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GTA 5 Open Wheel Race Tips

This guide rounds up almost all the things you should do while in an open wheel race.

Guide to Open Wheel Racing


  • I may not included every tip in this guide so please do refer everything that I happen to miss if you got any and I may review them and put them here right away.
  • I wouldn’t call this a complete guide hence it’s bearing the name “Very Quick” in the title because open wheel racing is a fairly new race mode and almost a different genre of racing here in GTA.
  • Why an almost different genre if you might ask? Well first curb boosting has no use in this race mode. Another you can mid drive (double clutch) and possibly brake boost but then there’s tire wear to take note of (more onto this later), and etc.

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.
  • Rapid tapping the throttle button on the countdown lights wouldn’t grant you the ‘boost’ start.

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

  • If you think that you’re not confident enough to win or are still new to open wheel racing, 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.
  • With the BR8 being the best choice according to me, I think that this is has the most chances of winning because of it having a greater top speed whilst being on par with the PR4 on most tracks. The PR4 can still be, again, competitive but I can only recommend you this car if you’ve mastered the turning physics of open wheel cars in the game (You know, you turn to the apex super close whilst getting a lot of speed). The PR4 gets its lap time from its agility on the corners whilst the BR8 gets its lap time from its top speed.
  • All in all, this question is purely subjective. Choose either two, heck even the R88 but not the DR1.

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 Tires? Best tire strategy?

  • 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.
  • On a 5 lap race if you don’t want to pit, if you know that the track has around a 30 second par time then you should use softs. Around 50 would be mediums. Anything above a minute should be hards but again that depends on the track because not all tracks are built the same; some tracks can be more technical and some are full of straights. This is just a guide for your convenience.
  • When learning the track with other drivers, it is recommended to start with softs regardless of its length. 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.
  • Any wheelspin is bad for your tires (this applies to brake boosting wherein you step on the brake whilst still pressing down your throttle on a tiny bump or crest to gain a momentary burnout boost, powersliding and oversteering). You could also preserve them by controlling the wheel spin of the car by half-pressing the throttle button whilst cornering if you’re using a controller.
  • Now that you can now change compounds whilst inside the pits, it would be a good idea to change to softs if you’ve ended up pitting near the final laps of the race.

The ‘Boost’ Start

  • On the countdown lights once all five of them lit up red, this is where you should prepare for it to go off and the race would start. Once all lights go off, this is where you should press the throttle. By doing so would grant a head start by giving yourself a brief boost.
  • Rapid-tapping your throttle before the countdown lights go off will not give you the boost. This has been patched by Rockstar with the new update.
  • This also works not just here in Open Wheel but also in other race modes.

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.
  • 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 😉
  • 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.
  • You should always take advantage of it, don’t earn it until the yellow bar underneath your mini map gets full or you would waste some when you brake. Maximize its usage.
  • 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.
  • There’s no need to curb boost the apex curbs. Curb boost is gaining suspension boosts on bumps found on the road.
  • Oh yeah, you’re on a big advantage when your FPS is higher than let’s say 140, scumbag.

Thank you!

As much as I want to adjust the time frame on making this guide to like maybe a month or two, I’d figured that there is no need to because this guide covers almost everything for beginners to learn from. Again, this is just a quick guide comprising of everything I know for you to get started in open wheel racing in GTA. I’m not into these kinds of races though because of how boring they are imo. What I am more into are just standard races because they are more challenging and more interesting to take part on. I expect that in the future, modders in the serious side of racing community would implement these newly-added features to the stunt creator though; take advantage of the car health HUD and all the other fancy things that had been added recently to the game mode.

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Written by Azure Moon

2 thoughts on “GTA 5 Open Wheel Race Tips”

  1. C:\Users\YourUserNameHere\Documents\My Games
    C:\Users\%USERNAME%\Documents\Rockstar Games\GTA V\Profiles
    Note: When it’s running, ALT+TAB and open task manager and go to Details, right click on the exe and “show folder location”.
    All done but profile file 📁not here


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