Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Ultimate Motor Racing

Giant Leaps from Formula 1 Safety Standards

How far can driver safety be stretched in motor racing? If speeds much greater than those in Formula 1 need to be achieved, safety needs to be revolutioned. F1 safety standards may be high, but they are not satisfactory for the kind of racing and the speeds (average speeds above 350 kph) I envisage for UMOR (Ultimate Motor Racing). I can't accept death or even serious injury (broken vertebrae, neck, broken limbs, paralysis, head injury, etc.) for drivers. Even speed isn't a worthy cause to die for. Human life is precious. We'll come to circuit and spectator safety in subsequent posts. In this let's concentrate on cockpit safety.

I'm not an engineer or a scientist, so I'm not sure about many things. But I invite suggestions from readers who may be professionals in various fields to contribute their ideas. I'm here only suggesting a few ideas. If they're laughable - forget it. But if not, develop on it and get back to me:

Is it possible for a driver to be relatively insulated from the vibrations and g-forces experienced in the cockpit that generally contribute to driver fatigue? We've heard of Colin Chapman's "double chassis" technology in 1981 but later banned in Formula 1, but is a double cockpit possible? My idea is to place the driver and his cockpit in a cocoon (the second cockpit). Of course, this will require the use of fly-by-wire technology for driver controls. But if the double cockpit technology is successful, safety will make a giant leap ahead in motor racing.