Monday, April 6, 2009

F1’s Danica factor?

I find it most intriguing that Formula 1 seems to be suffering a bit of Danica-itus at the moment... As current Formula 1 Driver’s weight has apparently become an issue. As first the Aussie Mark Webber has called for adjustments and now BMW Sauber has chimed in during the weekend of the season’s opening race, as apparently the non mandatory usage of KERS in F1 this year is causing drivers to go on the Slim Fast plan in order to give team engineers the ultimate freedom in ballast positioning...

Currently Formula One chassis have a minimum weight allowance of 605 kilos, (1,320lbs) with the KERS system reportedly weighing in between 35-40 kilos (80lbs) and with the tight confines of a modern F1 chassis, apparently it’s a most challenging packaging exercise.

Professor Steve Matchett noted that the teams are stuck with trying to shove the whole darn thing underneath the fuel tank, not to mention the unique problems surrounding battery storage, safety and serviceability... Recall that last year “Truly Scrumptious” (Jarno Trulli) suffered a retirement from the Australian Grand Prix due to an exploding battery located underneath his seat, due to the venues excessive heat, as many were quick to point out the term Hot Bot...

Thus reportedly the majority of drivers including Kimi Raikkonen and Fernando Alonso have all lost wait to further help the engineers in their quest to build the lightest car possible and then strategically re-ballast it, as BMW Sauber decided to run its Kinetic Energy Recovery system on “Quick Nick’s” (Heidfeld) car only, as the German was diminutive enough to not pose a weight issue, while the taller bean Pole-ish “Krakow Kid,” a.k.a. Robert Kubica was not running the controversial system due to his larger mass, as Matchett noted how Red Bull Racing had gone to brand new driver suit materials to save a mere three ounces.

Thus both Webber and Dr. Mario theisen have called for the FIA to increase the minimum weight limit as they claim that the larger drivers are being penalized due to their taller and theoretically larger physique’s... Which caused me to recall Robby “Dirtmann” Gordoun’s boisterous outcry over Danica Patrick having an unfair advantage in Indy Car due to her Lilliputian size...

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