Martinsville Speedway is famously a rhythm track. Over the course of 500 laps and 1,000 braking points, the throttle and brake have to applied within inches of the same spot with regularity.
Parker Kligerman showed exactly how to find that rhythm on Thursday’s NASCAR America and what is needed when one is forced out of the preferred groove by another driver’s aggression.
“Now it starts to get single file,” Kligerman said. “And we have to get into what we call a rhythm. Rhythm is about listening to the engine and doing everything in repetition. So here we come off the corner. You don’t want to spin the tires. Listen to the engine get to about 9,000 rpms. And then it’s braking down into the corner. Let it roll. Listen to the engine as it gets to its lowest octave and then accelerate again.”
A driver is not alone on the track and cannot always control their own destiny. There will be 39 other cars to contend with this weekend at Martinsville. One of the keys to success is recovering quickly after a driver gets bumped out of line.
“Suddenly someone gets to the inside of you,” Kligerman said. “They move you up the racetrack a little bit and this knocks you out of your rhythm so now you’re forced to the outside and you’re fighting against someone.”
On the outside, drivers have to fight against a tendency to overdrive with dirty tires.
For more on how to get around Martinsville, watch the video above.