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Posted 21 May 2018 - 14:00
PRUETT: How IndyCar gets to 900 horsepower
By: Marshall Pruett | 18 minutes ago
The Verizon IndyCar Series has officially declared its intent to push its next engine formula far beyond the 750hp peak that’s currently on tap.
The figures generated by Chevy and Honda with their 2.2-liter twin-turbo V6s have been especially impressive, but let’s be honest: The technical achievement of making small-displacement motors churn out decent power for long rebuild intervals has never enthralled IndyCar’s fans.
Folks want to see ridiculous, tire-scorching power, and drivers feeling like they’re strapped to a rolling explosion.
The calls for four-digit horsepower — a minimum of 1000hp — that draws from CART’s most incredible days has been a steady drumbeat since the 2.2-liter formula hit the track in 2012, and with a new set of regulations coming for 2021, those wishes will be granted. Eventually.
It has taken quite a few years for the power figures to creep up to and over the 700hp mark, and with that in mind, the mythical 1000hp figure is too far of a leap for where the 2021 rules are headed. Getting there by 2026 is what IndyCar competition president Jay Frye wants to see. Hitting 900hp from the start, though, is the target IndyCar has handed Chevy, Honda, and other manufacturers who’ve expressed an interest in joining the fight.
The same small-displacement, twin-turbo, direct-injected V6s will continue as IndyCar’s base engine configuration, albeit with a few changes that will make 900hp a reasonable number to achieve.
Here are a few of the ways IndyCar can get back to big power:
Image by Michael Levitt/LAT
The easiest way for IndyCar to leap toward the 900hp mark is through the sickly-sweet smell of methanol. IndyCar’s engine builders reckon trading the lighter punch found in the E85 ethanol they use today for the more volatile delights of methanol will take care of almost half the 150hp they’re looking for. A gain of 70-80hp is said to be ready and waiting if they get the green light for methanol, and I’ve heard the series could be open to the change.
Adopting E85 was an important step for IndyCar a decade ago. And when the series was receiving a significant annual sponsorship payout from a Brazilian ethanol group, it made perfect sense. But E85, at least from a promotional standpoint, is no longer a differentiator for the series. Fat checks from Brazil also stopped arriving a few years ago…
There are the obvious ties to the Iowa race and its Iowa Corn 300 ethanol angle, but with so much free and easy horsepower to grab by shifting to methanol, it’s hard to see how the series binds itself to ethanol with its next engine formula just to appease the promoter of a single race on its calendar.
With the return of methanol to IndyCar, which I’d suggest is a no-brainer, manufacturers would need to change fuel injectors, direct-injection pumps — the fuel system as a whole — compression ratios, cam timing and, in a welcome move, the higher compression would eliminate the significant anti-knock technology required with ethanol.
Another big improvement would come from the serious combustion chamber cooling benefits offered by methanol. For turbo engines, it’s a godsend. More fuel, more (and cooler) air, making happy horsepower.
Go with methanol, and we’re already over 800hp, with ease.
Image by Phillip Abbott/LAT
Consider Audi’s brand-new 2.7-liter twin-turbo V6 that will soon be available in its upper-tier road cars and how heavily Hyundai has been promoting its new 3.3-liter TTV6 found in the Stinger sedan, so the call to bump displacement up from 2.2 liters limit to 2.4 liters was always going to happen. In fact, the original 2012 formula was a 2.4-liter motor until a late reduction to 2.2 was agreed upon.
The auto industry, in a general sense, seems to be moving toward slightly larger “small-displacement” engines, so the new 2.4-liter motor fits the times.
Although the exact horsepower increases are hard to quantify, asking a larger motor to make more power while doing so in a reliable manner is much easier than pushing a smaller motor to its limits.
On the path to 1000hp by 2026, manufacturers will be relying on a bit more size to accommodate the request.
NEW TURBOS/MORE BOOST
With bigger, more robust motors, stuffing more boost into the combustion chambers would be another logical adaptation. The manufacturers will tell you the current turbos from Borg-Warner are solid and reliable, but the sizing is a bit off — they’re a wee bit inefficient in the rev range where they’re asked to perform.
There are a few factors to consider before deciding upon which turbos to install, so it’s not as simple as going bigger to get more power. Smaller turbos can make plenty of boost, but if they aren’t operating within the optimal RPM window, peak boost will not be delivered. The same goes for bigger turbos; the potential for huge boost figures are there, but if the sizing of the turbines on the hot and cold side are off, or the correct diameter for the turbine housing has been missed, the big boost numbers won’t be reached.
It’s also possible to fit a larger rotating assembly inside the existing housings; look for Borg-Warner to be consulted on matching the best turbo to the motors and helping to push more boost through the angry little mills.
This is where the money gets spent. IndyCar’s manufacturers have been bound to 12,000rpm since 2012, and if the series wants more power, more revs would get the job done, but at what cost? Manufacturers are generally opposed to RPM increases unless it’s absolutely necessary, and that’s due to the intense development required for valves, vale springs, and the valvetrain as a whole.
On the flipside, fans have been calling for better, more evocative sounds to come from the TTV6 engines, and an increase from 12,000 to something like 14,000 would have certainly pleased the ears. IndyCar baked in the same 12,000 maximum with the new formula, so manufacturers will be spared the costs and fans, unfortunately, won’t be hearing a higher pitch.
Image by Scott LePage/LAT
For the sake of reduced packaging complexity, all parties involved with the 2012 engine regulations agreed to leave turbocharger intercoolers out of the formula. An intercooler, which is little more than a radiator for the air drawn in by the turbos, uses high-speed air funneled in through the sidepods to cool that air before it reaches the combustion chambers. Cooler air is denser, and with more air density, there’s more oxygen to mix with fuel and ignite. With an intercooler lowering the temperature of the air entering the motor, an increase in power is found.
It would also add cost, and from a design standpoint, installing a large intercooler in one of the sidepods would require a significant amount of work to the DW12 if it’s carried over in 2021.
Even with a new chassis for 2021, a fair amount of space could be needed to fit an intercooler that can significantly lower air temperature. Take a look at the intercoolers used on the turbocharged single-turbo V6 motors in F1, and they are massive. IndyCar wouldn’t need to copy that approach, but size does matter.
If IndyCar sticks with E85 ethanol, intercoolers would be a must. If it goes to methanol, the fuel’s cooling properties would likely remove the need for intercooling.
Image by Scott LePage/LAT
Of all the practical decisions for IndyCar to make, relaxing the minimums that come with every engine lease would help the manufacturers to push the horsepower envelope.
For years, Chevy and Honda were bound to reaching 2,000 miles between rebuilds, and then it leapt to 2,500 before a recent change of policy erased the mileage minimums. The new standard involves a limit of four engines per lease, and while more than four can be supplied (if one breaks, etc.), only the first four motors can earn points toward the Manufacturers’ championship.
While I’m not suggesting IndyCar should remove all restrictions in this area, more power will be generated if manufacturers aren’t facing stiff penalties for their engine building aggression.
Take a change in fuel, more displacement, more boost, and all-new advancements with cylinder head design, new camshafts, crankshafts, and the inevitable improvements in electronics that will come ahead of 2021 with engine control units and direct-fuel injection, and delivering 900hp is more than attainable. The approximate 20hp leaps each year until 1000hp is hitting the ground in 2026 is also a reasonable request.
What’s the only negative associated with IndyCar’s future engines? I’m not sure I can wait until 2021 for the ground to shake and fences to rattle when these monsters fly by.
Posted 22 May 2018 - 17:45
RACER video: Scuderai Corsa 50/50 on full-time IndyCar entry in 2019
By: Marshall Pruett | 43 minutes ago
Scuderia Corsa, the Verizon IndyCar Series’ newest entrant, is working to transition its one-off debut at the Indy 500 into a full-time effort in 2019.
Team co-owner Giacomo Mattioli, who founded the Ferrari-affiliated team with Art Zafiropoulo, says IndyCar is where he wants to expand Scuderia Corsa’s footprint to complement their championship-winning sports car programs. Their initial foray into IndyCar has come in a partnership with Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing for Oriol Servia, who qualified 26th for the 500.
“It might be crazy, but that’s what we’re working on,” Mattioli told RACER. “It’s 50/50 [for a] full season for next year; we’re not there yet. But we are in advanced talks. We would love to add a full-time IndyCar program to our platforms. Obviously, we’ll stay in Ferrari Challenge and GT racing with Ferrari, but also it would be nice to have an IndyCar program so we’re working towards that. I can’t say much more for now, but hopefully.”
Ovo je trenutno najjaci privatni Ferari trkacki tim na svetu, imaju prakticno polufabricku podrsku za takmicenja u Severnoj Americi. Spekulise se vec neko vreme o ulasku Ferarija u Indikar na mala vrata preko Alfa Romea kao treceg proizvodjaca motora - doduse, jos nista konkretno nije dogovoreno na tom planu, ali ovo je interesantan novi detalj u celoj prici.
Posted 25 May 2018 - 12:01
Schmidt Peterson Motorsports parts ways with engineer Gade
By: Marshall Pruett | 21 hours ago
Le Mans-winning race engineer Leena Gade is no longer part of the Schmidt Peterson Motorsports IndyCar team.
The Briton, who joined the Indianapolis-based outfit during the offseason, was fired Wednesday morning.
Her exit comes after five events as James Hinchcliffe’s engineer on the No. 5 Honda. Gade’s experience, forged primarily in sports car racing where she scored multiple victories at the 24 Hours of Le Mans with the Audi LMP1 team, was put to the test in the unique multi-discipline environment found in IndyCar.
With its diverse challenges spread across road courses, street courses, short ovals, and superspeedways, IndyCar has been a steep challenge for new engineers to achieve rapid success. Gade’s former Audi Sport race engineering colleague Justin Taylor, who joined Ed Carpenter Racing as JR Hildebrand’s engineer in 2017, faced similar hurdles as a first-time IndyCar engineer. He returned to sports car racing at the end of the season.
While some could link Gade’s termination to Hinchcliffe’s failure to qualify for Sunday’s Indy 500, signs of hardships were visible on pit lane during the recent April 30 Open Test and continued as practice got under way last week. The culmination of those struggles pointed to a natural winding down of the relationship after Hinchcliffe’s car lacked the speed to remain in the field of 33 on Bump Day. Although the team made subsequent errors that kept the Canadian from making a final run to try and bump his way back in, the underlying issue that placed the team in the situation drew back to insufficient pace.
James Hinchcliffe (Image by LAT)
Considering her past achievements, Gade’s services as a race engineer—especially with the 24 Hours of Le Mans just weeks away—will likely be in high demand.
It’s unclear whether Todd Malloy, SPM’s technical director, will step in to engineer Hinchcliffe’s car starting at Detroit, or if Will Anderson, who has been farmed out to engineer the SPM-affiliated Meyer Shank Racing entry for Jack Harvey, will be promoted to the No. 5 car.
Posted 06 June 2018 - 13:41
Posted 06 June 2018 - 15:01
Ja koliko sam video nesto u vestima, Rosi je dominirao drugom trkom, ali usled neke nezgode je znacajno potonuo u plasmanu.
Posted 06 June 2018 - 16:31
Ne znam nisam gledao, kad se vratim u Toronto sve cu natenane da nadoknadim.
Posted 10 June 2018 - 15:13
Jel realno da neka televizija coveku koji ne zna imena vozaca da da prenosi trke?
Kakav Zek Vea, Kakav Toni Kenen? Kakav Rajan Hanter Reji? Arena Sport opasno kubburi sa ljudstvom.
Posted 10 June 2018 - 15:35
Nije bolje ni na drugim mestima. Danas lik koji je prenosio evropski TCR (Borkovica) na Sport klubu isto nije znao imena vozaca, ajade sto nije znao imena, vec odustane lik sa drugog mesta, njemu treba skoro minut da skonta ko je odustao, i pominje coveka koji i nije bio u prvih 10
Edited by romantik, 10 June 2018 - 15:35.
Posted 17 June 2018 - 16:20
Ja sam juce prispeo kuci i jos uvek treba da pogledam propusteno (Detroit x2 i Teksas), no samo da prijavim da se sledeceg vikenda vozi Elkart Lejk - 24. jun, start u 12:30 po lokalnom vremenu / 18:30 po srednjeevropskom...
Posted 19 June 2018 - 18:11
Pogledao juce prvi Detroit. Dikson surovo izdominirao, Rehol se gadno slupao dok je bio u prilici za drugo mesto, dobre voznje Hanter-Reja i rosija, Kimbal seljacki slupao debitanta Ferucija koji je imao mnogo srece da je prosao nepovredjen.
Edited by Rad-oh-yeah?, 20 June 2018 - 00:39.
Posted 19 June 2018 - 18:14
Miller's IndyCar mid-season report card
By: Robin Miller | 2 hours ago
Scott Dixon didn’t lead his first lap of the year until June; Will Power was nowhere until May; Alexander Rossi is yet to have a bad outing; Ryan Hunter-Reay made it back to Victory Lane; Josef Newgarden looked untouchable in April; Graham Rahal is steady but needs spectacular; Robert Wickens could have two wins but has none; Simon Pagenaud finally came to life; Tony Kanaan needs a result and James Hinchcliffe is trying to overcome his double-points disaster at Indianapolis.
Other than that, not much to talk about halfway through 2018.
It’s time for RACER’s annual mid-season IndyCar report card, and for past 34 years yours truly has pissed people off, made a few smile and prompted successful icons like Roger Penske to cancel their subscription.
Remember, this is a subjective process, but A.J. Foyt never gets the grade he deserves because he smacked me once and I know he’s itching to do it again. And if you don’t agree with what you are about to read, you’re not alone.
Image by Harding/IndyCar
Dallara’s universal aero kits have breathed some new life into street and road course racing and they look like an Indy car should. Ovals are still a work in progress, but drivers are lifting again and that’s a great sound.
ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT: Rossi’s performance almost pushed this to an A because a win, four podiums, a fourth and a fifth are the results championships are built on. He’s still kicking himself for throwing away 22 points at Detroit, but in three years he’s gone from a driver we didn’t know much about to a factor in every race. RHR’s charge to first at Detroit ended a couple years of frustration but he’s still as formidable as ever. Zach Veach has been the pleasant surprise of 2018, and Marco had one shining moment in Motown with a pole and 22 laps led but continues to fight inconsistency.
Image by Owens/IndyCar
CHIP GANASSI RACING: We knew everyone was in trouble because after the Indy 500 Dixie had yet to lead a lap and was still fourth in the standings. Now he’s won the last two races, led 158 laps and owns the point lead heading to one of his favorites – Road America. Yikes. Ed Jones has recovered from throwing away a podium at Phoenix and looks more comfortable every race.
TEAM PENSKE: It would have been criminal if a guy with all Will’s wins, poles and laps led never won Indy, and he took care of that in his rousing May sweep that put him right back in the title picture. Newgarden won at Phoenix and Barber to get his hands around no.1 again before a five-race run of mediocrity. Pagenaud scored his first podium for the year and led his first laps at Texas, so expect him to be right back on pace in the last seven weekends.
DALE COYNE RACING: If there’s ever a case of the points not telling the story it’s Seabass in 2018. A gift win at St. Pete wasn’t even his best drive, as he led 60 laps from the pole at Phoenix and wound up 13th after a bad pit stop, and would have finished no worse than third at Long Beach before getting hosed by a yellow and finishing, yep, 13th again. He’s led six of the nine races and is driving his skinny French ass off, only to be ninth in the standings. His revolving teammates Zachary Claman De Melo, Pietro Fittipaldi and Santino Ferrucci have all given a nice account of themselves under the circumstances.
Image by Owens/IndyCar
ED CARPENTER RACING: Winning his third pole, leading 65 laps and finishing second at Indy was almost good enough to get Ed a B, but he’d probably be the first to admit the rest of the season has been disappointing to this point. Jordan King impressed everyone instantly at St. Pete and shows the kind of potential worth hanging on to, but hasn’t been able to put it all together in a race. Spencer Pigot had a good month of May, but is still teasing us for that breakthrough performance.
A.J. FOYT RACING: Kanaan was going to be a factor in determining who won Indy before his flat tire, and he was a rocket at Texas in practice before grazing the wall in the race. The 2013 Indy 500 winner is doing exactly what we expected – strong on ovals and decent everywhere else, but not a threat to win. Teammate Matheus Leist has had flashes of brilliance (he qualified third in his debut) but it’s steep learning curve for anyone – let alone a teenaged rookie. ABC Supply just needs a couple of good results to stay invested.
RAHAL/LETTERMAN/LANIGAN: I’ve started calling Graham Rahal “Vuky” because he reminds me of the Mad Russian’s son. He never qualifies very well on ovals but always goes forward at the green flag. That perseverance serves him well and has him sixth in the points, but he’s not yet put it all together like the past three years. Teammate Takuma Sato hasn’t shown his 2017 form and still seems to be learning with engineer Eddie Jones.
CARLIN MOTORSPORTS: It’s about what anyone could expect from a new team in this series – some major growing pains, but three top-10s between Charlie Kimball and Max Chilton. But give Trevor Carlin a couple years, and then let’s talk.
SCHMIDT PETERSON MOTORSPORTS: Robert Wickens is right there with Rossi in terms of being on pace everywhere, and he’s only an IndyCar rookie. From his debut at St. Pete to his leading role at Texas, he’s as close to an A as possible, and it’s obvious why The Captain is interested. Seventh is the absolute worst he could be in the standings because he’s had zero luck. Fellow Canuck Hinch is responding to his teammate’s challenge and yet to finish outside the Top 10 except, of course, for the Indianapolis 500. And missing the Indy 500 should be an automatic F but the drivers have raised it to a C, so quit bitching.
Image by Owens/IndyCar
HARDING RACING: The reality of a one-car team is hitting home after a Cinderella story in 2017. Gabby Chaves is a good little peddler but could use another set of eyes and a voice from a veteran. Let’s just hope these guys find a sponsor.
JUNCOS RACING: Rookie Kyle Kaiser did a fine job at Phoenix and Indy, while Rene Binder seems overmatched but necessary to keep Juncos on track.
MEYER SHANK RACING: It’s tough to be consistent in three starts in three months but you get the feeling if Shank can put a full-time program together, Jack Harvey is one of those guys who can flourish.