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Old 05-04-2011, 11:08 PM
  #31
Veloce Raptor
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Originally Posted by Van View Post
Great idea for a thread!

A few times you've mentioned being "mentally & physically ahead of the car"... I wonder if you can elaborate on that - specifically techniques you use to do this.
Thanks. Well, one idea is mentioned above: Get detailed (in your notebook, after each session) with what the car is telling you, IE how the car is behaving as you get on the brakes, at corner entry, at midcorner, at apex, at track out, and at WOT. Do this for every corner at the track. It really helps detatch your conscious from the mechanics of driving (brake, turn in, apex, track out, etc.) which you probably do well anyway, and frees up brain cycles to really pay attention to all the small messages your car gives you every second on track, in order to mentally & physically be more ahead of the car.

Another way is forcing yourself to look way farther ahead than your normal comfort level. Another is making sure you s-l-o-w-l-y suck in & exhale as many deep breaths as you can on every straightaway. And another is closing your eyes just before you go on track, relax every muscle, and in 20 or 30 seconds, quickly visualize what you see as you driving really well. All IMO, of course.
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Old 05-05-2011, 07:50 AM
  #32
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Originally Posted by Veloce Raptor View Post
Thanks. Well, one idea is mentioned above: Get detailed (in your notebook, after each session) with what the car is telling you, IE how the car is behaving as you get on the brakes, at corner entry, at midcorner, at apex, at track out, and at WOT. Do this for every corner at the track. It really helps detatch your conscious from the mechanics of driving (brake, turn in, apex, track out, etc.) which you probably do well anyway, and frees up brain cycles to really pay attention to all the small messages your car gives you every second on track, in order to mentally & physically be more ahead of the car.

Another way is forcing yourself to look way farther ahead than your normal comfort level. Another is making sure you s-l-o-w-l-y suck in & exhale as many deep breaths as you can on every straightaway. And another is closing your eyes just before you go on track, relax every muscle, and in 20 or 30 seconds, quickly visualize what you see as you driving really well. All IMO, of course.
+1

As a related aside, I continue to be amazed at how many 'serious' drivers either simply do not or consciously refuse to keep notebooks...

VR, do you require your clients to sit down and make their notes - at least on days when you're working with them?
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Old 05-05-2011, 08:49 AM
  #33
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Originally Posted by fleadh View Post
How do the pros (or very fast/talented amateurs) learn new tracks so quickly?

I've spent a lot of time on technique and professional driving instruction, and my pure lap speeds are pretty good at tracks I'm familiar with. But when it comes to new tracks, I'm like rainman... and not in the good card counting way. Any tips/advice would be great! Thanks. :-)

-mike
no coach, no pro, just a motivated and passionate amateur club racer running in the lower run groups who applies the 80/20 rule to learning a new track. So the 80: If I head to a track I've never been to, I will print the track map, visualize it until it's committed to memory and I can draw it on my own, then I watch at least 1 hour worth of proper video. By then I know the twists and turns on the tip of my fingers and I am left with learning the subtleties (early vs late apex, bumps, small changes in elevation, slight +/- camber, etc...) that can't be learned other than by driving the track, which is the last 20 percent. To attempt to take-in that last 20 percent I first drive the track for 1 session, then ask questions to racers who have been there before, and will try to do a track walk... then go out again, seeking the limit of my comprehension up to that point.

I hear video games can help too, but I'm not into them.

Last edited by FredC; 05-05-2011 at 09:51 AM.
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Old 05-05-2011, 09:04 AM
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Require? No. I recommend they do, though, Kevin. And in fact I carry a small notebook with me whenever I ride right seat with them, so I make a bunch of notes myself (usually on the straightaways) in my pig latin shorthand.

Which brings me to a slightly bigger picture point: as drivers get to higher & higher skill levels, there is less differentiation between right & wrong on track. Small nuances can make big differences in performance, but too many folks in the right seat make "their" way the "right" way, and the client's way the wrong way. IMO, unless the driver is doing something egregiously wrong, it makes more sense to show the driver numerous techniques (IE, there are often several ways thru a corner), encourage them to try all of them, help them analyze their data & video, and then help them decide which is going to work best. Rather than making it a right & wrong thing.
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Old 05-05-2011, 09:39 AM
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^ Like. unless running a quali on an open track its very difficult ot find the optimal line when dicing with others that want to be in the same spot. Segment analysis/breaking down the track (simple data) per corner has been very helpful for me. Now I need to find that .1-sec so my mighty demi-cup can pierce .30 @ sebring.
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Old 05-05-2011, 09:45 AM
  #36
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Originally Posted by VERBOTN View Post
^ Like. unless running a quali on an open track its very difficult ot find the optimal line when dicing with others that want to be in the same spot. Segment analysis/breaking down the track (simple data) per corner has been very helpful for me. Now I need to find that .1-sec so my mighty demi-cup can pierce .30 @ sebring.
I'll bet we could find 0.1 sec per corner....x 17 corners.
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Old 05-05-2011, 10:46 AM
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Another Notebook question:

Can you list some of the variables you've found most helpful to categorize?

track
ambient temp?
tire temp & pressure?
sway bar settings?
etc.

Some of these will vary by session, so you record this for each session?

Thanks
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Old 05-05-2011, 10:52 AM
  #38
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Originally Posted by SH || NC View Post
Another Notebook question:

Can you list some of the variables you've found most helpful to categorize?

track
ambient temp?
tire temp & pressure?
sway bar settings?
etc.

Some of these will vary by session, so you record this for each session?

Thanks
Just my opinion only here:

track
ambient temp only if it falls outside of norms (IE, a very cold moring or a very hot afternoon)
weather (rain, fog, high wind, etc.)
cold tire temps
pyrometer temps occasionally
sways
compression & rebound on shocks
canister pressure on remote reservoir shocks
wing angle
etc.
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Old 05-05-2011, 12:58 PM
  #39
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Similar to the question about sawing the steering wheel, I have found that as I advance in my driving technique I am feathering the throttle more through high speed corners, to rotate the car incrementally (944 turbo). Is this preferable to other techniques such as sawing the wheel, or is it a bad habit? In other words, once you begin to apply power, should you stay on it?
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Old 05-05-2011, 01:03 PM
  #40
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Well, it depends, doesn't it?

If you are on & off & on & off the power, that is repeatedly upsetting the chassis. However, smooth modulation, while the car remains serene, is classic throttle steering.
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Old 05-05-2011, 03:53 PM
  #41
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Originally Posted by Veloce Raptor View Post
Require? No. I recommend they do, though, Kevin. And in fact I carry a small notebook with me whenever I ride right seat with them, so I make a bunch of notes myself (usually on the straightaways) in my pig latin shorthand.

Which brings me to a slightly bigger picture point: as drivers get to higher & higher skill levels, there is less differentiation between right & wrong on track. Small nuances can make big differences in performance, but too many folks in the right seat make "their" way the "right" way, and the client's way the wrong way. IMO, unless the driver is doing something egregiously wrong, it makes more sense to show the driver numerous techniques (IE, there are often several ways thru a corner), encourage them to try all of them, help them analyze their data & video, and then help them decide which is going to work best. Rather than making it a right & wrong thing.

+ 1,000,000,000


Our job as a coach is to have them come to an understanding 'on their own' rather than tell them how to do it. Spot-on points VR.

BTW, I like this thread.
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Old 05-05-2011, 04:42 PM
  #42
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Originally Posted by SundayDriver View Post
...

Each corner has 4 reference points - Brake Point, Turn-In, Apex, Track-Out Point. they are working on the most important thing for every corner on the track. I saw the first pro I mentioned equal the lap record in less than 10 laps at a new track.
Can you give us a feel for "set-ups"? When is the braking point is most important? When is the track out most important etc..? How does your approach to navigating the corner change when you emphasize one of the four elements vs. the other elements?
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Old 05-05-2011, 05:25 PM
  #43
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Originally Posted by Veloce Raptor View Post
Well, it depends, doesn't it?

If you are on & off & on & off the power, that is repeatedly upsetting the chassis. However, smooth modulation, while the car remains serene, is classic throttle steering.
I'm not a coach, but here is something that I've noticed over the years I've instructed.

IMO, lifting is one of the things that is overlooked, not taught, or sometimes improperly taught. I think there is too much emphasis put on the adage "don't lift in a corner." Lifting off the gas is a key technique to learn. It takes a keen touch with the right foot to be able to lift the correct amount for the situation. Regardless of how much, it must be done at the correct speed to keep the chassis balanced. Abrupt inputs yield bad results most of the time.

Maybe the old saying should be modified to don't abruptly lift too much in a corner. Or something like that.

-td
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Old 05-05-2011, 05:26 PM
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Or, perhaps more simply, don't do anything to surprise the car.

Kevin, thanks!
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Old 05-05-2011, 06:13 PM
  #45
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Originally Posted by Veloce Raptor View Post
First, it is critical to use all the track. You paid for all of it...use it!
Dave: Perhaps you can help me understand line advice I have been given to use less than all the track in a couple of corners. The corners are turns 8 and 13 at TWS counterclockwise, both lefthanders for those unfamiliar. The advice is to turn in from the right side of track center but not go out to the right side. Do you agree? If so, why is it better than using all the track? Thanks it advance. Nice of you to tolerate these questions and share your wisdom.
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