Riding brakes effective or just a waste of money? is it a bad habit that costs money or if it can genuinely be effective.
I’ve been a victim of riding brakes in the past and I know some very quick drivers who do it. But at a recent test in the company of two karting legends I was told that riding the brake is not quicker although they knew of a quick driver who has been guilty of going through pads quickly.
There was only one person we felt could give us the best opinion on riding brakes and that was Vic Eacott the Director of Motorsport Development at Frixa.
His response to our question was:
“I have been asked by the Karting magazine to give my opinion on what ‘riding the brake pedal’ does for your braking system.
Prevention is better than cure in some cases.
The majority of kart drivers (NOT ALL) are late juniors or senior kart drivers, who’s ability to drive a road car, to have their favoured left foot resting place on the clutch pedal, so, sub-consciously likewise in their kart, they rest their left foot on the brake pedal causing abnormal wear to the pad material and most probably, complain about the cost of the pads, brake disc and unsafe braking performances.
For those who suggest, loosening the brake cable so that the drivers left foot does not ‘’ride’’ the pedal / brake is an absurd and un-safe practice.
Look at the logic……….. it’s not as simple as it reads and, to ask a driver not to rest their left foot on the brake pedal especially, whilst in race mode going virtually full speed through a fast curve, all the forces of the kart and, the body weight is being transferred to the opposing side, so, it’s a natural posture to ‘bear down’ with the left or right foot / heel…..
For those who have this problem, please don’t loosen the brake cable as this will create an additional braking distance applying the brake…….it’s only a few metres but it could be the wrong few metres!!
A simple solution.
Aluminium strip 5 mm high and 10 mm width (you cut whatever length is required) to act as a heel rest, simply bolted / riveted to the floor.
This will allow the brake cable / pedal to be naturally adjusted to the right tension without creating drag on the brake and, it will save you money (pad material).
Use the foot rest as a support, NOT the brake pedal……
The other problem for those who ride the brake pedal……… friction – heat – increased nearside tyre pressure – unnecessary wear on brake disc – bearings – hubs – axle……..ALL HEAT RELATED problems, not just excessive pad wear.
I hope you can think, logically about this…”
So there you have the expert opinion on it, but yet there are very quick and successful drivers out there who go through pads quickly.
source: 1st August 2016 KartingMagazine.com