Reigning Supercars teams champions Shell V-Power Racing have employed the use of a race simulator to help prepare its drivers this season.
The Queensland operation has installed a race simulation system in its workshop after securing a partnership with leading race-simulation company Simworx.
Simulators have become vital tools in motorsport across the world as technology continues to improve to the point that the virtual recreations of circuits and cars can be a realistic alternative to real world testing.
The team took delivery of the system earlier this year in the hope that it can assist its drivers Scott McLaughlin and Fabian Coulthard given the strict testing restrictions imposed by the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship.
McLaughlin says he has been impressed by how close the simulator can mimic the feel of driving his Ford Falcon FG X
“The feedback coming though the steering wheel, the way the pedals and gearshift feel genuinely mimics the real thing,” said McLaughlin.
“Combined with the motion force through the hydraulic system, you can get a genuine feel for how the car might be handling around a particular circuit before we even get on the plane.
“It allows me to get my eye in before hitting the track, and that’s awesome when the field is separated by tenths of a second.”
Coulthard believes the tool has already proved to beneficial this season.
“Having tools like this simulator in our possession means that we are heading to the track with laps under our belts and a feeling of preparation that we’ve not previously had,” said Coulthard.
“I think that being able to simulate on-track scenarios has definitely assisted our performance at each event.”
The Queensland squad is not the only Supercars team to turn to race simulators to assist its preparations for events this year.
Erebus Motorsport purchased a state-of-the-art Motionforce simulator earlier this season, while McElrea Racing has an identical rig which has been used by several top Supercars drivers to hone their skills.
VIDEO: Shell V-Power Racing drivers tackle the simulator