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Hollywood

NASA Sim Racing League

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https://www.nasaproracing.com/news/2020/4/nasa_launches_inaugural_sim_racing_leagues_on_iracing

Congrats to @cabowabo on winning the first ever NASA iRacing league race at COTA. Was epic to watch.

 

 

 

 

Highly recommend watching the last 10 minutes to anyone wondering what this is all about and why you see it on FS1 and NBC these days..

 

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Props to anyone that can hold the lead position for that long. I tend to choke and make unforced errors as soon as I secure the lead. And that's in the regular iRacing sessions - not a higher-stress spectated NASA session.

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Guest lobster

 

 

Great racing by @cabowabo   

I participated in my first ever iRacing race and was firmly a mid pack larry.   started without qualifying at 41 and ended the race in 21.  For my first ever iRacing race I'm pretty okay with not being last place.  

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Hey @cabowabo - rookie question here - but for a guy who just bought a wheel, and is playing (non-subscription) Assetto Corsa right now - what drives a guy to go do iRacing?

As I understand, the cars / tracks (w/ mods) and the game physics are similar?  I guess, is the driving / competition better?  What drives a guy to go do the subscription thing?  

And congrats ?

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1 hour ago, Solo_S14 said:

Hey @cabowabo - rookie question here - but for a guy who just bought a wheel, and is playing (non-subscription) Assetto Corsa right now - what drives a guy to go do iRacing?

As I understand, the cars / tracks (w/ mods) and the game physics are similar?  I guess, is the driving / competition better?  What drives a guy to go do the subscription thing?  

And congrats ?

The competition and matchmaking system. In iRacing you gain/lose iRating based on your race performance. If 200 people sign up for the same race, which happens often in popular series, and there are 30 pit stalls then those 200 people get split into 7 different races based on iR. Because I have pace and race to finish well I have high iR and therefore end up in "top split". Top split is no guarantee of clean racing, people are still compelled to do dumb stuff, but everyone is reasonably on pace, understand car control, some amount of racecraft etc. As far as public lobbies go the racing is overall really good. You simply can't get that on a consistent basis racing against randoms.

 

With iR if you finish well, you gain. Finish poorly, you lose. This means win it or bin it drivers will quickly end up with low rating. Similarly, slower drivers won't easy gain large amounts of iR and won't be up against drivers like me, but instead with a mix of similar slower/safe drivers and fast guys that will just bin it under pressure.

 

Then you have the bottom splits that are full of the worst of the worst. People that have no concept of an apex, don't even know that brake markers exist, definitely don't have their spotter on, and their idea of racecraft is driving through you because they called dibs on the corner from 4 cars back. 

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16 hours ago, cabowabo said:

Then you have the bottom splits that are full of the worst of the worst. People that have no concept of an apex, don't even know that brake markers exist, definitely don't have their spotter on, and their idea of racecraft is driving through you because they called dibs on the corner from 4 cars back. 

What about the people like me with zero ability to drive a compute because there's no feel?  I've never been able to be consistent on one because of the lack of feel and etc..  don't know where the threshold in braking is when you don't feel anything..  

Is that something I just have to get used to I guess?   (honestly I haven't done iRacing but once at a friends house and I was miserable.  the last thing I actually did with my wheel was on my PS2..  it's probably trash at this point..)

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Again, noob (newb?) here - but here’s an opinion.

Once you accept the fact that you’re not in a car, and won’t feel any g’s, then there are other visual and auditory cues that help you sense what’s going on.

I think maybe the first thing that people need to get used to is slowing early enough, and enough, to place the car in the corner.  For me it was something Ross Bentley or some other guy said about picking / working with the “stop braking point”, rather than the “braking point”.  So brake early to practice that, then start adding min speed, and adjust from there.

Then, longer corners (with the car “set”) help you start to sense things like onset of understeer - you’ll “see” yourself drift away from the inside curbs, hear the tires start to complain.  

Mugello in a Spec E30 was a really good place to see that.  There are a few high speed entry / long straight following corners where you want to carry min speed, set the car on your line, and “see” when to pick up the throttle earlier and earlier.

Being a light, low power RWD car, it was forgiving in brake / throttle application - but also well balanced enough, that once you got your line down, you could actually trail brake into a corner and sense the rotation.  Or lift / brush brakes mid “long-corner” if you got too hot, and sense the car grip up again.

In that car in particular, after spinning a bunch, I could start to “sense” the limit even on track-out on power in higher speed chicanes / throttle application zones like turns (3, 5, 9, 11, 13) - and really start to “throw” the car into full throttle downhill left turn 7, then negotiate your way through the complex into 9 just using throttle.

 

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It’s not seat time on track, and I’ve only been playing for a couple of weeks, but once you get a “flow” going on a track, it is immersive and a ton of fun.  Mosport, Laguna Seca, Spa, and Imola have also been a lot of fun in various cars from GT86’s to their FA01 formula car.

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@Matt93SE - for me, coming from only real world stuff to iracing, VR is what made it palatable (and a decent wheel to feel everything). It’s still sensory deprivation when you’ve been driving your whole life with your ass, but VR definitely made it click.

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45 minutes ago, Hollywood said:

@Matt93SE - for me, coming from only real world stuff to iracing, VR is what made it palatable (and a decent wheel to feel everything). It’s still sensory deprivation when you’ve been driving your whole life with your ass, but VR definitely made it click.

 

2 hours ago, Matt93SE said:

What about the people like me with zero ability to drive a compute because there's no feel?  I've never been able to be consistent on one because of the lack of feel and etc..  don't know where the threshold in braking is when you don't feel anything..  

Is that something I just have to get used to I guess?   (honestly I haven't done iRacing but once at a friends house and I was miserable.  the last thing I actually did with my wheel was on my PS2..  it's probably trash at this point..)

in real life we depend on g load and visual parallax to perceive rotation / slip of a car.  learning to rely more on parallax by using a sim, will help tremendously in real life.  u just simply are relying more on visual cortex than your butt (inner ear really)

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Thanks for the input guys, much appreciated.  I certainly rely on butt feel of the car vs. the visual cues and whatnot.  I did do much better when I played around on Zach Sober's VR rig, but that's out of my budget for now.  I'm still dumping buckets of money in the car to get the "new to me" car race ready..  still needs aero, data, and retune before it's ready to race again.

I keep wanting to try the iRacing thing, but lack of time and enough ongoing projects continues to push it lower on priority list since I know it's going to take a chunk of time before I get decent enough at it not to crash everyone around me on L1T1.

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I feel you - always been (identified as? ?) a seat of the pants guy as well.  Always had trouble jumping behind someone’s wheel and pedal setup, and getting it to do anything.

I didn’t even have a PC, lol - built one, and took the usual garage evening time and put it into computer evening time - one or two solid weeks of building / setup / etc to even get to the point of turning laps.

One major thing that I can’t seem to figure out yet is - when the rear end steps out - it’s always been “never lift” - whereas in Assetto Corsa, the only way to not go around is to lock up the brakes.  Maybe that’s because I’m not “feeling” it come around early enough, but it currently a minor source of frustration.  That, and everyone piling into you on L1T1 lol

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I know y'all are probably more than beyond tired of me touting the SimCraft (full motion)...butt seriously...it really helps with the "feel" of things...I really only use it to train for the tracks that I race on - and usually in a GT car, sometimes in the Pro Mazda...

However, I've decided, with more free time, to actually start racing...so, there I am in the the little spec piñata thingy...after a few laps I can actually feel the thing about to snap...I can get a good drift/slip into the corners...tires always squealing for mercy, etc...this is all in iRacing.

Then I get into a crap "game" like Asseto Corsa...it's totally numb and unrealistic, to me.

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1 hour ago, Hollywood said:

Some say, maybe feels "too" real:

Yep LOL!! I hear my buddy Matt's voice in the background "we wrecked" LOL!! 

The wheel bar / base can be locked down - at least mine has that feature. The rig does require periodic maintenance - ie - going around and tightening a few key fasteners. There can be a LOT of motion...depending on what / how / where you are driving (and wrecking LOL!). I keep spare tools in my sim room. It's a LOT like getting in and out of a race car. When you wreck, especially badly...you are in for a RIDE with a SimCraft!! It's discombobulating, for sure LOL!!

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So I take it there's no drinking and driving in the simcraft so you can't spill your beer?

I'd love to try one someday..  maybe next time I'm rolling through DFW and you're in town...  

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18 minutes ago, Matt93SE said:

So I take it there's no drinking and driving in the simcraft so you can't spill your beer?

I'd love to try one someday..  maybe next time I'm rolling through DFW and you're in town...  

You are welcome too - with the motion off...or if you've got a sippy cup LOL!!! I actually do need to add a cup holder...I just usually put a bottle of water on the floor and then I reach down and grab it every now and then. I've had some buddies that have tried it after just one beer and then their equilibrium is screwed up for the rest of the night...like as in - they stop drinking LOL!! Some folks are just fine. Performance seems to be better when not drinking. Let me know next time you are coming through! I'm right by DFW Airport. Would love to have you!

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