Request for feedback on driving, tire, etc

This is my first season karting. I’ve attached a link to a race from earlier today. I would love feedback.

( has an LO206 winter race series that I’m participating in. The track changes direction every race; today’s race was run counter-clockwise. I’ve driven this track in rental karts in both directions. I’ve driven the track in the clockwise direction in the previous race (link below).

Today, I drove the track in the counter-clockwise for the first time in my LO206 2017 Fernando Alonso (OTK) kart - I had intended to practice earlier in the week but couldn’t get out to the track. The video is my fourth or fifth track session of the day; each session was at least seven minutes.

The air temperature was around 40F (~4C to 5C). The tires are LeCont Red and were new at the start of the day. The tire pressure in my pit after the sessions was around 13PSI all around. I was targeting 14PSI. I believe they may have been that during driving and had cooled significantly by the time we went through the scales, put the cart on the stand, moved it to the pit and made the measurements.

Generally, I felt the kart was lacking grip BUT I’m too new to know (this is one of the chronic problems of being new in that one doesn’t know exactly why) but I’m sure with your input and getting a lot more experience, I’ll learn what is going on, why and what to do about it. I found I didn’t have my throttle or braking points down (very reasonable given my lack of practice and experience level) - for turn 1, I’m consistently braking early - I feel this is the case because I was coasting into the turn and thought I could have come in a little faster. I was mentally processing this and this occupied my brain and I didn’t get back on the gas as soon as I would have liked. I need to figure out a technique where I park analysis for later rather than take time from driving in the moment. Also, I don’t think I’m braking particularly hard i.e. I’m gentle? Based on @Terence_Dove’s braking chapter, I was trying to do most of the braking while going straight and then at the end - while the weight is transferred to the front, initiating the turn but with the rear coming around, I’m a bit pensive.

I did have a few spins trying to find grip, figure out the line, braking/acceleration points. Under heavy braking, I think the kart has a tendency for the back to come around. I will have to go through all my video and see if I had any steering input when that happened - I really wish I had brake pressure and steering input.

I consistently found that I was not at full throttle because I was just not comfortable with the line - I don’t know “what would have happened if I had gone to full throttle” i.e. would the rear end come out (oversteer) or the front would have plowed (understeer). Now that I’m writing this, I think there were times when I was going faster through a turn and the rear was drifting out and I was countersteering and I suspect I didn’t want to push it because I’ve been told over and over again, sliding is slow. Also, given that this was a competitive event and there were other people on the track, there is no way I would have experimented. I need to add this to my list of things to try during a practice session.

One observation is that my camber is off - the left front has no wear on the outer edge. The rubber on the right front seems to be more centered.

Anyway, I look forward to your assessment, guidance, critique, and suggestions on what I should keep doing, stop doing, start doing, experiments and drills to run, etc. Thank you in advance.

PS: This is the video

running the other way. Tires were 5 races old. Temperature was the same. Rest of the story is the same.

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I would say your self analysis is very accurate.

I think it would be a great idea to remove thinking and correctness in your next practice, and just drive the thing hard. I think you need that bit of time to play, so your nervous system can get dialled into driving without being monitored and assessed.

It doesn’t matter if you go off, or make mistakes - you’ll start to be able to measure what grip is there, what the tyre can and can’t do. You’ll probably put more temperature in the tyre from sliding around and going a bit nuts.

Think of it like a calibration process, a particularly fun one where you can go on track and max out, find the limits.

You can then start to introduce the technical matters later, where you can appreciate what works.


When I first watched your video i thought your gearing was wrong because of how low the rpm’s were dragging down, then noticed you were on the chip regardless. You definitely need to attack the corners harder, it sounds like you are not getting any rotation or lift out of the kart and it’s bogging down the engine hard.

Hit the inside curbs as a starting point, less coasting before braking and see what happens just generally taking the corners faster. Like said above spin out a few times to figure out where the limit is, it’s easier to back down a notch than it is to creep up on said limit of grip/speed.


I get the impression you are keeping the kart deliberately within the grip and not stretching it, being conservative. But, it’s a race, so not exactly the time to try pushing it.

You are doing a nice job of being smooth and thoughtful but you need to “send it” a bit to figure out how much harder you can “send it”.

Justin white once said to me “you don’t trust your kart yet. You don’t understand what it’s capable of”.

His comments ring true here, as well. You are developing confidence and technique. You are asking relatively little of the kart in terms of what it can do. I would consider deliberately working yourself towards “more”.

You would benefit from making a pal who is faster than you and chasing him. And having him/her chase you. Make mistakes. Mess around.

Also, work on that braking… that’s the hardest skill to learn imho and it really needs deliberate stomping attempts in a controlled environment (cones) and a situation where you are ok going round EOS.

Your driving, right now, is careful. It looks good to me in that you are being thoughtful and aren’t overdriving like an ape. You are under-driving, but that’s easier to fix, imho, since it’s just you getting “habituated”.

I would completely ignore technical variables (tuning). I would focus on laps, practice. I would consider maybe a coach at this point, if you want to hasten your comfort level. If you are like me, it’s a bit of a challenge to push yourself to do scary stuff, thus maybe some “experienced oversight” might bring you comfort/peace of mind and accelerated learning.


I worked on this exact thing last session I had. By leaning away from the turn (I have some setup issues I am working through, so body lean is a bandaid until that gets sorted), I found my RPM were much higher during the last phase of the turn. With the solid axle, the outside tire wants to spin much faster than the inside, and your lateral weight balance determines how much the average gets weighted to the inside or the outside. For tight turns, the difference can be pretty noticeable


Hey Harjit!

You’re already getting great feedback above. As someone who got started in 2022, a couple of things came to mind that helped me.

  • Focus on driving, not tuning, at this point: As long as you have a decent baseline setup, your biggest gains will be had from pounding laps and acclimating yourself to the speed and grip levels.
  • Remember that it should feel fast and slightly overwhelming as you’re learning: Get onto the throttle as smoothly and as fast as you can, keep it pinned as late as you’re able to (which should get later and later with more practice), and brake as hard as you’re able to up unto the limit. The more you do this and find the limit, the slower it will start to feel, which will allow you to process more and get even faster.
  • Set some milestones that stretch you: Figure out what the fast guys/gals run and set some goals to get within 1/2/3 seconds of their times. Get some tips from other racers on areas of the track you can improve on. One example from my early-on driving: one of my buddies challenged me to stay wide-open on the throttle through the last sweeper that led to the front straight. It seemed insane and uncontrollable on my first day, but building up to that taught me how to find the limits and it extended my comfort zone. Now, taking that corner full-throttle is pretty routine.

Hopefully some of this helps. The more laps you put in and the more you push & find the limit, the more you’ll discover what is possible in your kart and the easier it will become.


This helped me a lot. Having a buddy that you trust, feed you plastic every time you over-slow can really speed up the process. The instant feedback of getting slammed in the rear helps it stick in the mind.

The other thing that helped me get over my little “comfort lifts” in the fast bits was the old fashioned track print out and that same fast buddy. Have them mark the corners that are flat out and mark the braking points. From this point you almost have to turn your brain off and be stubborn about it. Now that you know a given corner is supposed to be flat out you just have to decide to keep it pinned. Maybe you’ll make it through, maybe you won’t, but when you know that’s what you are supposed to do, you’ll eventually figure out how. The whole idea is to dance right at the limit, but to find that limit sometimes you have to cross

I also set my throttle pedal such that when I am relaxed in the kart, the pedal is close to mashed. I have to make more of an effort with my leg/foot to come off it. Might not be for everyone, but it helps me.


Thank you for the great actionable feedback to learn the limits, get to it, stay at it, go past it.

The mental - fear thing is real and it is good to hear (again) that others went through it, so, obviously, it isn’t unique/novel to me. I remember taking lessons at Jim Hall racing in Ventura like twenty years ago and there is a turn you come flat at and barely lift to get through but when you are aiming for it, you see the typical blue orange checked wall and it is scary to go flat out at a wall.

Another mental/attitude point made a few times above and by a fellow club mate was - you have to be hungry/aggressive with the kart. I’ve been worrying about overdriving it and learning bad habits but I hear you loud and clear that it is important to learn a few bad habits to learn many more good habits.

An item I’ve wished for is like a skid pad - both dry and then wet - to do drills to learn more just control.

On a track, where you are working on one turn, it takes a while to get back to it. So. I usually work on two turns on opposite sides. What other techniques are you all doing?

Thanks again, happy holidays and may the next year be the best year yet!

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Looking at your videos, I would say you got the basics, now it is just a question of going fast. You are going to go off track, you are going to crash, you might even hurt yourself. It is bound to happen, so you should not fear it. It is part of the learning process :slight_smile:

Also, do not tinker with your chassis setup until you feel like you are on the limit

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I think you are too smart to learn any bad habits. If you let it rip, you will just be informing your nervous system of where the limits are.

Most drivers do that on the out-lap from the pit every session. They go wild for a lap, or even just a couple of turns, and they gain the grip info from the track they need… Then they feel fully dialled in.

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For some (probably way too much) info about fear & confidence, check this article out:

The more I think about driving, the more I am convinced that at its essence driving is: recognizing relationships, then understanding them. Once you can ‘see’ them and ‘understand’ them, only then can you manipulate them with confidence. In the context you mention above, the key relationships are between the kart/tire/track, and these relationships influence how energy moves through the kart to produce traction. This is important because these relationships must be brought to life with a certain minimum amount of energy (speed) for the whole ‘kart/track’ system to function as intended.

If you do not corner with enough energy, then the ‘kart/track’ system does not work properly, which can cause what I call ‘unloaded’ drifts/slides. (The same slip angles can be produced by heavily loading a tire, or by insufficiently loading a tire, relative to the work you are asking it to do.)

Actionable bits…
Pick a safe time (practice day, no other karts close by), pick a turn that has low consequences if you make a mistake, and on purpose, drive WAY too fast into the turn. If you spin, no big deal. But there is just as good a chance you will make it through (perhaps a bit raggedly, but that can be adjusted with repetition). This approach can help break a common pattern of going 0.01% faster each lap, and very quickly give you some perspective about what the kart’s actual capabilities.

Once you have collected some of this raw Sensation vs Limit information/experience, reinforce (andn preferably expand it) EVERY NIGHT as you fall asleep, by doing imagery training. With imagery, you can do the same corner over and over.

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You can’t expect to be running near the front or even mid pack the first year of kart racing.

5 race old tires may be bit too old but it depends on whether there was a practice day with every race day.

Racing is a great learning experience because you’ll be running with guys with similar lap times, hopefully a bit fast. Also during practice, wait for someone in your class to go out and then try to follow them.

Have a someone else drive your kart that is 1 or 2 second faster and use the data to help you figure out which turns you need to work on the most. Learning the limit at one turn will help with the other turns.

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