In the Touring Car discipline, if you wish to nudge your opponent out of the way or trade a bit of paintwork, you can do exactly that. In the Open Wheel discipline, you don't get that luxury. A faint touch can be the difference between a podium place and the middle of the pack as the cars are much more fragile. GRID Autosport will be bringing this racing discipline to the masses when the game is released later this month.
Open Wheel features purpose-built cars that are designed to pack as much power as possible into their lightweight frame. Optimal racing lines and perfect braking points are required to take seconds off your lap times. Slipstreaming becomes extremely important if you're to perform the cleanest of passes. However, if you move into the slipstream of the car in front to be able to overtake, your braking distance will change. Get it wrong and you could run into the gravel trap, the runoff area or even take out another vehicle. Other drivers will be able to use your slipstream too, so you must always keep an eye out behind you. The AI opponents will opt for clean racing lines so it is your human opponents of which you need to be most wary.
The discipline features large grid sizes filled with cars of a "similar or pre-defined specification". This means that most Open Wheel races will only feature cars from a single class. Codemasters namechecked the Dallara F312, Lola B05/52, Dallara IndyCar, Catherham-Lol SP300R, Ariel Atom 3.5, KTM X-Bow R, Ariel Atom 500 V8 and Caparo T1 as vehicles that players will be able to use. They will be sports-tuned and will offer a lot of grip while racing on the track. Car Handling Designer Luke Stephenson explains in more detail:
For raw acceleration and agility, nothing can compare to cars from the Open Wheel discipline. These are lightweight, stiffly sprung racing machines that will change direction faster than anything else. The Open Wheel discipline includes a couple of different kinds of car: first, cars such as the Ariel Atom, which are nippy, rear-engined and love to oversteer through the corners. Then there are the mid-engine Formula cars, with thick slick rear tyres and lots of downforce, providing incredible grip that encourages drivers to attack the limits with real confidence.
Smoothness, precision and bravery will be rewarded in these cars; but with such high power to weight ratios and so much grip, drivers will need sharp reflexes to stay out of the gravel if they get it wrong.
Players will be able to take part in Open Wheel career events and championships, as well as taking their skills online, on circuits such as Circuit Mont Tremblant, Indianapolis and Spa Francorchamps. You'll need to practice and qualify as well as taking part in the daytime races. This trailer shows racing drivers, including British Racing Driver Club Rising Stars Jake Hill and Alice Powell, Young Racing Driver Academy member Danny Keirle, and Arden International Motorsport’s GP3 racer Patric Neiderhauser, as they explain how to win in cars that "take a bit of holding onto".
As well as the Open Wheel and Touring Car events, players will also be able to take part in Endurance events, Tuner events and street races throughout the "huge" career that features more than 100 routes across 22 locations. There will be different sets of cars that are dedicated to the different classes, such as Touring Cars, Hypercars, Endurance GT Cars, Prototypes, Single-Seaters, Super Modified vehicles, Drift cars and more.
Codemasters also decided to give us a panoramic peek at a selection of the race courses. Click on the image within the screenshot viewer to enlarge it.
If you don't feel like pre-ordering the Black Edition of the title, this is likely to be the box art that you'll be finding on your shelf instead.
Practice precision movements when GRID Autosport is released on June 24th in North America and June 27th in Europe.