The Death of Racing
From mans raw instinct to create a better, faster, louder car then his opponent might be coming to an end earlier then we might expect
The death of racing
Racing, the animal instinct in the mans body to prove that they themselves are more superior then ones around him. This instinct is natural, from beating you're friend in a elementary school 100m race or who can kick the soccer ball the furthest. Mans competition dates back to our creation and is one of the most important aspects of our world. Now you may ask, "how has this effected the automotive racing scene". Since the beginning we have seen some great cars emerge from one soul purpose to beat the competition. This given the likes of the BMW e30 M3 to beat Mercedes's 190E and Fords great aspiration to beat Ferraris prancing horse, the 330 P4 with the remarkable Ford GT40. Just think of that for a second, without these rivalry's we wouldn't of had these remarkable living icons and the stories which go with them.
We all know that racing isn't just about seeing who gets that podium position as the end of the race because that's not where the excitement is, the excitement is in the heart of the battle, those tense moments hearing the engine roaring past 7,000 rpm on Kimmel straight at Spa and seeing who will be the first to back out coming into the corner. These are the moments that make racing. I remember stumbling across a video of a Mazda 787b at le man from 1991, the man filming was around 50 metres away from the first corner of the outragingly long mulsane straight which gets the car well above 150mph. You could start to hear the 4 rotor in the distance and it was coming closer and closer and then hard on the brakes and downshifts right before the camera. I remeber replaying this video at least 10 times as the sound is just uncanny. Its the roarness, a scream or cry even to say as it was pure affection and emotion coming out of that exhaust.
This was the very moment I realised what racing is really about, yes it is about beating the other apponent and getting that gold medal but it is really about the connection between car and being. The key to winning is to win over someones heart befor winning the glory.
The reason why race cars bring this type of emotion is because they are pure to what they are, Im meaning that with road going cars their is a sense of subtleness and refinery. The cars are always great but they're is just something always missing. Its like when you want to go to the park but you're mum makes your take a backpack with lunch and then where a jumper and where sensible shoes, it might be ideal and practical but then your limited to you're fun.
Racing you car, not your car racing for you
Racing is a intense sport, its physically demanding and you are very well putting you're life on the line every time you place foot on the grid and if you are not willing to do that then your not really in it for the passion of competition. Humans will go to great lengths to win and if its putting their life on the line then so be it. As time has gone on with racing you are seeing more and more "driver assists", you. are seeing assists like traction control settings, ABS and automatic gearbox. This kills the driver engagement with the car, it was the skill before which made the sport great. If it was raining you could really see who was great as they would dare to push full throttle but still keeping traction, but now you just flick on traction control and its all solved for you. The assists ruin it as it gets rid of the excitement and the danger factor and this is what keeps us biting our tongues when watching the sport. You can start to see changes in the motorsport industry which are actually making the cars slower because of safety, I think people are starting to miss the point. Now I mentioned before about manual transmissions and yes I agree that it was a revilutinary change as shifting is faster and their is one less peddle to worry about, This was what made the driver one with the car as he had to manually shift that gear into another, hit that double clutch on the downshift where now this is all done for us.
Life Is not fair
It is 1978 and the new F1 cars are announced you have Ferrari with their flat 12 with dominates in top speed, then their is lotus with their Cosworth v8 which is light and nimble and then Brabham with their new fan car which cheats drag. The diversity creates excitement and mystery as every single car has something different about them, each car had something which would individually give them an edge over their opponent so it was anyones race, anyones season. This has started to all go now as FIA are trying to make cars "safer and fairer", I recently sore the picture of the new Forumula 1 cars for 2022 and don't get me wrong they do look amazing, but im looking at the same car from every brand. The moment you make things fair you ultimately kill the sport of racing. Racing is about finding that hidden loophole or doing something outrages with your cars design which could make it terrible, but just maybe it could be just a little bit faster then the car next to you on the grid. Formula 1 has basically nearly killed off the part of it which made it the top tier racing category. It was all about the design, the sound, the danger and driving. The emotion and tone of that exhaust was like a symphony and every car had a different sound and they where all amazing in they're own way. What is there to make you love another car over the other now, looking at Ferrari and seeing they're fan base just because it was a Ferrari. They're cars where sleek and the lines where soft with that recognisable Rosso corse paint. You can't say that now as Ferrari looks the exact same as Honda and Mercedes and Aston Martin. This why the new hyper car category in le man is something which has been needed for a while and you can already see the diversity and we are not even finished the season. The hypercar category lets you design your car however you want and put whatever engine you want in it. The recent Peugeot 9X8 LMH car has no rear spoiler which is so interesting as downforce is always key but they say they produce just as much downforce as the competitors from other areas such as under the car. Its things like this which still gives the racing world good bumps and mystery.
Now for the question of the future of racing, with our current worlds climate change and global warming increasing, we the lovers of cars get cheated on as the first thing the world wants to change are the emissions coming from our exhaust pipes. Yes the future will have faster cars and crazier lap times but I think we are going to lose our pure racing joy and thrill. The sound of electrification docent give off the same ore as a screaming v12, their will be no shifting but just brake and acceleration. I believe the race cars which will suffer the most are GT3 cars, as years go by the road going cars will get smaller and quieter engines with more self driving features then driving engagement features and this just gets fed straight into the race cars. These GT3 cars from my point of view show what cars truly are, its shows the wild animal kept inside its timid self as it is able to express its self fully. With more restrictions and limits, this side of the cars seems to fade away. The future will eventually have all electric cars and this will be the situation for motorsport aswell, so then their is the question if they're will still be a big community as their is now with aftermarket tuning and enthusiasts and that is a question which I can not answer.
I believe they're will be a future of racing which will adapt around our worlds situation and problems, but I think we just might loose out true purpose of racing and we will forget about our past and what it really means to be a race car.