How to create racing lap comparison videos

Synchronised lap comparison videos

You may have seen the very effective way some TV stations produce lap comparison videos to compare qualifying laps between racing drivers and feel that would be great for your needs too.

Perhaps you’d like to compare laps (or parts of laps) across cars or drivers to see the effect of a different driving style, racing lines or braking points but are rushed for time?

Unfortunately, even with specialist data systems and software, creating perfectly in-sync racing lap comparison videos is tricky and time consuming.

For those without such systems creating a video like this, can seem impossible:

But what would it mean if you could compare two laps side by side?

How much would it be worth to easily be able to see the subtle (and not so subtle!) differences between the laps?

How much would seeing that help you unlock more speed from your racing car?

Quite a lot I’d guess.


Guide to creating racing lap comparison videos

Here is a short step-by-step guide to being able to do this yourself using only your video data and video editing software (such as iMovie.)


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Create Lap Comparison Videos with iMovie :

Step 1 – Setup

Open iMovie. Create a New Project. Choose Load Media and select your onboard racing video to load in. Drag the video down to the timeline.

Step 2 – Review

Scan through the video to find the laps you want to compare. Note the time on the timeline that they start and finish.

Step 3 – Start reference

For the start of the first lap you want to compare, find the start line by searching back and forth with the timeline scrubber. Tip – it helps to zoom in to refine this precisely.

Step 4 – Split Clip

When you are happy that you have found the place on the timeline where the racing car is crossing start line, right click and select “split clip.” This will split the video on the timeline.

Step 5 – Finish reference

Now scroll along to the end of the lap. Then repeat steps 3 and 4 to split the video when the racing car crossed the finish line.

Congratulations! You have isolated your first lap!

Step 6 – Comparison lap.

Repeat steps 3, 4 and 5 to isolate your second lap.

Step 7 – Remove surplus

Select and delete the timeline clips that are not the two videos you want to compare. Once you’ve done that, slide the clip of the first lap all the way to the left.

Step 7 – Second timeline

With the second lap, drag this to the left also but at the same time drag it up so that it is now contained on a second parallel timeline.

Note – the two clips should be different lengths … The reason is that the two laps are of different times and he length of the clip represents time on the timeline.

Step 8 – Split screen video

In iMovie at the top right there is a little box style icon. Select this and a sub menu will appear. Select the left drop down. Then select Split screen.

Note – it comes out side by side. I prefer this but changed it too top to bottom as that way I could also see the steering wheel. Of course it is your preference.

Step 9 – Export

To export a video from iMovie you select File -> Share -> File … Give the movie a name and then you are done. Clearly you can also share direct to youTube etc this way too.

Congratulations you can now quickly create lap comparison videos to get a better understanding of you racing laps. Simple.

Now you just need to translate this into more speed on the track!


Enjoyed this? Check out these other articles:

Visual person? What about using Google Earth to compare your lap times? Here’s a guide on how to set this up: https://www.yourdatadriven.com/compare-racing-laps-using-google-earth-pro/‎

Want to take the guess work out of setting your tyre pressures? Try this article including a free calculator: https://www.yourdatadriven.com/how-to-set-your-racing-car-tyre-pressures-perfectly-every-time/