Hints by Sierra Sports
Game and controller setup:
* Controls: This should be a no-brainer, but it is easy to overlook.
Make sure that your gas pedal uses its full range of motion; do the same
for brakes and steering. If you are using a joystick, you may want to use
non-linear steering. If your controller has a digital input for gas and
brake, be sure to adjust the speed that it comes on and goes off. This is
very helpful when you are coming into a corner and you get off the gas and
hit the brake. If your controller speed is too fast, the back of the car
may want to come out on you; if it's too slow, the car will seem to push.
Last but not least, set up all of your control keys so they are
comfortable for you. This is very important for long races where you will
be shifting a lot.
* Traction Control: This is very helpful if you are just starting to
race, but if you feel that you have a handle on the car and the setup,
TURN IT OFF. This is the only way you can record good lap times. The
reason for this is that traction control applies the brakes to keep the
tires from spinning and it can't tell the difference between a controlled
spin and an out-of-control one. The same goes for Yaw Control.
* ABS Brakes: I have found that the car will corner better under braking
with ABS on high. If your tires are not turning, they cannot steer the
car. The car will be easier to control if you have to apply the brakes to
avoid an accident.
* Manual Shifting: This is the best way to lower your lap times; use it
and use it well! This is an effective way to scrub off speed when you are
coming up to a corner. For example, on a tight corner at the end of a
straightaway, roll out of the gas, then downshift at the same time you
apply the brake. Keep downshifting until you are in the gear that will
bring you through the apex most efficiently. It is also important to keep
the car in its power range at all times. The Viper makes its peak
horsepower at 5200 rpm and peak torque at 3700 rpm. Remember this when you
are setting up your gearbox.
Garage and Car Setup:
* Chassis: This can be a very confusing area. The best setups that I
have found with Viper Racing include balanced shocks and springs. This
means I will set my front bump and rebound the same as the back. I like to
use the anti-roll to dial in over or understeer. The way I do this is by
setting the front anti-roll as high as I can until lap times start to slow
down and use the back to keep the car from over- or under-steering. The
two reasons for this are that it is very easy to lose your combination if
you are always adjusting every aspect of the car to find the ultimate
setup. It's like taking one step forward and two steps back. The second
reason is that the car seems to drive better and handle better when you
get out of shape.
* Gearbox: Here is where you can gain a lot or lose a lot. I have found
that by adjusting the gears so they are 15 to 20 mph in-between gears, you
can use the engine's power more effectively during cornering and
acceleration. Also, make sure that 6th gear is used so that when you get
to the end of a straight the motor is making its peak power.
* ABS Brakes: See above tip.
* Manual Shifting: See above tip
* Alignment: Remember that toe-in will affect your speed, so on tracks
where there are long straightaways keep this as close to 0.0 as possible.
Also remember that negative camber will help you keep your speed up in
corners. This is because when a car's suspension goes through its range of
motion you need to keep as much tire tread on the racing surface as
* Wing: This is a very tricky part to adjust. You have to keep the car
stuck to the track, but you also need the speed in the straight. The way
that I decide how much wing to use is simply how the car feels. I start
with max wing and then bring it down until lap times start to slow. On
Dayton you can run with no wing, but on Uptown you almost need to run with