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Learn how to drive like Lewis Hamilton

Drive like a professional racing driver ' I will tell you the techniques I have learnt to drive faster and safer round any racing circuit. Including how to steer your car with the accelerator and how to increase your corner speed.

The first thing to mention is that any practising of the techniques below should be carried out on a private road or preferably a racing circuit. I do not agree with or encourage people to drive fast on the roads. In fact if you have a session at a racing circuit every now and again you will find that it kind of gets the speed out of your system and you naturally slow your speed on the roads.

Cars are so fast these days that you cannot drive them to their potential safely on the roads anyway; you need to get to a racing circuit. However lets not get carried away I am not suggesting that you go buy yourself a racing car. Just take your own car to the circuit on an open day and use your own car. You may want to take out separate insurance cover just in case you have an accident.

The first thing that you should do is start slowly and build up your speed. If you try to go too fast straight away you will probably end up in the gravel or worse in the tyre wall. On each corner there is a turning in point an apex (the point on the inside of the corner that you should aim for when turning in and just clip) and the exit point ( The point on the outside of the corner that you should clip as the corner is exited). Usually on an open day the track will mark these points with red cones. There may also be a yellow cone placed before the cornerFree Web Content, which is a breaking cone. If there are no cones then follow at a distance and watch the lines being taken by more experienced drivers. This is called the racing line and for most corners it will become obvious with some practice.

When you approach the corner you should look in advance to position your car in a straight line to the turning in point ' At first any breaking should be done early. Get a feel for the right corner speed before you try to judge the correct breaking point. It is far easier to let the car run or speed up a bit than it is to slow down if you leave your breaking too late. All breaking should be done whilst the car is in a straight line. If you are still breaking whilst the car is turning the back will start to break away causing a skid / slide. Any time you slide you are loosing time!

When you reach the turning in point you should set the steering wheel at a constant to aim for the apex of the corner. You should not need to be correcting this ie moving the steering wheel after your initial aim for the apex. After you reach the apex you should keep the steering wheel constant and you should find that you finish the corner with plenty of room before the exit point on the far side of the track. In other words your car should be ½ to 2/3 of the way across the track when you have exited the corner. Obviously you are meant to be further over at the edge of the track at the exit point and this is where a lot of people go wrong at first because they would correct the steering after the apex to aim for the exit point. This is wrong and will cost you a lot of speed and time. You should as mentioned before keep the steering wheel constant and accelerate more thus pushing the car across the track. (Its like steering with your accelerator! ) It is easier to get the feel for this in a lower powered car as a lot of the time you can accelerate hard out of the corner allowing you to "feel" the technique. In a higher powered car too much acceleration on the way out of a corner will cause the car to slide.

It is also important to break for every corner even if you do not need to slow down. This is because as you break the weight of the car is pushed forward over the front wheels. Allowing them to steer you around the corner. The danger is that if you don't break the weight won't be over the front wheels and they wont grip properly causing your car to under steer (in other words going more straight than you want to get you to the apex).

So go and have some fun and remember BE SAFE!

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