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by briankstan on February 08, 2008, 10:12:00 AM
                     HOW TO MAKE A PASS…

Your chance of making a clean pass are usually better during the entry and apex, as trying to pass on the exit, when both cars are accelerating is often the most dangerous.
To get by your opponent, and to make the pass stick, you’ll need to call your peripheral vision into play. When you know that you’re close enough to try for a pass, you’ll need to look slightly ahead of your car to see the other driver’s line into the turn. If he’s toward the outside of the turn, your opening to get by will be toward the inside. If he’s hugging the inside, change your line toward the outside of the turn. The point here is to try to take advantage of any gap between your opponent and the track borders that’s as close to the “fast” driving line as possible. You don’t want to drive way out into the boonies to make a pass, as you’ll no doubt lose valuable time (and may even get passed yourself). The following is an explanation of some typical passing techniques.

The inside block-pass:

This is when you pass the other car by going inside of the turn and basically stealing his line. In order for this pass to work cleanly, several conditions must be met. First, you must be very close (almost dead even) with the car you intend to pass. Secondly, the car you intend to pass must be toward the middle or outside of the turn. Lastly, the other driver should be courteous enough to give up his line once you’ve occupied it (if not, you’ll both get tangled up).
The trick to this type of pass is to quickly occupy the space that your opponent was planning on using. To get by the other car, you’ll need to enter the turn “hot,” i.e., faster than you normally would, and use the brakes to slow the car so that you don’t overshoot the turn (you can also slide your car to slow it down). Essentially, you will be out-braking the other guy. Once you commit to the pass, you’ll need to protect your line to prevent the other car from passing you back. Just stay as close to the inside of the turn as you can, and the other car will be forced to drive a longer line in order to get back around you (he shouldn’t be able to do this if you’ve executed the pass properly).

The outside-inside move:

This is the racing equivalent to a head-fake in basketball. As its name suggests, this is a pass in which your car enters the turn toward the middle or outside (depending on where the other car is), leading your opponent to believe that you’re taking the outside line. Instead as your car approaches the middle of the turn, you suddently square your line and head out of the turn toward the inside, hopefully driving past the other car toward the inside of the turn.
This type of pass usually works best when the turn exits onto a fast section of track such as the straightaway. This helps make your pass stick because, if done properly, a good outside-inside pass will give your car greater speed when exiting the turn.

The old inside-to-outside pass:

This uses the technique of early apexing to allow you to slide by your opponent while simultaneously blocking his path out of the turn. To make this type of pass, you must enter the turn while sticking to the inside as closely as possible. Once you’ve reached the turn’s apex and are ready to accelerate out of the turn, let your car drift wide. Under most circumstances, this drift will carry you right in front of your opponent, blocking his line. He will either have to hit you (and get booed by the crowd for dirty driving), or back off. If you’ve done this maneuver cleanly and properly, it’s a perfectly legal and clean move.

The plain old blow-his-doors-off move:

As it’s name suggests, this type of pass can only occur when you either have much more straightaway speed than your opponent (rare nowadays) or if you are able to carry much greater speed out of the corner preceding the straightaway. This, by the way, is one of the few types of passing techniques that doesn’t involve cornering.
Unlike passing which takes place during cornering, passing another car on the straight is best done with as much space between your car and the other as possible. Because straights are the fastest area of the track, any contact between cars can cause dramatic accidents (barrel-rolls in particular!). Always give the other guy a wide berth when making a straightaway pass.

Above all else, be courteous!

Remember that no matter what, racing is a game – you’re supposed to be having fun out there! If you think you are faster than someone, make the effort to pass them cleanly. Too many people choose instead to bully their way past other cars. These people take some of the fun out of racing because to the rest of us, driving a clean race is nearly as satisfying as winning. Whenever I’m in a close battle with someone, and they get by me cleanly, I almost always will think to myself – nice pass, man! If every person drives with respect and courtesy, racing will become even more fun!
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