iRacing – Brake Dragging Problem

iRacing – Brake Dragging Problem

Brake dragging in relation to iRacing has been on everyone’s lips in recent days and an end to the issue is far from in sight.

Brake Dragging

Brake dragging in itself is not a novelty and has been used for ages, even in real racing series. Put simply, it allows you to get temperature into the brake and thus also the tire by braking, steering and accelerating at the same time.

The problem

The problem in iRacing is that brake dragging is possible without the side effects that occur in reality:

  • Increased tire pressure
  • Massive load on brakes and tires

The user PabloGz has summarized the problem in his video including a short demonstration:

Statement iRacing-Staff

We appreciate your patience as we have been monitoring and evaluating the increased discussion regarding drivers dragging their brakes during qualifying sessions in order to build more temperature in their tires.
First and foremost, it is important to note that iRacing takes these discussions seriously. Any delay in response by staff is a product of a number of internal discussions and tests. It is important for us to ensure we fully understand what the community is experiencing and discuss the impact that any, of a number of possible updates, would have on the service as a whole.
Secondly, it is important to note that the process of dragging brakes while warming the tires on an outlap is a commonly used real-world tactic across many levels of motorsport from club level all the way to professional ranks. iRacing’s physics model takes such heat transfers into account. This concept, in-of-itself, is not an exploit. This is simply part of the process of racing.
We are aware of everyone’s concerns regarding qualifying scrutiny and currently have our team evaluating what the most appropriate course of action is in both the short term and over time to minimize exploitive behaviors and to keep the on-track action as realistic as possible.
I can say that the first option that we are looking at is to make the qualifying sessions more transparent. The ability to view your fellow drivers during qualifying would make those sessions more entertaining while you are waiting but also would allow for community policing of unrealistic driving behavior (such as pit lane driving) and a simpler process to submit a protest. As with most things, making such a change is not changing a single line of code but we are looking at this as a change in the near future to help.
We are also evaluating our Qualifying Scrutiny Systems to improve their detection methods for unrealistic driving behaviors. We do currently have a stronger scrutiny level that would require drivers to maintain higher speeds during qualifying and we are currently looking at how such a change would impact the service as a whole. While weaving and dragging brakes is not a violation of the sporting code, requiring drivers to maintain higher speeds would minimize the reliance on such tactics.
Keeping the iRacing service a fair and competitive environment has always been a top priority. This is the reason that we employ a full team of Race Stewards and continue to develop systems such as our Qualifying Scrutiny System. We understand that the community would like us to do more and we are looking at what the best options will be to accomplish that.
See you on the track!

Greg West – iRacing-Staff

The team of iRacing has taken care of the problem and is currently working on a solution, which should be taken in the sense of the community. Two of the described possible solutions are:

  • Make qualifying more transparent and allow spectators to watch the other competitors. Possible offenses would then probably be punished via protests
  • A stricter minimum speed during qualifying to limit unnatural driving.

However, a change in the tire model does not seem to be an option at the current time.


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