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Motorsport Wheel Alignment: Introduction

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Introduction

03.19

00:00 - I'm Andre from RaceCraft and I'd like to welcome you to our Racecar Wheel Alignment course.
00:05 In the search for ultimate handling and grip, it's often easy to overlook the importance of the wheel alignment and tire pressures in our cars.
00:13 Often these aspects are taken for granted or their effects on the way the car handles and performs may be vastly underestimated.
00:22 Regardless of the car you're driving though, it's the contact patch between our four tires and the racetrack that's responsible for everything the car does.
00:30 Accelerating, braking and cornering and the wheel alignment and tire pressure plays a critical role in optimising that tire contact patch.
00:39 This fact remains the same regardless if you're racing in the highest levels of professional motorsport or you're simply attending a track day for the first time in your daily driven road car.
00:50 Particularly when you're dealing with a standard road car, it's important to understand that like most aspects of a factory car's design, the stock wheel alignment settings will have little to do with achieving optimal performance and are more likely designed around achieving good tire life and a stable car that is easy and comfortable to drive.
01:11 When we head to the racetrack however, our priorities are likely to be very different.
01:16 On the track we want to optimise the tire contact patch with the road in order to maximise grip, particularly while cornering.
01:24 We also want our wheel alignment settings to promote high speed stability while offering sharp turn in and good balance.
01:31 Don't worry about any of the terms I've just used because they'll all be explained thoroughly as we move through this course.
01:39 While there are obviously a huge range of design aspects such as suspension geometry, spring rates, ride height and damper settings that can all add up to affect the car's behaviour and handling, in this course, we'll be focusing primarily on the aspects that you can easily alter, often without any cost outlay at all.
01:58 The aspects I'm talking about include the wheel alignment settings, which are comprised of camber, toe and caster, as well as the tire pressure and you'll learn how to optimise or alter them to suit the motorsport environment.
02:10 Many enthusiasts rely on the services of a wheel alignment specialist to have their wheel alignment adjusted and that's absolutely fine.
02:18 You don't need to actually be making the changes yourself.
02:21 However, if you want the right results, you will need to specify the settings you want for your car, otherwise you're likely to get whatever the alignment specialist decides is right for you.
02:32 That's where the fundamentals presented in this course will really help.
02:36 Alternatively, many of you may want to learn how to perform your own wheel alignments using cost effective techniques and some simple tools that you can fit in your race day toolbox.
02:47 In my opinion, this is a critical skill that any serious race day enthusiast should know and we'll show you how to do this in a simple step by step process without breaking the bank.
02:59 This course is designed for anyone who wants to improve the handling and balance of their car in a motorsport environment.