Left foot versus Right foot braking

November 11 2010

For years I've been playing F1 racing sims and I've been left foot braking, think the blending of the throttle with the accelerator helps with balancing the car, and it does.  However, I've never been happy with the 'feel' of the car when left foot braking in F1 2010.  I tried right footing for a bit but it didn't feel natural.   My pedal setup for F1 2010 has me using the clutch as the brake, mainly because it offers less resistance than the actual brake pedal and I found it easier to moderate.  When left foot braking with the harder sprung pedal I wasn't pushing it all the way to the floor the time.

I've peformed ok left foot braking, but it still just didn't feel right.  Sometimes I felt like I was trailing the brake when I could be accelerating and vice-a-versus and this was effecting my lap times.  On the way to work this morning I was listening to yesterdays (#184?)  Formula1blog.com podcast, where Paul Charsley talks about left and right foot braking and how left foot braking does use more petrol although it can aide balance in high speed corners.  Right then I decided to really give right foot braking a proper try.

I chose Time Trials on Suzuka as my test track.  Suzuka because it's the next race in my AtomicF1 racing comp and also because I don't have a ghost time on it yet.  I used my race setup for this test, as I didn't care about setting a time trial time.   It's been a few weeks since I've done Time Trial, spending my time doing Practice and Career mode.  The first thing I noticed was that it felt like I had driver aides on.  I checked my settings and I did not, but that's how much "fake" grip the car gets.  I felt a lot better about abandoning TT as a place to refine my setups.

I set a 1:34.xxx left foot braking.  It was a tidy lap and no complaints, hitting the spots I had been hitting in Practice.  Switching to right foot braking and I was 1.5 seconds faster by my second lap. I noticed the car was more stable under braking and I could brake later and turn better.  While my feet felt weird, and it didn't feel as smooth, because I has literally stomping on the brake using my whole leg and then heel-toeing the gas, my god it was faster.

This is the lap time I end up with after about 20 mins trying… Note, this is a race setup not a Time Trial setup! (ie I didn't go download it from the 'net, I refined it myself over a few hours of  (left foot braking) practice laps).

Left Foot Versus Right Foot Braking Suzuka 12 Fastest In World

Yes. That's 12th fastest in the world, and I wasn't trying to set a Time Trial time.

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