Slight braking to prevent width

So something that I have been messing around with, to good effect, is very slight braking, to keep car from drifting wide in sustained corners.

I’m not talking about trail, but that’s the beginning of it, generally. I am referring to the part where you are in a long, tight turn, approaching apex and alongside kerbing.

A very minimal amount of brake (less than 5%) will prevent the car from drifting wide. It is very subtle but very powerful. You can blend the throttle and the brake together on the way out as well. The dragged brake rotates slightly while the rising throttle starts to produce acceleration as your nose points correctly. This is a bit wierd in that I am told you don’t want both pedals at the same time. This, however, works. You aren’t upsetting the car putting power into 1-3% brakes briefly,

I am guessing this was not something I do/did in karting. I am guessing this is front brake dependent.

This little bit of brake allows you to send it in faster and you catch the grip with the front end and manage it.


This is one of the applications of left foot braking. Although it shouldn’t be necessary in a correctly balanced car. And totally useless in karting.

The drifting as you describing is usually a by-product of initial understeer that occurs in long turns. Left foot braking neutralize the understeer, and allows you to keep a tighter turn radius in those turns

Why not just roll more slowly into throttle or reduce throttle input slightly? If you’re going wide, you’re going too fast, simply put. In a long sustained corner, this probably means you’re too eager on throttle.

Isn’t that what’s called power braking? Very effective but very hard on the engine.

Well yes, ideally. I’d love to get to that point where I can decel perfectly into the ideal speed where the front end is just right.

The point is that it’s kinda new to me. I always understood that braking out weight on nose and improved front end grip. I hadn’t realized how little is actually required to have a significant effect. A 1% drag on brake, introduced under cornering, really changes the balance significantly.

It surprised me how significant the effect was on lateral grip. I always understood it from an understeer perspective, just not from a lateral understeer one.

Maybe. It’s not really overlapping much. Just perhaps the last tenth of travel. The throttle rises into falling brake. And it’s only a teeny amount of brake so I’m not lugging engine.

Very useful technique for when the kart isn’t perfect. It’s one of the many ways good drivers take that 3rd place kart and still win the race with it.