The Physics of Car Control and Race Car Handling for Drivers

The complete course only $97 USD for a limited time. 

Exclusive to owners of this course you'll receive free access to our "Car Control Workshop" , a series of zoom style meetups where we'll be be discuss the driver's view of car control. All meetups are recorded for those unable to attend in person.

Offer ends 30/04/2023, or earlier if the over-subscribed.


 In cornering, racing drivers depend on their “feel for the car”. This is common thinking amongst racing drivers.

But one problem that’s been around over the history of racing - drivers have difficulty explaining what it is they are feeling. What are the involuntary steering adjustments the driver makes when cornering? How does the racing driver do this without conscious thought?

In finding answers, new information from the field of cognitive science show us what's involved learning the skills you need in motorsport. Expert learning works through deliberate practise of the skills involved. In that learning and development process, the subconscious brain has an innate ability to select which sensory inputs to take into account, and what mental processing is required. The racing driver is not consciously aware and cannot get all the details on this, just by thinking about it.

However, by looking at the vehicle dynamics, the physics of what is happening at the tyre contact patch, we get insights into what the driver is feeling.

The racing driver’s awareness of the balance of the race car comes via the feel of this little recognised rotation motion of the race car.

As you steer into the corner and build grip at the tyres, increasing tyre slip angle gives rise to what is known as the “body slip angle”, this drift (or nose in) attitude of the car as you approach the apex of the corner.

A Visualisation of Car Control and the Body Slip Angle

The “body slip angle” is the angle between the vehicle centre line and the vehicle direction of travel. There is a geometrical relationship between the slip angles at the tyres and the body slip angle, where peak body slip angle represents peak grip at the tyres .

We need to reframe how we think about the race car in the corner entry.

Starting from zero body slip angle at turn in, as slip angles build at the tyres, the chassis rotates slightly, while the tyre contact patches continue to grip the road. See body slip angle β in the middle diagram.

If peak tyre slip angle (max. grip) is exceeded at the rear, then the car goes into oversteer and the body slip angle is ever increasing.

“Most drivers are acutely sensitive to the rate of change of body slip angle.” Damian Harty, Vehicle Dynamics Engineer and Author.

In vehicle dynamics engineering, the body slip angle is a key value in calculating/simulating cornering performance of the race car. It also works out, due to the properties of the pneumatic tyre, that the the body slip angle is equally important to racing drivers as well. 

With our training, "The Physics of Car Control and Race Car Handling", you integrate the body slip angle rotation feeling into your thinking. This information is not covered in any other training or race driving book.

You'll have a platform to improve what you do in practising/developing your  car control skills. Improve your skill in feeling the balance of the race car for understeer/oversteer. Give better feed back on the handling of the race car. Better feedback to help with analysing your data.    

In this online training we show you:

  • How the racers brain works in car control. The subconscious brain is controlling the process by feel alone. 
  • How the race car turns the corner with simple diagrams depicting the "forces and moments" acting at the tyre contact patches.
  • Descriptions of what is happening at the tyre contact patches and how that relates to driver feel.
  • Discussion on the racing driver's feel for the balance of the car, the stability vs agility (understeer/oversteer). This leads to the idea of "the balance trade-off"  - the trade-off between improving turn in vs getting to the throttle earlier in the corner exit.

    And much more.... We give you a complete end to end explanation of the vehicle dynamics relating to driver control. With this knowledge you can better understand your feel for the race car and the feedback you give on the suspension set-up car as well.

    If you're on the fence about doing this course, I want to take away all the risk with my 100% refund guarantee. If you  buy the course and it is not for you, let me know via email within 10 days of purchase and I will refund you in full. 


Getting started with the training is straight forward. On purchase, you get instant access to the complete course. You can proceed at your own pace and get help from me, Dale Thompson, as you need it. 

As you go through purchase and checkout, you are assured of the security of your information and the delivery of your course. If there are issues, email me, and I will fix it.

If you're thinking about going ahead and have any questions, please email me. [email protected] 

Dale Thompson
Co-Founder of Racing Car Technology and
Your Instructor in "The Physics of Car Control " Course