) is relaunching from the 22nd of June, 2022. You can book now to get behind the wheel of the all-new Emira.
- I have been covering Michael Andretti’s attempts to enter a team in Formula 1 in my Business of Motorsport column for the last few weeks now. One of the reasons that he wants to launch his team is that he wants to give American drivers “legitimate shot” in F1. “We want to be an American team that wants to be developing American drivers for the future,” Andretti said. “There’s nobody out there that’s doing that. That’s where we want to be. There’s no real legitimate road for an American driver to get into F1. There just isn’t. We want to pave the way to F1.”
- Group A Racing has announced their 2022 Radical Sports Car demo schedule for the northeast. Contact them for more details & to get signed up. 631-974-4379 info@GroupARacingTeam.com
- May 31st Lime Rock Park
- June 1st Thompson Speedway
- June 4-5 Monticello Motor Club
- June 25-26 NJMP
- July 16-17 Club Motorsports
- September 10-11 NJMP
- Saudi Arabia’s first female racing driver, Reema Juffali, has set up her own sportscar team by the name of Theeba Motorsport with the aim of competing in the Le Mans 24 Hours. “I came into motorsport a little bit later in life, so I decided that in order to fast track my learning single-seaters would be the best way,” Juffali told Autosport. “But endurance racing was always the goal, and after last year I felt I’d made some advancement and that single-seaters had served their purpose. Down the line, Le Mans is a goal.” From a driver development perspective, she wants to help develop the next generation of Saudi drivers and motorsport professionals. Juffali explained that she had also been motivated to set-up the team to “improve Saudi Arabian representation and access to motorsport. The whole idea of the team is to bring Saudis along on the journey and give them a platform to learn and understand the sport.”
- The Race’s Gary Anderson gives his opinion on how F1 can solve its opportunity crisis. “F1 is keen to have more races and drivers are not exactly happy about their workload. So how about F1 stipulates that each driver was only allowed to participate in a maximum of 20 races per season? So each driver would miss three races, with the rules requiring a young driver stepping in to replace them.”
- Last week I mentioned that USF2000 racer and series leader Myles Rowe was being forced to leave the series due to a lack of funding. Roger Penske has since stepped in to make up the balance of his budget so he can complete the season.