January 6, 2012

There is no "Driving Style..."

“It is important to have a car that is the same on entry, mid-corner and exit and needs to be predictable from entry to exit.
I want the car to drive into the corner by itself, I never want to force it with the steering. I want to transfer enough weight to the front of the car with my braking or by lifting but I don’t want to have to turn the wheel too much. My belief is there is no ‘driving style’, you need to be able to adapt at every corner.”

The quote is from Simon Pagenaud in a very interesting article from SimRaceway. The Peugeot ILMS, Honda IndyCar, Citroen WRC driver (and more!) explains how he sees and drives Mid-Ohio, a track he holds the record on, 1:03.7.

Pagenaud explains how Mid Ohio is a track requiring flexibility in thinking and technique, where to go fast, “you have to know how to drive in different ways.”

Turn 2 is a good example:

“The biggest issue with Turn 2 is the level of understeer, you enter the turn at the top of the hill and you have to brake as you turn. The car gets light and you have to contain the rear as much as you can. The more you can turn the car in on entry, the less the front of the car will wash out in the middle of the corner”.

“There are a lot of different lines, you can turn in early and ‘diamond’ the corner (in fast, out fast, slow middle) or go for an early entry and a long duration when you try and stay on the kerb all the way”. This technique helps the car rotate and it will help optimize your position on exit which, in turn, will mean you can get back on the throttle sooner"

Have a look at the complete lap walkthrough as told to Declan Brennan on SimRaceway's website, I know I'm bookmarking it for future reference.


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