Unlike regular vehicles, braking in go-karts brings a whole different vibe – thrilling, appealing yet challenging. Besides slowing down the speed, the pro racers also use go-kart braking techniques to win the lap. However, it will take you countless efforts and practical experience to master the dangerous bends. But things may get easier after you know the following tips regarding when and how to apply the go-kart braking properly.
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When Should You Brake In A Go-Kart?
There will be no fixed answers to be given. So why do we say that? Go-kart braking mainly comes from practical experience. You have to combine the training lessons and also the realistic collision perfectly. And the acquired technique will take a lot of effort and diligence.
Many coaches have to spend a bunch of time instructing go-kart newbies on breaking points. It is very dangerous if you make some mistake. You may end up oversteering, drifting, or hitting other nearby karts.
Fortunately, there are some fundamental rules for the braking time in the go-kart. You will do the braking before instead of during a curve. The principle is opposite to that of normal vehicles, but you must remember and follow it.
Another pivotal braking rule is when you pass the curve. Slowly loosen the pressure as the track bends. Then, release the pedal gently and keep gaining control of your go-kart. Move it quickly forward on the right track. Importantly, accelerate to the maximum velocity after passing the last curve.
Last but not least, you also need suitable braking skills even on a straight track. Rear braking is crucial to avoid wobbling, turning sideways, or a terrible rollover.
How Do You Use Brakes On A Go-Kart?
Learning The Braking System
- Get used to the left side by pressing
With regular cars, you are prone to use the right foot to press the brake pedal. However, there will be a little change when it comes to using go-karts. It would be best to switch to the left foot as most go-karts offer the left-side brake. This change saves the time of switching between the pedals.
- Hit the brakes smoothly
Multiple hitting times won’t work the way you desire. Instead, press down once as you brake and then slowly release when needed. Always stay calm even in urgent cases for a safe drive.
Learning To Brake Around Curves
- Smooth braking in a straight line
Don’t brake until you enter the straight line. Or else, the back part may topple over or turn sideways on you. As a result, you may lose control, and the tire friction will hold you back on the lap.
- Stop braking when the track bends
When you hit the turning corner, please stop braking immediately. In other words, release the brake pressure and alter the direction.
Then, it is time to accelerate at the turn apex and run ahead.
- Constantly get ready for the upcoming curve
Many curves appear in a sequence in a short time. So you must observe and determine the next breaking point right after coming out of the last corner.
Learning To Trail Brake
- Begin braking ahead of the curve
As you head closer to the curve, you still press the brake on the straight line. At the breaking point, let’s put the maximum braking force.
This step will help you to go around the bends faster utilizing the friction of the tire.
- Loosen the brake as you curve
As you hit the turning point, start pulling your feet off the brake pedal quickly, but just partly. Stay under pressure to get ready for the next turning apex.
In particular, you need to keep around 20% energy to continue fighting the following bend.
- Stick your foot on the brake until the apex
Try to remain your feet on the brake pedal, and don’t take it off until hitting the apex. With a many-curve course, This position will support you greatly in the next corner.
- Pull your feet off the brake completely
Release the entire brake pressure after you pass that breaking point. Then, gain the control to keep your go-kart on the right track.
Front Brakes And Rear Brakes
As you know, these types of brakes are essential to all racing motors. We ensure that you will avoid owning a go-kart that lacks both. Generally speaking, front brakes serve as a grip to the whole front wheels. Similarly, front brakes do the same mission as the rear ones.
You may associate this sport with the legend of the all-time race – F1. Those types of racing are quite different in some aspects; worth mentioning is the brake position. F1 has a bias to the front, which means they tend to equip the front brake to the racing cars.
Meanwhile, go-karts do not have the two brake systems or the front blockage. They lean to the rear brake. However, there are some disadvantages to this kind of brake position.
By that, we mean the oversteering or drifting happening as you make a rotation. As you turn, you must press the brake pedal and the accelerator. Then, the rear part will remain stationary. But the front wheel will continue to oversteer or drift due to no force reduction brake.
Remember that there are always times when things go wrong even if you have done everything right.
Do Go-Karts Need Front Brakes?
The answer must be yes. Go-karts do need front brakes for a more stable turn. But usually, go-karts come with the rear brake.
While front brakes control the steering level of the front wheels, rear brakes do the same function on the rear sides.
Do You Trail Brake In Go-Karts?
As we said earlier, trail brake is not a safe but ideal method if racers apply it professionally.
Why can we conclude that state? Because trail brake technique will result in oversteer, which speeds up your go-kart. Especially near the last apex, the pressure you put and release on the brake will lead to your ending rank.
So the point is to gain enough practice time and skills to master the trail brake. Begin from the basic level and go up thoroughly step by step. Even when you have already been a perfect racer, the accidents may sometimes occur unexpectedly.
What Happens If You Press The Brake And Accelerator At The Same Time In A Go-Kart?
Occasionally, you focus too much on the competition and forget one important thing – press both pedals. We will say that inattention may gradually harm your kart.
Read two below downsides, and you will avoid placing two feet at the same time:
The first part affected lies in the built-in centrifugal clutch. Although there are no controlling requirements, the possibility of damage also occurs. Typically, both-pedal pressing may result in fast wear and other potential damages.
Another worth-noticing consequence is the bad performance of brakes. The brakes have to double productivity to make up for the accelerator engagement. As a result, both feet placed on the pedals will lead to rapid wear and also the overheating issue at the wheels.
What Are The Three Levels Of Braking?
- Level 1: Decide and pick an exact point to brake
Identify an appropriate point before the turning corner. With the available experience, you would self-estimate the safe distance for braking time. It is crucial even for a pro racer. A small mistake also pushes you down to the lower rank.
- Level 2: Press the braking pedal right at the chosen point
After picking the good points, it is time to show off your go-kart braking skill. Once you get to that point, slam right on the brake pedal with a maximum force of feet. Don’t forget to combine smoothly with the steering wheel rotation.
- Level 3: Release the pressure and keep on track
After passing the hard turning corner successfully, you could gently release the pressure and do some alternation. Usually, the kart will swing from side to side, but stay calm and get it back on the right track. Then, let’s run desperately forward to the finish line.
Acquiring the new topmost skill is always the goal of any racers. More interestingly, trailing a corner with the smallest degree will offer you an extremely stunning sense.
Thus, the braking element will contribute significantly to your victory if you know how to utilize it. You have enriched all must-know regarding go-kart braking. Then, let’s go to the race lap and put them into practice right away.
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