Tapas with Lars Bargmann

If you ever raced a Star Mazda in the last few seasons you probably should thank Mr Bargmann for his multiples setups every week. Born in Denmark in the 70’s, he is always one of the candidates for the championship title. His smooth driving style and his advice and knowledge about the car has allowed him to be a part of the remarkable Carbon Team. Along with the other usual Star Mazda suspects like Rufat and O’Donnell, he will try to keep the up’n’coming young guys away from the podium.

Q: What was your first simracing peripheral?

Logitech-G27-SLI-Pro-Wheel-PlateA: A Logitech G27, which I got about 4 years ago.
At the time, I was primarily playing “arcade” racing games, like various Need for Speed titles and such. To be honest, I had never really heard about sims, but I think there was a trial version of rFactor in the G27 box, so I tried it out, and it caught my interest. I googled a lot and read tons of stuff about simracing, and I decided to give iRacing a try in February of 2011, and I was instantly sold. It has been sims all the way, ever since.

Q: How many hours do you train before a race?

A: Depends if I know the track or not.
On a track I have never driven before, I usually put in 5-10 hours of practice before I feel like I am ready to go racing.
On tracks I know, I am usually ready to race after 30 minutes of “getting to know this weeks weather” but I don’t always join races early in the week, even though I might feel ready.
Generally speaking, I spend 10-20 hours in practice-sessions per week, I guess.

Q: What was the inflection point in your career?

A: Well, first off, there was the discovery of sim-racing. That was a big thing for me, because I’ve practically never heard about it before, and I have always played racing-games a lot. Getting to that “next level” of driving just triggered something in me, and it has become my exclusive game-genre.
pro_mazdaSecond turning point of my “iRacing career” was during season 2 and 3 of 2014, where I suddenly went from being a midpack-driver to actually being able to hang on to the frontrunners. I still have no explanation for it; it just happened. At that point, I had been driving the Star Mazda for a long time, and I guess the experience with the car combined with a lot of practice ended up paying off. The strange thing is that it happened almost over night, and I was just as surprised (or maybe even more) than the other drivers in the series.

Q: Do you use your simracing skills for daily driving?

A: Not really, but I guess some techniques carry over to real life, if I should ever end up in an uncomfortable situation on the road.
I do believe that simracing teaches you some car-control that can be applied to real life.
Fortunately, I have never needed that.

okayama_testingQ: Tell me your most hated track.

A: Okayama!
I sincerely hate that track.
It’s as slippery as ice, and with the exception of turn 2, it’s practically made up of 90 or 180 degree turns.
It’s a fullthrottle-brake-fullthrottle-brake-fullthrottle kinda track, and I find it boring.

Q: What do you miss in simracing today?

A: Dynamic weather and day-night transitions.

Q: How much have you invested in your current cockpit?

A: Way too much!
I’d guess around 2-3000 dollars.

Q: Do you use Sims other than ir?

A: Rarely, but when I do, it’s hotlapping in AC or rFactor (1 and 2) and occasionally I jump in Race07 to mess around.

Q: Show me your racing shoes.

2014-12-22 12.37.01A: Here they are.

Q: What car would you like to race better?

A: The Williams FW31, because I actually like that car (even though it seems everybody else hates it) and I am a big Formula 1 fan.

I would like to thank Lars Bargmann his outstanding contribution to the iRacing community and specially to the Star Mazda series.

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