GTA 5 – Quick Guide to Open Wheel Racing

Most of the things shown below are just opinions. Feel free to share yours down in the comments section. I would like to hear what’s on your mind 😉

Open Wheel Racing Guide

Note: Credit goes to Azure Moon

A quick review on what Rockstar has done to the open wheel race game mode with the new update

  • New tracks and two new cars.
  • You now turn contact-less if you remain stationary on the track for a few seconds or have not catch any checkpoints for 12 seconds.
  • You can now change tire compounds whilst inside the pits.
  • New countdown procedure and car health HUD.
  • Newly added indicators for tire wear and mechanical failures such as sound and screen effects.
  • Tires now wear out faster.
  • New checkpoint sound effects.
  • Spoiler setups (front and rear wings) now have an effect on the overall performance of the car.

Which among the four is the best car to choose in all cases?

  • The Benefactor BR8 is the car to go if you want the most chances of winning in a race. The Progen PR4 can still be competitive if you still have it and are still in the verge of saving money to buy the BR8. While the Declasse DR1 is the cheapest among the four open wheel cars in the game, its performance on most tracks is mediocre.

Do Front and Rear Wing setups matter?

  • Yes. Rockstar has just fixed a bug wherein the downforce values of the cars would reset to its stock values as soon as the race starts. And because of this, front and rear spoiler setups now play a big role on how the car performs around the track.
  • Using the highest spoiler yields more downforce while having lower yields less.
  • Higher downforce means that the car would turn better at the cost of top speed. Perfect for tracks that have a lot of technical corners.
  • Lower downforce means that the car would would achieve a higher top speed but the car would become understeery (would turn less to the point it could be a chore to tackle corners). Not ideal since not a lot of tracks that are going to be created by people or even tracks by Rockstar have incredibly long straights (besides Lap it Up lol)
  • Overall it is up to you to tailor which wing setup is best for every track. Start by having stock wings and then gradually make your way up to the point that you’ve made yourself a setup that suits you and most of the tracks in the game.

Soft, Medium or Hard Tyres?

  • That depends on the length of the track and the lap count. You don’t wanna do a lot of stints because you are using softs in a 15 lap race. This not ideal because you are losing time while being inside the pits with every pit-in you do. You also don’t wanna choose hards on a 5 lap race on a very easy track with less technical corners as you would just sacrifice the true handling capability of the car which in turn would also cost time.
  • It is however recommended to start with softs if you are still learning the track. Surely enough you would force yourself to box (pit-in) because of how many times you’ve crashed onto a barrier or because of the other drivers that ram you.

Taking corners the right way

  • Start by going to the outside of the corner then to the inside until you’re close to the apex. Exit the corner by moving to the inside or to the outside depending where the next one goes. Go to the middle if it’s a chicane or an S-curve.
  • Braking is only mandatory on hairpin turns or on super tight corners given the nature of how glued the cars are on the road and how incredibly agile they are.
  • It depends on the corner whether you should turn in late or early — either of them could be faster. It is guaranteed however that you should brake hard when approaching a hairpin turn lol

KERS! (Kinetic Energy Recovery System)

  • Only use it on straights! Don’t use them on corners or you would send more power to the wheels at the back causing you to oversteer and lose control of your car.
  • Also helpful in overtaking if slipstream is turned off.

Clean overtaking techniques

  • In general, if there is a door wide enough for overtaking, go for it.
  • Don’t overtake on the outside UNLESS the inside driver is slow enough for you to pass them. It is risky and is very hard to do so.
  • Don’t overtake if the driver in the racing line (usually the driver outside the corner) is the one who is the first to approach the corner than you. You can however if you’re the first one to enter the corner and steal their position.


  • Try not to punt or take out drivers. You may lose your front wing and the victim’s rear wing, cause a racing incident and cost you time if you do so. In fact, most of the time you wouldn’t even benefit from it as, like I said, you’ll might lose your wings or your time.
  • Don’t grief. Heck, don’t even try being one by running backwards on the track. You’ll turn into a ghost once the “Wrong Way” warning appears on your screen.
  • Oh yeah, you’re on a big advantage when your FPS is higher than let’s say 140, scumbag.
  • Since the goal here is to catch as many checkpoints as fast as you can to get faster lap times, you can go outside of the track if you like whilst utilizing every bit of your car’s cornering capability. Think outside of the box 😉
Helena Stamatina
About Helena Stamatina 3204 Articles
I love two things in life, games and sports. Although sports were my earliest interest, it was video games that got me completely addicted (in a good way). My first game was Crash Bandicoot (PS1) from the legendary studio Naughty Dog back in 1996. I turned my passion for gaming into a job back in 2019 when I transformed my geek blog (Re-actor) into the gaming website it is today.

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