Formula 1’s official safety car driver, Bernd Maylanda, walks us through his career and the stable of safety cars he’s driven. All of the cars had been gathered with Bernd in a barn for a photo shoot for German car magazine. The line starts at the 1999 CLK55 and goes all the way to the debut of the new SLS AMG GT safety car for 2013.
Here’s some bonus footage of the current Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Wagon F1 Medical Car testing on track:
The folks over at Jalopnik.com put together this chart outlining the performance statistics and construction regulations for Formula 1 race cars this year. The rules change year to year, but this is a great crash course for the uninitiated. Hopefully there are a lot of new F1 enthusiasts getting ready to watch the return of the American Grand Prix at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, TX this weekend. Click to Enlarge:
Red Bull Racing’s Chief Technical Officer, Adrian Newey, is arguably the most innovative open wheel race car design the world has ever seen. Red Bull put him behind the wheel of two of his groundbreaking Formula 1 car designs. The first is a 1990 Leyton House March that represents the start of an era where Formula 1 cars were starting to tune front wings and underbody trays together as one aerodynamic unit. The second car that Newey drives is the Red Bull Racing RB6 that won the 2010 F1 World Championship. The RB6 represents the era of the exhaust blown rear diffuser where teams were changing engine mapping so that the exhaust from the engine was providing extra rear downforce. Newey obviously has full trust in his work as he shows what David Coulthard calls a “10 out of 10 for commitment” around Silverstone.
The Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas officially opened last week with less than a month to spare before the Formula 1 American GP is scheduled to take place there. Our first look at the track layout came courtesy of the Codemasters F1 2012 video game a few months ago. The actual track looks even more challenging and technical in person, especially the crazy uphill hairpin Turn 1 that Mario Andretti is calling the track’s “marquee corner.” It’s definitely going to take a talented driver to master COTA and I think there’s going to be a fair amount of passing under braking and in turns. The first official lap of the track was driven by Mario Andretti in the Lotus 79 race car that he drove to become the F1 World Champion in 1978. The second lap was done by Lotus test driver Jerome D’Ambrosio in a current Lotus F1 car. D’Ambrosio’s lap gives us a good idea of what the F1 race in a couple of weekends is going to look like. Here is D’Ambrosio’s lap with his commentary.
This second video is the full on-board footage of Mario Andetti’s lap and D’Ambrosio’s lap in HD. Unfortunately embedding was disabled so you’ll have to click over to YouTube to watch it: