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Driver Weight & Kers Solution


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#1 Dom77

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 14:04

I heard somewhere their was a idea about having a driver weight weigh the same including his racesuit, seatbelts, helmets and perhaps his raceseat.

This idea is better as the driver no matter small or big will have the same ballast weight to play with.

Unlike the idea if the FIA add 30kg's to the cars weight the lighter driver will still have more ballast to play with.

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#2 Muddie

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 14:17

I think it'd be a great idea. I think it would have to include race seat though - that's the obvious place to ballast up to the required weight. Also, I think the position of additional ballast should be specified in the regs.

#3 TickTickBooom

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 14:57

I'm confused at your reasoning. How are you going to make the smaller drivers weigh the same as the bigger drivers without further use of ballast? Or do you just want the bigger drivers forced out of the sport on the grounds that they don't get enough moveable ballast to play with while setting up the car?

Also, have the positions of ballast set out in the regulations would do nobody any good whatsoever. They're allowed to use ballast to balance out the car. In some cars this might mean putting it in the nose, in others it might mean putting it under the driver. This might even differ from one circuit to the next.

We've already got a sport strangled by regulations instead of innovation, why make it more so?

#4 wdh

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 15:17

If you really wanted to control costs (even a little) while introducing KERS, you'd have increased the minimum weight.

That KERS (and adjustable front wings) were introduced as extras - while retaining the same minimum weight - shows that someone really didn't think things through.

With next year's cars having bigger tanks and running 'fatter', a little extra on the minimum weight should be pretty inconspicuous. Indeed, as sMax would point out (if only he'd thought of it), an extra 20 or 30kg on the minimum weight would save millions of dollars for each team and yet be completely un-noticed by the spectators.


I think the minimum weight should be increased, BUT I also think that the idea of a minimum weight for jockey plus saddle (or driver plus seat) is overdue for implementation.
In today's cars Graham Hill (to name but one great of the past) would never have got the drive - he'd never have got past the barrier of his physical size and weight.

Any limitation on a minimum driver, kit and seat weight would however have to be carefully specified. I'd hate to see drivers with divers' boots on to, just to get some weight further forward - to give just one example of how the rule might be perverted.

But, well specified, its an idea that is overdue.
As is an increase in the car's minimum weight.

#5 tkulla

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 15:19

I think the whole notion of fairness when it comes to driver weights is getting a bit extreme. I think it should stay as is, now that the cars are weighed with the drivers.

The idea of weighing the drivers with the seat and using ballast in the seat to make them all the same is going a bit too far. After all, I would suppose the bigger drivers have, on average, a strength advantage over the smaller drivers. Do we have to equalize that next?

If KERS is to stay for next year, I could see raising the total car weight minimum 10-20kg or so. But nothing more dramatic than that.

#6 Muddie

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 15:24

The idea is that you do use further ballast but you say that the driver + seat has to weigh 80 kg (for example). If your car comes in under the weight restrictions, you still have moveable ballast to shift around the car, but the driver and seat has to meet a fixed weight.

You ballast the seat (or under the seat if that is a better solution) but by having a fixed position for the ballast you rule out teams saying to the drivers "well, we're better off having all the ballast up one end of the seat, so you'll still have to weigh under X kgs". I don't know how much effect that would have?

#7 Tenmantaylor

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 16:02

Make it 200kg, F1 is so fattist.

#8 Alfisti

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 16:07

I don't think some of you get it. Ther eis a reason that even before KERS drivers are shrinking rapidly. Having ballast to play with is vital, the more th ebetter and even better again if you can move it where you want it.

If you just increase the minimum weight you are not addressing the issue to any great degree as the smaller driver still has more ballast to put in key places. If the driver had to weigh a certain amount in his race suit, now that would mean they all have the same amount of ballast to play with that sits in key areas on the car.

#9 derstatic

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 16:10

It's an idea. Say the driver, gear and seat has to weigh in at well, 85kg and the car + driver has to weigh in at 605 just like now. I don't think the problem is that the bigger drivers get their car overweight. It's more that they don't get enough under the weight to put ballast exactly where they want it to. This way all drivers weigh in at 85 and has to adjust ballast accordingly. It seems more fair that a driver's build should not determine his level of performance. Talent, skill and work ethics should determine who succeeds, not who's got the smallest body.

#10 bankoq

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 16:10

Every idea specified in proper way to equalize possibilites for light and heavy drivers is good one. Putting the restricion on the driver+clothes+seat weight might be a good idea. Anyway, heavy drivers' disadvantages have to be eliminated in some way for 2010, there's no question about it and both FOTA & GPDA are already working on it.

Originally posted by derstatic
Talent, skill and work ethics should determine who succeeds, not who's got the smallest body.


:up:

#11 blackgerby

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 16:12

Originally posted by tkulla
After all, I would suppose the bigger drivers have, on average, a strength advantage over the smaller drivers.


Not necessarily. I haven't done the maths, but they would probably have longer levers which could negate any strength advantage in a small cockpit.

Also a tall driver like Justin Wilson (ex-F1) has to be very careful with his muscles else he might not get in the car, so he could actually be weaker than a light driver.

#12 tkulla

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 16:19

Originally posted by blackgerby


Not necessarily. I haven't done the maths, but they would probably have longer levers which could negate any strength advantage in a small cockpit.



For a well conditioned athlete, it's a given that the larger man will be stronger. That's why there are weight classes in boxing and wrestling. How much (if any) of an advantage extra strength is in F1 is certainly debatable, however.

#13 Tenmantaylor

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Posted 16 April 2009 - 16:20

Agreed. Longer muscles doesnt = stonger muscles yet they do have more work to do and less space to do it.

#14 Melbourne Park

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 00:30

It is a good idea - to have the drivers weigh the same. In yachting, they have weight measurements. For instance, the international Taser class (the first version of the two man Lasar class), has a minimum weight for its crews. In the international Etchell class, they have a maximum weight for their crews (its a keel boat where higher weight is a benefit).

However I do not like the idea of including the seat. Because if you do, you'll end up with a 47kg driver, and 35kg seat, whose bottom is constructed of tungston. And if it was legal, dpeleted uranium.

The place to put the extra weight, is at chest level, on either side of the driver's shoulders. That way there really would be no benefit in being light.

Incidentally, here are some weights:

Sébastien Buemi
Height 172 cm
Weight 55 kg

Felipe Massa
Height 166 cm
Weight 59 kg

Nicklaus Heidfeld
Height 165 cm
Weight 61 kg

Kimi-Matias Räikkönen
Height 175 cm
Weight 62 kg

Kazuki Nakajima
Height 173 cm
Weight 62 kg

Sebastian Vettel
Height 176 cm
Weight 62 kg

Lewis Carl Hamilton
Height 175 cm
Weight 66 kg

Heikki Kovalainen
Height 172 cm
Weight 66 kg

Fernando Alonso Díaz
Height 171 cm
Weight 68 kg

Robert Kubica
Height 183 cm
Weight 72 kg

Adrian Sutil
Height 184 cm
Weight 75 kg

Mark Alan Webber
Height 185 cm
Weight 76 kg

Rubens Gonçalves Barrichello
Height 172 cm
Weight 77 kg

Some others:

Michael Schumacher
Height 174 cm
Weight 75 kg

Juan Pablo Montoya Roldán
Height 168 cm
Weight 73 kg

MotoGP:
Christian Vermeulen (Suzuki)
Height 175 cm
Weight 67 kg

Jorge Lorenzo Guerrero (Yamaha)
Height 180 cm
Weight 67 kg

Sete Gibernau (Ducati)
Height 177 cm
Weight 70 kg

I'm not sure how much Stoner or Rossi or Hayden weigh ...

#15 Alfisti

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 01:25

That is absurd, 55kg for a grown man???? They are turning into circus freaks like basketball, just, you know ... small not big.

#16 Melbourne Park

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 02:35

Originally posted by Alfisti
That is absurd, 55kg for a grown man???? They are turning into circus freaks like basketball, just, you know ... small not big.


No, 55kg is more than jockey weight.

Jockey weights are around 52.5 kg, with some racing now being 55kg.

Of course, jockeys are normally de-hyrdrated in their races, and they suffer from various illnesses which are said to be due to their weight loss regimes. Bone density loss is typical and leads to later complications. Its ironic that when a jockey falls, his bones may be less strong due to his profession.

F1 drivers in fact weigh more than a jockey - by about 14-18%. Mark Webber though is 40% heavier than a jockey. That is with the lower weight of racing, the base I used being 52.5kg, or 112 pounds. Some racing is now 55kg though, which would make F1 drivers typically only 10% heavier than those jockeys.

This year worst thing is that most F1 drivers had weight loss programs over this year's off season, and most lost several kg. Webber did not, because he said he was already as light as his body could efficiently be!

I wonder about the benefits of being de-hydrated in racing car too. Weight has always been an issue with motor racing drivers though, but IMO its getting worse. Also pure size complicates car design, although there are now cockpit minimum dimensions.

I've met some older F1 drivers, and their size varies a lot. Jack Brabham seems normal sized. Jackie Stewart though is still tiny. Maybe even tinier than he used to be! No wonder Max Mosely did not cut it driving - someone should tell him it was his height. Or maybe they shouldn't! But then, wee Bernie already knows. ;)

A simple change in the rules would fix the whole bazaar issue. When I look at those Nascar drivers, they look like normal people. Most F1 drivers look like jockeys, despite their shoulder padding.

#17 trza2k

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 02:46

Originally posted by tkulla



For a well conditioned athlete, it's a given that the larger man will be stronger. That's why there are weight classes in boxing and wrestling. How much (if any) of an advantage extra strength is in F1 is certainly debatable, however.


F1 cars run power assisted steering. Its going to be more a battle of edurance rather then raw strength.

#18 Melbourne Park

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 02:48

Originally posted by trza2k


F1 cars run power assisted steering. Its going to be more a battle of edurance rather then raw strength.


And they have helmut supports, and power brakes, and push button gears.

The first I'd do with F1 would be to ban power steering. And doing so would also be green IMO. Of course, we'd end up with even worse looking physiques, with even more stunted bodies underneath a disproportionately overdeveloped upper body.

I guess while we are at it, we should ban power brakes!

#19 rookie

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 05:40

Originally posted by Melbourne Park


I'm not sure how much Stoner or Rossi or Hayden weigh ...


Stoner is 58kg and Rossi 64kg according to google.

I would be happy for the min weight to be increased, but the bottom line is in this sport, shorter lighter drivers are always going to have an advantage, it gives the designers more room to play with dimensions and weight aspects.

Some sports favour longer bodies, some favour shorter, some favour heavier...you get the picture.

The different shapes Human bodies come in are wide and varied. It's always going to be hard to equalize it.

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#20 Melbourne Park

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 06:59

Originally posted by rookie


Stoner is 58kg and Rossi 64kg according to google.

I would be happy for the min weight to be increased, but the bottom line is in this sport, shorter lighter drivers are always going to have an advantage, it gives the designers more room to play with dimensions and weight aspects.

Some sports favour longer bodies, some favour shorter, some favour heavier...you get the picture.

The different shapes Human bodies come in are wide and varied. It's always going to be hard to equalize it.


Thanks for the Stoner & Rossi weights.

I think in the bikes, the rider can use his weight and strength. In the cars though, extra weight cannot be an advantage unless strength or endurance is a requirment - ignoring of course G force issues, and helmut caused neck muscle issues.

While its true different sports favor different bodies, there's no reason not to put some ballast in the driver cockpit at shoulder level, so that tiny drivers are not mandatory. I think Jockeys are light because having them heavier might hurt the horses. Plus people like race records. But cars is a different issue. And anyway, now the drivers are almost jockey weight.

If it was done this year though, it might completely rule out KERS, so I doubt they'd do it this year.

But several influencial people - I think Max, Newey, Flavio and some others - have spoken about the need for it.

do we really want to have the top form of motor sport represented by jockey weighted drivers? I don't.

#21 wingwalker

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 13:55

Seems like a very reasonable idea to me. Smaller drivers are still gonna have advantage as they could put the ballast lower than their bodies (obviously) hence lowering the COG, but it's beyond ridiculous that F1 spends millions of dollars on a system which is unsuitable for the car because the driver happens to be heavier than 70 kgs. Not to mention it's unnecessary unfair towards taller taller drivers.

#22 Melbourne Park

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 14:17

Originally posted by wingwalker
Seems like a very reasonable idea to me. Smaller drivers are still gonna have advantage as they could put the ballast lower than their bodies (obviously) hence lowering the COG, but it's beyond ridiculous that F1 spends millions of dollars on a system which is unsuitable for the car because the driver happens to be heavier than 70 kgs. Not to mention it's unnecessary unfair towards taller taller drivers.


Which is why you'd put the lighter driver ballast at two points on either side of the driver cockpit, say 15 cm below the bodywork, at approximately the same height as the wheel.

When they ballast yachts, they have specific places for the ballast, so that a boats performance does not improve due to carrying ballast. The same principle would work for driver weight - just put it in the cockpit, on either side of the driver, at around the average driver's centre of mass.

Also I said that Max etc had mentioned driver weights. I think I made a mistake about that - I think they were talking about avoiding drivers having to be jockeys, but they said the answer was to increase the weight of the cars by 50kg. Also Max mentioned earlier on about the need to fix the tyre imbalance (as well he said KERS should be lightweight flywheels not heavy batteries).

But the cheapest thing would be to ballast up the drivers, and have the ballast placed where it does not benefit very light drivers - or heavy drivers for that matter. Car balance could be fixed quite easily, simply by reducing the front tyre contact patch, or increasing the rear tyre contact patch.

#23 salamin

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 14:31

Originally posted by Melbourne Park

Kimi-Matias Räikkönen
Height 175 cm
Weight 62 kg


62 kg, you sure? thats like the lowest BMI in the whole field

#24 wdh

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 14:42

Originally posted by Alfisti ]I don't think some of you get it. Ther eis a reason that even before KERS drivers are shrinking rapidly. Having ballast to play with is vital, the more th ebetter and even better again if you can move it where you want it.

If you just increase the minimum weight you are not addressing the issue to any great degree as the smaller driver still has more ballast to put in key places. If the driver had to weigh a certain amount in his race suit, now that would mean they all have the same amount of ballast to play with that sits in key areas on the car.

Unfortunately, the suit isn't the place to put equalising ballast. You'd be hindering the driver's escape.
The equalising ballast has to be safely secured, and close to the driver's CoG. Hence terming that "the seat" seems rational - even if it isn't as quickly removed as a racehorse's saddle for "weighing-in" after the race. (And remember driver's lose lots of fluid, ie weight, during almost all races.)


Now, if you set the driver + seat + overalls + helmet + HANS limit at about 75kg, you'd pretty much equalise for all the current drivers -- BUT you'd be reducing everyone's moveable trimming ballast to about the quantity Kubica enjoys. Which becomes very little indeed when KERS is fitted.
And the only way of increasing that trim ballast becomes to make an ultra-ultra lightweight chassis, engine and gearbox.
Which costs BIG money.

Hence, to avoid an expensive development race, while reducing the favourable discrimination enjoyed by midget drivers, and allow for KERS in the weight budget, it makes sense to increase the minimum weight limit by more than the 20kg difference between the heaviest and lightest drivers.

You need to have an increase in the car's minimum if you set a 'comfortably high' driver minimum. The two things go together.

#25 Dragonfly

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 14:51

Originally posted by Melbourne Park


And they have helmut supports, and power brakes, and push button gears.

I'm not quite sure about the brakes. Unless there has been a change in the rules.

#26 Clatter

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 14:59

Originally posted by Melbourne Park


And they have helmut supports, and power brakes, and push button gears.

The first I'd do with F1 would be to ban power steering. And doing so would also be green IMO. Of course, we'd end up with even worse looking physiques, with even more stunted bodies underneath a disproportionately overdeveloped upper body.

I guess while we are at it, we should ban power brakes!


Power assisted brakes have not been allowed for a long time.

#27 Melbourne Park

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 23:01

Originally posted by salamin
62 kg, you sure? thats like the lowest BMI in the whole field

I thought it light too. Kimi was supposed to have lost several kg over the winter though. So much for any lack of interest. But then he is the highest paid F1 driver by most reports.

All the weights I posted were from the Forix site. Kimi's: http://forix.autospo...=1979101700&c=0

Kimi-Matias Räikkönen Portrait Provided by DaimlerChrysler © Carlos Yamazato Finland Espoo Born 17 Oct 1979 Age 29 Height 175 cm Weight 62 kg Active years 2001 - 2009 Champion 2007 Presences 142 GP started 140 Wins 17 Podium places 57 Pole positions 16 Fastest laps 35 Points 531 Laps raced 7122 km raced 34387 G.Prix led 51 Laps led 1028 km led 5143 Other series F.Renault 2.0 Euro 2000 F.Renault 2.0 UK 2000 WWW links Suggest a new link • Official website (www.kimiraikkonen.com) • KimiStuff - fan site & downloads • F1Icemen - fan site Photo Gallery © West McLaren Mercedes Career history 2009 F1: Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro, 2 races, 18th, 0 points • F1 Tests: Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro 2008 F1: Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro, 3rd, 75 points (2 wins, 9 podiums, 2 pole positions, 10 fastest laps) 2007 F1: Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro, Champion, 110 points (6 wins, 12 podiums, 3 pole positions, 6 fastest laps) 2006 F1: Team McLaren Mercedes, 5th, 65 points (6 podiums, 3 pole positions, 3 fastest laps) 2005 F1: West McLaren Mercedes, Team McLaren Mercedes, 2nd, 112 points (7 wins, 12 podiums, 5 pole positions, 10 fastest laps) 2004 F1: West McLaren Mercedes, 7th, 45 points (1 win, 4 podiums, 1 pole position, 2 fastest laps) 2003 F1: West McLaren Mercedes, 2nd, 91 points (1 win, 10 podiums, 2 pole positions, 3 fastest laps) 2002 F1: West McLaren Mercedes, 6th, 24 points (4 podiums, 1 fastest lap) 2001 F1: Red Bull Sauber Petronas, 10th, 9 points 2000 F1 Tests: Red Bull Sauber Petronas • F.Renault 2.0 Euro: Manor Motorsport, 7th, 62 points (2 wins, 2 pole positions) • F.Renault 2.0 UK: Manor Motorsport, Champion, 316 points (7 wins, 10 podiums, 6 pole positions, 7 fastest laps) 1999 F.Renault UK: first race with Haywood Racing, 3rd; retired from the series after four races due to technical problems • F.Renault UK Winter Series: Manor Motorsport, winner (4 races, 4 wins) • F.Ford Zetec Euro Cup: 5th • F.Ford Festival: retired in the final 1991 1998 Karting: national and international races



#28 Melbourne Park

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 23:07

Originally posted by Clatter


Power assisted brakes have not been allowed for a long time.


I did read the brake regs, but I wasn't sure. KERS must be too.

With the current rules regime, I wonder if the FIA would ban their 40 million per team KERS concept, because they counter non powered brakes? :lol:

#29 Juan Kerr

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Posted 18 April 2009 - 00:24

Originally posted by TickTickBooom
I'm confused at your reasoning. How are you going to make the smaller drivers weigh the same as the bigger drivers without further use of ballast? Or do you just want the bigger drivers forced out of the sport on the grounds that they don't get enough moveable ballast to play with while setting up the car?

Also, have the positions of ballast set out in the regulations would do nobody any good whatsoever. They're allowed to use ballast to balance out the car. In some cars this might mean putting it in the nose, in others it might mean putting it under the driver. This might even differ from one circuit to the next.

We've already got a sport strangled by regulations instead of innovation, why make it more so?

You should've thought a bit more before you wrote, the guy is suggesting simply restricting the ballast to one area in the car, the driving area. This has the effect of equalizing the drivers' weights.