Unlocking your performance potential in a race car is the whole purpose of this weekly roundup of driver development news and racecraft tips and techniques and this week is no different.
Whether it be through racecraft advice on trail braking or defending your position on track to driver development advice from drivers like Nyck de Vries and Louis Foster to driver spotlights where you can take inspiration from how various drivers have developed their careers, it is all part of this column released every Monday.
The Driver Development News & Racecraft Tips & Techniques Roundup on Motorsport Prospects. It is news racers can use so that they can go faster on track.
Racecraft Tips & Techniques
Blayze has put together a Trail Braking Guide. “In the Blayze trail braking guide we will discuss what trail braking is, how to trail brake, when and where to trail brake, and why it’s fast. Even if you’re an experienced driver we recommend you still go through each chapter so that we can ensure we share a common language as we discuss learning to master your trail braking to go faster on track.”
In the video above, learn how pro racecar drivers defend their position from overtakes.
Ros Bentley of Speed Secrets answers the question in his regular Ask Ross feature, what’s the difference between turning the car and rotating the car?
HotCars looks at 26 driving techniques from the world’s best race car drivers. “The following accumulated bits of information are introduced to give you an idea of some of the driving techniques that the world’s best race car drivers use every time they get behind the wheel; some of them are rally techniques, some of them road racing techniques and some are just principles of driving that racing necessitates a fundamental understanding of.”
Race Driver Development News & Resources
Nyck de Vries discusses the mental conundrum he faces in his first full F1 season. “My commitment, determination but also my perfectionism is a great asset and a strength,” the 2020/21 Formula E champion said. “But equally a weakness. When you go too far, you lose focus and you get lost in the detail and that’s when you are unable to focus. Basically your will is paralysing your intuition and feeling.”
Ignition Human Performance has announced that Julien Simon-Chautemps, who was most recently Kimi Räikkönen’s last Formula One Race Engineer, is joining its Motorsport Speakers roster. In Unlocking Performance with Race Engineer Julien Simon-Chautemps, he discusses his career and the lessons he has learnt during his time in Elite Motorsport. On Kimi Räikkönen: “His race awareness was something I never came across before, he was brilliant in race situation. His understanding of race strategy and what was happening around him during the race, then what he had to do to perform better was simply phenomenal.”
Determining which series to race in for a young driver must take into account a number of factors. Feeder Series looks at why Mercedes choose the Formula Regional European Championship (FRECA) over FIA F3 for Andrea Kimi Antonelli. “In 2023, the rising star from Italy will enter FRECA, a championship that has always been hard for rookies. The Formula Regional machinery is not related to the F3 one, and is probably one of the most difficult cars to master. That is probably why some engineers often say that “if you can master the FRECA car, you can master any car”.
Before 2022 Indy Pro 2000 champion Louis Foster makes the jump to Indy NXT with Andretti Autosport, he is competing in the Formula Regional Oceania Championship (FROC). Feeder Series talked with him about his adaptation to FROC after his first race weekend in the New Zealand series. “It is pretty difficult, but I am enjoying the challenge. It is another tool for my arsenal to use in the future.”
Formula Ford is set to continue having a minimum age for entry in the United Kingdom of 16 years old, which keeps it above Formula 4 according to Formula Scout. “While other countries such as New Zealand enable drivers as young as 14 to race in the wingless entry-level FF1600 cars, and first-generation F4 cars built from 2014 to 2021 can also be raced by 14-year-olds in many areas of the world, the UK maintains higher age requirements for safety reasons. The standard minimum age for open-wheel car racing competition is actually 16, but FIA F4 cars “are given special exemptions based upon their compliance to current FIA safety criteria” by Motorsport UK enabling 15-year-olds to race them.”
The first two drivers have been confirmed for the new female junior racing series F1 Academy have been announced. ART Grand Prix has signed 25-year-old Swiss racer Lena Bühler as the first member of its three-strong squad and PREMA Racing have announced that Filipino driver Bianca Bustamante will the first driver in their three-car line-up.
The ERA Racing School is now ready to fully start its operations in 2023. For the first quarter of the year the program at Circuit Zolder is now fixed. Xavier Maassen, manager ERA Racing School: ” We have a nice program selected for the first half of the season. We have a good combination of Experience Days and our Racing School programs. We will start with some good Winter Tests to prepare drivers for their upcoming season in whatever class they will drive. We have a Racing School Advanced program in the holiday period and a Racing School Start program at the end of April. In collaboration with the RACB, we can confirm that for our programs we can deliver a Club license. For the Advanced program a national level license is on the table to play for. We are looking forward to a great first full season of our ERA Racing School.” Full details can be found here.
Doran Motorsports Group (DMG) is preparing for a busy 2023. With many announcements coming over the next few weeks, DMG will announce their very first driver to the new Doran Motorsports Group (DMG) Academy, two drivers for the Formula Pro USA Winter Series, and other drivers that will be part of both the Formula Pro USA Western Championship and F4 United States Championship Powered by Honda. “The purpose of the academy is to prepare years in advance for the transition of the driver and the parents from karting to open-wheel racing,” added Doran. “Although karting and open-wheel racing are two different beasts to tame on their own, we will make it our mission to develop young future stars and keep them mindful of what aspect of karting is relatable to car racing. We will not only help the drivers on the track but off it as well.”
Sonoma News explains how Sonoma Valley High School girls take to Sonoma Raceway to close gender gap in motor sports. “They were brought there by the Della Penna Motorsports NextGen Foundation, a 501c3 organization that empowers young women and girls with knowledge, expertise, skill and mentorship opportunities to supercharge a future in motor sports.”
Learning from the experience of others is key to succeeding in any walk of life and racing is no different. In Driver Snapshots, I will 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.
Parker Thompson is clear proof that hard work will get you where you want to go in your motorsport career if you want it enough. One of the things he explained to me in numerous meetings over the years is how important small sponsors are to a racer’s budget. He has never had many large sponsors so he has relied on his smaller sponsors to cover as many expenses as he can. And the key? That these sponsors are treated the same as you would any large sponsor. They deserve it.
Enjoy this interview with the newly crowned Porsche Carrera Cup North America champion courtesy of Sports Car Digest.
Roman De Angelis
If you are wondering how a young driver manages racing and school and their often conflicting demands, check out this feature on Roman De Angelis from his hometown paper. Incredibly, 24 hours after winning the Rolex 24 he was back in class. Read it here: Lakeshore’s De Angelis quietly returns to class after 24 Hours at Daytona victory