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Re: Heel-and-toe (archive)

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Posted by Jonah on August 02, 2001 at 11:00:40:

In Reply to: Heel-and-toe posted by Ben FR on August 02, 2001 at 10:26:04:

Hey Ben, it's definitely good to practice for the track or for extremely aggressive street driving. However, the only time you should need to heel toe is when you need to apply very hard breaking while downshifting as in the approach for a turn that is much slower than you were previously traveling. In the street it is usually sufficient to downshift and blip the throttle separately from your breaking for a smooth downshift. The synchros will protect your transmission but they won't make the downshift very smooth unless you really ride the clutch which is not a good idea.
-Jonah

I haven't been keeping up on my heel-and-toe'ing, but like a bike, you never forget it. I first learned about heel-and-toe'ing a long time ago, but had a very hard time doing it for a long time. Let's just say I'm not coordinated :) Finally, after a bondurant course, I finally had it down perfectly, but after driving the coupe for awhile, the synchromesh has made heel-and-toeing an unncessary chore.

However, after making the realization that I hadn't been practicing my heel-and-toeing for that once in a blue moon day on the track, I decided to make a concerted effort to freshen up on this skill I hadn't really used.

In my opinion, the hardest part of heel-and-toeing is maintaining constant brake pressure while applying a short burst of throttle to match the engine revs in the new gear to the car's speed.

I don't actually use my heel to apply throttle and the toe to press the brake pedal. Rather I angle my foot so my three right toes on my right foot are applying the brake pressure, while the right side of my right foot applies the throttle. As the angling of my foot in this manner requires moving my knee inward, I have learned how far to lean before my knee gets in the way of the non-telescoping steering wheel.

Just a little narration of what's been going in my mind with my car in the past few days (It's been raining like hell here so I can't use it like I want to now).

-Ben FR





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