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GTA Online Racing Guide

Boost your racing skills, avoid pitfalls, and dominate with the right car choices.


Racing is one of the most popular activities in GTA Online, so use these tips to help maximize your racing rewards.

Practice races alone in Free Roam to get used to the tracks and racing mechanics before you race against other players. You also might want to start by racing motorbikes instead of cars, as some players find it easier to master racing with a motorbike.

Instead of revving your engine during the countdown, wait to hit it right when "Go" appears on the screen. With the right timing, you'll get a boost.

Choose a vehicle with good traction. This will help you make turns without slowing down. Do not use your handbrake if you are racing in a car. When you approach a corner, don't hug the inside but instead follow the outside to inside to outside racing line. Sharp turns cover less distance, but wider turns can be taken at a faster speed.

However, take turns more slowly if it is raining. The wet roads will make it more likely you'll spin out.

When racing on a motorbike, you should use your handbrake instead of the regular brake, in order to maintain stability and traction.

If you're racing with NPC traffic, keep an eye out for oncoming vehicles. If possible, get an NPC vehicle in between you and the racer behind you, as extra protection. This is a particularly good idea if the other racers are using weapons. NPC traffic can act as a buffer.

Modded Car

Bonus RP for overtakes is based on the time it takes you to get to each checkpoint. Even if you aren't in first, you can earn a lot of RP by reaching checkpoints quickly.

You also get bonus RP if you ride in another player's slipstream for more than 5 seconds.

Another RP bonus is granted if you are in first place at the start of a new lap.

Therefore, the way to get the most bonus RP during a race is to hang back to stay in other players' slipstreams, pass them at the end to start the next lap in first place, fall back to ride in the slipstreams again, and overtake them as you near checkpoints.

If you have a friend willing to race with you, you can work together to max out your RP by taking turns riding in each other's slipstreams. Since the slipstream bonus gives you a burst of speed, you will lower your race time as well as earning the RP bonuses.

While riding in a slipstream, if it isn't safe to pass yet, slow down just slightly to remain in the slipstream.

Don't always race at full speed, especially when you first start. Instead, drive smoothly and carefully to avoid accidents. Once you're familiar with the tracks, you'll know when to speed up and when to slow down.

While it may be fun to fight other players, you might find it more beneficial if you concentrate on racing and let your opponents take each other out.

Car Editions

The cars you choose to race with depend on your personal style, but if you plan to do a lot of racing, here are some lineups to consider customizing:

Two Car Garage

  • 1 sports car (consider the Free Elegy)
  • 1 motorbike (consider the Akuma or Bati 801)

Six Car Garage

  • 1 sports car
  • 1 motorbike
  • 1 compact car
  • 1 offroad vehicle (consider the Sanchez)
  • 1 muscle car
  • 1 coupe, sedan, or SUV

Ten Car Garage

  • 1 sports car
  • 1 motorbike
  • 1 compact car
  • 1 offroad vehicle (consider the Sanchez)
  • 1 muscle car
  • 2 from the following types: coupe, sedan, or SUV (ex. a coupe and a sedan, a coupe and an SUV)
  • 1 super car
  • 1 sports classics car

Once you have a ten car garage, you will be equipped to deal with almost every race. You will be missing either a coupe, a sedan, or an SUV, but those races are less common than the others.

Betting on races is another way to make money. While you're in the lobby, check the odds on the race. These odds change as players make bets, so the odds (and payout) will decrease the more players bet on that racer.

Bet on two different players per race, one of whom should be you. Either bet a large amount on yourself and a token amount on another player, or the other way around. By doing so, you can earn a lot of money even if you don't win the race—and maybe even earn more by losing.


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Matt Gibbs

Matt Gibbs // Articles: 1316

Matt first came across the Grand Theft Auto series when he rented GTA III from his local video store, and it's been an obsession since. After playing through every GTA game since then, he decided to start GTA BOOM (initially in preparation for the launch of GTA V and as a way to document the hype, news and rumors about the then upcoming game. When Matt isn’t editing the content on BOOM, you’ll find him working on the server or making other improvements to the site, helping to update our library of guides and make them more useful for readers.