Racing a car is the ultimate rush; a rush you can only get when you are behind the wheel of a fast car approaching tight turns, and using actual skills to ensure the car stays within the track, without wasting any seconds. Racing a car on a dirt track is extremely different than a normal track, as the dirt makes the race much more challenging. The dirt track makes for an extremely slippery handling, and as you approach the rough corners, you have to tackle it differently than a normal track. Before taking your car on the dirt track, you have to learn a little more about the proper techniques for such tracks; for instance, braking, acceleration, turning, and almost anything you do on a dirt track is completely different than what you would do on a regular track. If you are interested in doing some dirt track racing, then read on to gather some useful tips.
In a normal car race, power is extremely important. How fast your car accelerates plays a big role in the outcome of the race. However, on a dirt track, power is important, but it is not everything. Too much power will result in too much skidding, as well as wheel spinning, so being able to capture the most acceleration without having your wheel spin in place is a technique you will need to get used to. Get a feel of your car and try different things; eventually, you will know exactly the amount of gas to give it, and how fast you should let go of the clutch to get the most out of your acceleration pick-up.
It is critically important to perform dirt track races with a manual transmission. Having an automatic transmission is like leaving your fate in the hands of your transmission, hoping it changes gears at the perfect time. Although most automatic cars have pedal shifters now, the clutch plays a huge role in how fast the car clamps down to the road, so even the advanced automatic technology doesn’t compare to the manual shifting. Practice down shifting a lot, and use it in turns. Be careful not to down shift too much, for instance, two gears at a time, as you can slow down too much or even lose control. Once you get a feel of how your specific car reacts with down shifting, it will become second nature to you to do it at the exact perfect time, which will give you the grip you need to take the slippery turns.
On a dirt track, grip is everything. To get the ultimate grip on a slippery dirt road, you need to always stay in lower gears, which means if your car isn’t screaming loudly, you are in too high of a gear. Taking turns in high gears give you no grip, so stay in a low gear and you’ll notice your car is holding on to the ground for dear life. Another important factor in achieving the best grip is having the proper tires. Street tires, track tires, or winter tires won’t serve you well on a dirt track, so be sure to get tire designed for dirt track if you want the right grip for the track.
Learn the Course
Being familiar with the course you are driving through makes all the difference in the world. Anticipating a tricky turn that comes right after a turn can be the difference between winning or losing, but more importantly, it can be the difference between crashing or making it through the course safely. Research the course you are about to tackle ahead of time, and remind yourself of the tricky parts in it. Also, a lot of places allow the drivers to take a few laps before the actual race, so make mental notes of anything you think will be challenging when you are approaching it at a much higher speed.
Weight makes a big difference in how your car will perform. The weight distribution is everything when it comes to challenging turns and acceleration, so be sure you don’t have your glove compartment filled with accessories, your trunk filled with car parts, and your backseat filled with snowboarding gear. Some professional racers go as far as remove the spare tire when racing, and others take off their watches; that’s how much weight matters when you are racing. Empty your car from any unnecessary weight, and make sure the rest of the weight is somewhat even, which will pay off when you are taking the turns.
Dirt tracks provide some of the most challenging fun in the race car world. Nothing beats the rush that comes from the bouncing of the car as you try to make your way through the dirt track. The more technique you gather, the more fun you will have. Be sure to practice a lot before taking on challenging courses, as it can go from fun to hazard quickly. Once you feel comfortable enough to tackle the more challenging courses, it will be an unmatched rush.