5 Tips To Become a Better Driver In Assetto Corsa Competizione



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Any activity that involves a high level of mechanical skill and precision will require hundreds upon hundreds of hours of practice to perfect.

5 Tips To Become a Better Driver In Assetto Corsa Competizione

The world’s greatest athletes all dedicate most if not all of their time to their craft. The late great Kobe Bryant could never have won all of his five NBA Championships if he did not spend most of his time honing his craft in the gym.

Of course, going fast and setting blazing lap times will always be the goal for most new sim racing drivers. The same can be said for Sim Racing. While seasoned veterans might make quick lap times look easy on-stream, these veterans started as beginners like most new sim racers. However, they eventually built up the mechanical skill required to set consistently fast lap times through enough practice and seat time.

Simply going around the track a thousand times is not going to cut it; learning basic theory and practicing effectively will be the key to building up good habits, technique, and the muscle memory required to set Alien-esque lap times in Assetto Corsa Competizione.

Here are five tips to help you drive faster and more consistently in Assetto Corsa Competizione.

1. Keep All Inputs Smooth

A piece of popular advice in the motorsport world says: “Fast is smooth. Smooth is fast.” As simple as this might sound, driving smoothly is one of the most difficult driving techniques to master in Assetto Corsa Competizione.

Driving a car smoothly has a few important benefits:

First, tires give their best grip when they are loaded up progressively. Whether turning, accelerating, or braking, keeping your inputs smooth allows the tires to work to their maximum capability, giving the driver the grip they need to set fast lap times.

Second, since Assetto Corsa Competizione is a GT3 racing simulator, it integrates racing consumables such as fuel, brakes, and tires, just like real-world racing. Smooth driving inputs help conserve these consumables to a significant degree. In endurance racing events which often last a couple of hours per race, every little bit of fuel or tire drivers can preserve will allow them to push for a few extra laps before they are ultimately forced to box (go to the pitlane.)

Racing is a very mentally exhausting activity. Your brain is working extra hard to keep a consistent line and defend positions while keeping tabs on which gear you are in or where the next braking point will be. Lastly, driving in a calm and relaxed manner will help the player conserve physical energy.

A smooth driver is a fast driver. Practicing with smooth inputs in mind will help beginner drivers carry over the same mindset and technique, which can help them post quicker, more consistent lap times and conserve race consumables better. 

2. Practice With a More Forgiving Car

Almost every car from every racing team involved in the GT World Challenge is available for play in Assetto Corsa Competizione. Manufacturers such as Ferrari, Lamborghini, and Porsche are just three of the many car manufacturers included in the Official GT World Challenge Game.

Every GT3/GT4 car in-game will feel different from one another. Some of these cars will be faster than others but harder to control, while some might be slower but give a more forgiving handling behavior.

For beginners, practicing in a car with a more “neutral” handling characteristic (such as the Aston Martin V8 Vantage GT3 or the Lexus RC F GT3) will be most advantageous in the long run, as cars with a more neutral behavior can help beginners come to terms with how the in-game cars handle acceleration, braking, and turning inputs.

3. Use Traction Control and ABS

Purists from other racing titles will scoff at the idea of using any form of driving assist in racing simulators. To them, turning on Traction Control and ABS is a disgrace to all of sim racing, that the untainted driving experience of having all driving assists off will always yield the fastest lap times.

Ironically, the fastest drivers in Assetto Corsa Competizione always have Traction Control and ABS on regardless of which track and weather conditions they are currently racing on. The GT World Challenge rules also allow for Traction Control and ABS to be used in the series’ GT3 cars in real life.

There is absolutely no shame in using Traction Control and ABS for Assetto Corsa Competizione. The real-life GT3 cars have it as standard equipment, and their drivers can dial in as much Traction Control and ABS as they wish. Ironically, using TC and ABS in Assetto Corsa Competizione is the more true-to-life option.

4. Do Most of Your Braking in A Straight Line

Braking is an underrated racing skill that can help drivers shave off significant milliseconds from their lap times. In passing situations, a driver’s braking technique is often the deciding factor in who takes the lead on the next corner.

However, regardless of how late or how early you brake, your car’s braking distance is dependent on how much grip your tires currently have for braking.

To put it simply, tires can only give 100% of their available grip at any given time. Turning, accelerating, and braking all compete for a slice of the tire-grip pie. When your wheel is turned even just a little while braking, what would have been 100% of the tires grip used for braking, now becomes just 80% grip for braking (Since 20% of the tires grip will be used for turning)

Common sense would tell us that our tires will now have less overall grip for braking, and in turn, will not be able to slow the car down as fast as they possibly can. This leads to a significantly longer braking distance, leading to a slower lap time.

With this in mind, it is a good habit to do most, if not all of your braking, in a straight line as much as possible with your steering wheel in a neutral position.

5. Participating in Actual Races

With all of the exciting races and impossibly quick hot lap videos posted by popular sim racing influencers in various forms of media online, it can be very easy to get caught up with trying to mimic or replicate the same lap times by playing practice or hot lap for hours on end.

By only playing single-player modes, beginner sim racers are denying themselves valuable experience by playing single-player hot lap modes rather than participating in actual servers with actual racers.

There is more to the sim racing life than just going for the fastest lap time on your favorite track in less than realistic weather conditions. Various racing techniques such as Drafting, Position Defense, and Pit Strategy are just some of the very important racing elements that have a huge impact on the overall result.

Sure, suppose you have been holding off playing online with other racers in Assetto Corsa Competizione because you think you will end up ruining the race for everyone. In that case, you will be better off playing single-player modes in the meantime.

However, as soon as you are consistent enough to post lap times within the hundreds of seconds, you are better off racing as much as you can with other drivers online. It is here where you can dip your toes in the full GT3 wheel-to-wheel racing experience that only Assetto Corsa Competizione can provide.

It’s A Competizione to the Top

Assetto Corsa Competizione is as real as it gets for GT3 and GT4 sim racing fans. The game’s graphics, physics, sound design, and online play are all top-notch. The entire game is truly worthy enough to be called the Official Game of the GT World Challenge.

No secret sauce will magically imbue sim racers with Michael Schumacher’s spirit that would enable them to post world-class lap times overnight. Only hard work, consistent practice, and lots of seat time will give sim racers the skill and racing experience they need to reach the top.

Honing one’s skill takes time. What’s more important, though, is that sim racers enjoy the entire journey and focus on having tons of fun in Assetto Corsa Competizione. The lap times will come. It is only a matter of time.

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