Since the beginning of my adventure in simracing that the social aspect and mutual help were something that made me stay around, but the more technical part has always been a fascination for me to the point of devouring several specialized forums every day in search of information that would make me faster. The moding phase was a discovery in itself as i was forced to understand a little more (very little 🙂 ) how some of our simulators work “under the hood” . At the time, this information was scarce and/or scattered and many of the little details that made a difference in performance were discovered only after many many hours of dedication (until my wife put the divorce papers on the dinner table! True fact!) All of this made me a very fast driver?? No… far from it, but what I bring to you today might help you anyway.
Fortunately, nowadays the Internet is full of videos and tutorials of the most varied topics about simracing (track guides, setups, graphic settings…) Still, and with the increasing competitiveness and growth of simracing as an eSport, simracers naturally tend to share less information spontaneously and naturally some business opportunities emerged. The appearance of setup stores and virtual driving schools somehow created some distance between those with greater financial relief and the others, as well as coaching, which even with some at very affordable prices are still considered as dispensable services by the majority who just want to have fun or are just only necessary and/or desirable for those who want to improve and try a simracer career in a more serious way and who knows, maybe even become a professional.
However, there will certainly be them out there like me. Those who want to have fun but also like to extract the most of their potential as if the race were against us only, those who are there in the middle of the pack but are willing to improve a little more and as they have nothing to lose they still enjoy share/learn from others.
A few months ago at a time when I was unwilling to race (but the pleasure in driving never disappeared), right after the GT4 Pack was released for ACC, I decided to try all GT4’s on all tracks, only with the Aggressive setup in HOTLAP mode to have the same track and weather conditions and I took note of the times in the old Excel sheet (my Excel sheet is much simpler than Niels Heusinkveld’s, rest assured!) . I commented with some friends who promptly called me crazy and shared it on a page I have on Facebook as I thought it could be helpful… for those just starting out especially. In that shared folder I decided to include the replays and telemetry (only later I found out about the Ghosts…stupid…) and also made a video for the fastest car in each track that I put on my Youtube channel.
I knew exactly what i was going into, being GT4’s a not so popular class and the lap times represented by me are far from any World record. But all this has a reason and I will explain!
As a musician and music teacher (clarinet and chamber music) I can say that the two most important accessories related to learning any musical instrument are the metronome and the tuner. And what the hell does this have to do with simracing???- you ask… Everything! Some of you will certainly know the huge amount of parallels that can be made in learning two seemingly different things, others not… and that’s why I’m going to share my perspective with you.
…”I have a
teammate that is one of these top qualifiers and it gave me the opportunity to
witness his techniques very closely. Trying to compare my driving to his was
nearly impossible. The techniques involved are so different that it can seem as if
they are alien. So, rather than compare to the leaders in the series, it’s best to
start looking at people that are roughly 1 second faster.”…Troy Schulz
Some of you will remember an app developed by fellow simracer by the name of Troy Schulz, the iSpeed Lap Analyzer. I was racing the Star Mazda on iRacing when I came across a post on the iRacing forum and with Troy. This app was accompanied by a manual written by him (which I highly recommend reading! even to understand this article). The making of this manual was openly discussed on the iRacing forum, when we just dreamed it would one day become an eSport. It was very gratifying to watch and participate, the most varied points of view to be presented and discussed there, the exchange of ideas and some friendships that remained, all in favour of the development of a tool that would be for everyone and for all iRacers. Such as in music, sharing was present.
I quickly identified myself with the project, were it not for learning a musical instrument a “One Second at a Time” thing. That was the philosophy I always had in my career as a musician and that I naturally adopted for simracing. Even so, I am fully aware that other methods will exist and will also be equally effective or even more so. This is what I use, it works with me and I’m sure it will work with many other simracers around the world, hence the sharing!
(Yes, go read the manual 🙂 )
Are you going to become Aliens overnight?? No…but it will certainly help you identify some areas that need your attention, and working to improve can be a fun task I assure you, especially when we are just starting out in this hobby.
So I leave you the link to access replays, telemetry and even some ghosts with the hope that I can help you somehow. Please remember that this is a personal project, not scientific at all and some mistakes were certainly made… also it is a WIP.
Before I leave, i have to thank you all for the support given so far! Was not expected! 🍻❤
Have Fun in the process & Happy SimRacing!