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Racecar Engineering

Racecar Engineering May 2018

Racecar Engineering is the world’s leading technology publication for the motorsport industry. From aerodynamics to engines and from handling theory to manufacturing practice, Racecar Engineering is read by motorsport’s top professionals. Only Racecar Engineering brings this insight every month.

Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
Chelsea Magazine
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12 Issues

in this issue

5 min.
heads and tales

Nature has protected the brain by having a bony carapace completely enveloping it, the skull. A mere fall from standing up can give peak shocks of translational acceleration of 145 to 500g, there being a very thin layer of skin covering the bone, almost nil deformation to reduce the g. But from time immemorial it has been found that we could help nature by adding protection, usually for combat. By 900 BC Assyrian soldiers wore thick leather or bronze helmets to protect the head, while the ancient Corinthian helmet and the Roman galea are still iconic even today. Yet helmets took a little while to catch on in motor racing. Drivers first wore cloth caps, usually facing backwards for aerodynamic reasons, and XPB then leather hats, the first appearing around 1908. By…

5 min.
fast and loose

It seems that downforce is culturally different in America than it is in Japan and Europe. Super Formula in Japan has for some time pursued high downforce levels and the drivers love it. In F1, the move to more powerful aerodynamics due to larger wings and diffuser, freed-up bargeboards and wider tyres, has received acclaim from those few privileged to feel its effect. The experience of very significant g-forces with the resultant grip and sheer corner speed really pumps the adrenaline. Anyone who has experienced even a little of the ‘great big hand’ that pushes the tyres down onto the track will understand this. So why are the IndyCar drivers in the States enjoying this going the other way? Reducing the overall downforce of the Dallara-built spec cars by around one-third…

15 min.
bentley buoyed

Bentley’s second-generation Continental GT3 has enjoyed an upgrade in just about every department, from the power steering system to the aero, and from the gearbox to the brakes. It is a major push for a car that competes in a Balance of Performance category, but one that was necessary with the introduction of a new road car with a lighter bodyshell, and also after four years with the first generation car – which won four titles, in British GT, Blancpain Sprint and Endurance, and GT Asia. That first generation car was something of a trailblazer, re-introducing the marque to endurance racing in 2014 after a layoff of more than a decade since the Bentley Speed 8 programme ended with victory at Le Mans in 2003. It was Bentley’s first customer-focused racing…

18 min.
let battle commence

By the time you read this the 2018 Formula 1 season will have kicked off in Melbourne, Australia. From preseason testing we have a good idea that Mercedes should be pretty quick again, and clues as to where the other teams stand in relation to it. But what the Barcelona tests have also shown us is the state of play in the Formula 1 development war. And that might be a much more interesting story this season. Take cooling, for instance. Here, there is a distinct divergence of opinion in terms of the design of the cooling systems on the current generation of car. ‘I think that the teams have approached it knowing which areas of bodywork are most sensitive and that tends to drive you on how you want to…

6 min.
circuit racer

The details remain sketchy, but there is no doubt that plans for an electric TCR series are well established, and at the Geneva Motor Show in March SEAT launched the Cupra e-Racer which the company hopes will form the basis of an all-new series, e-TCR, set to start as soon as the 2019 season. TCR creator Marcello Lotti was on the stand with Jean Todt, president of the FIA, as the first car was launched, and it seems clear that the two will work together to promote the concept. The outline regulations that were announced at the Geneva launch included the stipulation that the electric racecars will be standard TCR cars of four- or five-doors, fitted with an electric motor capable of delivering 300kW of continuous power and 500kW of maximum power…

1 min.
seen: gen 2 formula e

Formula E has unveiled its second generation racecar, which is to be raced from the start of its fifth season (2018/2019) onwards. The Gen 2 car has a battery capable of storing energy for twice the range of its predecessor to eliminate the need for mid-race car swaps. Its technical specifications have also been released. Alongside the improved longevity, the maximum power output of the car has increased by 50kW to 250kW, which will see the potential top speed of Formula E reach 280kmh (174mph). Including the driver and the 385kg battery the new car will weigh in at some 20kg more than the current STR-01E FE racer, at 900kg, while it is 1.77m wide and 5.16m in length. It also features the new Michelin Pilot Sport all-weather tyre, which is specifically designed…