Learn How to Become a Trail-Braking Pro
Want to be quicker on the track? Learn the art of trail braking.
Driving a car quickly around a track – whether it’s a racetrack, autocross circuit, or a rally stage, is something that takes time to master. Unfortunately, most of us lack the time or money to constantly improve our lap times. Luckily for us, TeamONeilRally has a set of videos to help enthusiasts learn the basics before heading out to attempt a new lap record.
The latest video from the rally school is this three-minute lesson on trail braking. And as anyone with a lead foot knows, it’s a good idea to do all of your hard braking while the vehicle is pointed in a straight line.
Once the braking has been done, you can turn the vehicle into the corner, complete the turn, then get back on the power when exiting it. While it’s a sure-fire way to set decent lap times, it’s not the quickest way around a track.
Trail braking is when the driver maintains a little pressure on the brakes while starting to turn into the corner, hence its name. Why trail brake? Well, as the instructor points out, maintaining full brake pressure while turning results in understeer. Fully coming off of the brakes results in understeer as well. Trail braking is the perfect medium.
The video is straightforward and provides simple, easy-to-follow directions. After a few views, you’ll at least know the basics. But be warned: It’ll take some serious practice before you’re a pro at it.
Mastering the art of trail braking will definitely make you a better driver. Who knows, it could even save your life if you find yourself going a little too quickly on a windy road.