Cars & Motorcycles
Racecar Engineering

Racecar Engineering June 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.

United Kingdom
Chelsea Magazine
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12 Issues

In this issue

5 min.
petrol heads

How we think, and how profoundly irrational we can be, actually comes from the way our brain is laid out and how it evolved. You have an area of your brain called the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and your baseline software is the limbic system. The limbic system is operational when you are born but the PFC will slowly mature up to your mid-20s, normally. So, for your first years you are more reliant on the limbic system. The limbic system will flood you with dopamine when taking risks or being impulsive, which was presumably a good trait when we were in the Stone Age. The corollary is that as you mature the prefrontal cortex starts making you more responsible and will help you make more rational decisions and the really silly,…

8 min.
identity crisis

Out of desperation to make Formula 1 more exciting and attractive to fans – or to be more precise to attract new fans – and to reinvent the business model for competing teams such that non-manufacturer outfits are sustainable, Liberty Media launched a set of proposals in Bahrain. These covered: power units, costs, revenues, sporting and technical rules and regulations, and governance. No details were provided to the public, teams being sworn to secrecy until they had been thrashed out. Interestingly, they were billed as ‘take it or leave it’. We are not concerned with the commercial and financial, or the governance issues here, however important they may be. The key proposal objectives that concern a reader of Racecar Engineering are the following: ‘The PU must be cheaper, simpler, louder, have…

5 min.
the human element

Modern F1 is not noted for its sympathy to those involved in it who suffer misfortune, but recent incidents have highlighted this in a sorry way. Kimi Raikkonen took his generally laid-back ‘I don’t care’ demeanour to a new high (low?) in Bahrain, receiving much criticism concerning his disregard for his injured wheel-changer, not even being aware of Francesco Cigarini’s condition when interviewed later. Contrast this with Romain Grosjean during the previous Australian GP, consoling the weeping wheelman whose pit stop fumble had just cost the Frenchman a probable top-six result. Williams, while constantly bemoaning the difficulties of competing in F1 as one of the mid-field teams, recently played a less than sympathetic card by being the only outfit to veto Force India’s request for some up-front prize money from Liberty…

11 min.
failure is not an option

Toyota’s concentrated its pre-season testing programme on racecar reliability and coping with failure modes The loss of Porsche and Audi from LMP1 has put the FIA WEC into something of a crisis mode. Suddenly balancing the performance of its sole remaining manufacturer and a privateer has become a pressing need, and so artificial limits have been put in place that heavily favour Toyota, yet give some optimism to privateers. But this is not a process that has just started; the ACO admitted in 2016 that it was preparing the way in case it finished up with just one manufacturer and that it had been exploring the idea of DRS and active suspension to give privateers more speed. However, for the 2018/19 FIA World Endurance Championship the option has been taken to limit…

10 min.
in it to win it

‘The main motivator for Rebellion to come back into P1 is not to win the championship, it is to win Le Mans’ Behind the sole-remaining manufacturer entry from Toyota, three chassis constructors will be vying for at least the final step of the overall podium at Le Mans this year, one of which is ORECA. The French firm’s boss, Hugues de Chaunac, also knows that this is his best chance ever to win the race overall with a car designed by his company, and it has risen to the challenge with its R13 design. ORECA is no stranger to winning major events overall; as a race team it won the 2000 Daytona 24 hours with the Dodge Viper, and Sebring 12 hours with the Peugeot 908 in 2011. The team has actually…

14 min.
swiss timing

The C37 has already proven to be a much more potent design than last season’s C36, having scored points in its second race For much of 2017 Sauber was looking towards the 2018 season with great optimism. It had new management, and manufacturer backing from Honda.by With this in mind the technical team, headed Jorg Zander, embarked on an innovative and highly complex new car concept in an attempt to move the team back up the grid. Then things started to go wrong. Just before the summer break news came that Sauber’s deal with Honda had collapsed. Seemingly the team could not then be assured of a supply of transmissions from McLaren, which had cut its ties with Honda anyway, and without its own in-house transmission programme Sauber needed a gearbox deal…