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Old 09-06-2014, 06:21 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Mr. Scary - '07 Ford Mustang GT Race Car

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Originally Posted by Joris View Post
Can you explain why you don't want to do that?
For practical purposes I'm going to refer to a single corner with higher straight away speeds (entry and exit) than corner speed to keep things simple.

A racing line assumes a few things. One, you are entering the corner a lot faster and two you are exiting the corner a lot faster while also trying to maximize your speed down the next straight by "driving" the exit. And three, the racing line is not about saving energy. It's actually all about using all the energy at your disposal. And lastly the racing line is a very flexible thing. It changes considerably from car type to car type. Car to motorcycle, etc. You can't look at a track map and simply draw the perfect racing line, no matter how much experience the driver has. You have to get out there and "feel it".

The goals of hypermiling (HM) are a lot different. The goal is to use the least amount of energy as possible. The easiest way to do this is to not slow down for the entry and not speed up for the exit. Of course in a lot of situations that is not possible, the corner will be too tight. So you have to figure out how you can get as close to that goal as possible. And a lot of that is going to come down to feel. You have to be able to feel when you're scrubbing speed (loosing energy) so you can retain as much momentum as possible.

The feel is very, very hard to explain. You can read 100 books on how to go around corners and I will still be able to teach you more about the subject in one day of hands on driving instruction. It's all about the feel.

You can absolutely learn about going around corners efficiently by reading about it. It is important to understand the vehicle dynamics, techniques, etc. But unless you take those lessons and go out and practice and feel them you will only have a very rudimentary understanding. Driving fast (or in this case efficiently) is a lot like sex. You can explain sex to a virgin for years and years, show them movies and even have doctors come in to explain the mechanics of what the body goes through. But until they actually have sex they simply won't understand.

I professionally road raced for 10yrs. Won championships, lots of races, set lap records, etc. I've worked as a driving and riding (motorcycle) instructor. I've also worked for Pirelli and Michelin as a tire tester and Ohlins, Penske and Matris as a suspension tester.

I've just started this hypermiling thing when I got my Focus. One of the first things I did was figure out how to go through corners as efficiently as possible. I assure you it is not the same as a racing line. You can use racing line and vehicle dynamics knowledge as a spring board to feeling out the "efficient line", they are quite a bit different though.
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