Vehicle balance is the most significant factor in driver confidence and the best way to prepare your talent for race day.
Driver Confidence is a critical variable in F1® Manager 23’s races. When confidence is high, drivers will perform consistently lap after lap and take opportunities to overtake their opponents. When low, the risk of making a mistake increases, seeing them lock up on turns, shy away from attempting overtakes, and potentially even crash.
The most crucial factor in Driver Confidence is Setup Satisfaction, representing how comfortable the driver is with the car’s balance. Setup Satisfaction accounts for a significant share of a driver’s confidence going into a race, so we've put together this handy guide to help you learn everything you need to know about this vital system.
For more information on the other factors in Driver Confidence, read our F1® Manager 23 Drivers guide.
F1® Manager 23 setups take time; you are unlikely to find the optimal balance on the first try. While your driver will spend a race weekend’s practice sessions focusing on learning the track, your attention should be on tweaking and adjusting the vehicle to make it perfect for race day. Your attention here will lead to a better performance in qualifying and the race itself.
Race weekends usually begin with three back-to-back Practice sessions, where drivers can learn the track and familiarise themselves with their vehicle. As your drivers participate, as well as increasing their Track Acclimatisation and Car Parts Knowledge scores, they will collect feedback on the current balance of the car. There are five areas they can give feedback on to their Race Engineer – Oversteer, Braking Stability, Cornering, Traction, and Straights – ranging from bad to optimal.
Once your driver has collected feedback and pitted their car, you will see their satisfaction with the current setup and suggestions for improvement.
While the car is in the pits, you can tweak it to find the optimal balance for its components. A slider represents each area of the car, with the current setting appearing as a white marker and the driver’s feedback as a blue boundary. By making minor adjustments to the car’s Front Wing Angle, Rear Wing Angle, Anti-Roll Distribution, Tyre Camber, and Toe-Out, you can move the white markers on the setup sliders, aligning them within the blue boundaries.
Each component you adjust impacts multiple aspects of the car’s balance. Changes made to Toe-Out, for instance, will change both Braking Stability and Cornering. Adjusting some components, such as the Front and Rear Wing, will impact every aspect of the car’s balance, sending the sliders in different directions. You will often need to tweak multiple components to find the perfect setup.
Once you’ve confirmed the changes, your pit crew will make the adjustments, and your driver will return to the track, gathering fresh feedback on the new setup. When they next pit, the blue boundaries will narrow, allowing you to make finer adjustments, bringing the car closer to an optimal balance.
Often, when your driver first feeds back on the car’s setup, you will discover your adjusted settings, while better than before, fall outside of the updated blue boundary. Make your adjustments and get the setup within the blue range, and the driver will again test the car and provide feedback – though, if you get the marker inside the smaller boundary, they will always be happier than before.
While you have final control over a car’s setup, making all the adjustments yourself, your driver’s relationship with their Race Engineer can give you an advantage.
The Race Engineer is the person who has direct contact with the driver while they’re on the circuit, and it’s they who communicate that to the pit crew. The higher a Race Engineer’s Feedback stat, the faster they can gather feedback from a driver, and the sooner you can pit the car to adjust its balance.
You can read more about the critical roles in your team in our F1® Manager 23 Staff guide.
It’s important to remember that a driver’s satisfaction score is only confirmed once they’ve had time to collect feedback on a setup. So all of your adjustments are for nothing if your driver goes into Qualifying with an untested car, even if you got all of the sliders within the blue boundaries. For this reason, you should aim to make all of your adjustments in the first two practice sessions and leave the third for the drivers to focus on developing their Track Acclimatisation and Car Parts Knowledge.
It’s essential to remember this for Sprint weekends, where you only have one practice session before qualifying. You only have time to adjust the car once or twice before your drivers try to secure a place on the starting grid.
While you should tailor a car to upcoming Grands Prix by developing parts that are suited to the circuit, such as a rear wing that improves low-speed cornering at São Paulo or a chassis that allows for a higher top speed at Baku, you shouldn’t skip the opportunity to perfect each car’s setup. While you can simulate Practice sessions, left to their own devices, your team will rarely find as good a balance as you will.
With Setup Satisfaction accounting for half of your Driver’s Confidence ahead of a race, taking the time to balance your cars is a way for you to impact the outcome of each race directly.
For a more detailed introduction to your role as Team Principal, read the F1® Manager 23 Beginner’s guide.