When Choosing Racing Oil, A Systems Approach Is Best - Engine Builder Magazine

When Choosing Racing Oil, A Systems Approach Is Best

Today’s engine builders are skilled at creating performance powerplants to win at any level. But just as one size engine isn’t right for every racing series, the oil you use will vary based on application as well.

Lake Speed, Jr., Certified Lubrication Specialist with Driven Racing Oil, Huntersville, NC, says choosing the right oil is an important process.

“Today’s passenger car and truck oils are formulated to reduce emissions and provide longer drain intervals,” says Speed. “This has been done by increasing detergents and reducing anti-wear additives, but your race engine operating under high load and high RPM conditions needs high

amounts of anti-wear additives (Zinc and Moly) to create a sacrificial additive coating that prevents metal to metal contact in your engine.”

Speed says race engine builders should use an oil designed for racing applications. The differences between street and race engines are dramatic.

Modern Engine Set-up:

Decreased anti-wear (i.e. Zinc) and more detergents:

  • Catalytic Converters
  • Low RPM
  • Overhead Cams
  • Extended drain intervals

Race Engine Set-up:

Need more anti-wear (i.e. Zinc) and less detergents:

  • Higher RPM
  • Higher Torque
  • Flat tappet cams and push
  • Shorter Drain intervals




In addition, Speed recommends using a system of compatible products to avoid additive clash.

“Properly protecting the engine from excessive wear
during initial start-up and break-in is critical to the long-term life and
performance of the engine.,” he says. “By utilizing matched additive
chemistries in the products we use to assemble, break-in and operate our
engines, we eliminate the risk of ‘additive clash.’ Additive Clash can occur
when switching between products with different additive chemistries – putting the engine at risk.”

Speed explains that, by utilizing complimentary additive chemistries, Driven Racing Oil products work together to produce and maintain a high level of anti-wear protection throughout the engine during start-up, break-in and operation.

“A system approach is best for many reasons,” Speed explains. “It builds and maintains protective anti-wear film. It avoids additive clash that can compromise the anti-wear film leading to premature part failure. It includes oils specifically designed for
each stage of operation provide optimized protection and performance. And, it can be considered insurance for your investment in time and parts.”

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