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Launch Control on Gravel

Launch Control

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Are the any particular tips for launch control calibration on gravel? Any experience?

FWD N/A car.


One of the problems on gravel is that there is naturally less grip available than on tarmac (although with a proper rally tyre the amount of grip can actually be quite surprising). Often you'll find that a little more slip on gravel can be beneficial to allow the tyre to get through the loose gravel and onto some harder dirt below. The principles are identical but you're going to need some experimentation in order to figure out the sweet spot for your specific car.

Hello Andre, thanks for your feedback.

Traction is indeed surprising with a pair of decent tyres, especially for the newbie.

I totally agree that a bit more slip is beneficial and the only way to go.

What is not so clear for me, before testing it yet, is whether it worths the hassle, considering the "uncertainties" implied by the various terrains we come across with.

In addition, on gravel, we constantly need to deal with this traction limit, especially coming out of hairpins or tight corners, without any aids, besides the usual LSD.

So in the end, I am a bit doubtful if launch control will give a benefit that is realistic to utilise.

"Gravel" can cover a lot of different surfaces, hard, dry packed surfaces may be best with minimal slippage but deep gravel/stones may give best results with quite a lot, mud may be different again. Different tyre designs and compounds are another complication.

Something to consider is that excessive wheelspin will rip the heck out of your tyres and some form of traction control should extend their effective life by a significant margin - if you have a tight tyre budget, or you have to run long/several stages on the same tyres this could mean giving up a small amount of speed initially but making big gains later - or even allowing a softer compound to be used without overheating and/or tearing the tread.

The other thing is with front wheel drive, the tyres are also steering under power and, depending on the vehicle, etc, it may reduce understeer and kickback which should make it easier to drive consistently fast.

ultimately, though, you are going to have to do some experimentation to see what works best under the different conditions, etc. and make a note of them - maybe even changinging them on the fly as things change.

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