Brands Hatch - Clearways best line ?

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Brands Hatch - Clearways best line ?

Postby alfaholic » Wed Dec 09, 2015 2:11 pm

So having just done a track day at Brands, as ever I struggle to find the best / fastest line through clearways.

This is what the Lotus on track reccomends -

Running along Cooper Straight to Surtees, the turn in point is the seam in the tarmac that runs the full width of the track, and the apex is around two thirds along the kerb on the left side of the track before making a straight line to the turn in point for Clearways keeping the braking in as straight a line as possible. After turning into Clearways ensure you either take both the apexes or prolong the initial apex long enough to let the car then drift out to the outside edge of the circuit. You should be right out to the edge of the circuit meeting in the same point where the white line crosses the track. Then bring the car back to the right-hand side of the track right by the marshals box ( post 24) and hold the car to the right hand side of the pit straight. At about the pole position point begin to move the car back to the left for Paddock Hill bend.

My line usually is clip the left kerb at Surtees , then straight line to first apex in Clearways , braking, turn in and try and settle the car (this point always feels too slow to me and the car unbalanced drifitng or pointing to the outside of the track sometimes requiring a dab of brake to get the nose round towards the pit lane entry) If I am going to spin its always in the middle of Clearways (either front or rear wheel drive cars) if I am pushing or carrying more speed.

Then move right and power on past marshalls post hug pit wall straight then across at 300m board for Paddock (which for the first time in awhile I drove through well).


Comments observations please ?
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Re: Brands Hatch - Clearways best line ?

Postby Andy Elcomb » Thu Dec 10, 2015 3:10 pm

The Lotus description is pretty much what Brands uses on their experience and corporate days.

Taking a large chunk of the initial apex at Surtees does allow you to stay on the power longer and then brake in a straight line diagonally across the track, going right to the outside before turning into Clearways.

Letting the car run wide to the outside of the white line at pit entry really does work as many drivers tend to hold too much right lock on as they go over the crest at the apexes in the middle of the corner and the car can get very loose if you don't take the load off the steering.

However, particularly the late turn in after Surtees is only really appropriate if you are on a track day or there is no other car around as in a race situation you are leaving the door open on the inside.
Same goes for Druids - fastest way round is to go deep on entry and turn back across the track, rather than hugging the inside all the way round, as you are able to get on the power sooner and for longer down into Graham Hill.
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Re: Brands Hatch - Clearways best line ?

Postby Salesy » Tue Dec 15, 2015 7:37 am

Blimey Andy, you just took the narrative from my video.......

Great advice as always Mr E.
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Re: Brands Hatch - Clearways best line ?

Postby alfaholic » Tue Dec 15, 2015 11:09 am

"Letting the car run wide to the outside of the white line at pit entry really does work as many drivers tend to hold too much right lock on as they go over the crest at the apexes in the middle of the corner and the car can get very loose if you don't take the load off the steering."

I think Andy this is where I'm going wrong, holding the lock on too tight as I go over the crest in Clearways and fighting the car round to try and get a good power out on to the straight, this causes the car to unbalance and I either have to dab the brake or try and wind a bit of lock off, if I keep the power on and try and fight the car it tightens up and the back goes light end result a spin towards the infield which I did on my second lapout. also clearly its my inputs causing the problem as this has happened to me in the same spot twice now in afront engined car (Honda type R) and mid engined - the Lotus.

That said against the MX5's I could afford to be slow through Clearways as I could easily outpower them on any straight on the track.

Definatly need more seat time in the Lotus and the tracking sorted.
'The reason I do it is because if you do it wrong, it will kill you.
If you think it's too dangerous then go home and cut your lawn and leave us to it.'
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Re: Brands Hatch - Clearways best line ?

Postby Furyblade_Lee » Sun Dec 20, 2015 11:19 pm

Definitely as said an ideal trackday or qualifying line around Brands Hatch is not what a racer would use there, you would have people throwing their car up your inside left right and centre. My line through Clearways is really brake HARD in a straight line then turn in early , and the line is dictated by grip and throttle and what you can get away with . I am not too bothered about clipping the two other apexes as much as getting the throttle wide open ASAP and building as much speed as quickly as possible for the start / finish straight. Regarding last Friday there we were limited a bit as a dry line appeared and to be anywhere other than on it was a bit pointless and hairy and a fast ticket to either get overtaken or visit the gravel trap!
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Re: Brands Hatch - Clearways best line ?

Postby Matt5 » Fri Mar 11, 2016 1:24 pm

Pretty much what Andy says, if it's a trackday, a race or Sprint there can be different lines.
I normally have my eyes closed when going round Clearways so couldn't tell you the best line.....
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