How to Get Better at F1 23 (and Win Races)

Written by Bushi

Let’s be honest with ourselves: nobody races to finish in 5th place. We all race to win. However, some people tend to win races more often than others (like 2-time F1 Esports Champion: Jarno Opmeer).

There’s more that goes into consistently winning races other than just being the fastest person on track. So, in this written tutorial, I will teach you how to get better at F1 23 and win races more consistently.

My League Racing ExperienceBushiAntz

As I mentioned in my blog about how VirtualGP was created, I was a sim racing YouTuber for roughly 4 years and in those 4 years, I did a lot of league races and in many notable leagues as well.

I’ve won races in WOR, PSGL, and the F1 Creator Series.

A lot of the time, I wasn’t the quickest person on the track; I didn’t win my first league race until at least a year after I started because I used to race people much quicker than myself.

For example, I’ve raced Thomas Ronhaar and Jake Benham in different F1 2020 & 2019 leagues, respectively.

Even in the F1 Creator Series moving forward in time, I regularly battled with some of the fastest and most well-known F1 creators and still came out on top.

Winning against Tom97, Alex Gillon, Tiametmarduk and more.

So I’ve had my fair share of success in league racing, so let’s dive into how to get better at F1 23 because what YOU need to start winning races may differ from others.

First Off, Improving Your Laptimes!

I know. I just mentioned how being the quickest driver on the track isn’t necessary for winning races, and it’s not. However, if you’re not at least on par with the best in your tier, then winning races will be very difficult.

So, the best place to start is learning to improve your lap times, which can be done in various ways.

Racing Line

The lines you take through each corner can determine how quickly you are around a particular circuit. Some corners require specific techniques to get around them quickly, and others may require different techniques.

For example, hairpins require a different approach to get around quickly compared to a 90-degree right-hander.

There are usually 2 different ways drivers will approach a hairpin: either by using a double apex approach (also known as V-ing off the corner) or a late apex approach.

The “normal” late apex approach is done like this:

Firstly, you will brake later into the corner. This is because you will be doing most of the turning late into the hairpin to allow for a later apex.

After braking into a hairpin late, you will turn in later than usual. This ensures that the exit is taken with the car as straight as possible, allowing you to get on the power much quicker. Once you’ve done that, you will hit the apex (the point where the car is closest to the corner) towards the end of the cornering sequence.

A “double apex” approach usually goes like this:

Usually, you would brake at the typical braking point or potentially even earlier, depending on the corner, so you can turn the car early to hit the first apex.

Once you’ve hit the first apex, you can allow the car to drift out wide slightly and then hit a sharp turn before hitting the second apex. Once you’ve done this, your line around the corner will look like a V.

Double Apex Corner

Hence, it’s also known as “V-ing off a corner.”

The best way to learn how to improve your racing lines for each track is by watching track guides and then taking what you’ve learnt from them and hitting the track to practice.

I used to make very detailed guides, going through corners slowly before showing you how to take each corner of a track in real-time. Here’s my F1 23 track guide around Qatar as an example:

Braking and Acceleration

Another way people are losing a lot of time out on track is through the braking and acceleration phases of each corner.

Understanding WHEN to brake into a corner & accelerate out of a corner and HOW can be the difference between being in the top 5000 on Time Trial vs. being in the top 500.

When I first started league racing, I was at least 4 seconds per lap slower than the Esports drivers at any track; moving forward to 2023, I was only, on average, 5 – 8 tenths slower than the majority of Esports drivers over a single lap. Most of that improvement came from learning and understanding how to brake and accelerate into and out of corners.

I didn’t get to make a tutorial on F1 23 for it. However, I made a trail braking tutorial on F1 22 that will still give you the tips and tricks needed to improve your braking:

I also did a tutorial for acceleration (or traction control) on F1 22 that will help as well and, to this day, is one of my more popular videos:

Next, Your Racing IQ…

Now that I’ve briefly gone over how to improve your lap times, it’s time to discuss the next way to enhance F1 23: your racing IQ.

Super important and isn’t usually something you can pick up. This is learnt through experience.

Your racing IQ means how much you can understand how a race is unfolding and what you need to do to maximise your result.

Because here’s something you might not hear much elsewhere…

It’s impossible to win every race.

Take a look at Max Verstappen. Breaking Sebastian Vettel’s long-standing record of 9 race wins in a row, Max won 10 races in a row, and right after breaking that record, Red Bull had a horrible race weekend at Singapore, with both drivers qualifying outside the top 10.

Knowing that it would be a tough race to win, Max tried to maximise his results instead and finished with a solid P5 result starting from P15 (which Max only got P5 due to Russell’s rookie mistake on the final lap).

F1 2023 Singapore Results

Drivers who win many races don’t tend to focus on what they can do to win. They focus on what they can do to maximise each result.

Jarno Opmeer’s last to first win at China during F1 2021 Esports showcased how much he understood how to pull a result out of nowhere. Track in full wet conditions, he understood that the track was going to dry out quickly and opted for the intermediate tyres vs. the full wets like everyone else.

This almost immediately proved to be the correct decision as he ploughed through the field throughout the race to go from P20 to P1. A feat that I don’t think has been repeated by anyone else (DON’T QUOTE ME ON THAT).

So, the best way to improve at F1 23 is to learn how and when to take certain risks to maximise your results.

Learn what the track conditions will be as quickly as possible, plan a race strategy around that and focus on getting the best result.

Setups Also Play a BIG Part!

Something else you may not here in other places is to focus your setup on the race vs. qualifying.

It’s great to be quick over a single lap and get pole. However, the race is where points are scored, and a setup geared towards being quick over 1 lap vs 71 laps can quickly turn you into Charles Leclerc (somebody who doesn’t have an excellent pole-to-race win conversion).

For setups, I can only recommend Sim Racing Centre. With setups made by Esports drivers and Engineers, I used their setups myself to win races. It saves a lot of time having to learn how to make them yourself.

Lastly, Practice!!!

Yes, I know, the thing nobody likes to hear, BUT it’s true. Taking everything you learn from written tutorials like this one or video-based ones and learning to apply it to yourself will take you to a level beyond your competition.

Esports drivers get to the level they do simply because they spend hours practising every day.

From testing different setups to understanding the best lines to take on a lap, each component is something they will typically spend hours working on to perfect.

So get out there and start practising!!!

I recommend first focusing on improving your 1-lap pace by slowly learning how to tackle each type of corner and putting it together.

Once you’ve noticed some significant improvements to your 1-lap pace, you can practice your consistency over a race distance. Being able to read a race and plan your strategy accordingly can only come from experience doing multiple league races.

Some Final Words

When it comes to sim racing, the only way to see actual results is by learning the proper techniques and putting them into practice.

As mentioned before, this is the path you need in a 30,000-foot view of how to get better at F1 23:

Improve Your Laptimes -> Practice Race Strategies & Setups -> Gain Experience Through Actual Races (to Improve Race IQ).

I will be going more in-depth on my experience improving race IQ and how it’s helped me make podium-finishing (and even race-winning) decisions during a league race. If you have any more questions, please comment below (or privately email me at

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