Safety vs. Speed: 2017 Changes to the Chassis
The Evolution of the Stock Car While many fans decried the look of the Car of Tomorrow, the most significant thing about the COT was a part you couldn’t see: The Chassis. The first time I was around a stock car, I was surprised at how flimsy the sheet metal on it actually […]
Center of Gravity, Part II
Last time, I explained what the center of gravity (CG) is. This time, let’s look at why we care.
NASCAR Science 101: The Center of Gravity, Part I
You hear engineers and crew chiefs talking a lot about the racecar’s “center of gravity”. There’s a reason for all the talk. The center of gravity really is the point around which everything else on the car rotates. Terminology: CG vs CM You will hear people in racing use the terms […]
Center of Gravity as Performance Art
Before you read this blog, head over and watch this video. Sorry, I tried to embed it, but it is a really long video. If you’re short on patience, get the general idea, then go to 6:38 and watch to the end. See you back in a moment. OK, pretty […]
The Flap over Roof Flaps
Why Roof Flaps? Roof flaps (the invention of which I detail in my book The Physics of NASCAR) help keep cars on the ground. This is necessary because of Bernoulli’s law, which says basically that: Faster-moving air exerts less pressure. Slower-moving air exerts more pressure. A wing develops lift because the […]
Sprint Car Safety
NASCAR fans are used to having our drivers walk away from spectacular crashes. Unfortunately, we are reminded all too often — like last night — that racing, regardless of all the technical improvements we’ve made, remains a dangerous sport. As you move from the top-level Indy and NASCAR series, the […]
Did Danica Get the Daytona 500 Pole Because of Her Weight Advantage?
Did Danica Patrick win the Daytona 500 pole because she has a weight advantage?
More on the Red Bull Sheet Metal Penalties
After getting in late from Columbus, I made the mistake of listening to the radio as I attempted to sleep. Listening to the comments about the Red Bull Racing penalties got me slightly riled. NASCAR came down hard on Red Bull, including 150 driver/owner points, a $100 kilobuck fine and […]
Acid Dipping to Shave Weight
The stock car science blog has been a little quiet lately, mostly because I’ve been working on a really exciting project I hope to be able to tell you all about in the very near future, but also because I’ve been traveling all over the country giving talks and because […]
Treading Lightly: Tires at Indy
Tire problems again, but the issue here was different than the tire problems we saw in Atlanta earlier in the year. At Atlanta, the tire was too hard. The drivers complained that they didnt have enough grip to race. That wasn’t the problem today. Lets look at the anatomy of […]