WORLDS: Tessmann brought his broom on Day One of qualifying


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Its one thing to win two consecutive rounds of qualifying at the IFMAR Worlds, but its quite enough to leave the rest of the field in your dust. Current ROAR National Champion Ty Tessmann made short work of the first day of qualifying at the 2014 IFMAR Fuel Off-Road World Championships, winning the second round by five seconds – which, believe it or not, was actually closer than the first round. Hes halfway to the overall TQ, as the points earned in four of the six rounds contribute to the overall qualifying order, but a perfect score on Day One is certainly an excellent start.

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Tessmann flirted with a 17-lap run with a dazzling display of car control – and an equally brilliant pit stop from his parents using the new Pro-Line fuel stick, which he chose to complete before the halfway mark in order to make the best of track position and stay out while the other drivers cycled through pit lane. A small bobble on the second lap was really the only blemish on an otherwise sterling performance. Though TQ earns nothing but bragging rights and a front-row spot for the ever-important semifinal, Tessmann can sleep well tonight knowing he’s halfway there.

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Defending champ Robert Batlle improved significantly over his first round finish of ninth, turning a time some 13 seconds faster to be the fastest of anyone not hailing from the land of the maple leaves. Batlle’s only mistake also came on the second lap of the heat, but it was smooth sailing from there – and he set his fastest lap of the race right after his pit stop.

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Batlle’s Mugen Seiki teammate Lee Martin was fourth, and he too set his best lap of the heat after his pit stop. Martin ran behind Lutz for two laps until he settled in, and led the rest of his heat before finishing 4.5 seconds up on Lutz and the field. The run gave Martin two fourth place finishes on the day, a great result considering his second run was about a half second slower.

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Jörn Neumann finished third in his heat, after winner Batlle and less than six tenths behind Jared Tebo. The run was a 14-second improvement over the first round, as the German went toe-to-toe with Tebo for nearly the entire race with his Durango DNX8 prototype.

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One can’t help but imagine that Ryan Maifield is pleased with the beginning of his first major nitro race with new sponsor TLR, scoring his second top ten finish of the day with his 8IGHT 3.0. No doubt benefitting from the guidance and experience of teammate Adam Drake, who finished third in round two, Maifield is off to a great start.

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Ryan Cavalieri improved by four seconds and was the fastest of four drivers within less than eight-tenths of a second – including the two drivers who finished immediately behind him in heat one. Just sixth in his heat on lap one, Cavalieri quickly climbed to the top of the charts and held off a late chart from Darren Bloomfield. Cavalieri led the AE prototype charge, with teammate Cragg just .075 seconds behind.

Ty Tessmann – Canada (Hot Bodies/O.S./Pro-Line/Nitrotane) – 10:01.737
Robert Batlle – Spain (Mugen Seiki/Novarossi/Procircuit/Nitrolux) – 10:06.775
Adam Drake – USA (TLR/Novarossi/Pro-Line/Nitrotane) – 10:09.695
Lee Martin – England (Mugen Seiki/Novarossi/Pro-Line/Nitrolux) – 10:12.247
Jared Tebo – USA (Kyosho/Orion/AKA/Maxima) – 10:13.008
Jörn Neumann – Germany (Durango/FX/Pro-Line/Maxima) – 10:13.597
Ryan Maifield – USA (TLR/Novarossi/JConcepts/Sidewinder) – 10:13.963
Ryan Lutz – USA (Durango/Alpha/AKA/Byron) – 10:16.855
Ryan Cavalieri – USA (Team Associated/Orion/AKA/Sidewinder) – 10:18.098
Neil Cragg – England (Team Associated/LRP/Pro-Line/LRP) – 10:18.173
Darren Bloomfield – England (Agama/BULLITT/Beta/Piranha) – 10:18.489
Martin Wollanka – Austria (XRAY/FX/Pro-Line/RB) – 10:18.837
Carson Wernimont – USA (Mugen Seiki/O.S./Procircuit/Flash Point) – 10:19.962
Alex Zanchettin – Italy (TLR/Novarossi/Pro-Line/MLC) – 10:20.769
Cody King – USA (Kyosho/REDS/Pro-Line/Byron) – 10:20.887
Martin Bayer – Czech Republic (XRAY/LRP/AKA/LRP) – 10:22.620
Davide Tortorici – Italy (Mugen Seiki/Bliss/VP-Pro/Meccamo) – 10:23.045

Source: liverc
Publisher: aaron waldron

WORLDS: JConcepts’ new kicks


Racers are always looking for an advantage, which is why their sponsors often bring new gear to big races such as the IFMAR World Championships – especially on the tire front. JConcepts launched four different patterns this weekend in Italy specifically for 1/8-scale racing on fast, high-grip surfaces. Here’s the official word:

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JConcepts has once again come loaded to the IFMAR World Championships with a variety of fresh product. The unique conditions in Italy, along with steady improvement has led development to the next level with 4 new tire options here in Messina. The concrete based track here in Messina gave JConcepts designers an idea for long life and smoother feeling characteristics to these carefully created tread designs.

First to show is the Diamond Bar. Named after the shape and longer horizontal bar, this tire has shown incredible wear on the concrete surface and blends consistency with speed and durability. The Diamond Bars have a dual stage, tapered design. This allows for exponentially less wear over time allowing to consistent.

Next up is the Reflex tire designed to bridge a gap between the popular Hybrid tire and other options such as Crossbow and Stacker tire. The Reflex has square angled pins that are stacked vertically to flex and fold evenly across the tire. Typically a stacked tread will wear less and provide more forward bite. The aligned space helps rotation in the turns and gives a snappy release to square up quickly.

The 3rd newly designed option will certainly be a favorite across multiple conditions. The Chasers rely on hefty, medium lugs which are angular in multiple directions. The horizontal type tread has a striking similarity to the trusty Crossbow tire which has remained a favorite for the last several years. Chasers have a lower, closer lug arrangement which gives incredible responsiveness and bites in medium, high and low grip conditions. The wet and dry condition tire has small recessed cuts in the top of the tread for extra edges and increased formability over terrain. The center overlapping bar treatment increases durability in the highest wear region of the tire.

4th and final, the Remix. Tested during the year at races such as the ROAR Off-Road Nationals, the Remix is a crossover tread bringing two tire lines together. With directional side-bars and straight forward block detail, the Remix will serve as a high-speed blue groove tire on larger style and flowing track layouts. The sidebars react calmly to bumpy sections while still giving stability as borrowed from our successful Metrix tire. The blocks are beefy and medium in width and height. That arrangement gives forward tracking stability and the sidebars handle the all important cornering support.

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All new tires will include the latest insert from JConcepts. The Dirt-Tech insert popularized by its durable nature and gray color will give customers the combo package they have been waiting for from JConcepts.

The last new item here at the Worlds is an updated 83mm wheel. Customers have asked for a more polished face wheel allowing a cleaner look and finish to an already successful wheel. Also revised are the locations of the upper ribs for better tire alignment and more bullet holes added near the center axle while a solid area remains for locknut clamping surface area.

Source: liverc
Publisher: aaron waldron

GEARING UP FOR 2014’S CHANGES


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The 2014 rule shake-up is the biggest since…when exactly?

Certainly it’s the biggest since 2009, when KERS first appeared and the majority of the current aero rules were introduced. According to Sky Sports F1’s Martin Brundle, “It’s right up there, I would have thought, with banning turbos in that era”. It’s now 25 years since the era to which Martin refers passed F1 by, yet the new rules see the sport going back to the future.

But only up to a point. Yes, turbos are back – but not with a vengeance. The 1200bhp fire-belching monsters that Brundle and his contemporaries grappled with back in the 1980s are certainly not on the agenda. Times have changed, attitudes have shifted, and what’s to come reflects as much.

In short, F1 is going green. The ‘revolution’ which started with the introduction of KERS five years ago has been advanced by the 2014 rules, which were originally framed in the summer of 2011. Fuel will be rationed more strictly than ever before and a far greater emphasis is being placed on energy recovery. Further efficiency gains will also be produced due to chassis changes cutting both downforce and drag.

Yet the changes are not as fundamental as they might have been and, as is usually the case in F1, the result is very much a compromise. Haggling has persisted throughout the gestation period, with the engine specification changed (a four-cylinder unit was initially suggested) and cost considerations putting the implementation back a year. In terms of aero at least, what we’ll see will be very similar to what we’ve already got.

The debate about what we’ll hear has been more pronounced – with Bernie Ecclestone among those suggesting that the roar of the now departed V8s will be castrated, with slower lap times also having an adverse effect on ‘The Show’. Then there’s the issue of cost: a lot of teams are finding the going tough enough as it is; change doesn’t come cheap.

Such a departure raises other questions too, which Martin discusses in Part Two of our feature while McLaren Technical Director Tim Goss outlines how the changes will affect chassis design.

2014 – The facts

Engine

The normally aspirated 2.4-litre V8 engines used from 2006 until the season just gone will be replaced by 1.6-litre V6s with a single turbocharger and rev. limit reduced from 18,000 rpm to 15,000 rpm. The original intention was for four-cylinder turbo engines limited to 12,000rpm but that plan wilted in the face of opposition, notably from Ferrari.

Fuel

Fuel will be injected directly into each cylinder and mass flow will be controlled according to a formula which does not allow the rate to exceed 100kg/hour. Furthermore, the amount of fuel cars will start races with comes down from around 150kg to 100kg, meaning an effective increase in efficiency of approximately 33 per cent.

ERS

This is where the additional power will come from. Cars currently use KERS, of course, and the device will remain. However, heat energy will also be recovered from the exhaust turbine (which spins the turbo). The systems are known as Motor Generator Units (MGU-K and MGU-H respectively) and the cumulative effect will roughly be tenfold: whereas KERS in its current guise has given an 80hp boost for 6.7 seconds per lap, ERS will offer 161bhp for 33 seconds. A maximum of 4MJ of energy can be stored per lap.

Engine + ERS = Power Unit

This is the term being applied to the combination of hydrocarbons and voltage outlined above, although whether it catches on is another matter. Depending on how good a job Mercedes, Renault and Ferrari do, it is anticipated that overall power will remain in the region of 750bhp.

Something that definitely will be heard next year, however, will be the actual sound of an F1 engine in the pitlane. The FIA’s original intention had been for a reliance on electrical power only but this has now been put back to 2017.

Only five power units will be allowed next season (eight engines have been permitted) and any use of an additional complete power unit will result in the driver having to start the race from the pitlane. Meanwhile, any changes of individual elements, such as turbo, MGUs or energy store, will result in a ten-place grid penalty.

They will therefore need to last at least 4,000km rather than the current 2,000km.

As is currently the case, there will be a ‘freeze’ with power units homologated by the FIA between 2014 and 2020. However, changes will be allowed for “installation, reliability and cost-saving reasons” while manufacturers will also be given the chance to make up any performance shortfall.

Gearboxes

Eight-speed gearboxes will replace the current seven while ratios will be fixed for the season (although they can be re-nominated in 2014 only). Gearboxes must also last for six consecutive races, an increase from the current five.

Chassis

Here, too, the changes are intended to boost efficiency, yet the FIA announced in December 2012 that “changes made to bodywork design, originally aimed at reducing downforce and drag for increased efficiency, have reverted to 2012 specification”.

Ideas such as reverting back to ground effects – whereby a Venturi tunnel on the car’s underbody generates downforce without the drag – were initially mooted but what has emerged carries, in truth, a large degree of compromise.

But that’s not to say the changes are insignificant. By the sound of it, the most fundamental change comes at the front of the car, where a narrower front wing and lower nose will significantly alter the airflow. So, starting there and working back:

The front wing width will be reduced from 1800mm to 1650mm

Tim Goss: “Probably one of the most significant changes is the front wing, the span of which has been reduced, moving the endplates in. That, in terms of the airflow across the car, is quite a major design challenge because the front-wing endplates are now sitting more directly in front of the tyres.”

The nose, which has been raised for many seasons now as designers seek downforce by pushing as much air as possible underneath the car, will be lowered from a height of 550mm to 185mm. Also, the ‘step’ seen for the last couple of seasons will be a thing of the past.

Tim Goss: “The rules stipulate that you must have a lower tip to the nose. One of the reasons for that is to try and prevent cars launching off the back of other cars – if a following car was to hit the rear tyre of a car in front then it would get kicked up in the air, but a lower nose would prevent that.”

The chassis height will also be lowered.

Tim Goss: “There’s a regulation on the chassis height that’s dropped by 50mm. The chassis height towards the cockpit, the limits there are the same. So essentially, the chassis will have to drop down as you go forwards and then the nose tip continues to drop as well. The days of a high chassis and high nose tip are gone.”

Side-impact structures will be made standard.

Tim Goss: “The crash tube that sits within the bodywork here will be a standardised tube. It’s being developed by Red Bull and the idea is two-fold: one to reduce costs and, two, the current regulations mean that the tubes aren’t particularly good in a lateral impact. They’re very good at taking an end-on impact but in a lateral impact they’re not particularly good. There’s a longer, more triangulated tube that all teams will have to run and that will dictate the amount of freedom you’ve got in terms of shaping the forward sidepod and floor. All the teams at the moment tend to do slightly different things with their side-impact tubes.”

No rear-wing main plane while the wing itself will be slightly flatter

Tim Goss: “There’s no rear-wing main plane allowed. The lower wing is not allowed at all, there’s an exclusion zone that sits there.

“Then the rear-wing box as we call it, which is the height of the rear wing from top to bottom, has been reduced. Both of them take downforce off the rear of the car.”

A central exhaust exit

Tim Goss: “The final significant change at the rear is that you have to have a central exhaust exit rather than exits at the sides of the car. So all exhaust systems will be exiting rearward of the rear-wheel centreline. The whole idea of moving the exhaust to that position is to prevent their use in creating extra downforce.”

Weight

Engine capacity might be reduced but the additional ancillaries will actually push the minimum weight of the car up from 642kg to 690kg.

This is without fuel but includes driver weight and there is a feeling that it’s actually still too low – hence the debate over whether heavier drivers might be penalised.

Tyres

Pirelli has long been working on a new tyre – indeed, last May’s controversial test with Mercedes was in part undertaken with next year in mind.

As a consequence of the rule changes, Pirelli Motorsport Director Paul Hembery has promised “very dramatic changes” given that electric motors produce more torque at lower revs. For example, it’s been speculated that 2014 cars will be capable of generating wheelspin when changing from fourth to fifth gear.

Although the new tyre will have the same dimensions as the current model, the profile will be different while the structure is also being changed to cope with the greater forces unleashed.