A Different approach

An important reminder written by Steven van Helsdingen.

The start of a race is a discipline in its on way. There are many factors to deal with.
Dropping the clutch as soon as the lights turn green, Managing a good take-off, Dealing with traffic around you, Trying to pass your fellow racers, avoiding incidents in front of you, breaking timely for the first corner and preying you do not have a first corner hero behind you. Not to forget dealing with your own emotions as stress and tension builds up.

One of the tricks in making a start less accident prone is by doing a simple practise before you start the race. The most under anticipated corner is turn 1 on lap one. That’s because where all busy practising turn 1 while speeding down the straight in race pace and braking according to a normal approach speed. But at the start we encounter turn 1 with an entire different speed than we usually do. Different Speed, Different Line, Different Gear. That gives turn 1 on lap one an entire different approach.

Enter an empty session or practise mode. Drive up to one of the left starting stripes on the main straight. Launch your car toward the first corner and see where your “Lap one turn 1” break point is. Practise this until you have a good brake and turn-in point. Now practise the same thing from a starting stripe on the right and keep that right line all the way into the corner.

Keep in mind that racing conditions are always different an unpredictable. You will probably need to brake a sooner than in practise conditions where no other cars are on the track. This is because of the accordion effect.

See you on the track!

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