Hi all. This is an article i am in the process of writing up for my web page ( http://www.qrda.asn.au
). It's kind of inspired by the how long does V8s have post, just that i am getting ahead of myself and have come up with a set of rules. Have a read through it, its not finished yet, but if you could give me any feedback, it would be greatly appreciated.
The naive will tell you that V8 Supercars will last forever. These were most probably
the same people who would have told you that Group C, Group A and Super Tourers
were to last forever. It is the nature of touring cars, situations change. Group C
finished when the power that be decided Australia needed to step in line with the
world and Group A was introduced. The men in charge had to make another change
when crowds dwindled, and one car, the Nissan GT-R ruled supreme at the end of
Group As reign ended. Next up was V8 Supercars. Super Touring cam along as the
new Group A; a world wide formula, which proved to be very successful in itís
homeland of England. However ever rising costs and low attendances have brought it
to an end
I am not coming to you as the grim reaper, telling everyone V8s are dead. Motorsport
at the top level in Australia has never been better, and it continues to grow.
Attendances are huge, as are competitor numbers, at this stage of the ball game there
are possibly 10 to 15 or more years left in the series.
Possible reasons for the downfall of V8 Supercars include:
The amount of money to be successful may become excessive, and force a decline
in competitor numbers.
Factory support ceases.
Domination from one team discourages other competitors, crowds and sponsors.
Another category comes along and proves to be more successful, and draws
people and resources from V8s.
Where V8s are failing under these rules:
At present HRT are spending more than $300,000 on each individual new car the
factory makes. They are the only team which can afford to spend that much money,
and this can also be a part of the reason why their cars are so far ahead of the
The reason why Super Touring has failed here and in England was in part due to
factory support. Without continuing money and support, it would prove hard to
survive, and teams like HRT and FTR would have to find sponsorship, where there
was previously no sponsorship to be found. Much like the days after Cigarette
advertising finished, but when that happened, factory support came along and topped
up the banks of several sponsorless teams. One shinning example to this is Transam
in the USA, it continues to grow despite the recent pull out of GM and Ford.
At the moment HRT fairly well has a monopoly on the top step of the podium.
Whether this is discouraging fans etc is debatable, it may in fact be a good thing.
However, just remember back to the final days of Group A, the Nissan team went
from something that was cheered to victory in 1991, to be being booed on the podium
GTP has drawn some competitors away from V8 Supercars for various reasons,
the main one being costs. For a smaller amount of money, competitors can get more
TV time. Drivers to switch include Wayne Russell, Kevin Heffernan and Darcy
Russell. Although it is not a threat at present, it could develop into one if disillusioned
continue down this path.
However, V8s have got a lot going for them, which includes:
More active competitors than any other closed circuit class.
More money in sponsorship than any other sport in Australia.
Largest crowd figures in modern Australia motorsport.
A sound and atmosphere which the crowd loves.
My Draft Proposal
This is simply an idea for some time in the future if ever there is need for a
replacement category for V8 Supercars. What is needed is something which is:
Something the public can relate to.
Something that the public would get just as much, or more enjoyment out of.
Controlled, yet very adjustable, so smart competitors can still gain an advantage,
not necessarily the rich ones.
I draw parts of the regulations from several different existing categories which
Existing V8 Supercars
A spec tubular space frame chassis, with fibreglass body work. Addition bars may be
added to the roll cage structure, however bars from the spec cage may not be removed
without approval. The outer body work is to resemble the road going variety of the
race car. Put basically, a Ford, Holden or any other manufacturers skin would go over
a standard chassis.
Exotic materials such as carbon fibre and kevlar are to be used at a minimum, with
standard carbon fibre fittings such as the dash board, and front passenger door insides
for safety reasons.
All of the chassis are to be made by an appointed firm, to ensure consistency
throughout all of the cars, and that there are no discrepancies with the standard
chassis. The chassis are to be set at a pre-arranged price from the builder to all
The standard chassis is top be upgraded every so often by the ruling body to keep the
cars evolving from one year to the next. The changes arenít to differ greatly with the
previous spec chassis.
Pneumatic air jacks are permitted.
Standard front and rear spoiler, with the rear having adjustable height, as well as tilt.
McPherson Struts, live axel with Watts linkage.
Pick up points are fixed.
Springs etc are free.
Brakes may only have 6 pistons, 1 calliper and 2 pads per wheel.
Exotic brake pads are banned, only ferrous materials may be used.
A standard electronic dash and telemetry system is to be used by all competitors.
Fuel and Fuel Tank
A standard unleaded fuel is to be used by all competitors, and the fuel is to be
provided by the organisers.
The fuel tank is to be of standard construction with standard pick up points.
The tyres are to be made by an appointed company who will provide 2 different
compound tyres for every event.
The dimensions of the tyres are to be of the following dimensions:
18X10 inch front
18X12 inch rear
The engine is to have a maximum displacement of 5000cc, have a standard engine
block, pistons and camshaft, and be fuel injected.
The engine is to have a speed limit of 7000rpm.
Exhaust and Cooling System
The gearbox is to be of Hollinger H type arrangement, with a maximum 6 forward
gears and one reverse. Each forward gear is to have the option of 2 different ratios.
The clutch is free.
A selection of 3 differentials with ratios of 3.2:1, 3.5:1, and 3.8:1 can be used at any
A set weight which includes driver. Ballast to be positioned in one of 4 preset
positions: front, left side, right side, boot.
Testing is only to be carried out on approved days, either before each race meeting or
on designated days set out by the series organisers.
The standard space frame chassis is to ensure parity amongst difference ďmakesĒ of
car. To have it built by an outside company is to lower costs (to make sure no
competitors spend excessive amounts of money on construction) It ensures that all of
the cars are the same (taking the manufacturing out of the hands of the individuals, so
that the rules canít be read differently by different teams). Having the outside
company build all of the cars in a field is not uncommon, just look at spec open wheel
classes such as Formula 3000.
The standard chassis is to be upgraded after every season, mainly to keep with
upgraded safety standards, as well as making the cars different for the next season.
Thus if a team has an advantage with a certain set up at a certain track, if the