Asymmetrical Handling Still Plagues iRacing After Eight Years

There used to be a pretty hilarious meme floating around within the darker corners of the iRacing community, one which claimed that most of the simulator’s road racing content is inherently broken due to the underlying engine being more or less unchanged from the team’s last release – a commercial NASCAR simulator in February of 2003 in which the cars only turned left – and building upon this base generated highly unrealistic behavior when creating cars to attack traditional racing circuits. It’s definitely one of the more elaborate conspiracies surrounding the title, as any game that asks its users to fork over an arm and a leg for only a fraction of the content will undoubtedly generate some level of hostility towards it – and this is more or less the “jet fuel can’t melt steel beams” of iRacing, but in this case, curious sim racers have actually proven this to be correct with basic tests, and the problem is supposedly yet to be fixed after almost eight years in operation.

Yes, you read that right. The fifteen dollars iRacing members are forking over on a per-car basis to drive the plethora of European road racing content on the service, allegedly created with the utmost of accuracy and a pristine attention to detail far beyond what’s seen in other simulators… This money is instead going towards cars that are – to put it into simplistic terms – haphazardly placed over a generic NASCAR shell that’s hard-coded into the game’s underlying software, and the team are still yet to rectify this easily demonstrable vehicle behavior; brought up several times over the years by those unwilling to abide by the country club atmosphere and pretend the rather questionable driving physics are realistic, merely because the marketing department said so.

Several talented sim racers over the years have noticed that cars which are traditionally symmetrical in real life have an absurd tendency to oversteer in sweeping left-hand corners, while understeering in sweeping right-handers, which is a pretty fundamental characteristic of what happens when you take an asymmetrical American stock car to a road course. Some may note that the talent pool on iRacing is all over the place, and maybe these guys just haven’t gotten their shit together on the setup aspect – or outright suck at driving – but Finnish sim racer Mikko Nassi has gone through the effort of showcasing these tendencies on video at the game’s centripetal circuit, a concrete test pad where driving skill basically doesn’t apply.

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And as you can see in his several unlisted videos on the subject matter, the various cars he tries out indeed spin violently during left turns, while understeering towards the concrete wall turning right.

The original iRacing forum thread on this subject started in 2011, when the service was still in its growing phase, though physics guru and longtime public figure David Kaemmer has responded multiple times (1, 2) on the matter admitting it’s a problem, ending by saying it hasn’t been fully fixed yet, but “soon” – a sim racing code word for “sometime in the next three years.”  This was roughly fourteen months ago, and nothing has been mentioned about it since. Needless to say, it points to the fact that it’s a much bigger problem than iRacing originally thought it was; maybe it’s not even able to be fixed, as you’d think over eight years, they’d find a solution for it.

It’s quite sad to think that for every corner of every track that anyone has ever driven on iRacing, they’ve suffered from a car balance that is either too tight or too loose, primarily due to their car’s hidden asymmetrical characteristics that shouldn’t actually be there. However, at the same time this also explains why a higher concentration of iRacers refuse to spend time learning how car setups work compared to those who prefer to invest many hours in the products of a competitor; if you can never quite refine the car’s behavior because the setup balance will always be ruined due to the game’s underlying coding, what’s the point in open setup sessions to begin with? Why not just run the numerous fixed setup championships to at least somewhat avoid what is obviously a broken element of the game?

Apart from the fanboys, who come up with the most ridiculous theories as to why it’s not a problem or why it’s accurate for cars to handle asymmetrically – something even Kaemmer himself can be seen disputing in one reply, so at least he understands it’s a problem – everyone with half a brain, a pair of hands and a steering wheel can go out and recreate the same test results in the game’s free centripetal circuit to see something is fundamentally wrong. The only way around it for the time being is to build setups with a cross weight above 50%. As such, this problem doesn’t really affect oval cars because they hardly ever run 50% cross weight, but for the entire other half of the service, they are unknowingly fighting a losing battle in the garage area.

And for a service that promotes itself as the most accurate piece of software on the market today, alongside the extremely high financial entry fee, you’d think this wouldn’t be an issue – or at the very least it would have been ironed out in the service’s infancy.

But it’s still around. And anonymous iRacers, such as the one who sent in this information, are getting tired of it.

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129 thoughts on “Asymmetrical Handling Still Plagues iRacing After Eight Years

  1. I tried iRacing for 2 days in 2012, and my Cadillac kept spinning in the same slow left turn at Okayama no matter what, and I thought the game was just broken. Saved me hundreds of dollars, so I guess it’s a good feature after all.

    iRacing is more fake than the Holocaust.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Or you just suck, and can’t be bothered to fix the nut behind the wheel.

      Personally, I don’t notice any asymmetric handling, but I don’t discount Nassi’s findings. I imagine it’s a very subtle issue, and I’m glad it hasn’t ruined my racing.

      Like

    2. The Cadillac is a lot better now with the new tyre model and was really complete bullshit before. I don’t say it’s worth the expenses, because it’s the only car I like in iRacing.

      Like

  2. Game supposedly also doesn’t do tyre scrub, which in essence means that once you make the tyres lose longitudinal grip and start dragging them laterally, by drifting or whatever the cars lose their shit. I tried iRenting for a week, no. Just no.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. I thought it was established that the asymmetric handling was due to the effects of engine torque on the chassis. I read it somewhere in that long ass thread a year or two ago and it made sense to me… I mean you can see a pretty noticeable effect just sitting stationary in the pits and revving the engine; the chassis rolls to one side.

    That same force (obviously) is acting on the car while cornering so naturally the car would get a bit more oversteer in the direction of chassis roll.

    Also, I’m not going to pretend like I know anything about car dynamics or physics, but I have a little knowledge on the basic fundamentals of flight from my time as crew chief in the Army. In aviation there is a phenomenon called Adverse yaw that must be taken into consideration during turns. This is where the aircraft wants to yaw in the opposite direction of a roll. For example, if you want to turn right (which requires rolling to the right), the aircraft will also want to yaw left.

    I don’t see why this same phenomenon wouldn’t effect cars as well, however minimal it may be. I mean physics are physics.

    Like

    1. Actually two things going on there – one is roll in response to change in engine speed (accelerating the flywheel in one direction accelerates the car in the other), where your typical engine will put extra weight on the right tires when accelerating and on the left when decelerating.

      The other is gyroscopic forces, which act when you yaw the rolling engine, even at constant rpm – which creates a pitching force, in left hand turns it pitches the car forward, in right hand rearward.
      This one matches what’s observed in iracing, the obvious question “is it too much” well given that the spec miata, which has a weedy little engine, is able to switch from under to oversteer based on this alone… maybe.

      There’s a third one for solid axle cars, which is that the above forces are mostly pushing on the diff (not the chassis) so accelerating puts more force on the left driven wheel but that doesn’t apply to most of the examples in the article.

      Like

    2. It kind of is, the problem is iRacing is simulating it very inaccurately. Keep in mind that the SRF has a transverse engine for one so the real ones don’t really do that to start with but in iRacing the inertia is still applied as if longitudinal. But for all the other cars as well the mass being calculated in that effect is far too high because of the simplified way they simulated the inertia of the powertrain originally, so it’s massively exaggerated. (something about the pistons being considered spinning for example)

      Like

    3. Project Cars 2 doesn’t model engine torque, therefore engine torque is not actually a real thing and should not exist in any accurate simulation.

      Like

    4. WTF – are you dumb?

      This wouldn’t make sense in real life at all, no one would want to drive a car that is behaving radically (yes it’s a big) different turning left vs turning right.

      Fucking blind iRacing fanboy

      Like

    5. Adverse yaw is created by differential drag between semi-wings, not engine torque.

      It clearly shows that you learned nothing about aerodynamics.

      Like

  4. It won’t be fixed because there’s a 6 page thread called “where does the money go” where there same fanboys conveniently work with numbers that point to iracing only just covering costs,there’s no money to fix the major issues,only to produce new content that all display the same tyre flaws.
    Glad I’m not resubbing,the whole product a lie,dynamic weather lol,dynamic road lmao.
    There’s no simulation value of driving a car,only an arcade game where you race other shit drivers 8/10 times

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m familiar with that thread, and as expected, your reading comprehension is as non-existent as your premise.

      And by the way, Russ (yes, your inability to properly use commas has identified you), when your iR is barely above 2K, perhaps you’re the shit driver.

      I imagine the rFactor community can’t wait to have you all to themselves.

      Like

      1. Henke, you’re such a pretentious pseudo-intellectual. You would do well to memorize this:

        “Nothing is as peevish and pedantic as men’s judgements of one another.” ― Desiderius Erasmus

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I agree, albeit for different reasons than Erasmus, that judging others isn’t wise, and probably should have phrased my response with that in mind. Or not posted at all.

          Unfortunately, once I realized that Patchedupdemon was actually Russ Lowe, my annoyance got the better of me. That’s no excuse, but were you privy to his iRacing post history, you might understand my frustration.

          I apologize for the shit driver comment as well. 2K iR is well above average, and even if it weren’t, there’s certainly room in the community for all manner of drivers.

          Like

      1. Yes and no

        Rage was never built for racing in the first place, but seems like a very similiar (possibly the same) bug. It could be that the basic idea for the fix is appliable to iRacing for fixing it. But I guess we will never know.
        As you saw from the past, iRacing didn’t fix several game braking bugs sofar, so it is highly likely that they won’t even try to fix this one.
        The only thing they’re interested in is money … that means bring out more content so people buy it = more profit.

        Like

      1. Some fat fuck deliberately cut her body from the photo so that when she got a “match” on Tinder and showed up to the date, the guy saw her for the whale she was and ran her over for lying to him about her size.

        Like

  5. Ha! Totally unsurprising!

    iRacing is like a cult – you’ll have a hard time getting people on the inside to see reality , which for the record is:

    – brilliant licensing system
    – dubious pricing
    – gussied up NR2003 physics (pretty fun on ovals; glass tire nightmare on twisties)

    Like

    1. That’s about as accurate a summary as I’ve ever heard. Hard to believe that anyone who’s ever actually driven on a road course could accept iR’s tire model as “realistic”.

      Like

    1. Further (to add to oldGPLer) in real life you would compensate with weight, because such behavior isn’t desired at all. The car behaves completely different left vs right turns. You can’t extract like this full potential.

      Like

  6. Of all my sims, iRacing, F1 2016/17 and Forza 6 require the most adjustment in terms of changing my driving style to accommodate their bizarre handling models.

    With AC, rF2 and R3E, I’m able to jump in – even after weeks away from sim-racing – and drive naturally.

    I just got back from running an M4 at COTA and my IRL car control skills translated right into those sims with nearly zero adjustment needed.

    I guess iRacing is really useful to develop skills involving racecraft, but for actual vehicle dynamics it seems worse than useless. It’s actively misleading.

    Like

    1. Can’t speak to rF2 (not enough wheel time), but I agree – I very easily bounce between AC and R3E (personal preference for R3E, but AC is fun too).

      Like

  7. f1 2017, project cars 2 and forza7, this is truly golden year of sim racing, iracing is merely a reminder of dark times

    Like

    1. F1 2017 & Forza 7 & GT Sports are NOT simulations!
      They are Simcades. Just inform yourself how much is simulated underneath and then you very probably come to the same conclusion(s).

      Like

      1. I would go as far and argue that iRacing simulation is less believable than Project Cars or Forza. We run online league in the off-season with about 12-15 drivers who race in real life. Some of us tried iRacing and came to conclusion that the car does not behave like that in real life. So we went back to run forza/pcars as it is more familiar grounds.

        Yes – you can learn to drive fast in iRacing, but that is exploiting its quirks and we figured that it would mess with our experience more than it would help.

        Like

        1. @zumm yep, same in our community … actually there is a famous story here about Nascar Pro driver racing in iRacing and suddenly doing bad results for several season. When they (team) told him to stop and focus on real driving he suddenly was at the top again!
          It’s not enough evidence to come to a fair conclusion but for me it’s fucking clear what’s going on, especially given how there are so many known “bug”.

          Like

  8. It’s so funny to see even here, the iTard fanboys defending their broken game.

    I’m beginning to think the sim racing community needs to split into two groups:

    Group 1. iRenters with their love for spending stupid amounts of money on broken software and $12,000 replica cockpits, and aggressively defending their throwing money away as they have nearly bankrupted themselves.

    Group 2. Normal people.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Group 1: All fanboys that defend their sim no matter what and can’t admit obvious flaws

      Group 2: People that enjoy simracing and don’t worry too much about which sim is the best

      Group 3: Newbies that believe Forza / GT / F1 are simulations and have good driving physics

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Alrighty then, my new super computer is all setup and running, my oculus rift just came in and will be hooked up tomorrow, signed up for steam and bought assetto and all the associated content, bought all the Reiza Studio stuff.

    I can buy whatever but want to stick with worthwhile stuff, suggestions please, thanks.

    Like

        1. If you’re interested in an engrossing career mode, GTR2, Race07 and F1 2017 are likely good choices. You should also investigate R3E, and especially its Experience packs (DTM/WTCC).

          Although it doesn’t offer an expansive career mode, AC’s AI has supposedly improved quite a bit, and the driving experience is excellent.

          You can also join a league associated with most of the above titles, as well as Automobilista (which I guess you already have) if you’re interested in online multiplayer.

          Finally, if you’re interested in pickup online racing, iRacing is your best bet. Although controversial, there’s a reason why most of the top sim racers are members. Personally, I expect it’s no more, or less, realistic, than alternatives like AC, Automobilista or R3E, but it’s multiplayer infrastructure is unavailable elsewhere, and the racing is usually excellent.

          If you’re interested in iRacing, sign up for an introductory membership (I think 1 or 3 months are offered for around $10) and see whether you enjoy the free content.

          Like

          1. Thanks for the input, I was looking at getting the simbin bundle from steam,it’s only $40 for all their stuff.

            I’ve read good things about RR3 and will check it out, iRacing I’ll sign up when they have a good promo and I can put in the hours to take advantage, not being to use the content offline is a big turnoff tho.

            But hey again thanks for the input.

            Like

            1. Don’t buy all their stuff in a bundle, it will include obsolete stuff to their already obsolete stuff. Get GTR², maybe GT Legends and GTR EVO, and Race has 17 million silly expansions which Race Injection may make obsolete.

              Like

            2. I think both the SimPit and InsideSimRacing offer iRacing promo codes.

              I bought the SimBin bundle on Steam a few years ago for around $10 USD, and it offers excellent value, but make sure to visit NoGripRacing, and download the community patch that injects Porsche and Ferrari back into the GTR2.

              NGR also offers numerous other GTR2 mods that are worth your consideration, while RaceDepartment hosts mods for everything else.

              Like

          2. Get cancer @Michael Henke

            GTR2, Race07 are outdated
            F1 2017 is Simcade

            R3E is a below average sim

            The best sims atm:
            Project CARS 2, rFactor 2, Assetto Corsa, Automobilista
            Thats it

            Like

  10. Hey look, its the reason everyone hates the sim racing community.

    “oh no, cars have exaggerated drivetrain inertia effects, the company is terrible, everyone who gives them money needs to die because of their personal preference of hobby”

    Like

    1. It’s more like the reason the sim racing community hates itself. No one outside of sim racing gives a fuck about the tiny irrelevant community.

      Like

  11. forza 7 not only give you over 700 cars and over 30 tracks with multiple layouts for $60 but also more authentic set of car physics than iracing, and thus higher simulation value level

    Like

    1. Even Forza 7 is infact a Simcade – it very possibly might be more realistic than iRacing, sad story

      Reason: Multiple heavy physics bugs like the one above and F7 has rain etc.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s interesting to see just how much he really does have in common with the dominos pizza autist he was featuring a while ago.

        Like

        1. Yeah, cause there are pizza boxes on my roof and I’ve got my own custom fire suit.

          At least my work actually does sponsor me and I don’t just say they do to keep up the facade.

          Like

          1. You’re still keeping the “i’m doing all of this for the well being of the sim racing community” facade blog you started two years ago.

            So you rile people up to gain money, nice confession.

            Only a bad guy like ian bell could hire another one without integrity like austin ogonoski (aka james).

            Like

          2. That video isn’t even funny dude, by today’s standards you are still just a “dumb” kid, yet you come across as sincere, clearly respectful of your employer’s money(equipment) and your own stuff as well.

            It really puts perspective on what makes you such a target of contempt and loathing, not only have you a mind of your own and the ability to express it but you didn’t get an advanced degree from a college to do it. Let’s not forget the huge wallet suck that goes along with those degrees. Your big sim investment is $350 Canadian, which is like $10 US and you run circles around the sim daddys, no wonder they are so SAD.

            Your day job is sim racing, for shits and giggles you have a blog on sim racing, your hobby is real racing, hmm yea clearly your life sucks and you should get a grip there buddy.

            Liked by 1 person

    1. I think it’s great how he is able to compete at a high level using such basic equipment. His rig proves that spending $10k on a bunch of buttkickers, button boxes, DD wheels and other extraneous bullshit won’t make you any faster.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The quest for immersion in sim racing is a false lead.

        No matter how much $$$ you spend to “feel” like you’re sitting in a real race car, at the end of the day you’re still hanging out in your room playing largely unfinished and visually unappealing video games.

        There is no point in paying more than the baseline entry fee (a mid-range wheel & pedals) because nobody will reach the ultimate level of immersion sitting in their bedroom.

        “Oh, but in the long run it’s cheaper than going out and doing the real thing.”

        Well see, it’s not. With what’s on the market today in terms of building a sim rig – all the frames, wheels, bases, buttkickers, etc – building a killer sim rig quickly approaches and then eclipses the cost of getting into grass roots auto racing.

        Now unless you’re kidding yourself, most of us here would love to turn laps in a race car. So why not just put your money towards that?

        Like

        1. I see your point James , but some people don’t have time to put into dragging cars around to the race track , fixing it when need be and most cars be it racing cars or tough street cars which I have had a few off can and will be a absolute money pit in general .

          I don’t have a problem with the $5000 that I have spent to have a bit of fun at home when time permits . I may have to upgrade a wheel every 3 years or so but that’s about it , oh lets not forget the price of a new game or 3.

          Its up to the individual and there life constraints and I’m sure most of us have some all be it financial or time.

          I just cant agree with your way of thinking on this one , we are not all Dominos Pizza Nutters.

          Like

        2. As far as I’m aware, Spec Miata is about as grassroots as American road racing gets (outs of Le Mons, which I’m not that interested in), and I’m pretty sure it’s a substantial investment.

          Perhaps Kondor can provide further insight, but I’m not sure grassroots road racing and sim racing are cost equivalent.

          Nor do I agree that sim racing immersion is an impossibility.

          VR provides astonishing in-car presence, the racing feels very real, and stuff like like high end pedals, DD wheels and Buttkickers are just icing on the cake. Completely unnecessary, but useful additions if you have the money and interest.

          Like

          1. I may be wrong but I see a big difference between the people that play these games for fun and the competitive urge we have and the people that tell themselves that this hobby is just like actual on the track racing.

            Most racing in real life is the kind Austin does with the beater cars, you go to the junk yard or auctions and spend as little as possible for something that runs or can be made to run laps on the local shitty track around town.

            Like

        1. That is not true for most autistic illnesses

          A doctor once told me, autism has a huge variety of symptoms …
          1 autist can be agressive as fuck, the other 1 is saying not a fucking word

          It could be that Austin is little autistic or something else (ie. ADD), but its small and tbh he is successful enough in life that it’s not hindering him. Thereby it is not a problem.
          If it’s not a problem for you in your life, then there’s no problem at all – that’s what all psychiatrists & psychologists will tell you!

          Like

          1. No wonder the diagnosis of Autism has exploded in popularity.

            Apparently, all that’s required is even a passing interest in something besides pop music, Reality TV or porn.

            I’ve got a friend who’s a real estate developer whose net worth is in the $10’s of millions. He just took delivery on an F12. He’s got an entire room set aside for little models of airplanes, tanks and cars, with 80’s movie posters on the walls and a custom replica of that ChemRail gun from “Elysium”.

            I guess he’s “autistic” as well.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Autism is a meme as much as it is a diagnosis, and that’s kind of blurred the lines between 4Chan autism and like, actual debilitating autism that affects one’s well-being.

              No pizza boxes glued to the roof just yet, so we’re on the safe side.

              Like

                  1. that has nothing to do with your obsession and personality.

                    In fact, you’re just confirming your manipulation through “media power” that you’re serving to the sim racing community. Something other people also mentioned in the past that you do with your blog.

                    It just raises the question, how much of your controversial articles are with exaggeration and dubious facts, only to go up in popularity. All of this is for your self gain and not for the gain of the sim racing community. A “sim racer” that only praises console simcades… enough said.

                    Liked by 1 person

                    1. Sorry for praising genuinely good, finished games, and not eternal science projects crafted by developers who rely on their legions of over-zealous fans to make concessions on their behalf.

                      Like

                    2. – reply to james

                      so why aren’t all sim racers playing those wonderful games you praise so much instead of the shit sim racing games?

                      Maybe because they aren’t as good and for the taste of most sim racers. But the problem is that you don’t take in account the preferences of the sim racing community. You want to impose us what is good/bad according to your opinion.

                      You write article after article but you keep coming back to sim racing games. Those console simcades aren’t satisfying enough and for a long time? No problem, in three months there will be a new console simcade you can buy and forget about the last one.

                      Liked by 1 person

    2. You need a new amp, Austin. Or look into amp and effects modeling software for the computer, it’ll sound a million times better than what you’ve got there.

      Like

  12. This is all very old shit you posted here and iRacing was shit before the Porsche Cup and new tyre model. I still don’t like it in many aspects, but the driving got a lot better to be fair and you didn’t provide any evidence that the problem still exists.

    Like

    1. Unless I’m mistaken, the problem does remain, but it’s subtle enough that most never notice.

      That subtlety may make it hard (i.e. time consuming and expensive) to diagnose, and given the lower hanging fruit available to work on, less of a priority.

      Like

  13. Wish I could cash in on black privilege ( diversity quotas, affirmative action, being able to say anything you want about other races, being able to hit a white person with a Mag-lite and be portrayed as the “victim” etc. )

    Like

  14. i quit iracing early this year after being there every year for the last 6 years and owning 80% of the content..i thought I might be there for life but I started to see a pattern in things getting swept under the carpet and how they prioritised things..and the lack of knowledge in some areas were obvious.

    i started online sim racing back in the gpl days but the iracing community has to be the most toxic community I think I have ever experienced.

    I got disillusioned about how ‘some’ of the cars handled and always felt I had to drive ‘wrong’ to be fast, something always felt off (remember the 40mph death spins in the miata lol) that were defended to death by the die hard racing fans..even telling gizzy he was wrong when he said the v8 supercar did not drive like the real thing..people telling him he was wrong and didn’t know what he was on about,rather than asking how it could be a improved…I swear iracing is like a cult membership.

    I miss the online experience of iracing,no one does that better but I miss my racing and I need to find another sim to play now,

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And get a mortgage, a student loan and a wife that’s going to take everything with her when she finds a sugar daddy.

      Austin is so immature. 😦

      Like

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