Formula One - All About

Formula One, also known as Formula 1 or F1, is a set of rules that participants must conform to when racing in the Grand Prix.

Car fanatics have always been interested in showing off their beauties by racing other cars. Car racing has been a part of human history and goes back to the early days of when cars were invented. The search for a better and faster car never ends.

Formula One or Formula 1 is the most famous single-seater auto racing that happens every year. It originates during the 1920s and 1930s with the European Grand Prix Motor Racing. However, it was dismissed for World War II and then reinstated after the war was over. The races are sanctioned by the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA). While, the FIA Formula One World Championship has been the face of the Formula racing, other Formula One races were also regularly held until 1983.

What is Formula 1?

It is the fastest single-seat auto racing that happens every year. It holds two annual World Championships – one for the drivers and the other constructers. The drivers race among other drives to try and win the title of the faster driver. The constructer title is because all of the cars that race in the Grand Prix are built specifically by companies for the purpose of the race. These cars are made conforming to the specific regulations provided by the FIA and are super light in terms of weight to give it more speed.

The cars in the Gran Prix resemble the box cars that are created by children and their parents. However, these cars that are used to race in the F1 are faster, better with more technologies.

Why Formula and what does Formula mean?

The ‘formula’ in the name suggests the set of rules and regulations that are set by federation. These rules are required to be followed by all participants that wish to enter and compete in the race. The tracks for these Grand Prix (meaning ‘great prizes in French) are purposely build by the Federation or done on public roads sanctioned for the races.

How does one qualify for Formula 1?

The event or the race spans over a weekend, where there are free practice sessions given to the racers. There are two free practice sessions on Friday and another one on Saturday. Following the practice session on Saturday, the qualifying round will be held. The order of the cars will also be determined by this qualifying round.

The current qualification laps differ from the older one in which drivers were supposed to establish their fastest lap, which would then determine their grid position. The current qualifying system, adopted in 2006, is known as ‘knock-out’ qualifying. It is split into 3 periods known as Q1, Q2, and Q3. In each level, drivers race to get to their fastest time, with the slowest racers being disqualified or knocked out from the race. The timings of the final lap will determine the grid setup for the actual race.

Regulations of Formula One

  • F1 car can be no more than 180 cm wide and 95 cm tall
  • The car must only have four wheels mounted externally of the body work with only the front two steered and only the back two driven.
  • The main chassis must contain a safety cell that reduces the impact directly in front of the cockpit.
  • The car must contain roll structures behind and ahead of the driver.
  • The cars must pass all crash tests that are set forth by the F1 Federation.
  • Onboard electrical and computer systems, once inspected at the start of the season, may not be changed without prior approval.
  • Electronic starters and launch control are forbidden.
  • The computers must contain a telemetric accident data reporting system.
  • Engines used in 2013 were 2.4 liter V8 engines; however, engines used in 2014 include 1.6 liter turbocharged V6 engine.
  • Variable-length intake and exhaust systems are also forbidden.
  • The crankshaft and camshafts must be made of steel or cast iron. The use of carbon composite materials for the cylinder block, cylinder head and pistons is not allowed.
  • Separate starting devices may be used to start engines in the pits and on the grid. If the engine is fitted with an anti-stall device, this must be set to cut the engine within ten seconds in the event of an accident.
  • Refueling is no longer permitted, but is set to return in 2017.

There are more rules regarding tires, racing procedures, how the scoring works, and so on. The list of more detailed rules can be found on the Federation’s website.

Image Courtesy: en.wikipedia.org

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