Champion level driving

How do champion level drivers instantly adapt to lots of tracks compared to drivers who have only raced on one track. What kind of adaptability skills do they have that a lot of us don’t ?

Part of what you see as adaptability is just raw pace. They’re champions because they’re fast, and we’re not. When they go to a new track, they’re going to be losing time vs. their theoretical best lap because they might take the wrong line in one corner, not hit a particular curb the right way, be a tooth or two off on their sprocket or a little off on their carb settings and tire pressures as the track evolves, etc. But if they’re straight up better than you, then they’ll probably beat you anyway even if you have thousands of laps at that track. They have transferrable talents (depth perception, hand eye coordination, etc) and skills (sensitivity to modulate braking pressure more finely than you can) that apply to any track, regardless of experience.


Most very experienced drivers have been to many tracks already, so they have an idea in their mind on how to attack a new track or new corner because they’ve probably seen a similar corner on another track.

Like @BisayaKarting noted, the best drivers also have a very refined feel for the limit of the tire and are very in tune with the kart as an extension of themselves. This allows them to learn a new track quickly as they already know where the limit is on the tire, so it’s just a matter of figuring out each session to exploit that limit. Less experienced drivers don’t have that innate feel, so while they are trying to figure out the circuit, they are also making more mistakes and not feeling the limit of the kart as well and they are battling that too, which can create uncertainty for a driver.


Pretty much what TJ said


I had some regional championships ages ago, and ran in the top 3rd of the pro shifter class. Not sure if I qualify to answer, but figuring out a track quickly has always been one of my positive attributes.

I walk the track (if I am allowed) and memorize the rough layout.

First session. drive the middle of the track, and go hard on all the straights pretty much immediately. I brake conservatively and then note to myself what the corner is like relative to how I entered. I am already deciding on a new braking point and turn in for that corner for the next lap. I just keep doing that turn by turn, lap by lap. Usually I am able to be quick on a new track within 15-20 laps.

As far as adaptability, it takes me maybe 1 lap with warm tires to have the kart essentially feel like an extension of my body. I can put it right on the grip limit as easily as running around on a gym floor in sneakers. I am smooth and deliberate with my inputs, which generates a feeling that I incorporate into a sort of rhythm. That is how I learn to “dance” with a particular track layout.


I think part of it is experience with many corners. When you’ve raced a lot of tracks you develop a vocabulary of turns/complexes. I started to notice this after a bunch of years. It makes finding pace in new tracks easier/ quicker. I am a not a hot shoe though.

And this starts happening as well, around the same time, the forgetting about the kart bit because it’s very familiar, YMMV.

Many ways to approach. Study track maps. Watch on-board videos of other people driving on the track. If possible, do sim work of the track in question. Visualize yourself driving around the track, hitting the apexs, etc.

Picking up a new track is mainly how fast you can memorize the “limits”. Fast guys find the right line quickly and are able to repeat it, over and over.

Slow guys like me, takes alot of time to learn and then maybe I can repeat one in 3 :slight_smile:

Speaking about Champion Level Driving…

What deliberate practice and techniques while driving can one use to improve feedback in terms of handling, fuelling and engine power-wise.

( How can i give better feedback about any carburettion change ‘Dellorto ROTAX EVO VHSB’)

So that when you explain to your engineer they receive very accurate information.

ie.We had changed to a shorter sprocket and i had complained about oversteer instead of power induced oversteer leading us to make the wrong changes.

Thank you :grin::ok_hand: