Formula One, abbreviated to F1 and also known as Grand Prix racing, is the highest class of single-seat open-wheel formula auto racing. It consists of a series of races, known as Grands Prix, held on purpose-built circuits or closed city streets, whose results determine two annual World Championships, one for drivers and one for constructors. The cars race at speeds often in excess of 300 km/h (185 mph) with engines that produce, as of 2005, around 950 bhp at just over 19000 rpm.
Many people are only interested - or privy to - the end result of many different things. For example, no one really cares how the cake is made as long as it tastes delicious. The same can be said for Formula One. As fans, we root for our favorite team or driver and hope that they come across that finish line first. Most of the time, we don’t know how they got there or how much it costs to get there.
Our latest installment of our Car Infographics series cracks that mystery right open with a breakdown of Formula One vehicles by numbers. For example, we discovered the engine of a F1 vehicle costs around $214,300 while the monocoque comes in at around $117,900. The tires may only cost $650 per set, but then you have to take into account how many sets the vehicle will go through in its lifetime (it’s about $291,200 worth if you’re wondering). Add the one time purchases to the accruing costs and estimates come in at about $6,868,000 for the lifetime of the F1 car. That’s definitely not chump change in our books.
This infographic also sheds some light on the performance numbers of a typical Formula One car. For example, a typical F1 vehicle can sprint from 0-60 mph in just 1.7 seconds and continue on to 124 mph in just 3.8 seconds. The sprint from 0-186 mph can be achieved in 8.6 seconds. That is all done with a 2.4L V8 maximum engine size.
Check out the rest of the infographic to get a more detailed breakdown of Formula One and remember to check back with us for our next installment in the Car Infographics series.
We’ve seen a lot of expensive timepieces in these pages, some more audacious while others literally scream "bling." However, stop us if you think that you’ve seen anything remotely close to what Hublot’s new BB Watch is bringing to the table. More importantly, do you have €2 million ($2.9 million) to spare?
The watch is, without question, one of the most expensive watches we’ve ever laid our peepers on. Rightfully so too, considering that the watch is made from 18 karat white gold and comes with over 140 karats of diamonds made from 637 individual-cut ’baguette’ diamonds that have been placed piece-by-piece together without any spaces in between.
Take a few seconds to look at that watch and just study how all those pieces are actually diamonds. Crazy, indeed.
According to Hublot, the watch took over 2,000 man hours to finish with 45 gem-cutters working on it. On top of all the bling that makes up the entire piece, this €2 million financial torpedo comes with a tourbillion movement and an offset hour and minute indicator.
And to justify just how exclusive this timepiece is, it’s the only one of its kind with F1 czar Bernie Ecclestone showing off the watch at the recent Monaco Grand Prix. The whole Hublot and Formula 1 partnership is yielding tremendous press for both parties and if you happen to have €2 million lying around, you can make a run for this exclusive watch at Zegg & Cerlati’s premier suite in Place de Casino, Monaco.
There are a lot of things in life that can be counted as daring exploits. This, however, isn’t one of them.
A nutjob fan attending a Red Bull sponsored exhibition event in Japan decided that it would be a good idea to jump over a moving Red Bull F1 car, proving that idiocy can always get you your 15 seconds of fame, albeit for all the wrong reasons.
As Scuderia Toro Rosso driver, Sebastian Buemi, was driving the Red Bull showcar back to the pits at a reasonably slow 30 mph, the fan jumped from nowhere and proceeded to clear - or at least attempt to - the moving F1 car. Unfortunately, even his best high-jump impersonation was not, ahem, high enough and his legs just ended up clipping the top of Buemi’s race car.
Despite his random act of lunacy, the fan suffered no serious injuries, but as the video evidently shows, his stunt will now go down in You Tube infamy as one of the dumbest things anybody could do to get some attention.
The Nintendo 3DS is cool for a number of reasons. One, it’s hand-held, which means that you can play it anywhere and at anytime. Two, it’s the first hand-held video game unit that boasts of 3D technology, and those that have the 3DS have had nothing but praise for all the 3D awesomeness they enjoy.
And now, die-hard fans of Formula One will be happy to know that F1 2011, the sequel to the BAFTA award-winning F1 2010 game, is getting prepped to have versions for both the 3DS and the Sony’s successor to the PSP, the NGP. The 3DS and the NGP joins the Playstation 3, the Xbox 360, and PC as available consoles where F1 2011 can be played in. As it stands, the game is scheduled to drop in stores starting September 20, 2011.
While it should make for some pretty exciting racing with all these consoles, the 3DS version is what’s looking to be the most interesting of the lot. Watching a Formula One race in 3D is one thing, but actually playing a game that supports the same high-tech format is a completely different thing.
As part of the game, players will be tasked to compete in a wide rage of competitive and co-operative multiplayer components, including a career mode that puts you in the driver seat of one of the fastest machines on the planet going nose-to-nose with the official teams and race drivers of the 2011 FIA F1 World Championship.
Needless to say, the 3DS version of the 2011 F1 game is what’s getting us all geeked up about it. September can’t come soon enough, can it?
Whether or not you were young enough - or maybe not even born yet - to not remember the career of arguably the greatest auto racing driver in history, you still owe it to yourself and your love for racing to watch the just-released feature-length documentary of Ayrton Senna.
Regarded with so many superlatives both as a man and as a racer, Ayrton Senna was a larger-than-life character who happened to be the best at what he did: auto racing. The man was charismatic, passionate, and an all-around lighting rod. Unfortunately, he was also a victim of an accident that cost him his life.
Over the past year, the documentary about the greatest racer of all time was being developed and now, the final product is about ready to hit the shelves. Everything you want and need to know about Ayrton Senna is included in the documentary, including his early upbringing in Brazil, his meteoric rise to the top of Formula One, his unbridled rivalry with Alain Prost, and even the fateful afternoon in Imola in 1994 when everything ended so unexpectedly.
Ever the source of important automotive information, Top Gear is front and center in promoting the documentary. The British auto show has a review of it up on their site and in addition to that, the latest issue of the magazine, which will go on sale on May 18, will contain a free preview DVD of the documentary that includes film footage, outtakes, exclusive interviews with Alain Prost and director Asif Kapadia, and so much more.
If there ever was a documentary that puts serious truth to the phrase "must-watch", this one is it.
When Hublot and Formula One struck a partnership last year for the former to serve as the official timepiece maker of the latter, you kind of expected the watchmaker to roll out a slew of special edition timepieces. Since then, we’ve seen a number of limited edition watches from Hublot and now, they’re preparing to release their latest model. It is called the Hublot Formula 1 King Power Ceramic Watch and will only come in a limited run of 500 pieces.
Coming in a matte black ceramic King Power style case measuring 48 mm wide, the watch was given black and red tones with a strap mixed with titanium tones. There’s also a ceramic bezel placed over a carbon fiber plate and a black Nomex strap with red stitching attached to the case. All the elements used on the watch boast of premium quality, something that you would expect from the luxurious and extravagant world of Formula 1.
Aesthetically, it doesn’t get any better than this. It’s one of the best race-themed watches we’ve seen in a long time, and as a special edition, we expect it to be run dry faster than a Red Bull RB7 laps the Nurburgring.
Luxury timepiece-maker Girard Perregaux needs no introduction when it comes to creating some of the most lust-worthy watches in the world. Just like a lot of other luxury timepieces, the company has close ties to auto racing, probably even more than most considering that since 1992 until 2010, the Swiss company has had the late Luigi Macaluso as its president.
The 1972 European Rally Champion and later president of both the Italian Motorsport Federation and the International Karting Federation, Luigi Macaluso had oil and petroleum running through his veins. As one of the most influential figures in auto racing before his passing last year, Macaluso was also fond of high-end driver’s watches, none more so than the products of Girard-Perregaux.
The Swiss watchmaker’s latest creation, the R&D 01, is a chronograph that features inverted push-buttons, dials styled after a car’s gauges, a tough rotating internal bezel, and a crown field that takes the look of a Formula One air intake. The watch actually took more than a few years to build with lengthy time given to research, development, and feedback given by Formula 1 drivers.
In the end, the R&D 01 is exactly what Luigi Macaluso wanted for the perfect driver’s watch: sporty, classy, and functional with a touch of subtle luxury.
In the world of crossover drivers, a lot of people have wondered how a Formula One driver can fare driving a stripped down NASCAR stock car and a NASCAR driver can handle the technology of a Formula One race car. It’s a scenario that we’ve all wondered and now, thanks to Mobil 1, we might find our answer.
The motorsport oil company and sponsor for both the McLaren F1 team and the Stewart-Haas NASCAR team have come out with a marketing campaign that has the Formula One Champion and the 2-time Sprint Cup Winner taking the other driver’s car to see how they can fare in uncharted cockpits. Will Tony Stewart be able to understand the technology employed in the MP4-26? How will Lewis Hamilton react to driving Stewart’s #14 stock car and all the bumps and bruises it’s bound to come in?
These questions will soon be answered in Mobil 1’s running campaign. For now, check out the teaser video to see how the two ace drivers size up each other and their respective rides.
The long and arduous task of building the new world-class, 3.4-mile racetrack in Austin, Texas took a positive turn after track officials officially unveiled the circuit’s name. From here on out, the racetrack will be called the ‘Circuit of the Americas’.
Now that that’s been settled, the important part of actually building the track before it hosts the 2012 Formula One U.S. Grand Prix continues on. Earlier this year, the site from where the track will rise officially broke ground, kicking off a tight and busy 18 months to build the track before it opens to racing.
The Circuit of the Americas will be the latest race track to open in the US, one that is expected to host other racing events apart from Formula One. In fact, executives announced that the track will also host MotoGP starting in 2013. It is still unclear whether the Circuit of the Americas will be the third US track on the MotoGP schedule, or if it will replace the Indianapolis Motor Speedway which does not have a contract set up for 2012 or 2013.
In addition to running 3.4 miles, the circuit also features 20 turns, a 133-feet elevation change, and most importantly for stability and business reasons, a 10-year contract with Formula One.
Seeing as the 2011 F1 seasons just kicked off, it seems like there’s plenty of time for the Circuit of the Americas to be completed. But given how a Formula One season runs as fast as the cars that compete in them, 2012 will be just around the corner in no time.
Let’s just hope that by then, the Circuit of the Americas will have more than just an official name to show for it.
Last year, Red Bull Racing took it upon themselves to preview each and every race of the 2010 Formula One calendar and, as luck would have it, that strategy paid off when the team eventually won both the Driver’s and Constructor’s Championships.
Okay, the two things don’t really have anything to do with each other, but for all we know, those guys are superstitious enough to not mess with a good thing.
So now that the 2011 F1 season is so close - it starts on Sunday March 27th -, the defending champs are at it again, releasing a preview video of the 2011 Australian Grand Prix at Albert Park in Melbourne.
It must be noted that even though Red Bull romped to both championships last season, their fortunes at last year’s race in Australia wasn’t as, shall we say, ’champagne-soaked’. While reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel did secure a pole position last year, his race was ultimately cut short after 25 laps due to mechanical failures. As for hometown hero Mark Webber, he had a mediocre 9th place finish in front of his fellow Oz.
How will Vettel, Webber, and the entire F1 grid fare this year? It’s anyone’s guess, really, but with the introduction of the KERS system and the new rear wings that are supposed to provide more overtaking opportunities, we’re willing to bet that the 2011 Formula One season will be as exciting and action-packed as any season we’ve seen in history.
Strap on your seatbelts, fellas! The 2011 Formula One season is just about here!