"How to save a season in eight seconds"


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    Keith Collantine

    I’m not a great fan of Superleague Formula but I just got sent this by the Minardi team who run one of the cars in the series. It’s well worth a read:

    How to save a season in just 8 seconds: User manual by Davide Rigon

    Winning the title in Superleague Formula Davide Rigon continues to take stand in motorsport, both within and outside national boundaries. The firm Rigon has not gone unnoticed among engineers Menard Competition Technologies Limited (MCT), the company that designed, engineered and created the heart of the Superleague Formula car license plate, a 4.2-liter V12 that delivers 750 hp beauty .

    By controlling the telemetry of the car dellAnderlecht MCT V12, engineers were particularly impressed by the prompt reaction of the sample in contact with the car Venetian white-green of Beijing during the early stages of the second race on the track of Navarre (the last round of the season ) had hit the championship leader Rigon sending him off the track, making the engine stall. At this point, it would be fair to say that most drivers would have detached the steering wheel, climbed out and gone in search of the nearest bar. But not Signor Rigon from Thiene

    Rolling backwards, with a stalled V12 engine and a gearbox in auto shift mode, he had the presence of mind to select the manual gearbox mode, shift down through the gearbox to select reverse, and then bump start the engine. And with just enough momentum and backwards speed, the MCT engine fired into life. From this moment, he recovered to finish 11th and score vital championship points.

    If one looks at the data, with the left hand numbers being seconds elapsed, the sequence of events is not only complex but extraordinary in terms of the sheer speed of thought needed. Indeed, in just over eight seconds, Rigon turns his day and his championship assault around.

    So, for those number crunchers amongst you, heres the sequence of events,

    0.o sec Collision with Beijing car driver lifts off the throttle and starts to brake

    0.5 Driver brakes heavily engine stalls

    1.385 Zero road speed displayed, wheels are locked

    1.925 Brakes released car is now rolling backwards

    2.050 Wheel speed displays 39 kph backwards the system cannot differentiate between forwards and reverse

    2.925 Steering lock applied wheel speed displays 24 kph (backwards)

    3.610 Clutch depressed, engine speed = zero, wheel speed displays 20 kph


    4.105 Full steering lock applied

    5.305 Steering lock reduced wheel speed displays 16 kph (backwards)

    6.245 Manual gearbox mode selected (auto mode will not shift whilst the

    engine is not running and will not select reverse in any event) wheel speed displays 15 kph (backwards)

    6.415 2nd gear selected wheel speed displays 14 kph (backwards)

    6.875 1st gear selected wheel speed displays 14 kph (backwards)

    7.165 Neutral selected wheel speed displays 13 kph (backwards)

    7.535 Reverse selected wheel speed displays 12 kph (backwards)

    8.0Throttle applied wheel speed displays 11 kph (backwards)

    8.07 Clutch released, engine rotates wheel speed displays 11 kph


    8.235 Engine fires, 683 rpm wheel speed displays 9 kph (backwards)

    8.360 Engine starts to run, 1228 rpm wheel speed displays 8 kph


    8.710 Engine speed rises to 7872 rpm the chase begins

    In short, a new demonstration of the talent of a young man of twenty-four years this season, as in all others, dominated the scene by winning the title, leaving behind yet another highly experienced pilots in the world. With this latest Rigon seal is confirmed as the great reality of international motorsports, despite the lack of an important economic support.

    We hope that the pure talent of Davide Rigon not go unnoticed among the most important team managers, who are always on the hunt of the young promises to be launched in Formula 1.

    We thank David Price and the Menard Competition Technologies for permission to use the data or for the person to Davide Rigon.

    Alberto Fussotto

    Ufficio Stampa Minardi



    really interesting read – but, with all due respect, isn’t this what most good drivers would do? The times are astonishing, but I would have thought its not something that is actually extraordinary. Correct me if i’m wrong though!



    I did the same this afternoon when my currently-untuned-and-with-fuel-trims-way-off racecar stalled. Then again, I wasn’t busy racing 20-30 other guys at the same time and it was a normal 5-speed, not a paddle-shifter.



    Minardi aren’t in Superleague, saying that, are any Minadri team still running now? They had a Champ Car team, were with Piquet Sports in GP2 and did a bit in IndyCar I think. Maybe Paul Stoddard just keeps the name in case he wants to enter something else.

    On a different note, I think Superleague would get more credibility if it wasn’t made up of Football teams. The Racing is excellent though, the organisers have made a series that really entertains. Maybe use those cars and bring back the A1GP countries.



    Wow, that’s like a mini tense thriller.. I was there in the car with him!

    As for ‘what most drivers would do’, Have you ever heard of someone doing that before? Maybe most driver would like to think that’s what they would do! :)


    Keith Collantine

    Hare – Interesting question. If we’re talking about smart recoveries from spins, Jenson Button’s at Korea was pretty good.



    Let’s not forget Hamilton leaving his engine on for a crane to rescue him!



    @icthyes Yeah that was a pretty smart move! Although he risked over heating his engine, however it was raining!

    @keith That was kind of a one man ballet moment, you could set it to music :



    @ Hare

    I would have thought the anti stall kicking off at the start of a grand prix like what happened to Rubens last year (and I suppose Webber this year?) has a similar procedure to the above which is a lot of small movements in a very short amount of time.

    Also, what happened to Hamilton in Brazil in 2007 when he lost all gears must have been similarly frantic (pretty sure that happened to him at another race as well but I can’t remember off the top of my head)


    Dan Thorn

    Going back a bit, Gilles Villeneuve was the master of spin recovery. Then again he did have a more conventional gearbox…



    It does sound like doing something quick that is special and gets him noted. A bit like Schumi deciding he needs to park the car in Monaco :-D a few years back.

    On a technical level I would rate this close to Ferrari seeing Fernando race without the clutch all race and still be right on the pace in Malaysia.

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