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Cars travel at their fastest speeds when moving in a straight line, and Formula 1 is no different. F1 racers drive at over 215 mph on the straightest parts of the track. But when it comes to turning around tight corners, these kinds of speeds just aren’t possible. In order to avoid spinning out and crashing, racers have to slow down and use physics to strategically craft the most efficient turns while retaining the greatest amount of speed, ideally giving them a leg up against the competition.
The most efficient path through any corner (or set of corners) is generally referred to as the “ideal racing line.”
This line changes depending on the path of the track before and after the curve, but the goal is always to spend as little time in the turn as possible. That means using the entire width of the track to minimize the angle that the car will take around the turn, ultimately allowing drivers to carry the most speed through it.
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