Racing Simulations

Growing up in an 'F1 family' where waking up at 02:00 to watch the races in Japan or Australia seemed normal, it wasn't a bit stretch to find myself playing racing games. Things really started out with Nigel Mansell's World Championship, which although certainly not a simulation, led me onto F1GP on the Commodore Amiga.

After progressing through and spending many years modding the Geoff Crammond Formula One simulations for myself, I started to run IndyCar Racing and NASCAR Racing from Papyrus Racing Games. In 1998 Papyrus released Grand Prix Legends, this had a huge impact on my entire life; I founded a Web site about it, began racing online with it, and it actually led me to where I am today; working for a racing sim developer.

Grand Prix Legends (1998):

Apart from the occasional rFactor mod, I didn't run anything other than iRacing (who I worked for) for a long time. In 2010 I started to work for Image Space Incorporated, deep into development of rFactor 2 at the time. That's all I run these days, I just don't have the time to run anything else!

 

SASBTCC Round 6: Loch Drummond

closeThis post was published 3 years 1 month 24 days ago.
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I was pretty excited about this race. I know the track, I know the car, what could go wrong? Not much, really. My race went OK.

The pre-race and the participant numbers were marred by race joining issues. The league admin had said that we would go with 8 runners, and that’s what we got.

Qualifying I don’t feel I ever put down a very good lap, but I was very happy to be starting in 4th. My time was 1:21.840 compared to the Pole by Joern Hoormann of 1:20.015.

I got a great start, better than the 2nd-place starter Rob James ahead of me, but was crowded out and unable to carry my speed. I held position around the first lap, benefiting from the spin of a closing Neville Britton behind me to end the lap. On lap 2 I gained 3rd-place from a spinner, but lost that place again on lap 4 after losing momentum when I ran a little wide.

By lap 6 I was starting to settle into a rhythm but spun coming off a kerb when running a little wide. It sent me gently into the inside armco and lost me a bunch of time. I had to reverse away from the barrier and eventually got going down in 7th.

My spin had flatspotted my tires and I could feel vibrations in the wheel. I also started to slide a little into braking zones, it felt like I had lost a massive amount of grip.

I tried to settle myself back down, started to push hard to catch the couple of cars who had passed me. I caught them very quickly, but found it a lot harder to pass than I expected. I am not sure if catching them had worn my tires out, but the car felt awful.

I watched as Britton passed Nils Jordan, then just drove away from me. I had tried to follow him through, but just couldn’t find the grip to make it stick. I felt stuck behind Jordan, but also didn’t have the pace in the right places to be able to pass him.

I eventually worked out where I could make a move, so tried to setup a pass into turn one… It probably was a bit of a dive bomb, but it worked because Jordan was aware enough to give me space and I slipped through, gaining 6th on the very same lap that Britton retired, handing me a 5th place that I would hold to the finish (despite a couple of near misses with the barrier on horribly worn tires).

Fin Sta Driver Interval Led Fast Lap
1 1 Joern Hoormann 26 laps 13 1:20.645
2 2 Rob James +8.871 13 1:20.551
3 3 Christian Baxmann +26.526 0 1:21.395
4 6 Peter Ridley +56.292 0 1:22.536
5 4 Timothy Wheatley +1 Lap 0 1:22.497

Sorry about the audio. I didn’t realize I had double recorded the same audio in the same track until I was done, and I wasn’t going to capture all the footage again. :)

You’ll notice I recorded myself racing this time. Not sure why, just thought it’s an interesting angle to show. But I didn’t want to just show a single screen, so I ran the race using three screens and SoftTH. Worked quite nicely, though I really need three monitors of the same size, and maybe a racing cockpit rather than a desk, to take full advantage! My video card is more than capable.

I can’t say I am happy with my performance in this one, but in a best case scenario I think I only would have finished one position higher.

Next race is at Poznan, I don’t have much experience there. I did accidentally practice there instead of Putnam a couple of weeks back, so maybe that’ll help!

Official league race report.

 
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Tim is British and lives in the United States with his wife and kids.

He works for software developers Image Space Inc. and Studio 397 on their racing simulations, and is a fan of Gaming, Motorsports, and photography.