Some fantastic stuff in the week’s Racecraft & Driver Development Roundup. For Racecraft Tips & Techniques, I have tips on curing understeer, spending less time on throttle and a look at Scott McLaughlin’s vitals as he raced through the streets of Toronto. In Driver Development News & Resources, I look at driver development programs in Asia with Porsche, New Zealand with TQF and globally with Radical Motorsport, the First Gear Mazda Challenge, the debate over the W Series, and more.
Racecraft Tips & Techniques
- Your Data Driven looks at What Can You Do To Cure Understeer In Your Racecar? “You might have faced a situation where you are looking to cure understeer in your race car? The temptation is to head off looking at all kinds of suspension changes. This is fun but can get confusing fast. In this article, I share an experience where we cured understeer using information from our tyres to guide us – and not in the way you’d first expect.”
- Ross Bentley at Speed Secrets answers the question: I’m faster when chasing another car – why and how can I be fast when not following another driver? “Certainly, one of the reasons for being faster when chasing another car is that you have a reference. When you’re driving by yourself, and you approach a corner, what tells you when to brake, how much to slow down to, and what speed to carry through the corner? It’s a combination of your senses and your memory – what you’ve done on previous laps.” Read his full answer here.
- Check out the behind the scenes look at Alpine F1’s simulator in the video above.
- Blayze looks at Go Faster On The Racetrack By Spending Less Time On Throttle. “Sometimes spending less time on throttle can actually lead to a faster lap. Yes, you heard that right! At Blayze we often work with our drivers to actually spend less time on throttle. But, there is a very important part of this puzzle to make it all work…“
- Sports Car Digest looks at What Makes A Racetrack A Classic? An Investigative Look At Some Of The Best.
- Check out the post above from Scott McLaughlin that shows his physical exertion during the recent Toronto Indycar race.
Driver Development News & Resources
- Granted that this is essentially written by Honda but Powering next-gen talent: Honda Performance Development in F4 U.S. and FR Americas is a good overview of both USF4 and Formula Regional America. “Both categories were conceived by motorsport’s international governing body, the FIA, to help fast-track burgeoning talents to racing’s pinnacle championships. F4 is an entry-level category offering young drivers an opportunity to make the move up from karting into open-wheel racing and to demonstrate their skills on an international platform, while keeping affordability and safety as key elements of the program. Continuing that mission, FRA provides the next step up the ladder, delivering increased power and performance to help accelerate a driver’s learning curve and prepare them to grow and succeed in the higher levels of motorsports.“
- In the article Rising Radical star Rafols makes international debut by Radical Motorsport, they discuss their driver development program which some may not be aware of. “This award also supports Radical Motorsport’s ‘Race The World’ initiative – that enables competitors from any of the 14 international Radical series to join the grid at any of the iconic race tracks that they compete at around the world. This initiative has been amplified recently with the announcement of a Radical World Finals that is due to be held in Las Vegas this November.”
- Blackbook Motorsport looks at how W Series is increasing female representation in the male-dominated world of motorsport, although many, such as Lewis Hamilton argue that the series, if it is to continue, needs to guarantee progression to a series like F3 or F2 for its champion in order to justify its mission.
- Racer looks at how Travis Wiley claimed the First Gear Mazda Challenge outright in 2022 and explains how the program works. “When it comes to supporting amateur racers, Mazda Motorsports excels. In addition to the well-known contingency and parts programs, Mazda Motorsports supports young racers through the SCCA First Gear Mazda Challenge. The First Gear Mazda Challenge (FGMC) was designed for SCCA First Gear members under the age of 25 (for this season, the age cutoff was the end of January 2022) who race Hoosier Super Tour events in the Spec Miata class. The point leader each year earns a free entry to that season’s SCCA National Championship Runoffs in Spec Miata and a free pass to the first round of the Idemitsu Mazda MX-5 Cup Shootout.”
- Grassroots Motorsports looks at how, for retired Olympic ski racer Bill Schenker, buying a Miata became a gateway to his autocross addiction.
- The Porsche Carrera Cup Asia has a strong history of supporting young drivers as part of their Porsche Carrera Cup Asia Talent Pool. “Porsche Carrera Cup Asia has a strong history of supporting young drivers with its exclusive motorsport talent development programme. Eligible drivers* from the ages of 16 to 26 can enter the Talent Pool automatically. Talent Pool drivers will train with expert coaches and world-class Porsche racing champions, as well as enjoy a series of special offers and opportunities.”
- Porsche Motorsport Asia Pacific has announced the brand new GT Track Day that bridges the gap between training and competition. “The Porsche Motorsport Asia Pacific Pyramid gains a new step this season to help ease budding racing talents into the world of motorsport. Sitting between the Porsche Track Experience held at the Porsche Experience Centre Shanghai and the Porsche Sports Cup China, the GT Track Day is an exclusive platform for enthusiasts to develop their skills and deepen their enjoyment of driving a Porsche GT race car or road car on the track. “This exciting new event is aimed at bridging the gap between learning the motorsport basics and taking to the field among other dedicated privateers in a competitive environment,” said Alexandre Gibot, Managing Director of Porsche Motorsport Asia Pacific Ltd. “By providing some necessary track time and plenty of pure driving pleasure, GT Track Day offers the ideal platform for our amateur racers to graduate up the pyramid towards our established racing series.” The GT Track Day official event will be held later in 2022 and the event date will be announced in due course.”
- In New Zealand, Velocity News reports that the Tony Quinn Foundation (TQF) has increased the amount of financial support it is giving New Zealand motorsport by reaffirming funding for various scholarships for a second year, and teasing a new initiative to help Kiwi drivers launch an overseas career. “Budding race car drivers who take part in the Academy programmes at Quinn’s Hampton Downs facility are eligible for significant financial support towards competing in either the Toyota Racing Series, or the Toyota 86 championship.”
- With what many are calling a new “golden era” in sportscar racing, Formula Scout looks to answer the question, does junior single-seaters have a place in the hypercar driver market? “But do the drivers reviving that pipeline think – with a top class of sportscars that is getting slower, simpler and demanding smaller budgets – that being in the DTM with its single-driver cars and automotive-dominated paddock and fan village is the best place to prepare for hypercars or could downforce-laden junior single-seaters now be more appropriate?“
- Award winning actor, producer, director, and musician Idris Elba, a passionate advocate for inclusion and diversity, is launching Speed Academy powered by Total Karting Zero. It’s purpose is to find, nurture and develop future racing talent from communities currently underrepresented in the world of motorsports.
- The Robb Report looks at How Lamborghini’s Esperienza Program Helped Us Take Our Driving to the Next Level. “Baldi says Lamborghini customers are, on average, younger “than our competitors,” which, although the name is never mentioned, is assumed to be Ferrari. Specifically, Lambo buyers are between the ages of 35 and 45, and typically CEOs or successful entrepreneurs, according to Baldi. The Esperienza programs offer these guests the opportunity to sample the prowess of model lines like the Huracán and Aventador, as well as the Urus SUV, in a variety of settings around the globe.”