Sage advice from fellow sim racer and real-life pro race car driver, Tyler Cooke!
by Dean Chapman, Northern New Jersey Region PCA
What do you ensure you always do before a race?
Tyler Cooke, “I listen to some pump-up music, go over setup with the engineer, and focus on what I need to do to get the best result. A lot of times I am watching the broadcast and time charts to see how the car is doing throughout the stint and when the fall off starts. Knowing that information can help with finishing the race.”
What do you ensure you always do in a race?
Tyler Cooke, “I’m going to be corny for a second and say that I always try my best. You will not win every race, get on the podium every race, or sometimes even finish every race, but if you know you did everything you could then you can at least go home proud of your effort. I have been in 3rd coming to a green, white, checkered and had my race end. I was coming up with a strategy on how to jump 1st and 2nd when the field stacked up and the car behind me couldn’t slow down fast enough and jumped over the back of the car. Unfortunately, it bent the rear of the car and I could not continue. I was very bummed because If I had finished second, we would have clinched 3rd place in the championship, and 1st would have been 2nd in the championship. I looked at the positive side and just said I had the chance to do what I love, there are worse things in the world, but I would be lying if I said it didn’t sting.”
What do you recommend racers never do before a race?
Tyler Cooke, “Do not try to be a hero and win your first race. Take it as a learning experience. There is a lot to learn in every race no matter how long you’ve been driving, so absorb as much as you can in the beginning so that one day you will be the frontrunner to beat.”
What do you recommend racers never do while in a race?
Tyler Cooke, “Do not burn the car to the ground keeping up with the driver in front or pulling away from the field. Consistency is key. The drivers that finish the best are typically the drivers with the equipment at the end to do so.”