Skills and Knowledge
How to steer on the racetrack
Smooth is fast
Steer smoothly. That's it. Smooth = fast.
We can basically end this article here, but that'd be boring, so let's elaborate a bit more.
Being smooth and limiting jerky steering movements means you are less likely to upset your car or lose traction. As you add steering input gradually, you can feel when your car is reaching the limit of its grip, and that balance point is where you are the fastest.
So how do you steer smoothly? The most important factor in smoothness is
Next, you should keep your hands at 9 and 3 o'clock on the steering wheel. This gives you the greatest steering range of motion. We expand on this more in
Hand movement while steering
When you’re turning the steering wheel, keep your hands in the 9 and 3 position for as long as possible. Don't steer hand-over-hand or shuffle your hands because taking one hand off the wheel, even if just for a moment, results in less control and smoothness.
Obviously, if you need to make a tight hairpin turn or correct a slide, you may need to take a hand off the wheel to turn it more than 180°, but for most turns you can and should stay at 9 and 3.