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Brake Drag Racing

Stopping Power.
  [vote for,

In this event, Brake Racers push their unpowered vehicles up to the starting catapult, steam wafting around their feet.

The 2 racers enter their cockpits, and a catapult hook is attached to the underside of each car.

The catapults are wound back further then their carrier born bretheren, and are geared and accellerated to a higher top speed.

Using a starting tree, these events would be sanctioned like the N.H.R.A.

The tree counts out, and the driver fires their catapult button.

At 100 feet, and hopefully around 300mph, there is a bright white line that indicates where to activate the brakes.

Interesting thing is that these cars are engineered with the single minded purpose of stopping as quickly as humanly possible.

All kinds of fins, flaps, channels, wings, and doo-dads are employed to stop the car.

I chose 300mph as this is roughly the speed that alcohol funny cars reach (I think), so it would be relevant and comparable. We already know F1 cars can go from 200mph to 60mph in about 2.5 seconds or so, and 0-100-0mph in about 4 sec.

The only rules would be minimal "closed" and maximum "open" measurements, as these machines spring open like some kind of aerodynamic jacknife. Also wheelbase and tire specs would be set, but everything else (barring maybe retro rockets) would be allowed. Drag chutes would be there in reserve if something goes wrong.

The challenge would be in having a super stramlined and low drag shape to cover the 1st 100 feet, and the ability to transform into a high drag and downforce configuration for the braking part.

Giblet, Aug 05 2008

Off topic, gratuitous pics of a carbeque http://www.wediditf...om/2007-CHRR-6.html
the best one is 3/5 of the way down [normzone, Aug 07 2008]

Expalination of ET For anyone like me...ics/index.html#what
ET the basis of is a handicaping system [acemcbuller, Aug 07 2008]


       How do you know who wins?
GutPunchLullabies, Aug 05 2008

       So...biggest chute system wins?   

       I swear people here don't read.   

       Myself included.   

       The chute is there "if something goes wrong". Chutes are not allowed unless something actually goes wrong.   

       The winner stops in the shortest distance.   

       I figured that part was pretty straightforward :/   

       Oh well, next.
Giblet, Aug 05 2008

       I love it. You may want to have some system whereby you cannot brake under 300 mph (while still in the target zone on the track), then you are free to do so, in order to encourage both competition to reach speed and to reach a full stop, with a scoring system based on the combination.
normzone, Aug 05 2008

       This whould be easily acheivable with in car telemetry and transponders, so a braking fault could be detected resulting in a disqualification.   

       And Norm nailed it on the head with race being two parts, keeping speed closest to 300mph by the time you reach the 100ft line, and the distance needed to brake at the end.
Giblet, Aug 05 2008

       I suppose the driver's seat should face backwards, looking out of the rear of the vehicle, so it can cushion him against the force of deceleration. [+]
Wrongfellow, Aug 05 2008

       You'd go through tires pretty fast in this sport.
normzone, Aug 06 2008

       My bad. (+)   

       Not necessarily, [fries].   

       I served my auto mechanic apprenticeship under a retired funny car quarter mile racer by the name of Randy Walls (first Chevy to go 200, first Chevy to go 210, which should date me appropriately).   

       He told a tale of going home to do a run at the local airport, or some such strip, kind of a local boy makes good and comes home to show it off kind of thing.   

       His chute failed to open at the end of the run, and he went through a barbed wire fence and in to a cow pasture / swamp with his hometown crowd watching. It was a while before a tow truck with a cable could fish him out.   

       So not bad, chutes can be good thing. He was a great guy to work for, and I owe him a great deal.   

       Update: After years of being unable to find him on the web, I've found footage on YouTube and some great stills of his car catching fire in a race a couple of years ago - apparently he came out of retirement. He walked away from it. (link)
normzone, Aug 06 2008

       Next Idea: Instant Wall.
Noexit, Aug 07 2008

       You'd want a fairly narrow set of weight limits, and require them to be met both before and after the run. (You've got to stop the whole car, not just part of it.) And with the cars the same weight, you can calculate from the catapult throw a minimum time to the white line - if a car exceeds that time, they were slowing down prematurely and get a DQ.   

       Would there be any reason to not tie the two catapults together, since that's not the competitive end of the race?
lurch, Aug 07 2008

       You can assume this series, like all sports, has a formula.   

       This is the reason a hockey goalie can't just sit inside the net and hold up a piece of plywood.   

       The formula would allow for weight and dimensions minimum and maximum to keep people from doing the obviously silly.   

       The reason for two seperate catapults, is it adds the reaction time to the event, just like in regular drag racing. Lane choice is important in regular drag raing, so I figured it should factor in.   

       You can win a race by a better reaction time, better braking, or a combo of both.   

       These limited dimensions force engineers to work and think different, like the famous Colin Chapman who invented the Fan Car. The fan was outlawed next race.   

       The formula therefore will exclude things like rope tethered grappling hooks and other such Speed Racer tomfoolery.
Giblet, Aug 07 2008

       That's exactly the reason for my question. You didn't specify that the person who stops shortest wins. If you had, I would have asked about the possibility of waiting until the other guy is stopped before catapulting.   

       The system actually discourages quick reactions.
GutPunchLullabies, Aug 07 2008

       P.S. My car converts its entire energy to vertical motion, by catapulting upwards on a lever built into the frame. When it comes down on the spot where it took off, it has traversed zero forward distance.
GutPunchLullabies, Aug 07 2008

       Your car then is not allowed.   


       Cuz this is just a half baked idea. I can't come up with every single rule of what you CAN'T do. But if I had time and lawyers and planners, you would never be allowed such a silly design. A stipulation that the car must remain on the ground. Done. Next.   

       This is why a sport like F1 has evolved over 50+ years, so these rediculous ideas can be engineered by crackpots then immediately banned.   

       Byt the way gutpunchlullabies, what does launching into the air have to do with braking?   

       I'm sure anyone who would want to compete in this sport (Brembo etc) would also attempt to adhere to the spirit of the rules.   

       So to clarify.   

       1 - Lights go out, you hit the button.   

       2 - at 100 feet, you need to brake.   

       3 - whoevers car stops first wins.   

       So... if you get a good et, you are having a better time, and you will be further ahead (time and distance) then your oppenent. Any E.T. added to your time will increas the length of your run, again, like in real drag racing.   

       The faster you can make it to the white line, the quicker your time will be.   

       If your car is able to brake better, you will also stop sooner (less time) then your opponent.   

       So the car that wins, will likely be the first to stop, unless there is a huge discrepency between E.T.'s and braking power. Therefore a good driver could be the difference.   

       Assuming you want to play within the rules, you are going to try to make a Brake Racer, not a spring loaded frog car.
Giblet, Aug 07 2008

       Do you need to specify at minimum speed when crossing the braking line? Otherwise the less aerodynamic or heavier car at launch will be slower already.
acemcbuller, Aug 07 2008

       Hey, [Giblet], go easy with the defensiveness. It looks like people find the idea interesting. Those aren't attacks. You've got a number of the finest minds ever wasted on webfoolishness circling and admiring your idea, and wanting to tinker with it. You don't need to drive them all off like a bloody-muzzled hyenawyer.   

       Look up top. Buns, notice? Mine included.
lurch, Aug 08 2008

       Noted lurch.   

       Simple fix. Reaction time is added to the time it takes to get to the white line.   

       This way, engineers want their cars to cover the 1st hundred as quickly as possible.   

       Sorry for the heavy d, when i am put in check, I usually think clearer.   

       I get passionate about ideas that I feel have merit, and just felt like I was getting hammered by stupid sounding questions that seem to have obvious or simple solutions.
Giblet, Aug 08 2008

       Perhaps you need to set a maximum time between go flag and crossing the white line. The proper value should ensure both quick reactions and a sufficient speed across the line.   

       Then you could just judge based on who stopped in less distance. It seems like it would cause fewer shouting matches than some arcane combination of distance, time, reaction time, etc.   

       Re the formula, I aspire to be the guy responsible for the most ridiculous rules in the book (No moving the ground the car rests on closer to the starting line, etc.)
GutPunchLullabies, Aug 14 2008


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