Fast Lap: :53.20 by SLO_COPE
Garage Settings: 1400 med tires/soft suspension
Mariposa is a compact little circuit for the racing purist who enjoys a high-stakes chess match on a track that’s both demanding and extremely unforgiving of mistakes. It's probably best suited for one-on-one match-ups because there’s not a heck of a lot of room for lateral movement. In addition to the difficult nature of the course, it has one major hazard: water. As I said, there’s not a lot of room for drifting and maneuvering from one side to the other in an attempt to make a pass. On tracks of this type holding your line, being patient, and staying within striking distance of your opponent are the keys to wining races, or at the very least, having a good, competative run. To some that may not sound like such a big deal, but I’m here to tell ya, some of the most exciting races I’ve had have been on tracks exactly like this.
Unfortunately quite a few people will quickly dismiss Mariposa due to its “plain Jane” appearance, but I assure you, there’s more to it than meets the eye. For starters, it’s interesting that even though there are slightly varying degrees of altitude changes, you can actually drive this track at full speed and just about keep all 4 tires on the road. In a race that’ll be pretty hard to do unless you’re able to pull away from your opponent (or he/she crashes) so that you have the pressure-free freedom to execute the line in properly, yielding lap times around the :54 mark. Mariposa requires both hard, aggressive cornering as well as delicate, minute adjustments – all at very high speeds, which is what makes it so challenging.
There are three places where lead changes “will” take place, and I noted them on this picture
of the layout. The first is at checkpoint one, which has one of the toughest hairpin turns I’ve ever seen. It slopes down and away from you as you round the corner to proceed to checkpoint two, thus making it very easy to slide off the road, plunging to the water below. Of course, there’ll always be someone willing to save you the trouble of doing it yourself by knocking you off, too lol. Either way it’s without a doubt the most precarious section of the track, and will yield quite a few lead changes…and pile-ups. Checkpoint 4 affords racers quite a bit more room to operate, and it’s relatively flat and straightforward, but still, some will misjudge or mistime their turn, swinging wide (or not wide enough), resulting in losing the lead or falling further behind. Finally, the area leading to the start/finish line, if not given the proper amount of caution and attention, willl likely result in someone doing the old Superman imitation. Dropping the gas and easing over just a hair to the right will allow you to maintain contact with the road, enabling you to put more distance between you and your opponent.
The arrow you see here
does in fact serve a purpose. Initially I thought it was there to suggest where you could potentially end up if you failed to negotiate that very difficult hairpin turn at checkpoint 1. What it does is show you where the computer trucks exit the road in an attempt to jump to the other side of the road, and at times they manage to pull it off. It’s not very pretty…but they get the job done. Actually I’m just amazed they can run the track at all. They won’t give intermediates and pros much of a contest, but if you’re a beginner you’ll at least have “company” while you race.
Mariposa is a no frills racetrack, and thus deserved the same kind of review; short and to the point without all the mumbo-jumbo. Personally, I love this little track, and SLO_Scrooch (he’s quite the racer, especially considering his age
lol), who helped out during beta testing is pretty adept on it, so I’m sure we’ll be doing a few one-on-ones, trading wins and beating each other to a pulp lol. Ok this was supposed to be a “strictly business” kind of review, but I couldn’t resist slipping one in there lol. As for the Copey Rating, this one gets a 10
out of 10 possible points because it accomplishes exactly what it set out to. It may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but as I said, if you’re a racing fanatic and you love the kind of tracks that require pinpoint technique, patience, and taking risks, this one’s for you! The author summed it up best during beta testing when he said “It’s dangerous the moment you press go
”, which is right on the money.