Then you're doing something wrong. Or you don't have the stuff needed for racing. Don't know,can't judge and don't take it offensive. Well,I'm in this "business" for over 10 years now,I remember doing 1:45 laps in KY2 with GTR cars,thought back then there are my limits. These days I'm doing 1:37-1:38 with full tank and with reserve to not overheat tyres,while getting under 1:36 with low fuel or in hotlap mode. And I'm pretty sure that with some serious practice I would beat my PB in less then few hours,would need motivation though.
What I wanted to say - it's all about experience. Practice is just one kind of it - you do the laps and with every next lap you should get better feeling for the car,what it does in certain conditions,also you get the track to know better,braking points should optimize and the lines should get better. It's all the learning process. And you'll never stop to learn. I'm still learning after these 10 years,I'm still finding better ways to drive,still setting new PBs.
Another thing - focus. You really need to shut away stuff around and focus on driving. You need to have in head what comes next and what you need to do there. With experience this comes more and more automatic,where you don't have to think at all,until then you have to repeat in your mind what you have to do next.
People are different,some learn faster,some slower. Some get the feel for car after few laps,some need to work for it. Some can concentrate on race automatically with the green light,some need to focus before and turn rest of the surrounding world off. It's all about you - you need to learn what way is best for you.
Practice helps but only practice isn't enough if you don't make progress. You can spectate a faster driver and see what lines he takes into corners, which gears he uses, where his braking point is, ...
Also when you join a online race there are always friendly people to send you a setup if you ask them.
Well then you're not getting the most out of the car. Because when you push all out of it you can feel alot of differences. But first you have to start with the fast drivingline (NOT the one LFS gives you). When you know that and you have good car controll the setup will makes the difference.
Setups are important, and not every setup fits your driving. Don't expect to make a WR just because you use the setup the WR holder used if you don't even know where to brake, or when to accelerate. The setup may or may not fit your driving depending strictly on you. Also depends on how aggressive and confident you are when taking corners and pushing the car to it's limit. Same goes for the racing line, braking and etc.
Sorry, but then you are the problem, not the racing line. Just because you failed at them doesn't mean they don't work.
If you are feeling frustrated after practicing a bit, relax, play another game and take a break to refresh your mind and get back to it, otherwise the frustration will overrun making you fail more.
skill acquisition is actually a very interesting question. especially in computer gaming, where large massifs of data can be collected relatively easly. Can be, but i'm yet to find someone did that
For example, if researches took hundred of people novice to simracing, make them play lfs one track one car for an hour every day for a month, no quitting allowed. What would be the median? Other distribution functions? Whats the effect of former experience in other activities, like different types of games, real life driving, some physical sports etc.
So if you go out in your favourite car on your favourite track, and you do 30 lap stint, every lap will be +-0.1s same with getting slowly steadily faster due to fuel burnt? And you can't improve that?
Or do you have +-0.3s every lap, driving each in different line and being all over place? Then take it easier and practice consistency, so you can establish some kind of "base line" performance. After you can drive 3-5 laps within ~0.2s each, and you fully know what you are doing where (like you know when you do mistake and take a line 15cm off), you can try alternating some aspects of your driving, and see yourself what helps.
Or hire some performance engineer which can check directly your personal issues and focus on the obvious ones, it's hard to help blindly without having idea where you are, and what is making you slow.
edit: I had a friend of mine living at my place for few months, and he loved FBM at blackwood in demo version, and managed himself to get into high 1:15, but I was back then at 1:13.1 and he watched me over shoulder several times and was unable to tell what it is. So I coached him for few weeks, and within like two months he got on 1:13.9, was just about pinpointing the biggest problems and putting enough practice to be consistent and conscious, so he could try to follow any advice and measure difference.
This is only half correct. People often leave out the first part, which then becomes:
Perfect practice makes perfect.
If you're pushing at 100% all the time and sliding everywhere with little control, then you're practicing sliding everywhere with little control.
Take a slow car (XFG/XRG) and take it slow, get the car under control, keep your inputs smooth, figure out exactly where and when your reference points are. Once you get some consistency, then you can start increasing your pace/aggression a little. If you start sliding everywhere again, you increased it too much.
Pure aggression will get you to a certain point, but no further. You need to use your brain too.
LFS is not arcade game. I remember hundred years ago when I got Gran Turismo 1, after few days of playing I was already very good in it.
Then lets take this LFS; I have done over 200 thousand kilometers online, and I still cannot reach top 15 positions in FM GTi Thursday with those Gti cars.
LFS is very demanding racing environment, since there is mostly just very quick simracers left in this community. Think you buy a real formula one car, and you begin compare yourself to real f1 drivers. Then you say practice doesn't work.
Practice works, but you need also patience. You want success and speed, but sounds that you are not very interested on learning how to achieve that.
1. Download WR and watch lines, gears, braking points, gas
2. Go HL mode and try to do all of those things. Sector by sector slowly getting better. And get good setup here in lfs.net
One of the most important thing when trying to get better for myself atleast is downshifting rhythm in braking. Helps a lot car(atleast cars I drive)to break and enter to corner and to not get locking tires
I got pretty good in GTI and fox only in 3-4 months by doing this
Perhaps it's too early for you to be in control of the high powered cars. Just take the ordinary GTi for a spin around a moderate length track but easy enough to practice on (Blackwood, AS3, FE3, AS2). Turn on the race line and follow it. Don't think much of your surroundings. Don't think of keeping up your pace with the car infront. Focus on your driving, be safe. Then, slowly nudge a few corners you think you can improve and get a good feel on it.
I had several conditions where I would try driving on the ragged edge trying to beat someone's HL. Instead, I'm losing precious time and enrage myself. I calmed myself down and try to drive in a safer pace, and guess what, it worked.
As for the saying goes "patience is a virtue." You're not the only one. And you're not the first nor the last. Many people gone through your stage. You're still in the very beginning, there are lots of things to do.
Speaking from my personal experience, I was a cruiser. No knowledge of realistic racing. I came to race servers just to be an unsafe obstacle like anybody else. It was not until early 2016 i began to seriously practice, going more than 12 hours per weekends, make some people mad about my driving, asking advice from many people even beg for them to make a drive for me, not to mention setups. Heck, my first setup was an LSD setup and was very different with the current WR set (BL1 XRG). But i guess all that paid off. And even today I'm still trying to be faster.
Take your time, you still have plenty of fun competitions going on. Your stage is the best part, you got many drivers around you to have fun. Fast racers often find themselves racing all alone infront of the pack, which takes away some of the fun. Rarely they get door-to-door actions
Practice is really what makes you good at things, certain things does take longer than other things though. Some people need triple the practice than others does, and thats just because some people have 350 IQ and then there's me with 35 IQ.
I'm going a bit off topic now, but I've been playing this game called Rocket League. Basically, there's a bunch of things that everybody in higher ranks needs to know. I'm still in the learning stage of the game even though I'm nearly a 1000 hours into it, its crazy. From playing that game for nearly a year I've learned a couple of things.
- Don't let dreams be dreams.
- Practice does make you better.
I was Gold 3 (6 out of 20 ranks) 12 months ago, and now I'm Champion 1 (which is 17 out of 20 ranks). Anything is possible!
This is the first step, realizing that you practically don't know what you are doing and this is good.
Now you need help from other, more experienced drivers to help you with advices on what exactly you need to change. Please, upload your MPR or SPR, whatever you have and let us help you analyze your driving.
the real question is, after spending some hours and being this far and knowing spending 3x-4x-5x time on a game will definitely push your results further, is this really what you want to spend time on? Because dedicated practicing would feel more like investment rather than entertainment. In games with larger player base one can find opponents of any level pretty easily and get entertainment right now.
In lfs you should go through ~month of frustration, before you'll likely be 4-6th in PB chart in a race of 12 people. and you will have like 1-2 players of your level to compete with. the 'pros' will have their own race at the same time on the same track, n00bs will have their own in the tail, and crashers will be the cherry on a cake.
And, one more thing. Setup (the right one, for you) matters more than you think. also, if you're playing with the mouse mouse acceleration and sensitivity matters too. Fine-tuning your wheel if you play wheel - matters even more.