While most of us associate a racing simulator as a tool you use at home, the team at SimMetric Labs has come up with a new approach to driver coaching and utilizing simulation by bringing the simulator to the track
Housed in a 45’ trailer, the SimMetric Labs mobile coaching lab is equipped with a CXC Simulations Motion Pro II and Coaching Station which adds a dedicated coaching PC, live telemetry, live eye-tracking and two-way radio system to the Motion Pro II. SimMetric Labs will be trackside with their mobile coaching lab at IMSA and select SRO Americas, FARA, and HSR races throughout the 2019 racing season.
SimMetric Labs was founded by Greg De Giorgis, a former race data engineer who has worked in various levels of motorsports for ten years, including the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, Ferrari Challenge and Lamborghini Super Trofeo. De Giorgis saw a need for mobile race simulation as a tool to help race car drivers and their driver coaches at race events. Track time is increasingly at a premium at professional racing events, and what little practice time there is can be reduced even further due to incidents, weather, or mechanical failure.
De Giorgis believes that track time is essential for increasing a driver’s performance. In many of IMSA’s support series, most drivers hold a Silver or Bronze license from the FIA because they do not make their living racing cars. When a driver has a day job, track time is even more valuable.
The SimMetric Labs trailer first appeared in the IMSA paddock for the Rolex 24 at Daytona and has been a fixture in the paddock throughout the season.
“We’ve enjoyed a steady stream of drivers coming to the mobile coaching lab – from rookies in their first season in the TCR class, to pros in GT-Daytona,” said De Giorgis. “Absolutely everyone who has driven the sim so far has had their expectations blown away.”
SimMetric Labs offers a variety of services at race events – beginning with Track Familiarization if it is a driver’s first visit to the track, reviews of in-car video and data after on-track practice sessions and qualifying and race stint simulations. While the approach is tailored to the driver, the goal is the same – to use the additional track time afforded by the simulator to work closely with the driver and unlock their speed. At a recent IMSA race at Mid-Ohio, for example, an LMP3 driver who had limited track time due to poor conditions was able to quadruple his track time on the simulator before his race.
“We treat the entire sim driving experience very seriously,” said De Giorgis. “We have drivers wear all the gear they’d wear in the car – shoes, suit, gloves and helmet. We raise the temperature in the sim room to match cockpit temperatures in their real cars, we make the follow pit lane procedures. All of this results in the most realistic experience possible from a driving simulator. The only way to make the experience more realistic would be to actually get in a real race car at this point.”
You can also test drive a Motion Pro II simulator with SimMetric Labs. SimMetric is also offering a 20-minute demonstration to registered competitors at any racing event that SimMetric is attending. Learn more about them at www.simmetriclabs.com.