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NASCAR driver once overtook five other cars using physics trick he saw in a videogame

He actually used a wall assist
  • A NASCAR driver beat five other racers to the finish line using a move inspired by a video game
  • He went from tenth to fifth place
  • And while the wall assist wrecked his car – it’s a pretty incredible watch

Published on Apr 12, 2024 at 1:31PM (UTC+4)

Last updated on Apr 15, 2024 at 7:02PM (UTC+4)

Edited by Tom Wood

In a scene that looks straight out of Mario Kart, a NASCAR driver beat five other racers to the finish line.

And he claims to have been inspired by – you guessed it – a videogame.

He even used a wall assist to get ahead.

READ MORE! Lewis Hamilton confirms Mercedes departure for Ferrari

NASCAR driver, Ross Chastain, was able to go from tenth to fifth place, which allowed him to qualify for the championship.

He drove the car along the wall in what was a hell of a show for the audience.

“I played a lot of NASCAR 2005 on the GameCube with my younger brother Chad growing up,” he said in a post-race interview.

“You can get away with it. I never knew if it would actually work.”

NASCAR

He continued: “I mean, I did that when I was eight years old.

“I grabbed fifth gear, asked off of two on the last lap if we needed it, and we did.

“I couldn’t tell who was leading.

“I made the choice, grabbed fifth gear down the back. Full committed.

“Basically let go of the wheel, hoping I didn’t catch the turn four access gate or something crazy. But I was willing to do it.”

So it turns out that the trick works in video games and real life – but it will wreck your car.

And it’s not the first time NASCAR got extreme – this driver threw his bumper mid-race and gained a new sponsor that sells bumpers.

If combining gaming with driving is your thing you’ll love this Xbox-enabled dream car that’s a gaming paradise on wheels.

So how does the physics behind it work?

As you race on the track, the friction between your tires and the road creates what is called ‘centripetal force’ which turns the car.

The force required to keep you moving in a circular motion is equal to your mass times your velocity squared, divided by the radius of the imaginary circle you are making.

If your force is too low, you will spiral out of the circle.

The result will be making a much larger circle or crashing into a wall.

Ultimately, you don’t need to understand why – just know that it looks rad.

But if, like Chastain, you want to take a corner at the speed required in this video, there are several ways to make centripetal force – and turn – without flying off the track.

First, you can decrease your acceleration like most of the drivers in the race did.

Alternatively, you can start losing mass – throwing out car seats will help, for example.

Lastly, you can take the corner wider. 

Chastain chose the wildcard by adding more turning force that wasn’t coming from the friction between the tires and the track – it used the force of the wall to turn the car.

Sure, the friction of the wall will have slowed the car, but not enough to cancel out the benefit that came from taking the corner at such a velocity compared to conventional race driving.

Thankfully the damage to his car wasn’t enough to put him out of the final lap of the race.

Want to hear more racing news? This ultra-rare new Ferrari 499P Modificata is an ode to the Le Mans winner and costs a whopping seven figures.

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