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Old 02-05-2010, 09:59 PM   #1
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Any Formula 1 (F1) or dirt track racing fans?


I am an avid Formula 1 (F1) racing fan in addition to short track (mainly dirt) racing. I can't handle the NASCAR racing theatrics which is somewhere between the old roller derby and the World Wrestling Federation.

The good part is that spring is coming and the F1 races will start soon. The bad news is that I now have to watch races from Asia starting at about 12:00 or 1:00 AM or get up at 6:00 AM to watch them live since reruns are very limited by the racing regulators. The dirt tracks will start later on a more convenient schedule.

F1 is interesting because of the cars and technology that race in almost all conditions, especially rain. The cars are about 1300# including driver and fuel. The engines weigh 225# will get the car up to 225 mph, but are usually governed to 18,000 to 19,000 rpms since they do not win because of speed, because of stopping/slowing and track line and cutting corners and going over curbs where allowed.

The tracks are 2.5 miles to 3.5 miles long with 10 to 15 turns both right and left and hills on some tracks. Some tracks are clockwise and some are counter-clockwise. Most drivers will walk the track slowly several times to see the road and the texture before even getting into a car.

I have seen 3 or 4 but most were free tickets except the first Indy F1 race. The price of admission to foreign tracks is $225 to about $400 for cheap seats depending on tarck and demand. It is a great experience, but you do not see as much as well as you do on TV (Speed Channel). I hated to see the U.S. F1 race dropped but there were higher bidders for races that are only run every two weeks because of the logistics of loading planes and moving several hundred engineers. It takes a lot of money for a 2 man team with two cars and a 747 to move them, spare parts one spare engine and the portable fitness center around the world. In some selected races there will be several jumbos per team for analyzing and tuning the suspensions and cars. I have no idea where all the money comes to sponsor a team.

I like the dirt track racing because it is real racing by "backyard" cars and they are driven by drivers for fun and not the $50,000,000/year + F1 drivers demand. The stands are close and there are families cheering and bringing their coolers well stocked (cans only) and you might even get dirt on you are just near the first turn. It is a great weekend night! It is good watching, close, cheap and easy to get to.

Dick


Last edited by concretemasonry; 02-05-2010 at 10:02 PM.
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Old 02-05-2010, 10:57 PM   #2
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Any Formula 1 (F1) or dirt track racing fans?


Used to follow F1. Never did get into Nascar. Looks like F1 is dying a slow death though.

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Old 02-05-2010, 11:14 PM   #3
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Any Formula 1 (F1) or dirt track racing fans?


have you seen this vid dick?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MGEqlNU30Tg

there are several different ones out there as well

http://video.google.com/videosearch?...&hl=en&tab=wv#

Personally, I miss the old Indy racing (not league). Back when it was USAC sanctioned. There was a variety of engines and chassis and some were good at straights, others good in the turns so you got a lot of position changes.

that is one of the biggest problems with F1, very few lead changes and now, with no refueling during a race, there will be even fewer, I would think.

I do enjoy the technology of the F1 vehicles, just not the god status drivers seem to be raised to.

and Nascar? I figure any race that bumping is not only part of driving but expected, it simply shows a lack of drivers ability. With open wheel, if you come up behind a guy and touch wheels, the guy in back usually goes airborne so they try to stay away from each other yet you can see them a couple inches from touching. That is skill, not some good ol' boys just playing bumper cars.

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Old 02-06-2010, 02:23 AM   #4
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Any Formula 1 (F1) or dirt track racing fans?


Rubens Barrichello - since 1997.
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Old 02-06-2010, 06:16 AM   #5
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Don't have much need for a car anymore but the last new one I owned was the second or so model year Acura Integra. What near flawless (did get recalled because of a problem with the motor on the rear wiper) and elegant piece of machinery. It was about 20 percent old Honda Civic technology and 80 percent enhancements that came out of Team Honda Formula One racing. It had a hatchback. I guess I could have kept it to haul paint and building materials around. I bet if the person who bought it replaced the timing chain thing at 90K he is still driving it.

I worked for Illinois Institute of Technology at one time and we gave an alumni award to Peter Schutz, then the only American president of Porsche. As part of the deal, Peter and regional Porsche clubs helped us assemble some of both Formula One and the consumer market models developed from the technology in one place for an exhibit. His talk about the use of Formula One as an engineering and technology testbed was interesting.

Nascar does not seem to make the same revolutionary contributions to automotive technology as far as I can see. Unless you consider faster curing bondo a major contribution.

It is a shame Formula One is collapsing under its own weight.
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Old 02-06-2010, 01:33 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdsester View Post

It is a shame Formula One is collapsing under its own weight.
actually I see all of racing in general having problems.

Even NASCAR isn't immune to the economy in general and sponsors problems individually. Their cookie cutter car (car of the future I think they call it) is an attempt to lower costs to race because so many sponsors are either cutting back support dollars or getting out of the game altogether and money is getting tighter.

and if anybody thinks it's just racing, take a look at the sports like baseball, basketball, and football. I just read yesterday the NFL is talking about no 2011 season if things don't get worked out and the players accept less money. I doubt it will actually happen but since the NFL gets $5 billion dollars from their TV contracts whether the season happens of not, who knows.
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Old 02-12-2010, 11:41 PM   #7
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Any Formula 1 (F1) or dirt track racing fans?


If roundy-round racing a la NASCAR was so easy, why haven't the F-1 and Indy type drivers completely dominated when they try to break into the good ole boys network? Andretti and Foyt both did well in limited NASCAR stints, but what of Franchitti, or Carpentier or Villenueve? All really good world class drivers. All mostly gone from NASCAR. J.P. Montoya has gotten it and will do well this year, but after how long? He's also a great driver having won the Indy 500 and in F-1. Sam Hornish is getting it and will also do well.

Do you remember a show SPEED had on several years ago, I think it was called 'trading paint', with Jeff Gordon and Montoya(I think) swapping cars at the Indy F-1 track. Gordon was quickly up to speed and driving the F-1 car within a fraction of the base speed established by Montoya. However, Montoya had a hard time driving Gordon's car fast. Apparently not as easy a it seems on TV.

I like all forms of auto racing, but I'm working on road racing, which I've always liked best. But I don't disparage any form of racing;its all hard to do well.

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Old 02-13-2010, 11:23 AM   #8
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Any Formula 1 (F1) or dirt track racing fans?


Montoya was not acceptable for Fourmula 1 because he was not technical enough to communicate with the engineers and he torn up $2,000,000 cars by racing with emotion and not knowing when and why to go over curbs. He sure was fun to watch especially near the end where something seemed to happen to the car or tires. When you have a car that weighs 1320# maximum including fuel and driver you have to be disciplined and smart. He took a big cut in pay to go to NASCAR, when the good F1 drivers were making $30,000,000 to $50,000,000 per year salary plus winnings plus end endorsements and fees for interviews.

Some of the others you mentioned are essentially just Indy drivers. Indy and Cart are just ugly step son's of Formula 1 with heavy cars and no budget or research.

In Formula 1, you win by driving strategy, braking and cornering. That is why they govern the engines to 19,000 rpms or so depending on the track. They take extra (usually 24 per car) $12,000 brake rotors for a total of $280,000 per car. For a 2 car team, they take 1 or 2 eatra engines plus about 200 engineers to each race. The engines are V8s with 3 liters or less.

Dick
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Old 02-13-2010, 11:37 AM   #9
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my son use to build and pit crew for a large porche dealer in florida and flew me to a long weekend race in watkins glenn years a go. had winston cup, imsa racing, formula with momo(what a car) and classic all on same weekend. what atreat. he now works for britts racing in sonoma ca. and they supply high end racing parts for cars, will even take trctor trailer to diff events and setup on site. he says the economy is killing their buisness
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Old 02-13-2010, 01:07 PM   #10
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tpolk -

I agree with the economy hurting the high end parts for bolt on applications, since the people and local teams do not have the money and try to make do with what they have.

Most of the Formula 1 teams have very few sponsors, but the sponsors pay a lot because of the international market of 500,000m million to 1,000,0000,000 people on TV. They also only have 2 cars per team, so the drivers can get paid well if they are good enough. All of their parts are unique Kevlar, graphite, etc. made by the teams since they are unique to each car. Engines are usually built by supplier to the teams specs and are not off the shelf. - The new Mecedes team (Brawn) and a couple of others are exceptions, but the chassis and aerodynamics are different. Generally, Ferrari makes everything themselves, but they have agreements with other teams to get around the 2 car team concept so they get more immediate engine race monitoring from sensors on a second by second basis and other data and information. They have deep pockets since they are owned by Fiat (among others), but not expect to get Ferrari parts on a "new" Chrysler in the next few year.

I am still waiting for the local dirt tracks to start up, but too many are getting paved. That type of racing will also continue with a poor economy because the drivers will do their own work nad make it continue. They are fighter. I remeber sitting just before the first turn, getting splattered with dirt and seeing a car go off and down before the second turn. All eyes were on the turn and flags flew while people started to go over and begin to look in the brush and trees in the dark. Nobody noticed that the driver kept going and got on the track at turn 3 and was in the line-up waiting for the restart. - That is fun racing!

Dick
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Old 02-13-2010, 06:17 PM   #11
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agree on dirt trackin where it all begins

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