Friday, June 20, 2008

Safety Car in Formula One Race

Earlier you might have read about Formula One Facts. Also you might be eagerly awaiting to watch The first ever Formula 1 Race to be held at night in Singapore titled Formula 1 Singapore Grand Prix on 26-28 September 2008 at Marina Bay area. I recently happened to get to know about another interesting fact related to Formula One Safety Car. And I thought that it will be great news to share with you for your pleasure reading. So, here it is.

The safety car is a key factor in Formula One racing. In the event of an incident or adverse weather conditions, the safety car is deployed by the FIA race director in order to show the cars down and to restore order to the race.

Instructions: The safety car is called onto the circuit to reduce speed, especially during hazardous situations like accidents, unsafe track (objects or dirt on the track), bad weather/poor visibility condition & oil slicks or if there is a danger of aquaplaning.

Regulations: When the safety car is deployed, yellow flags are waved (In Singapore Formula 1 Grand Prix these flags are going to be electronic type, I read somewhere) to indicate that no overtaking permitted, reduce speed and laps completed behind the safety car count as race laps.

It looks like there is a selection process to define a specific car model as Safety Car for the year between the leading Safety Car manufacturers like DC & BMW. For this year 2008 It was Mercedes SL 63 AMG was selected as F1 Safety Car for 2008. Here you can find how the safety car evolved over the period of time.

Sign Language: The safety car communicates with the drivers by means of light signals.
Orange Light – No Overtaking
Green Light – Overtake
Flashing white light – Always On

Free Driving: Once the safety car leaves the track, the leading car determines the pace until the Start/Finish line. From then on the drivers may overtake again.

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