Tips on how you can improve your braking skills and more racecraft advice highlight this week’s edition of the Driver Development & Racecraft Roundup.
In addition to braking techniques, I look at how karting can help you in your driver development training, setting a best lap time at Dubai Autodrome Circuit, how mental fatigue affects your performance, and a great collaboration between Racing with Autism Australia and the Australian Racing Drivers Club.
I also bring you information on the new track expansion at Porsche Experience Center Atlanta, taking a track-only Aston Martin Valkyrie AMR Pro for a test drive and the very modern motorsport path taken by Jarno Opmeer.
All this and more in this week’s edition of the Driver Development & Racecraft Roundup on Motorsport Prospects. As always, its news racers can use.
Racecraft Tips & Techniques
The video above focuses on how to Master the Art of Braking with Enzo Mucci’s 10 Pro Tips. “In this video I want to give you some pro tips that will help you get the last bit of laptime that you need if you want to win. Braking is pretty much the No.1 area to master if you want to be a top race driver, take it seriously and treat it like an art. You need feel and intelligence when it comes to braking.”
Ross Bentley of Speed Secrets answers the question: Can you help me understand how to use the Garmin Catalyst to improve braking?
130R Performance explain how F1000 champion Rob Welham uses karting to prepare for the new race season. “Karting is a tool frequently used by drivers at the highest levels of the sport, with Lando Norris, George Russell, and Romain Grosjean all being notable high-profile advocates of testing karts over their off-season as a key component of periodised training schedules.”
Your Data Driven looks to answer the question “will stiffer suspension give you better car handling?“
“One consequence of changing your spring stiffness is that it alters the load distribution across your tyres when cornering. Adjusting the damper (shock) settings modifies the rate at which that load is applied. This is crucial because your grip depends on getting your tyres into their “happy place,” and both the amount of load and the rate at which it is applied to your tyres significantly affect this. Your goal is to ensure that you load the tyres in a way that maximises their grip and makes you feel confident driving.”
The FFSA Academy has been equipped with a simulator specially designed for single-seater training. It is a model designed and developed by MOB-SIM, a specialist in this field for several years, which uses rotating central cylinder technology to best reproduce the perception of the yaw movement by the driver by generating cockpit rotation around a vertical axis. The simulator can be accessed as part of an complete training session or in individual sessions by the day or half-day. More details are available here.
The Asian Le Mans Series have released an onboard video of a lap of the Dubai Autodrome Circuit with TF Sport in the Asian Le Mans Series. You can watch it here. (I cannot embed it in the post)
“Ride onboard the #61 TF Sport Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT3 of David Pun, Adrian D’Silva and Ross Gunn around the Dubai Autodrome Circuit. Asian Le Mans Series commentator and Le Mans winner, Oliver Gavin explains what the driver will need to do to set the best lap time. The Asian Le Mans Series is growing year on year and is attracting some of the world’s most successful endurance racing teams, as well as fostering new and emerging talent. Offering the region’s only direct pathway to the world’s most prestigious endurance race – the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the Series is also the perfect training ground for those wanting to step up the ACO ladder. Eligible cars include LMP2, LMP3, and GT3. More information here – www.asianlemansseries.com“
Can the AI of the Garmin Catalyst compete with a human driving instructor? In the video above, Grassroots Motorsports took two novice drivers to the track to find out.
Race Driver Development News & Resources
The F1 Academy conducted their first of two pre-season testing in Barcelona last week. A total of 900 laps were completed by 15 drivers at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya for the 2023 F1 Academy’s opening day of pre-season testing on April 11. The first of two days in Spain was described as a positive start to the testing program, as the female drivers got to grips with the race cars ahead of the campaign’s first race on April 28-29 in Spielberg, Austria. Feeder Series breaks down how the sessions went and who stood out.
Simon Hayes of Performance Physixx has published an article at FlowRacers on Female Racing Driver Fitness (With Workout Program) that is quite comprehensive.
“When we analyze the physiological differences with regard to sporting performance, the gender factor seems to play an import part in most sports. However, where motorsports are concerned, this actually seems to have become less and less of an issue in recent years – if it ever actually was from a functional and physiological standpoint! I have already covered racing driver fitness training routines. In this article, we will look at how routines may need to be adapted (or not) to allow female drivers to race in a variety of series.”
Guenther Steiner has highlights the “mammoth task” F1 faces in adding female driver to the grid. “Marketing-wise, it would be magic,” said Steiner when put to him by The Times that Haas surely had considered bringing in a female driver. “But at the moment they are simply not out there. You’ve got thousands of male children who go go-karting and only 20 make it to the top. We need to create a big field of grassroots for females. We cannot have delusions that it will happen in two to three years. We are five or six generations behind now.”
Canadian Amateur Motorsport Association Road to Racing has announced that so far they are supporting 6 drivers so far this year and they are providing an easy way for potential donors to make a tax deductible contribution to support their work. “Road To Racing was inspired by the desire of motorsports fanatics to help amateur drivers, using charitable funds. As a CRA registered amateur athletics association, we can accept donations and provide charitable tax deductible receipts! You can transfer money from your family foundation or donor advised fund or donate directly. We encourage our donors to follow along with us as we watch these young drivers win races, championships and live their dreams!”
Find out how you can apply for a scholarship or contribute by visiting their website at https://road2racing.com/.
A revised class structure leads the regulation changes for the 2023 Fanatec GT Europe season. “As ever there are several changes to the sporting regulations for the new campaign, the most significant being a revised class structure. With all cars conforming to GT3 regulations, Fanatec GT Europe classes are based on driver categorisation, and the changes implemented for 2023 will ensure that the class names are more consistent with driver line-ups. There will be five categories at Fanatec GT Endurance Cup events: Pro, Gold Cup, Silver Cup, Bronze Cup and Pro-Am. In the Fanatec GT Sprint Cup, all five rounds will feature the Pro, Gold Cup and Silver Cup classes, while the Bronze Cup contenders will be present at Misano, Hockenheim and Valencia. “
I highly recommend reading Grant H. of Soma Technologies article Mental Fatigue in Sports: The Tired Athlete’s Brain and its Effects on Performance. “Athletes are expected to perform at their best, pushing the limits of their physical and mental abilities. However, mental fatigue can take a toll on an athlete’s performance, affecting their ability to think clearly and make split-second decisions on the field.”
Racing With Autism Australia (RWAA) has announced a collaboration with the Australian Racing Drivers Club. Racing with Autism Australia aims to raise awareness and acceptance of Autism Spectrum Disorder through showcasing the unique and talented individuals involved in motorsport who are on the Autism Spectrum.
“Part of encouraging people with Autism to get involved in motorsport includes providing a quiet space for those with sensory sensitivities. Similar programs have been run for various football codes and other sporting events.”
The Sports Rush explains the importance of mental health and how George Russell has adopted some of Nico Rosberg’s “hacks” off track when racing against a formidable competitor like Lewis Hamilton on track.
“Russell is aware of Rosberg’s doing the same. However, the Briton claims that the need to seek professional help aids one to overcome the challenges in their life and in their head. He added, “It doesn’t matter how rosy it looks on the outside, there’s always something in all of us that is challenging. Finding ways and having this sort of mental maintenance, almost keeping things ticking over, rather than seeking out help once there’s a problem, is really important.””
The Robb Report explains how Porsche’s new Atlanta track lets you try legendary circuits from around the world including while also being able to run hot laps in an all-electric Cayman GT4 delivering 1,088 hp.
“Designed by Formula 1 racetrack guru Hermann Tilke—whose work includes everything from the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Tex., to Yas Marina in Abu Dhabi—the beauty of the new 1.6-mile West Track is that it features grin-inducing elements inspired by some of the world’s most iconic circuits. In other words, you get to plunge down a tribute to the Corkscrew at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, sweep around the infamous Carousel from Germany’s Nürburgring-Nordschleife, duck into the famous Daytona “Bus Stop” chicane, and even snake through a section of the Smoky Mountains’ 318-curve Tail of the Dragon mountain road.”
Chris Harris of Top Gear drives the track-only Aston Martin Valkyrie AMR Pro. “The result is a car that rather shattered my expectations. I’m not a fan of track-only supercars because they are almost always inferior to a non-racing racecar. But the difference here is that I can’t think of a racing car that produces this much downforce, and has a 1,001bhp naturally aspirated V12, so you can’t replicate the experience elsewhere.”
Learning from the experience of others is key to succeeding in any walk of life and racing is no different. In Driver Snapshots, I feature the experiences of various drivers where you can get some perspective on what they have gone through (and continue to go through) as they work to make their motorsport careers happen. I hope you can take some lessons from these experiences and apply them to your own motorsport careers.
In the video above, two-time Formula One Esports Champion Jarno Opmeer recently shared his racing story to the world in a TEDx Talk back in February. You can watch his TEDx talk above.
“In his talk, Jarno speaks on his unorthodox racing path, one that has become more of a reality with esports and sim racing in today’s day and age. It wasn’t always in the cards for the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Esports Driver to be in the position he’s in today. Starting off in real-world racing, eventually he found his place among the greats in sim racing, and now that’s led back to the real-world with opportunities he would have never had otherwise.”
Motorsport Prospects Joins the Weekly Motoring Goodness Newsletter!
I am excited to announce that Motorsport Prospects has teamed up with the motorsport-mad folks at Racing Edge to become part of their Weekly Motoring Goodness newsletter! The first edition with content from Motorsport Prospects was part of last week’s April 14th newsletter. You can subscribe here: https://motoringgoodness.beehiiv.com/subscribe
Looking forward to having you along for the ride!