Secrets of rFactor 2

Secrets of rFactor 2

Welcome to Secrets of rFactor 2 where I will be recording my experience, tips, tricks, resources and other helpful information as I get into rFactor 2.

Secrets of X is a series of blog posts I started with Secrets of iRacing and which has grown to include Secrets of GTR2, Secrets of Automobilista, and Secrets of rFactor 2. The “secrets” part is a little dramatic but there are quite a few tips and tricks I think new users will find very valuable and interesting.

Update 2018-07-26: Tip: For in-cockpit FOV adjustments try the Multiview Adjustment tool by pressing CTRL-= while in-car in the pits. Thanks to this post on for highlighting it.

Update 2017-10-12: Initial publication.

What is rFactor 2?

From the Wikipedia article,

rFactor 2 is a computer racing simulator developed by the American independent software firm Image Space Incorporated, released for Windows in 2013. Like its predecessor, rFactor, it is designed to be modified and is used by professional racing teams for driver training and race car development. Much of its source code is derived from rFactor Pro which is also used by professional racers and most of the Formula One teams and NASCAR manufacturers.

And here’s a visual taste of the game,

Getting Started

In Secrets of X, I try to focus on the non-obvious or unintuitive so I won’t be covering basics like getting the game, installing it, tweaking graphics or force feedback. You’re probably beyond that yourself so I’ll focus on the hidden and obscure things.

Continue reading “Secrets of rFactor 2”

Secrets of GTR2

Welcome to Secrets of GTR2 where I will be recording my experience, tips, tricks, resources and other helpful information as I get into GTR2.

Secrets of GTR2

Welcome to Secrets of GTR2 where I will be recording my experience, tips, tricks, resources and other helpful information as I get into GTR2.

Secrets of is a series of blog posts I started with Secrets of iRacing and which has grown to include Secrets of GTR2, Secrets of Race 07, Secrets of Automobilista, and Secrets of rFactor 2. The “secrets” part is a little dramatic but there are quite a few tips and tricks I think new users will find very valuable and interesting.

Update 2019-02-26: MRW Cars: If the cars feel like they’re not turning enough for how much you turn your wheel, trying increasing the Wheel Lock in-game. The default is something like 15deg but I’ve tried 18, 21, 24, and I’m now at 25 and that feels about right. It seems high but I guess pickers can’t be choosers.

Update 2019-02-25 – 3: I’ve recently joined the F1 Classic Forums and I can totally recommend this site as another quality place for getting involved in the GTR2 community.

Update 2019-02-25 – 2: Here’s an XD overlay tweak to the XD.INI file that repositions the Standings Box to top-left, to the right of the native Position dialog. This prevents the Standings Box from getting in the way of the rearview mirror. Here’s the tweak:  StandingsPosX=370 and StandingsPosY=0. To reduce the number of entries in the Standings Box, so it takes up less space, set StandingsPlayersVisible=7. I find this improves the layout and frees up the screen for where you really want to look while you’re racing. Added this info under Modernizing > XD Telemetry Overlay.

Update 2019-02-25: After talking with the MRW Cars author, it appears he set HDC files SteeringFFBMult=3.0 (Default: 1.2) which is why I had to drastically change FFB Steer Force Output Max (See Update 2019-02-21 for details). So, now, instead of modifying Steer Force Output Max away from the previous value, and breaking the FFB experience for every other mod since the previous value worked relatively well across mods, you can use the previous FFB steer force output max=”0.95000″ and, instead, change the MRW Cars HDC files SteeringFFBMult=1.2 to match every other mod. This results in a much better feeling while retaining compatibility across other mods.

Update 2019-02-21 – 2: Cleaned out the Mod Bounty Program. It never really got going and it doesn’t seem to mesh with the mod culture of these old games. That’s actually okay. Modders have integrity and honour and do this on their own time, for free, because of their passion. I can respect that. Thank you, modders!

Update 2019-02-21: I’ve currently tuning FFB for the amazing MRW Car sets (Cup, GT4, GT3 and GT3) and have promising results. For now, set FFB steer force output max=”0.53438″ and that should mostly do it. I feel like I will have to tune Grip Weight but don’t have any numbers for that yet. That said, it still fees very good so far. You can find all the details about how to get the MRW Car Sets on the EEC Forums. You’ll need to register with them but their mods are worth it! I’ll be reviewing the MRW Cars in the Mod Spotlight soon.

Update 2019-02-18: GTR233 and Co. have released both of the amazing GTR2 HQ Mods Collection v9.7 and GTR2 10th Anniversary Patch v9.7 mods! These are absolute must-haves for GTR2 fans. The 10th Anniversary Patch is one of the best and simplest ways to take a vanilla GTR2 install and modernize it all in one easy step. You won’t be disappointed!

Update 2019-02-03: Added Power & Glory 3 to the Table of Mods and Custom FFB Files.

Update 2018-10-14: TrackIR users probably want to set Video options World Movement to 1% (not zero) to stabilize the vertical angle of the cockpit camera to the angle of the car so that when you’re going up or down a steep hill you don’t lose sight of the bonnet of your car looking too far up while going downhill or end up looking at your feet looking too far down going uphill. Zero World Movement is lock-to-horizon, I guess, and to me that doesn’t work for TrackIR users. World Movement greater than 1% causes your cockpit camera to stabilize with the car angle but the “world” (ie. what you see of the car and the track) ends up bouncing around so a high World Movement number isn’t great, either. So 1% seems to minimize ‘world shake’ and stabilize the cockpit camera to help when you’re going up and down hills. Added tip here.

Update 2018-09-28: Certified new HQ Cars with significant grip increase changes. No more of the wheel going super light. The downside is non-direct drive wheels might not convey the grip information that is still there as well as before. A Pre-2018-09-28 download is still available if you don’t like it.

Update 2018-09-28 – 2: Added DTM 2012-2016 Mod to Table of Mods and Custom FFB Files.

Update 2018-09-09: I’ve been working on a significant update to the HQ Cars FFB settings (which should benefit other car sets in the future) involving tuning the ‘light wheel during grip loss’ effect for more realistic behaviour and I’m very pleased with my results so far. In some cases it can feel rFactor2-like(!) such as when regaining grip when going light over high-speed ridges. I even posted about a particular finding over at Race Department with respect to actually feeling very specific front-left whee lockup on heavy braking into left-hand corners (same would apply to right-hand corners, of course). Give this PLR a try if you’re interested. Just copy&paste the FFB lines into your own PLR. Make a backup of your own, of course! :) When I’m satisfied with tuning I’ll update the official HQ Cars FFB settings. Enjoy!

Update 2018-09-02 (2): Added the free Bill’s Process Manager as the primary recommendation for the section Improve Frame Rate by Making GTR2 Use More Cores For Better Performance.

Update 2018-09-02: Check out my new Secrets of Race 07 post –  I’ve recently got back into Race 07 after watching a recent Race Department video and discovering that my GTR2 FFB settings worked really well in Race 07. Beware SimXperience AccuForce owners: Disable Dynamic Oscillation Control – Stationary or the FFB will feel incredibly dull and extremely over-dampened.

Update 2018-08-28: Correction to Field of View instructions.’s vFOV value is used as-is not a calculation against default value.

Update 2018-06-13: Fixed PLR link for FFB settings for Original Cars under Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files.

2018-06-08 – 3: Updated Mod Spotlight > EEC GT3 V3 with some potentially helpful notes on how to get started installing it.

Update 2018-06-08 – 2: Added my NVIDIA Inspector customization notes for improved graphics under Getting Started > Modernizing > NVIDIA Inspector Settings.

Update 2018-06-08: I’ve now certified my new FFB settings for DTM Classics cars which are now rebased on the benchmark 2005 FiaGT Mod FFB settings. Check out Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for the PLR download.

Update 2018-06-04: There’s an update over on my Is Down post. Check it out for the latest on what happened to and details on how we might be able to help recover the site! PS. There are full backups! Catch? Sounds like unpaid bills to pay before they’re released :(

Update 2018-06-03: I’ve now certified my new FFB settings for HQ Cars which are now rebased on the benchmark 2005 FiaGT Mod FFB settings. Check out Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for the PLR download.

Update 2018-05-30: has been down for most of today. Anyone have any news? It would be a crying shame if it were permanently lost – there were so many downloads there and lots of good people. I would be happy to provide some kind of mirror hosting if anybody knows how to get in contact with the owner.

Update 2018-05-25: I’ve now certified my FFB settings for Original Cars. Check out Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for the PLR download.

Update 2018-05-21 – 2: I have now certified my FFB PLR for the FiaGT 2005 Mod. Check out Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for the PLR download. In my opinion, FiaGT 2005 is currently the best mod available. It doesn’t try to do too much, just provide the FIA GT 2005 season, and that’s how it keeps everything tight and polished and feeling high quality. Give it a try if you haven’t already, it’s well worth it!

Update 2018-05-21: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for FiaGT 2005 Mod. This is now my best feeling FFB + Mod set.

Update 2018-05-13: Added David Littman’s mod bounty to the GTR2 Mod Bounty Program.

Update 2018-03-25: Introducing the GTR2 Mod Bounty Program: A system to match pledgers with modders to improve the game we all love, GTR2. Take a look at the available bounties and consider pledging to see if we can gather some interest in keeping GTR2 alive and kicking!

Update 2018-03-24: Updated Force Feedback > The GTR2 Force Feedback Engineer with advice for FFB adjustments when your wheel goes numb, like it’s clipping, even though you’re not at max FFB strength.

Update 2018-03-23: Correction on Troubleshooting > Graphics driver crash and black screen freeze while driving: This problem seems to have been due to bad files in my GTR2 folder. I started again with a clean, brand new GTR2 installation, and tested with crash-prone cars and tracks and haven’t had a black screen freeze crash again, yet *fingerscrossed*.

Update 2018-03-05: Updated Mod Spotlight > DTM Classics Mod to (1) recommend NOT raising Max Vehicles on tracks to avoid some pit issues, and (2) provided a ‘plain’ championship that allows for custom race durations (in minutes) and avoids repeating tracks. Added Troubleshooting > Graphics driver crash and black screen freeze while driving.

Update 2018-02-16 – 3: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for WSGT Mod cars but unfortunately, due to consistency issues with the cars physics and handling in the mod, FFB could be tuned for one car but not for all. You’d have to tune each car separately which I’m not willing to put the effort into. There are also tire heating/cooling problems with the mod. Sadly, will have to avoid this mod for now.

Update 2018-02-16 – 2: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for EEC GT3 cars bringing it to a Candidate quality level.

Update 2018-02-16: Added Force Feedback > The GTR2 Force Feedback Engineer, inspired by the Project Cars 2 Race Engineer, which is an in-game question and answer car setup tweaking interface, to help narrow down how to tune force feedback in GTR2.

Update 2018-02-15: Added All Cars (Baseline) FFB settings under Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for those people who just one one, simple FFB setup and don’t want to find the perfect one or who don’t want to change them in and out. Note, the All Cars (Baseline) FFB settings are simply the Certified HQ Cars FFB settings that I use as a baseline when starting to test any other car set. They just so happen to provide an acceptable FFB experience with most cars. I wouldn’t use it for everything but I can understand if some people prefer to just have one set of FFB settings.

Update 2018-02-11: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for Original Cars bringing it to a Candidate quality level. Also added some methodology info for how I got about tuning FFB.

Update 2018-02-10: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for Japan SGT300 Mod after some further work to get it to above average standard. Some of those Porsches feel really good, especially when you throw out the backend and feel it catch itself :)

Update 2018-02-10: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for Super GT500 2005-2013 Mod and Japan SGT300 Mod after getting these to acceptable standards, although they still need work. Also added grades here to indicate how good the FFB for these cars feel. For example, HQ Cars have Grade A, or very good, FFB feel, EEC3 GT3 have Grade B, or acceptable/still needs work, FFB feel, and DTM Classics Mod has Grade C, or not really acceptable/needs work, FFB feel. I’ve added grades for each car set.

Update 2018-02-09: Noted my latest Field of View parameter, now 40.

Updated 2018-02-07: Updated Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files for Super GT500 2005-2013 Mod. I really enjoy seeing the FFB come into its own as you narrow in on the tuning. Feeling these cars come to life is an amazing experience. Sight and sound these cars are great and reviving the FFB brings the whole package together in a great experience.

Update 2018-02-30 – 2: Updated Mod Spotlight > EEC GT3 with some WIP thoughts. Added Getting Started > Community link and encourage taking advantage of the websites involved in the GTR2 community.

Update 2018-02-03: Added Force Feedback > Shovas Custom FFB Files including a table of FFB settings organized by Car Sets. Removed Force Feedback > My Personal Force Feedback Settings and Tweaking Notes as it was a little redundant after adding the Shovas Custom FFB Files section.

Update 2018-01-28: Added Mod Spotlight > Japan SGT300 Mod – Super GT GT300 Class Cars, Mod Spotlight > WSGT – World Super GT Mod (I’m impressed!).

Update 2018-01-27 -2: Added Troubleshooting > Crashes Loading Game, Mod Spotlight > Super GT500 2005-2013 Mod, Mod Spotlight > Subaru Impreza Mod, Mod Spotlight > FiaGT 2005 Mod, and minor edits to Mod Spotlight > DTM Classics Mod.

Update 2018-01-27: Added Peripherals > SimXperience AccuForce Direct Drive Wheel and TrackIR Head Tracking sections.

Update 2018-01-25: I’m a fan of Simracing Youtuber Jimmy Broadbent and he recently noticed my RaceDepartment post How much FFB can you feel in GTR2? 1/1000 of a percent (also a blog post of mine) and posted a video about his direct drive experience on GTR2 using the force feedback settings I recommended in that post: GTR 2 – How Does It Feel With A Direct Drive Wheel? Check it out, he seems to like it! I’m really happy to help some people get more enjoyment out of this oldie-but-goodie game.

Update 2018-01-25 – 2: Organized and cleaned up a lot of stuff in Getting Started, Mods and Force Feedback sections. There was a lot of clutter that I tried to weed out to make things more readable.

Update 2018-01-25 – 3: Posted my latest HQ Cars and Tracks “certified” UserData PLR and FFB tuning notes under Force Feedback > My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes.

Update 2017-12-29: Added Known Issues > The Leader’s Advantage AI Bug.

Update 2017-12-08: CORRECTION: Time Acceleration is OKAY. Skipping qualifying sessions is a problem! Relevant notes about Time Acceleration updated.

Update 2017-12-03: Added Racing > How to Manage AI Difficulty in Championships. Added Known Issues > Time Acceleration Results in Unrealistically Fast AI Lap Times and Skipping Qualifying Results in Unrealistically Fast AI Lap Times.

Update 2017-12-02: Updated my latest personal UserData PLR file and my force feedback tuning notes under Force Feedback > My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes. I’ve been experimenting going back to baseline ffb values and trying to reach a more iR/AMS/RF2 feel. I definitely prefer this in terms of drivability and reliability on the road.

Update 2017-11-10: Added Force Feedback > Guidelines for Tuning GTR2 Force Feedback. Updated Force Feedback > Rumble Strips Pushing/Pulling the Wrong Way to clarify wrong interpretation and now using default FFB parameter value.

Update 2017-11-09: Clarified Racing > Custom Daylight Acceleration works for regular race sessions but not 24 Hour races – they automatically time scale to race length setup when first starting the 24 Hour race.

Update 2017-11-08: Added Racing > Custom Daylight Acceleration. Added Resources > GTR Engineers Handbook and GTR2 Car-Owner’s Manual links. The GTR Engineers Handbook is particularly excellent for describe car setups better and more informatively than any in-game descriptions I’ve encountered before and the Q&A with real-life experts is also incredibly helpful.

Update 2017-10-31: Added Racing > How to Set AI Difficulty Level and Tips for Practicing and Qualifying for a Race sections. Also emphasized tip to avoid Time Acceleration as it causes a bug which results in overly quick AI lap times no matter what your AI difficulty level is set to.

Update 2017-10-29: Cleaned up and clarified Getting Started > Field of View. It’s now easy to understand and has an example. Fleshed out Force Feedback > My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes with latest tuning adjustments.

Update 2017-10-12: Now using AI to AI Collision Rate=”40″ (max) as there’s no FPS loss for me so why not. Added Tips and Tricks > Avoid Time Acceleration to AVOID AI Bug Actually, skipping qualifying is the bug, Time Acceleration is fine.

Update 2017-09-22: Now using AI to AI Collision Rate=”32″ as I’m no longer experiencing FPS loss, maybe only stock tracks are affected and not HQ tracks. Try running HQ tracks if you have this problem. Added 5. Adding Friction and Damper under Force Feedback > My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes. Added Force Feedback Settings under Getting Started > Modernizing as, while it may seem obvious, I wanted to highlight the need to do more than is available in-game to get closer to modern standards for FFB feeling. Added note about preferring HQ Cars and Tracks due to improved handling and grip adjustments in Getting Started > Modernizing > Mod: GTR2 HQ Mods Collection.

Update 2017-09-21: Added 4. Improving Corner Feeling under Force Feedback > My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes.

Update 2017-09-17 – 2: HQ Cars & Tracks is working for me again after a fix. See comments under Modernizing > Mod: GTR2 HQ Mods Collection. Added Troubleshooting > Enable Tracing.

Update 2017-09-17: Added Troubleshooting section. Noted HQ Cars & Tracks was crashing for me. This works now, see comments under Modernizing > Mod: GTR2 HQ Mods Collection.

Update 2017-09-16: Added Tips & Tricks regarding turning up tire scrub and tire skid volumes and regarding refreshing old mod files if you’re experiencing instability.

Update 2017-09-15: Added Modernizing > 4GB Patch notes. Added GTR2 HQ CARS & TRACKS – 10th Anniversary and GTR2 HQ AI under Modernizing > Mod: GTR2 HQ Mods Collection. Added note that I’ve stopped using the Changing Weather Patch due to suspected instability.

Update 2017-09-14: Added Mod Spotlight > DTM Classics Mod with details for getting it running in 2017.

Update 2017-09-11: Detailed my FFB tuning in the section “My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes”. Important! After a few rounds of FFB tuning I finally feel like I have a simple FFB setup that achieves car stability, quick response, and road feel. Added “GTR2 Crashes – It might Be Other Accelerated Graphics Apps” to the Tips and Tricks section.

Update 2017-09-08: Added “Disable Auto-pit and ai control” under the “Tips and Tricks” section. Noted tweaks in the “Make GTR2 Use More Cores For Better Performance” section under Performance. Added “My Personal Force Feedback Tweaking Notes” under the Force Feedback section.

Update 2017-09-06: Noted I’ve started over again from Julien Regnard’s FFB guide tuning FFB from baseline values instead of PLR defaults values under the “Helpful Guide for Advanced Force Feedback Tweaking” heading. Highly recommended. Don’t skip it like I did.

Update 2017-09-01 – 2: Added main section Performance and sub-section Make GTR2 Use More Cores For Better Performance to describe GTR2’s single-core use and how to get it to use more than a single core for better performance.

Update 2017-09-01: Added a Table of Contents for more convenient organization and to make it easier to find what you want.

Update 2017-08-30: Updated Force Feedback section to include more details on finding my optimal “FFB steer force average weight”, “FFB steer force exponent”, and “FFB rumble strip pull factor”. Also added “Force Feedback Tweaking Guide for Simbin Games by Julien Regnard” in Force Feedback section.

Update 2017-08-25: Added Changing Weather Patch mod under Modernizing section and added to Mod Spotlight. Updated my latest FFB settings in the Helpful Guide for Advanced Force Feedback Tweaking section.

Update 2017-08-20: Further FFB tweaking of “FFB steer force grip weight” which gives a feel of losing and gaining grip while cornering. Added Tips and Tricks section Use Auto-Clutch With Paddle Shifters. Added main section Mod Spotlight.

Update 2017-08-19 – 2: Added Getting Started sections: Mod: Track update for GTR2 Original Tracks, Mod: New GFX Mod, Field of View, Wheel Rotation and Wheel Lock, iRacing-like Brake Sensitivity for Potentiometer Pedals (eg. G27). Added Adding Game Cars, Tracks, Mods and More main section. Added Force Feedback main section with sub-section Helpful Guide for Advanced Force Feedback Tweaking.

Update 2017-08-19: Welcome to the initial posting of Secrets of GTR2! Check back from time to time as I add things and note the updates in this update box.

What is GTR2?

From the Wikipedia entry,

GTR 2 – FIA GT Racing Game is a sports car racing simulator developed by Blimey! Games and SimBin Studios (later Sector3 Studios) for the x86 PC and is a sequel to GTR. Since its release in September 2006, it has received widespread acclaim. The game simulates the 2003 and 2004 FIA GT Championship racing series.

And here’s the official game trailer,

Continue reading “Secrets of GTR2”

ICAR Luxury Supercars Experience

Over the weekend, I had the opportunity to drive a Ferrari 458 Italia with some friends on one of those exotic, dream car experiences you can find every now and then. It’s difficult to describe just how good of a time I actually had. As a simulation racing enthusiast it’s always been a dream to do what I do in the virtual world out in the real world. It really was incredible. I’ll cover the day from arrival to registration, instruction to the pits, the course tour to actually driving the course, and finally the photos and videos they take in the car while you’re on the track.

IMG_0375 Check the end of this post for a video as I walk out to the car, run my laps, and come back with a big smile. :)


Continue reading “ICAR Luxury Supercars Experience”

James MacDonald on the Signs of the Times

James MacDonald, of Walk in the Word, interrupted his usual preaching series to spend the past two weeks on a study of current events and the prophecies of the bible concerning the last days. With all that’s gone on this year, the Oregon community college mass shooting, Russia in Syria, ISIS torturing and executing Christians and others, the Ebola outbreak of 2014 which is still ongoing in some countries in West Africa, famine and drought in Ethiopia, earthquakes in Chile and all around the world, and wars and conflict around the world, and every tragic, sorry we hear on the nightly news–this was a very timely series to remind Christians we should not only be living in view of a a good Christian life but also in view of the time we have left.

Click to watch the video
Click to watch the video

The important thing to remember about doom’s day predictions is not that it’s supposed to happen on a given day, but that it’s going to happen any day, at any moment. Live then as if you were out of time and up for account, so that in any day, in any moment, you have encouraged yourself to “produce fruit in keeping with repentance.” -mjg/12

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

Lac Témiscouata – Homage to a Lost Canadian Highway Rest Stop

Update 2016-04-30: I discovered some photos in my collection of the original rest stop. Check them out, they don’t do justice to the beauty of the spot but they give you an idea of what was lost. En vérité, la belle province…

Lac Témiscouata – Homage to a Lost Canadian Highway Rest Stop

This is a visual tribute to a picturesque Canadian rest stop along Autoroute 20 in Quebec Canada, overlooking Lake Témiscouata . Sadly, the rest stop was literally blown out of the hills surrounding the lake when the highway was divided around 2013 or 2014. As it has been a memorable stop on many family vacations and my own drives out east I wanted to provide a place online where others can remember the area. Enjoy the memories!

Do you have photos of the rest stop before it was taken out? Please contact me as I only have a few photos from before and after the highway was divided.

Continue reading “Lac Témiscouata – Homage to a Lost Canadian Highway Rest Stop”

How to make a movie trailer: Jurassic World meet Jurassic Park

I just caught the Jurassic World trailer and something bugged me as I watched. It was playing to the same old, tired Hollywood manipulation routines of every other ‘blockbuster’ move trailer. It got me thinking about what the original movie and how that original trailer, now 20+ years old, would hold up against modern trailers. So, first, here’s the new Jurassic World trailer…

I’m with you if your interest is piqued, you’re a little excited, but you’re also a little disappointed by the trailer. Something’s missing…

Well, try this Jurassic Park trailer on for size…

Continue reading “How to make a movie trailer: Jurassic World meet Jurassic Park”

Secrets of iRacing

Welcome to Secrets of iRacing where I will be recording my experience, tips, tricks, resources and other helpful information as I play iRacing.

Secrets of iRacing

Welcome to Secrets of iRacing where I will be recording my experience, tips, tricks, resources and other helpful information as I play iRacing.

Secrets of X is a series of blog posts I started with Secrets of iRacing and which has grown to include Secrets of GTR2, Secrets of Automobilista, and Secrets of rFactor 2. The “secrets” part is a little dramatic but there are quite a few tips and tricks I think new users will find very valuable and interesting.

2019-03-29: Updated Participation > Participation Stats to recommend instead of the currently broken site.

2017-10-08: Added In-Game > Calibrate Pedal Deadzone.

Update 2017-03-14: Added Tuning Car Setups main section to cover car setup basics and added the first two sub-sections Virtual Racing School Setups Academy Basics and The Simpit with Shaun Cole on Basic Setup Tips.

Update 2017-01-02: Added Performance > Unpark All CPU Cores to Reduce Stuttering tip. Added Force Feedback > Enable Simple Min Force to Reduce Wheel Chatter tip. Added Going Faster > Use All The Track (And Everything Else) tip.

Update 2016-09-12: Added Tweaks main section and Disable Head/View Rotation with Slip Angle sub-section.

Update 2016-07-04: Added The Schumacher Advantage tip in the Racing section.

Update 2016-06-26: Added Racing tip about practicing new week tracks early, cleaned up section headings.

Update 2016-05-14: Added video, “iRacing Road Racing Basics with Wyatt Gooden @ iRace4Life 2016,” a very well presented on-track demonstration about learning road tracks.

Update 2016-04-14: Added Incidents section.

Update 2016-03-20: Added Graphics section about iRacing’s new DirectX 11 (DX11) rendering mode and notes about how to use it.

Update 2016-01-01: Added Going Faster section discussing what you do besides practicing to improve your lap times.

Update 2015-07-12: Added Race Sessions and Time Trials sections

Update 2015-04-28: Added Graphics section

Update 2015-03-21: Added Racecraft section

Update 2014-12-29: Added a racing tip, clarified some points, fixed some typos

Update 2014-11-23: Organized the post a little by adding and separating sections by topic such as sales, racing, safety rating, etc.

What is iRacing?

From the Wikipedia entry,

iRacing is a subscription-based racing simulation released by Motorsport Simulations in 2008. Official races, special events, league races, and practice sessions are all hosted on the service’s servers. The service simulates realistic cars, tracks, and racing events, and enforcing rules of conduct modeled on real auto racing events.

And here’s one of their game trailers,

Sales and Deals

iracing-saleBlack Friday Sales

iRacing has an annual Black Friday sale where account renewals are typically half off. For example, a one year subscription usually costs $99 but during the sale it costs $49. You can renew for multiple years and the the code they give you can be used multiple times even on different accounts.

iRacing Dollars and Credits Sales

iRacing has a sale around March (Update: They did the same thing Christmas 2014) where you buy iRacing Dollars and they’ll give you extra iRacing Credits for free. For example, buy $20 iRacing Dollars and they’ll give you $5 iRacing Credits free, or buy $75 iRacing Dollars and they’ll give you $25 iRacing Credits free. iRacing Dollars and Credits have equal value and can be used to purchase cars and tracks exactly the same. It’s a good deal!

Tech Tracks

iracing-spa-tech-trackTech tracks are tracks currently undergoing development by iRacing. They cost $5 which is half or more off regular tracks. You only get to keep the track until it becomes an official track at which time you will receive iRacing credit for how much you paid for it and you will have to buy the track again at full price. But, hey, at least you got to enjoy it until then!

Any other sales or discounts?

Sorry, no, iRacing doesn’t seem to do sales like other online stores like Steam where games might be 50% off or more. iRacing doesn’t sell cars or tracks at a direct discount other than the iRacing Dollars/Credits sales mentioned above. So try to score when you can!


Never Qualify On New Track Days

New tracks typically launch on Mondays in the evenings (EST). If you qualify just after the switch you’ll likely be one of a few who did and you’ll be at the front of the grid. Unfortunately, most smart drivers know new track days are typically going to be pretty bad for racing incidences so they don’t qualify and start near the back to avoid first corner wrecks. So, save your SR, and just practice before the race. Enjoy the ride around the track while all the bad drivers crash out early. Qualify the next day.

Continue reading “Secrets of iRacing”

GTEye Progressive Brake Spring for Logitech G27

Update 2015-07-03: I just put in the new trio of springs tonight and I am very pleased indeed! I had previously put in and removed the brake due to an Achille’s Tendon issue but I’ve now put them all back in and they absolutely transform the pedals into a much higher quality pedal set. The feel is just so much nicer and more informative. I still say a must-have upgrade for G25/G27 pedal owners and well, well worth the price.

Update 2015-06-05: GTEYE has released throttle and clutch springs! I haven’t tried them but if they do for throttle and clutch what they do for brakes they’re a must have for G25/G27 pedal owners!

Update 2014-09-01: Following up on my concerns about my wheeled office chair moving too much because of the new spring stiffness – it’s fine now and my chair stays in one place. I didn’t need to do anything to the chair to get it to stick so I’m happy about that.

Update 2014-08-20: The pedal now feels very pliable now, very movable, not the stiff thing I thought it was in the beginning. This is great! I can still feel the progressiveness of it and I can still finesse the top range of motion into corners where fine motor control is needed. It’s amazing how much my perception of the feel of this pedal has changed, for the better, since I started using it just over a week ago. Well worth $30 as the first upgrade for Logitech G27 owners!

Update 2014-08-15: I have to say I’m back to normal and at home now with this new brake spring. I feel I’m more consistent, as well. I’ve put in a lot of laps of practice in iRacing before stepping into a few races and I have to say, while I had my doubts about how I would perform with the new brake spring, I performed quite well in the race and the brake pedal was really not a problem for me. This is a great upgrade and I highly recommend it for G27 owners!

Update 2014-08-12: I emailed the GTEYE guys about a less stiff but still progressive spring and he replied that it wasn’t really something they were going to do but he did give this interesting tidbit: “If you study the spring rate graph, you will notice that the initial spring rate is the same as the original spring, and by the end of its travel, its about 80% stiffer than the original. To my best ability this was the most appeasing to the larger audience, trying to find a one-spring fits all design, that does not detract in any way to the racing experience.

Update 2014-08-11 – 2: Just a few hours after I received the brake pedal, and I was getting 1:54s/1:56s on a course I can do routinely at 1:52, I’m already back at 1:52.5s high 1:51s! I’m also starting to feel how this brake is going to help me be more consistent. The resistance you feel from the pedal really helps you stick to a certain level of pressure much more easily than with the stock pedal which, I take it, is so easy to move around that your legs just don’t have that level of fine motor control. I’m very pleased to see how this is turning out so far!

Update 2014-08-11: Check your brake calibration! In iRacing I noticed a little bit of red was showing on the brake pedal meter while driving without touching the pedal. That meant the game thought I was pressing the pedal a little bit. No problem, though, just go to your options, click on the Pedals button and it’ll allow you to recalibrate. That fixed it for me!

GTEye Progressive Brake Spring for Logitech G27

I’ve just received my new GTEYE progressive brake spring (eBay page) for the Logitech G27. I’m writing this post as I assemble the pedals and then step into a game and actually try it for the first time going around a corner(!). My thoughts so far…


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Sim Racing – 2014 Thrustmaster FSR World Championship

I’m really fascinated by this FSR World Championship sim racing series I just found. It’s a complete world series, complete with professional drivers and sponsorship, including call-by-call qualifying and racing. It caught be by surprise that we already have a fully virtualized, top-tier, professional sporting event that is a copy of a real word sporting event.