No matter what form of motorsports you participate in, there has likely been a time when you sought out advice from someone else about how to go faster. When choosing who to get advice from, we typically reach out to the fastest driver we know. Of course, this makes sense. When we look for for an A/C repairman, financial advisor, or any other professional service provider, we want to know what their credentials are; we want to know what makes them qualified to help us. From that perspective, “lap times” are the credentials of a performance driver, so we feel confident that the fastest driversRead More →

In case you missed it, round 1 of this test is here. Last time, on medium grip asphalt, the Bridgestone RE71R edged out the BFGoodrich Rival-S 1.5 by 0.3 seconds on my 2009 Corvette Z06 prepped for A-Street (front sway bar, double adjustable shocks). For round 2, a couple of things were different: I made some shock adjustments that have made the car much better behaved in high speed transitions, and… More importantly, this test was done on high grip concrete. The airport concrete at this site is very similar in grip and feel to what we see at the SCCA Autocross National Championships inRead More →

Here at BeST, we’ve always tried to dispel some of the well-intentioned, but ultimately inaccurate pieces of advice that get handed down from driver to driver over the years. We’ve talked about how there is a limit to how smooth we want to be, we saw that sacrificing the first corner in a pair of linked corners is not always the right answer, we established that getting on the gas before the apex is a misguided pursuit, etc. Today, we turn our attention to another oft repeated phrase; that looser is faster. Let’s examine this idea a little more closely, and see what truths andRead More →

Here are the results from round #1 (of 2) of my test of the top 2 autocross tires; the BFGoodrich Rival-S 1.5 vs the Bridgestone RE71R. This was tested on my 2009 Corvette Z06 prepped for A-Street (Strano front sway bar, Koni 30-series double adjustable shocks). Let’s get this out of the way first. Everyone has their own ideas of the “proper” way to test tires. Given unlimited runs, unlimited time, the ability to setup my own test course, etc etc, I may have done things differently. But given that my testing was during the course of a regular autocross event (I double entered), IRead More →

Long time readers of this website know that I like to start off each year with a little introspection (and some tough love). Do you know someone who wants to get in better shape, but is still “doing research” on the right workout plan and diet? Or perhaps they already workout somewhat regularly, but haven’t made the progress they want? Maybe you know someone who has been talking about looking for a new job, but has been “working on their resume” for years now? Or, a friend who says they want to meet a new special someone, but refuses to put themselves out there andRead More →

In this video, we will go over what drivers expect from national level autocross courses, and what they DON’T want, as well as cover the parameters and constraints we have to take into account. We’ll spend the bulk of our time talking about how to create a balanced course, and I’ll share some ideas on how to get started. This presentation assumes that you have a grasp on the basic aspects of course design, and the goal is to give you some ideas and things to think about in order to design fun and balanced national level autocross courses. NOTE: This video is an abridged versionRead More →

When it comes to figuring out the racing line, we often hear conflicting advice. We hear autocrossers preach the mantra of cutting distance above all else, while track drivers, as well as most racing education material, talk about using “all of the track” to carry more speed. Who is right? Are the rules different for autocross and track driving? Spoiler alert: The rules for determining the optimal line are identical for autocross and higher speed track driving. But in order to uncover what’s going on, we need some context. We need to uncover the origins of some of the common hand-me-down advice, and understand whyRead More →

A common misconception is that faster drivers do everything better than average drivers. Average autocrossers may lack a few major driving tools/skills. For example, they might struggle with car placement, lack smoothness, etc. They also have a less clear idea of what they are doing wrong or how to fix it. That said, average autocrossers occasionally shine, and collect trophies at national events from time to time. Good autocrossers often make the same mistakes as average autocrossers, but usually recognize their mistakes, and have strategies to avoid those mistakes in the future. Good autocrossers will frequently have success, win national events, but struggle to doRead More →

The greatest challenge in autocross is that we get a very limited set of runs within which to put in our best performance. This is made even harder at national level events, where we only get 3 runs on each course. With only a few opportunities to learn the course, find the right places to attack, fix mistakes, etc, having a well thought out strategy is critical! This brings up the often-asked question… What should we do on our first run? Should we put in a safe/clean run to build on? Should we attack hard to test the limits? What should we do if weRead More →

Imagine a tight 180 degree turn followed by a long straightaway. We have been taught that in such a scenario, a late apex is critical, because even though it results in a lower minimum speed in the corner (compared to taking a larger constant radius geometric arc), it allows us to get on the gas sooner, giving us a higher exit speed, and we carry that higher speed advantage all the way down the straightaway. Countless books, websites, videos, courses, and instructors talk about this, but unfortunately, not everything we are told about late apexing and early throttle is true. Certainly, getting on the gasRead More →