Image of a car rotating through a race track corner

All contests of speed involve making use of (and enjoying the feeling of) g-forces. Different types of vehicles create those forces in different ways; airplanes rely on jet thrust and aerodynamic forces, motor boats rely on turbine thrust and displacement of water, and cars rely on the grip generated by the tires. For any performance driver, understanding how tires work is critical to our ability to extract and use the maximum forces they have to offer. Understanding slip angle “Slip angle” may be one of the most misunderstood terms in performance driving. Here are some things that slip angle is NOT: Slip angle is simplyRead More →

At the 2022 SCCA Solo National Championships and Pro Solo Championships, 7 students of The Complete Autocrosser’s Manual won their first national championship titles, and 2 others won their second championship. I asked each of them the following question… “In what ways have you improved your driving/performance that contributed to your win? This could be anything! It could be a mental approach, some specific driving techniques, better car prep, skipping breakfast, anything at all. There is NO pressure/expectation to say anything BeST related. I am looking for a real/honest exploration of what improvements helped you get the win this year.” You’ll notice a slew ofRead More →

We’ve heard it a million times; look ahead more! This is drilled into us by instructors, books, videos, online courses, racing schools, etc. There are some obvious reasons why looking ahead is important, but there are also some lesser discussed nuances that I think are important to talk about. Let’s go over some of these, and then talk through a few practical ways to get better at looking ahead. There are 3 reasons we need to look ahead… that all build on one another. 1st, we need to look ahead to give our brains the visual information it needs to draw smooth arcs from whereRead 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 →

A lot of this information here comes from the book “The Perfect Corner” by 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 weRead More →

We’ve probably spent months, maybe even years, fine tuning the handling of our cars. We have probably spent even more time learning how to extract the most out of a car that is balanced perfectly for our driving styles. Having confidence and predictability in our vehicle’s handling is vital to extracting the most out of it in the heat of competition. But the fact is, no matter what kind of racing we are involved in, sometimes the car just isn’t going to behave as well as we want it to. For road racers, the most common causes of this include tire degradation, changing fuel loads,Read More →

This is the second part in a 3-part series… Part 1: Identifying and fixing execution errors Part 2: Identifying and fixing errors in our game plan Part 3: What to look for when analyzing video Last time, we talked about how to use visualization to identify execution errors as they happen. Of course, doing so assumes that our visualized game plan is correct to begin with. But what if our visualized game plan itself is wrong? Before we can identify errors with our game plan, we need to consider how we go about coming up with our visualized game plan. While we’ve established that creating detailed visualizations isRead More →

This is the first in a 3-part series of posts… Part 1: Identifying and fixing execution errors Part 2: Identifying and fixing errors in our game plan Part 3: What to look for when analyzing video Have you ever known a driver to come back after an autocross run or track lap, say something like “I left 4 tenths out there”, and on their next run they end up going 4 tenths faster? How did they know that?? How were they able to accurately figure out how much time they left out there, and then go find it? There is nothing mysterious about this, and overRead More →

When it comes to driving techniques, approaches, or styles, there are a number of choices that drivers are presented with. And we spend enormous amounts of time debating, both internally and with others, which of those choices is better. We obsess over left foot braking vs. right foot braking, shuffle steering vs. not moving your hands, trail braking vs. braking in a straight line, setting up a car to be loose vs. pushy, cutting distance vs. using more space, and the list goes on. We will explore all of those choices (some of which are real and impactful, and some of which are false) in futureRead More →