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shalo
17th Oct 2011, 14:41
Dan Wheldon crash video: IndyCar champion dead after 15-car pile-up in Las Vegas | Mail Online (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2049949/Dan-Wheldon-crash-video-IndyCar-champion-dead-15-car-pile-Las-Vegas.html)

An accident waiting to happen.... :(

Storminnorm
17th Oct 2011, 14:59
This is quite a sad story. Terrible for the guy's poor family, but
I'm afraid I've never heard of him before.
Just not a great fan of motor sport, apart from F1, I'm afraid.

er340790
17th Oct 2011, 15:08
Tragic... but:

4 cars abreast.

Travelling at 225 mph.

Next to a concrete barrier.

Up to 35 cars.

All vying for a one-off $5m prize.

The most surprising thing is it doesn't happen every race.

El Grifo
17th Oct 2011, 15:12
Tragic... but:

4 cars abreast.

Travelling at 225 mph.

Next to a concrete barrier.

Up to 35 cars.

All vying for a one-off $5m prize.

The most surprising thing is it doesn't happen every race.

Sad, but absolutely true. No end to what counts as a spectacle around there !!

Thoughts go out to his wife and kids !

Evanelpus
17th Oct 2011, 16:47
Was watching the race live and couldn't believe what I was seeing. The longer time went by before any announcement, I feared the worst. It reminded me in some way of Ayrton Sennas crash.

Motorsport has lost someone special, my thoughts are with his family and friends at this sad time.

hellsbrink
17th Oct 2011, 21:09
4 cars abreast.

Nonsense, they were 3 wide at the time of the accident

Travelling at 225 mph.

Nonsense, they were leaving turn 2 so would not have been at that speed. No SENSIBLE report gives a speed of the cars at the time of the accident, anything else is speculation

Next to a concrete barrier.

Nonsense. The exits of the turns are SAFER barriers and 75% of the Vegas circuit is such a barrier. Wheldon's car flew OVER said barrier, "concrete" had nothing to do with the accident

Up to 35 cars.

Only 34 cars at the Vegas race, 33 at the Indy 500. Less than 30 at all other races. Your point is?

All vying for a one-off $5m prize.

Horsemanure. Only ONE driver was vying for that one-off prize as it was offered to any driver who did NOT have a regular team drive in 2011. That driver was Dan Wheldon.

As far as your last line goes, just remember a man died yesterday, show some respect to him and to the others who participate in the sport.

El Grifo
17th Oct 2011, 23:15
Sadly, in some parts of the world, that is considered show business !

TZ350
18th Oct 2011, 00:07
El Grifo [ Quote ]

Sadly, in some parts of the world, that is considered show business ! [ Quote ]

Having worked on and off in CART for 17 years, I feel the IRL/Indy Car imposition of a spec engine/chassis to promote close " racing " :eek: has been the root cause of the multi car accidents on ovals ( since the CART/IRL split ) for many years . They were very rare in the CART days of diverse chassis/engine combinations. The performance differentials spread out the fields, everyone was vying for an advantage.

Add to the fact that many of the current teams are second rate , "mickey mouse " operations, taking on drivers with bucks as opposed to talent, all the factors are there for a perfect storm. Oval racing was always inherently dangerous, adding to it , IMO, with a fixed spec car is utterly irresponsible.

Pappa Smurf
18th Oct 2011, 00:59
How many actually die for the number of racing miles they do.Cars are safe but now and again as with any sport something freakish happens.

hellsbrink
18th Oct 2011, 05:06
How many actually die for the number of racing miles they do.Cars are safe but now and again as with any sport something freakish happens.

Since the IRL came into being, there have been 4 deaths and only one in a race.

Since 1916 the Indy 500 has seen 37 driver deaths (14 in the race), 12 "riding mechanics" deaths (5 in the race), 4 track personnel and 7 spectators


So you do the maths on how many Indy 500's there have been since 1916 and then you'll see how many "mile per death", including practice and testing, there have been.

Just to give you a comparison, between 1953 and 1994 there were 27 DRIVER deaths during race weekends in F1.

Nemrytter
18th Oct 2011, 08:34
hellsbrink (http://www.pprune.org/members/215057-hellsbrink) , your stats are misleading. There's been about one driver fatality in every 3 Indy 500s, and about one in every 20 races in F1 (to 1994).

As I said yesterday, in my helpfully deleted post, I think there's too many poor driver in Indy at the moment, too many who show no respect to those around them. It's crazy that so many can get into Indy without much experience in feeder series - hopefully the accident at the weekend will cause a rethink on that.

Re-entry
18th Oct 2011, 10:32
Fact is the only reason anyone bothers watching car races is for the juicy crashes and pile-ups.

This latest tragedy should enhance viewer numbers for a while.

Matari
18th Oct 2011, 12:17
Sadly, in some parts of the world, that is considered show business !

This from someone writing from Spain, where torturing bulls in front of cheering crowds is a national sport. RIP Mr. Wheldon, by all accounts a good guy.

pvmw
18th Oct 2011, 12:40
Fact is the only reason anyone bothers watching car races is for the juicy crashes and pile-ups.

Just because that may be your reason for watching, don't assume it applies to the rest of us.

Evanelpus
18th Oct 2011, 13:10
Just because that may be your reason for watching, don't assume it applies to the rest of us.

Well said that man.

I'm sure there are ghouls out there who want to see accidents and replays from every possible angle but for the true racing fans it's all about men and machines against each other.

I knew Senna on a personal level and believe me, his death affected me in ways I never thought imaginable. I can only imagine what Dans family and close friends are going through and I hope they find peace soon.

Pelikal
18th Oct 2011, 13:21
****...you do really think we watch races to see cars go round and around. It is called ACTION!

er340790
18th Oct 2011, 14:45
Well, hellbrink can foam in his own alternate reality, but don't take my word for it.... these are Jody Scheckter's....

'Ridiculous' IndyCar racing not safe, says Scheckter - GPUpdate.net (http://www.gpupdate.net/en/indycar-series-news/270071/ridiculous-indycar-racing-not-safe-says-scheckter/)

Re-entry
18th Oct 2011, 16:28
I can only imagine what Dans family and close friends are going through and I hope they find peace soon.

I think it's known as grieving as we all undergo on the loss of a close family member..

The sad event could , of course, have been delayed by a few decades with some sensible behavior.

Evanelpus
18th Oct 2011, 17:09
I think it's known as grieving as we all undergo on the loss of a close family member..

The sad event could , of course, have been delayed by a few decades with some sensible behavior.

I'm sure your compassion is only surpassed by your extreme good looks!

hellsbrink
18th Oct 2011, 18:40
your stats are misleading. There's been about one driver fatality in every 3 Indy 500s, and about one in every 20 races in F1 (to 1994).

Actually, there hasn't been a driver fatality in every 3 Indy 500 "races" when you look at how many died DURING the race and, just to keep you happy I'll amend the figures to a total of 41 driver deaths including tyre testing, etc, at the Brickyard.

Now, these figures include the small matter of only TEN races involving accidents, etc, which claimed a driver's life since the first Indy 500 in 1911, so to say that the Indy 500 itself has "one driver fatality per 3 races" is extremely misleading and, in fact, is a downright lie since, according to the data from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway itself, only 14 drivers have lost their lives in the race with the rest being in practice, quali or testing.

By the way, the last driver to die as a result of an accident during the Indy 500 was Swede Savage in 1973. Even then it is doubtful whether the accident was to blame as he died 33 days after the accident of "complications" which were blamed on contaminated blood being used at the hospital. The last driver to die during qualifying was in 1982.

hellsbrink
18th Oct 2011, 18:48
Well, hellbrink can foam in his own alternate reality, but don't take my word for it.... these are Jody Scheckter's....

The stats don't lie, er, no matter what you like to think regarding the safety at Indycar races.

Lonewolf_50
18th Oct 2011, 22:44
Pilots area aware that flying can get you killed, but pilots still fly.

Race car drivers are aware that driving that fast in competition can get you killed, but drive they do.

Sorry to see it happen, just as I was sorry to see any number of my squadron mates die in aircraft crashes over the years.

Pappa Smurf
19th Oct 2011, 02:36
Well said Lonewolf.
After seeing the carnage with only 2 drivers visiting hospital for a check up,i would say that the cockpits stand up to their job pretty well .
As for Wheldon ,he hit the catch fence above the barriers ,which many have before,but he wasnt so lucky.Those catch fences were put up years ago to stop cars leaping the fence into the crowd.One day in the future a car will get over it in a freak crash.
Personally i dont like oval racing (only dirt speedway)but if they draw a big crowd ,fare enough.

Davaar
19th Oct 2011, 04:11
Sad, but absolutely true. No end to what counts as a spectacle around there !!


It can happen at lower speeds. We had the same sad thing here a few days ago as a young lady tried to prove that she + bicycle could win over 2 tons of automobile, central city., at about 18 m.p.h.

She lost, so today another gaggle, 150 or so, took yet more bicycles to prove whatever they did prove in a mass memorial commemorative ride-in. It will all happen again in a month or so, of course, to be followed by yet another commemorative mass memorial ride-in. Surprise! Surprise!

They told her the thing could never be done,
But she just smiled and went straight to it!
She tackled the thing that couldn't be done;
........................ And couldn't do it.

Sad thing is; it is sad. She really did have sixty or so potential years ahead.

Nemrytter
19th Oct 2011, 10:48
Now, these figures include the small matter of only TEN races involving accidents, etc, which claimed a driver's life since the first Indy 500 in 1911, so to say that the Indy 500 itself has "one driver fatality per 3 races" is extremely misleading and, in fact, is a downright lie since, according to the data from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway itself, only 14 drivers have lost their lives in the race with the rest being in practice, quali or testing.
Aah well - if they lose their lives in practice then that's not important, is it?:ugh:

But let's go with your 'new' statistics. If there's been 14 deaths then, on average, that's one per 6.8 races. Still far from F1's 1 in 20.
Oh, but you changed the goalpsots - so we need to adjust the F1 stats to only those killed in races. That means that the fatality rate is reduced to 1 per 26.2 races*.
But I still don't get what point your making. Indycar is always going to be more dangerous than F1 by the sheer nature of the event - Indy has higher average speeds, more cars and close pack racing. That's just the way it is. A lot of work can be done to reduce the risk - but it's never going to be completely safe; The drivers know that and they make a rational decision to race anyway.

*2 of whom were killed in the Indy 500, by the way.

(edit) Although I wish there was something to be done in making the catch fences safer - no idea what it could be though.

Alloa Akbar
19th Oct 2011, 11:23
I think the underlying and key point is that Indycar is more dangerous than F1 - Statistically speaking at least. But we are all relatively sane human beings, I don't recall seeing a racing driver being forced into the car at gunpoint, and the financial rewards are huge. I for one would happily jump in a racing car for the sums of money being paid to these guys, and accept the risk that I may end up as toast.

DW's death was both sad and tragic, but he himself would be the first to admit, like all other racers, it's dangerous and carries risk.. you get in the car, you accept that. Eeven the late great Ayrton Senna once said Motor racing is dangerous, and it has to be seen as that. When you have a man and a machine operating on the limit, from time to time things go wrong, and you must be prepared to pay the price

Cacophonix
19th Oct 2011, 11:29
only 14 drivers have lost their lives in the race with the rest being in practice, quali or testing.


One death should be regarded as one too many. It is this no tolerance philosophy that has made F1 relatively safer over the last two decades.

In fact Indy could learn a lot from NASCAR where speeds on the ovals increased to the point where cars started riding up the catch fencing with potential catastrophic consequences for spectators and drivers alike....

Car of Tomorrow - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Car_of_Tomorrow)


On January 11, 2006, NASCAR announced the Car of Tomorroow after a seven-year design program sparked mainly by the Sr. (http://www.pprune.org/wiki/Death_of_Dale_Earnhardt) in a final-lap crash during the 2001 Daytona 500 (http://www.pprune.org/wiki/2001_NASCAR_Winston_Cup_Series#Daytona_500).[2] (http://www.pprune.org/#cite_note-yahoonascar-1) The then-current cars were based on a design by Holman Moody (http://www.pprune.org/wiki/Holman_Moody) first used for the 1966 Ford Fairlane (http://www.pprune.org/wiki/Ford_Fairlane_(North_America)).[3] (http://www.pprune.org/#cite_note-2) The primary design considerations were "safety innovations, performance and competition, and cost efficiency for teams."[4] (http://www.pprune.org/#cite_note-3)


Caco

hellsbrink
19th Oct 2011, 18:24
Well, caco, if you look in the F1 thread you'll see pics of the 2012 Indycar which has a design that should be incorporated into other open wheel series. It's called a crash structure BEHIND the rear wheels which means that the very type of contact that sends cars airborne should be eliminated. If that had been incorporated into the cars driven last Sunday you would not have seen cars taking off like they did, and Dan Wheldon would still be with us as his car would not have gone airborne after one of his front wheels touched a rear wheel of an other car. It's the sort of design that would have prevented Webber's recent "test flights" which, thankfully, ended happily but could have easily ended in a different manner. The car is also designed so the wheels cannot "interlock" when a front wheel of one car is in front of a rear wheel of another which will also prevent a car momentarily taking off. So please don't try and say that Indy should "learn" from NASCAR as they are constantly evolving. Accidents, however, when in such close wheel to wheel racing (the sort of thing people like to see happening in F1) will always happen and, thankfully, Sunday's tragedy is a rare occurrence.

Now, let's get a reality check on the stats I posted. Pappa Smurf asked how many drivers actually die for the number of RACING miles they do. He got an answer, and it's everyone else who is blowing that out of proportion. Motor racing is a dangerous sport and no matter what you do there is always the possibility of an untimely death. Safety has improved in ALL forms of motorsport and just because nobody has died in F1 since Senna is no reason to start thinking that it will not happen again. Let's face it, there have been some lucky ones (Hakkinen, Massa, Webber when he's gone airborne, Kubica, to name a few in recent years) and thankfully no deaths. Start to expand things to include Raids like the Dakar or include NASCAR and you get a worrying figure. That is why the organisers, whether that is the FIA or any other body, constantly strive to improve things. Lessons will be learned from the loss of Wheldon, you can be sure of that, and one of the first ideas I expect, including the design of the 2012 car, is that they may raise the height of the SAFER barrier and make it mandatory around the entire track. Measures may be taken to reduce speeds (again). There will be a reaction, which will improve safety at not only Indycar but also Nascar races, and we'll also see what comes out of the investigation being carried out by Indycar, ACCUS and the FIA into the tragedy. Ultimately, motor racing will become safer but will still be a sport where there will be accidents and there will be tragedies.

G-CPTN
19th Oct 2011, 18:45
Interesting to hear current F1 drivers not talking down the dangers of open-wheeler racing, despite the obvious differences between F1 tracks and US ovals.

hellsbrink
19th Oct 2011, 19:02
You do hear them talking about things occasionally, G-CPTN, but most of the time they keep things "in house" between them and the FIA. Ok, I'll admit it, they go public more than you think, like in April this year when they complained about the Pirelli tyres leaving so many "marbles" that they believed it could cause an accident. Pirelli's response? "You can't make an omelette without breaking eggs" (aka, "get over it").

Oh, and a "response" to er's words from Scheckter, this time from someone who is a bit more in tune with modern day motor racing.......

'Death a risk every racing driver accepts' (http://totalf1.com/full_story/view/396254/Death_a_risk_every_racing_driver_accepts/)

Cacophonix
19th Oct 2011, 21:21
So please don't try and say that Indy should "learn" from NASCAR as they are constantly evolving.

Indy has a lot to learn from NASCAR and not just on the safety front. It is no surprise that the open wheel sport has shrunk to the state it has while NASCAR is the dominant and most popular form of racing in the US! The day you cease to look and learn is the day you cease to grow or prosper.

Paste link to see why one fan believes in NASCAR!

http://domapp01.shu.edu/depts/uc/apps/libraryrepository.nsf/resourceid/10C68464CE3135748525716F0049C5F5/$File/Maisano-Matthew-N-Masters6.pdf?Open


NASCAR - Talladega the wild card in Chase for Cup - ESPN (http://espn.go.com/racing/nascar/cup/story/_/id/7122457/nascar-talladega-wild-card-chase-cup)

Caco

Pappa Smurf
20th Oct 2011, 01:48
Safety improves every year.Only have to look back in time to see that.But it can never be 100% perfect when speed is involved.Carbon fibre shells have helped a lot along with placing the feet further back for leg protection.
Ive seen Indy cars get totally demolished yet the guys walk away but others touch the wall ,grind to a halt without much damage but the driver dead because the front wheel hit him on the head.Ok ,you could put a roof on them,but then its a cross between Indy car and sportscars--stupid idea.
Dan had an argument with the catchfence upright which maybe modified as a result of this--somehow.
In the end it doesnt matter what sport ,you always read of someone getting killed---push bike racers,horse races ,downhill ski-ing etc etc

Rollingthunder
20th Oct 2011, 06:05
Interesting...... enclosed cockpit could improve safety as well as increasing top speed due to streamlining.

Alloa Akbar
20th Oct 2011, 09:06
To be fair to Indycar, the 2012 car design with the "Anti-flight" back end was obviously designed before Wheldon's crash, so no-one could accuse Indycar of not being proactive.

We seem to be going all stato and getting wrapped up in driver deaths in motorsport.. differing opinions about safety levels in Indycar, NASCAR, F1 etc.. "This should be done..." "That should be done.." and "This wouldn't have happened..".. "Unacceptable loss of a life..".. Hmmm anyone care to discuss the Isle of Man TT Safety stats???

englishkev
21st Oct 2011, 14:32
Has anyone else seen the tracic irony to the loss of Dan Wheldon. This was the last race with the old chassis and Dan was doing all the test driving of the new chassis with the hope of getting a new contract for 2012.

Evanelpus
21st Oct 2011, 14:35
with the hope of getting a new contract for 2012

Dan had already secured a drive for 2012 before the fateful race had started. He is replacing Danika Patrick.

TZ350
21st Oct 2011, 17:53
pitpass - Competition vs Entertainment (http://pitpass.com/45019-Competition-vs-Entertainment)

Another fan of the " Incompetent Racing League ".......a very succinct appraisal.

hellsbrink
21st Oct 2011, 20:52
It is no surprise that the open wheel sport has shrunk to the state it has while NASCAR is the dominant and most popular form of racing in the US!

Open wheel racing in the US declined because of the split between CART and Indy, resulting in two distinct race series. You ended up with some good drivers and then mediocre ones filling up the field. Whilst that was going on, NASCAR grew because there wasn't the fighting between series. When (re)unification was called for, Tony George stuck up two fingers, an that cost Indy fans.

Politics played a MAJOR part in the "dominance" of motor racing in the US, and the same would happen to NASCAR if Talladega or Daytona decided to do the same thing that Tony George and Indycar did all these years ago and go for the split so more money would head their way. After CART died, Indy was left with old cars, some good drivers and the rest of the field being mediocre and/or pay drivers. That cost them dearly, and they know it. There is nothing they can learn from NASCAR in that respect, and only those with no knowledge of what actually happened would think so.

It's the same as if Ferrari, et a,l carried on with their pissant threat to start a new series against F1. They would lose a heck of a lot of money as they fought each other for "dominance" and end up as a far poorer attempt at a series (like the A1GP) in the process.

Cacophonix
22nd Oct 2011, 23:20
There is nothing they can learn from NASCAR in that respect, and only those with no knowledge of what actually happened would think so.

I see :rolleyes: :p

Caco

Cacophonix
22nd Oct 2011, 23:51
Another fan of the " Incompetent Racing League ".......a very succinct appraisal.

An excellent article TZ350.

Caco

hellsbrink
23rd Oct 2011, 10:29
We should now turn this thread into one to mourn the passing of racers in all disciplines after today's tragedy at Sepang.......



RIP Marco Simoncelli...........


:sad::{

Cacophonix
23rd Oct 2011, 10:46
Damn it! A bad week for all who participate in or support motor racing of any kind...

RIP

Caco

hellsbrink
23rd Oct 2011, 11:06
Was a horrific accident, Caco, something that you cannot have any rules to prevent. I almost puked..............





:sad:

Cacophonix
23rd Oct 2011, 11:17
Motorcycle racing is on the raw edge of courage that's for sure. No motorsport can be absolutely safe... as this hideous week has demonstrated.

Really sorry to hear about Marco Simoncelli.

Caco