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      04-10-2020, 10:22 PM   #1
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Untold Facts/Stories of Past F1 Cars

I came across an interesting series of articles titled "My F1 Cars" on www.racefans.net. Didnt think there would be much interesting information but I was pleasantly surprised. If you have a few minutes to spare, I highly recommend them. The series only has two articles so far, but I'm looking forward to the futures ones. Here are a few quotes I found interesting to draw you in

On the topic of the 2010 HRT F110:

Quote:
'This is what we’ve had on CFD and in the wind tunnel, it’s going to be 60 points of downforce, that’s the real car.' And 60 points of downforce is two-and-a-half seconds, that would have brought us into sort of Toro Rosso territory at the time...
On the topic of the 2004 Williams FW26

Quote:
That car, at every corner it scared me. I was in awe of it. It was like, holy cow, this is a sensory overload like I’ve never experienced. And of course, you got the sound of 19,000rpm.
https://www.racefans.net/2020/04/10/...arun-chandhok/




On the topic of the 1992 Benetton-Ford Cosworth

Quote:
McCarthy was still feeling the after-effects of his ‘meetings’ when he got into the B192 the next morning. “They strapped me in and, I’m not kidding, my first few laps hitting bumps I was burping Heineken. Suddenly I’m in an absolute dynamite Formula 1 car and I’m slightly hungover from the night before.”

...

“He [Scumacher] said ‘Bridge corner, I’m flat’. I said ‘No way’.” McCarthy took some persuading it could be done. “I’m coming up to that with my balls wrapped around my neck with a light tap on the brake, let alone a lift, a light tap on the brake and I’m coming through scaring myself.”
https://www.racefans.net/2020/04/02/...erry-mccarthy/
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      04-10-2020, 10:26 PM   #2
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There's also a guy on Reddit who has excellently summarized the story of a few of the worst F1 teams to exist. It's really interesting to hear the stories of these teams as its almost hard to believe these teams existed!

Here's the link to the thread of the summary of the Andrea Moda team. He's got links to his other summaries in this post if you want to read the other summaries: https://www.reddit.com/r/formula1/co...e_team_so_bad/
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      04-11-2020, 02:26 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apexit4 View Post
I came across an interesting series of articles titled "My F1 Cars" on www.racefans.net. Didnt think there would be much interesting information but I was pleasantly surprised. If you have a few minutes to spare, I highly recommend them. The series only has two articles so far, but I'm looking forward to the futures ones. Here are a few quotes I found interesting to draw you in

On the topic of the 2010 HRT F110:



On the topic of the 2004 Williams FW26



https://www.racefans.net/2020/04/10/...arun-chandhok/




On the topic of the 1992 Benetton-Ford Cosworth



https://www.racefans.net/2020/04/02/...erry-mccarthy/
Thank you for putting all these on my friend, me and I'm sure many others will be occupied eying over these interesting facts for the next few hours..dziekuje bardzo!
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      04-11-2020, 03:29 AM   #4
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Haven't read the article...but I do recall a couple of things from the early turbo era:
Teams using a high % by volume of toluene mixed with other rather toxic chemicals in the fuel to increase BHP.
Qualifying engines run at super high boost and only lasting one qualifying session.
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      04-11-2020, 06:22 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SenorFunkyPants View Post
Haven't read the article...but I do recall a couple of things from the early turbo era:
Teams using a high % by volume of toluene mixed with other rather toxic chemicals in the fuel to increase BHP.
Qualifying engines run at super high boost and only lasting one qualifying session.
That's quite interesting, I had no idea they ran such chemicals to turn up the boost!

If I remember correctly, teams had special qualifying engines all the way up through the late 90s. I don't remember the source, but I recall reading somewhere that the oil that they used in these qualifying engines was essentially water-like to reduce resistance and increase power for the lap or so. They quantity of the oil they put in was something absurdly low as well. Needless to say, the engines were toast after qualifying.
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      04-11-2020, 06:26 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M5theonlyone View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by apexit4 View Post
I came across an interesting series of articles titled "My F1 Cars" on www.racefans.net. Didnt think there would be much interesting information but I was pleasantly surprised. If you have a few minutes to spare, I highly recommend them. The series only has two articles so far, but I'm looking forward to the futures ones. Here are a few quotes I found interesting to draw you in

On the topic of the 2010 HRT F110:



On the topic of the 2004 Williams FW26



https://www.racefans.net/2020/04/10/...arun-chandhok/




On the topic of the 1992 Benetton-Ford Cosworth



https://www.racefans.net/2020/04/02/...erry-mccarthy/
Thank you for putting all these on my friend, me and I'm sure many others will be occupied eying over these interesting facts for the next few hours..dziekuje bardzo!
Anytime! I hope others are able to chime in with interesting stories and other less known facts as well. There's so much history there and finding the less well known but still interesting stories can be difficult at times.
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      04-11-2020, 06:30 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apexit4 View Post

If I remember correctly, teams had special qualifying engines all the way up through the late 90s. I don't remember the source, but I recall reading somewhere that the oil that they used in these qualifying engines was essentially water-like to reduce resistance and increase power for the lap or so. They quantity of the oil they put in was something absurdly low as well. Needless to say, the engines were toast after qualifying.
those were the times...

and actually after 2004 first FIA forced teams to use 1 engine for the entire weekend if i remember the date right.. so its not that long ago..
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      04-11-2020, 06:39 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yco View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by apexit4 View Post

If I remember correctly, teams had special qualifying engines all the way up through the late 90s. I don't remember the source, but I recall reading somewhere that the oil that they used in these qualifying engines was essentially water-like to reduce resistance and increase power for the lap or so. They quantity of the oil they put in was something absurdly low as well. Needless to say, the engines were toast after qualifying.
those were the times...

and actually after 2004 first FIA forced teams to use 1 engine for the entire weekend if i remember the date right.. so its not that long ago..
Sad times indeed

But I think there's a trade off these days. The clamp down on "wastefulness" has led F1 manufacturers to make some truly bonkers solutions to make the engines more efficient. So efficient in fact that these are the most efficient engines ever produced. Mercedes say their engines have 55% thermal efficiency!

That being said, I'm still not a fan of the hybrid system
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      04-11-2020, 06:53 AM   #9
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Remember that insane BMW F1 Turbo engine from the eighties?

1,5 liter 4 cylinder engine.

Output > 1.200 BHP during qualifying

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      04-11-2020, 07:09 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apexit4 View Post
That's quite interesting, I had no idea they ran such chemicals to turn up the boost!

The FIA eventually stepped in to ban it because the mixes they were using were so toxic....and probably illegal by the rulebook.
http://mccabism.blogspot.com/2015/09...-aromatic.html
From that article Honda ran fuel made with 84% toluene.

Last edited by SenorFunkyPants; 04-11-2020 at 07:15 AM..
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      04-11-2020, 07:38 AM   #11
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Excellent reading entertainment...particularly the Reddit writer's storytelling style...Thanks for posting apexit4.
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      04-11-2020, 08:41 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apexit4 View Post
That's quite interesting, I had no idea they ran such chemicals to turn up the boost!

If I remember correctly, teams had special qualifying engines all the way up through the late 90s.
I know they ran toluene up through 90 or 91, because Berger's accident at San Marino in 1989 caused both burns from the fire and chemical burns from the fuel. The fuelers had to wear full chemical suits, as I remember ESPN showing the fueling process, and I was fascinated as a sixteen-year-old watching it.

The qualifying engines from at least the turbo era were absolute monsters. By 1986 they were getting over 1600 horsepower (some reported more) out of 1.5 L Turbo 4-cylinder and 6-cylinder engines. Riccardo Patrese was famously quoted as saying when your accelerated you had roughly 700 horsepower and then instantly you had an additional thousand when the turbo hit. I couldn't possibly imagine!
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      04-11-2020, 10:24 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EdM5 View Post
Remember that insane BMW F1 Turbo engine from the eighties?

1,5 liter 4 cylinder engine.

Output > 1.200 BHP during qualifying

Thanks for sharing the video. Pretty amazing that they were able to squeeze that much power from a 4 cylinder engine.

Kind of hard to imagine that a turbo 4 cylinder from the 80's makes more power than the turbo V6's we have today (albeit not that much more). I'm curious what the limitations are on the current engines that keep them from making the same power? Off the top of my head, I'd assume the cap that they place on the rev limit these days as well as the fuel flow rate.
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      04-11-2020, 10:35 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SenorFunkyPants View Post
The FIA eventually stepped in to ban it because the mixes they were using were so toxic....and probably illegal by the rulebook.
http://mccabism.blogspot.com/2015/09...-aromatic.html
From that article Honda ran fuel made with 84% toluene.
Thanks for the link, that was a very interesting read. Interesting to see that some of the fuel blends they used were initially developed during WWII!
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      04-11-2020, 10:49 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drledford93 View Post
I know they ran toluene up through 90 or 91, because Berger's accident at San Marino in 1989 caused both burns from the fire and chemical burns from the fuel. The fuelers had to wear full chemical suits, as I remember ESPN showing the fueling process, and I was fascinated as a sixteen-year-old watching it.

The qualifying engines from at least the turbo era were absolute monsters. By 1986 they were getting over 1600 horsepower (some reported more) out of 1.5 L Turbo 4-cylinder and 6-cylinder engines. Riccardo Patrese was famously quoted as saying when your accelerated you had roughly 700 horsepower and then instantly you had an additional thousand when the turbo hit. I couldn't possibly imagine!
I just looked up the accident you mentioned and man was that a bad shunt. Very surprised he walked away from it considering the speed at which he hit the wall AND how long he was in the car when it was in flames. I tried to look up the chemical suits you mentioned but couldnt find any photos unfortunately. There must have been a stark contrast between them and the pit crews of the other teams. IIRC, in the 80's the pit crew were still wearing T-Shirts during pit stops.

An instant addition of a thousand horsepower, that must have been one hell of a kick! We're a bit spoiled these days by how far turbocharger technology has come. Looking back on it now, having an abrupt power increase that significant must have been very annoying (for a lack of a better work), lap after lap.
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      04-12-2020, 06:17 AM   #16
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There are many videos and stories about how the blocks for the BMW 4 cylinder engines came about. The rumors have always been (and I think I remember seeing it in an interview, somewhere but can't quote it) that they came from a road car and the engine guys threw them outside in the elements to cure. Then, after several weeks to months outside, they were cleaned up and used as the most powerful F1 engine, ever. Crazy stuff.
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      04-12-2020, 06:23 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apexit4 View Post
I just looked up the accident you mentioned and man was that a bad shunt. Very surprised he walked away from it considering the speed at which he hit the wall AND how long he was in the car when it was in flames. I tried to look up the chemical suits you mentioned but couldnt find any photos unfortunately. There must have been a stark contrast between them and the pit crews of the other teams. IIRC, in the 80's the pit crew were still wearing T-Shirts during pit stops.
It was a eerie foreshadowing of Senna's crash, as they happened only feet apart. Very similar, too, as both were mechanical failures. (Berger's front wing came off.)

I have no idea why there isn't any video or pics of the refueling. Maybe because it was a VERY secretive area, the top teams getting up to a 50hp boost from having great fuel. They did the fueling in the garage, as there were no refueling stops at that time.
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      04-13-2020, 04:17 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drledford93 View Post
There are many videos and stories about how the blocks for the BMW 4 cylinder engines came about. The rumors have always been (and I think I remember seeing it in an interview, somewhere but can't quote it) that they came from a road car and the engine guys threw them outside in the elements to cure. Then, after several weeks to months outside, they were cleaned up and used as the most powerful F1 engine, ever. Crazy stuff.
Yeah, I think I remember hearing that story in the past. Never looked into it deeper though to see how much was based on facts though.
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      04-13-2020, 04:19 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drledford93 View Post
It was a eerie foreshadowing of Senna's crash, as they happened only feet apart. Very similar, too, as both were mechanical failures. (Berger's front wing came off.)

I have no idea why there isn't any video or pics of the refueling. Maybe because it was a VERY secretive area, the top teams getting up to a 50hp boost from having great fuel. They did the fueling in the garage, as there were no refueling stops at that time.
It's interesting you say that because that was first thought as well. Very eerie how similar those accidents were, sadly with a much different outcome the second time
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      04-13-2020, 04:40 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apexit4 View Post
Yeah, I think I remember hearing that story in the past. Never looked into it deeper though to see how much was based on facts though.
It is real. I saw an interview with BMW's head of F1 back in the day.
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      04-13-2020, 06:03 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drledford93 View Post
It is real. I saw an interview with BMW's head of F1 back in the day.
If you can dig up that interview on YouTube, I'd be very interested in watching it
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      04-14-2020, 02:42 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drledford93 View Post
There are many videos and stories about how the blocks for the BMW 4 cylinder engines came about. The rumors have always been (and I think I remember seeing it in an interview, somewhere but can't quote it) that they came from a road car and the engine guys threw them outside in the elements to cure. Then, after several weeks to months outside, they were cleaned up and used as the most powerful F1 engine, ever. Crazy stuff.
Sorry I lost you when they threw engine outside to elements...
- what happened to your Focus RS.
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