Skip Barber Tips and Techniques 5


*Disclaimer*

 

These are old articles for previous models of iRacing cars that may have changes significantly. This was all designed for a TNT Racing app in 2015, but is now free to the public as a general guide. Some links may be broken and can no longer be updated.

 

Shameless plug - Send a private message to any TNT Member on iRacing for 30% off all GTR Simulator equipment!

 

Drafting

Drafting is a huge part of racing the SB. Utilize this effect to the maximum extent practical and focus on two main ideas: new braking points and aero-understeer. As you draft, your speed increases and the entry point that you previously used with no draft is now no longer acceptable. The entry point to the corner will now be earlier as you brake to achieve proper entry speed at the correct point. When passing, be sure to note more than one marker or trackside object for your entry points. It may happen that you are unable to view your standard entry point in traffic. Aero-understeer occurs when you are behind another car and turning the car. The airflow from the car in front is significant enough (depending on distance) to reduce the airflow over the front end (and to a lesser extent, the rear) to lower the front forces/grip levels to the point of understeer. To compensate for this, try to drive a line that is slightly offset to the inside of the car in front if feasible. The angular deflection of the airflow from the car in front is skewed slightly toward the outside of the turn allowing for some airflow over at least the inside portion of the trailing car.

Lap 1 Incidents

        Use caution entering T1 on lap 1. Many a race has been avoided by bufoonery stemming from improper entry lines, entry speed, defensive techniques, or by general inattention. As a competitor brakes, he or she should use a braking marker or point identifiable by the car behind. The car behind should not brake at the normal braking point, but rather pay attention to when the car in front brakes at that braking point and judge the braking effort required to slow down whilst maintaining the gap to the car in front. This braking point for the trailing car will be slightly prior to the braking point used by the forward car. Use this as an avoidance tool. Allow others to dive-bomb, wreak havoc, and be sidelined by car damage. Avoid T1 issues by leaving room, knowing that if you are faster, you will have your opportunities to pass as the race moves forward. Remember, to finish first, first, you must finish!!!

Defensive Lines

        If you are under attack from a faster driver, it might be prudent to let them by. If the driver has comparable skill, or if you are feeling wiley and the end of the race is near, a defensive line may be the best way to go. A defensive line is not blocking. Blocking is when you move your car to a line you had not previously chosen to impede the progress of a trailing car prior to a corner. There is some debate over how this occurs, and many times it may be required based on other cars around you, but to ensure you are not blocking, take the defensive line early and relay your intentions with quick inputs to the wheel. The inside line through a corner is the defensive line in most circumstances. When taking the inside line, you are forcing the other car to drive a longer distance around you to complete the overtake. Remember, when you are on the inside line, you will have to take the corner at a slower speed. The decreased turn radius of the corner due to tight entry parameters requires a slower speed. If you enter at the same speed with the same braking distance, you might wash up the track and into the competition. On iRacing, it is important to leave sufficient room for others and to not cut them off. Also, factor in a few feet of netcode for international competitors. "Race the code!"

Lap by Lap

        If you find yourself pushing the car to its limits and making up little or no time, try backing off and being smooth with the inputs. Often, the less you turn the wheel and the slower you ease off the brakes and onto the throttle, the faster you will go. In times of frustration, keep focused on single lap-over-lap efforts to be smooth and hit all the apexes. Try to set goals for the race and establish more stringent goals the further you progress. Here are a few example goals:

Top 3 with no off-tracks.
Less than 3 missed apexes.
Less than 2 late braking instances.
No spins and more than 5 session-best laps.
Decrease total time by 1 second over the last race.

Make sure your goals are measureable, attainable, and are effectively debriefed after your race so you can find trend items to work on in subsequent races.

More information

        If you are looking to improve your driving skills, TNT-Racing offers instructional track-time which can be found on the app. We charge $25/hour with session lengths determined by you on a pro-rata basis. We would be happy to show you practical examples of driving techniques, driving in traffic, managing setups, and looking deep into telemetry. We are available on TeamSpeak as well based on any specific needs or products you may desire to obtain.
In addition to this, we offer “ask TNT,” to all our app purchasers. This function allows you to ask any question you like about the SB or any other car and we will provide you with the most up-to-date information from any of our Pro/DWC, Pro, or specialist drivers.

Here are the links to more Skip Barber Formula 2000 Tips and Techniques:

Finding the Edge

Braking Techniques

Weight Transfer

Setting Up The Car

Racing Techniques

How to drive the Skippy (YouTube Video)