Yes, it is true. A motorsport which comprises of airplanes, either over a pre-defined course or cross-country up to coast to coast limits. The winner is the one returning the best time, with the maximum points or who is closest to the previous estimated time. Purpose built planes are used, with the wingspan limited to 7.6 metres (25 ft) and a top speed of up to 425 kmh. Though this sport dates back to early times of flying, the first international aviation event was only held in the year 1909 at Reims, France. Initially, the formulators of this sport would meet to demonstrate the design and advanced technology of their aircrafts. Gradually, the competition resulted in progress and growth of this flying sporting event.
Classic & Historic
This form of racing is one of the most popular amongst the motorsport enthusiasts across the globe. It offers an opportunity for ardent classic car fans to come together and enjoy the sport in a relaxed atmosphere, while showcasing their respect and honour to the history of auto sports. Various clubs organise these events, involving cars built in the year ranging from the 1920’s up to the 1980’s. These treasured cars can be worth up to US$20 Million dollars. With no driver aids or ABS, these races are guaranteed to thrill the fans.
The name comes from the 1050’s, when US drivers used their hotted up cars to race on the “main drag” of town, or on airstrips. Two cars compete with each other, from a standing start, on a straight track, known as drag strip, over a timed distance of ¼ mile, The cars compete in numerous standard or purpose built classes. Importance is given to the driver’sd reaction time, acceleration and top speed in order to beat the opponent. The primary governing body for the race is known as National Hot Rod Association, in California, USA. Drag racing has now expanded to Australia, New Zealand, The UK and Europe.
Some say drifting is an art, which took birth sometime in the 1970’s on the windy edges of the mountainous roads of Japan. In Drifting, the drivers swerve through a corner at high speed, oversteering yet still maintaining delicate control of their high modified car. At the professional level drivers two drivers compete against each other through multiple turns without the rear wheels gripping the track. The drivers are judged on their display style and the line taken through the set of corners.
This race is driven on heavy duty semi-tractor units which are difficult to manoeuvre. This racing class started in the 1970s and it is very popular in Europe and the UK. The trucks need to have a minimum weight of 5500kg, and 160 km/h is the maximum speed limit restriction. The races are usually between 8 to 12 laps. Due to the size of the trucks, minor collisions are commonplace.
F1 & IndyCar
Formula 1 has come a long way since its inception in 1950, to be the premier form of auto-racing around the world. It is open-wheel circuit racing with a single seater car. Formula 1 cars are designed to drive at high cornering speeds and the drivers experience a very high g-force. The cars are built to strict regulations as per the specification outlined by the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile association. The season comprises of series of races at different locations across the globe. After each race, the driver and the constructors accumulate points to strive for the World Championship. The races are held at purpose built circuits or on street circuits including the Monaco Grand Prix.
This form of race is done with high horse power cars which can develop power in excess of 600bhp and develop speeds of up to140mph. The hill climb is run against the clock, with various classes of cars competing. It is also the oldest known motorsport, with the inaugural event being held in France in the 1897. The uphill course can be extremely steep at times testing the performance of both the driver and the car. The races are conducted at different parts of Europe, North America, Oceania, and Africa.
Ice Racing is a form of racing which takes place on frozen lakes and rivers using cars or snowmobiles. The races take place at a higher altitude where the temperature is very cold to form natural ice. The tracks used are normally oval. Some tracks may also include artificial jumps. The cars normally run with studded tyres to provide extra grip. With studded tyres a screw is fitted to the tire, providing better traction and speed. The sport is popular in Northern Europe.
Landspeed is a form of motorsport more recognised as the effort to break the highest speed achieved by a person using a vehicle on land. The race is not limited to a specialist vehicle but should meet the class requirement and safety regulations set by the governing body. As per the current rules, the speed record is defined over a course of fixed length with an average of two passes. The records can be set over a flying kilometre or flying mile. All the records are further classified under engine displacements. The most famous event is held at the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, USA.
As the name suggests this form of racing is run over natural terrain, including desert, mud, riverbeds, sand, or snow. The vehicles used are usually derived from 4x4’s or can be purpose built high tech racing vehicles. Classes include cars, trucks, and motorbikes. The most famous off-road racing events include the Baja500 and the Baja1000 which takes place in Mexico, and the Dakar, which is currently held in South America. The two main forms of offroad racing are Desert racing – courses of up to 1000 miles long, and Short course off road racing – tracks limited to up to 5 miles. Offroad racing is popular in the USA, Mexico, South Africa, Australia New Zealand, and some parts of Europe
Offshore racing is a point to point racing for ocean-going power boats. The governing authority of this race is known as Union Internationale Motonautique. The race originated in Great Britain in the year 1903. The first official race was in 1904 from the south eastern coast of England to Calais, France. But nowadays the circuits are much shorter and closer to shore, so that spectators are able to see the action and the sport can be promoted to a larger audience.
Rallying involves especially built cars, driven on closed public roads or forest tracks. The courses are usually comprised of asphalt, ice, snow, or gravel. The cars are driven on a point to point format, leaving at regular intervals from the starting point. The premier event in rallying is the World Rally Championship. To win you must be the fastest driver over several stages, normally held over several days. The driver is supported by a navigator who reads out pace notes, and a large support crew repair and maintain the car at “service parks” between stages. Penalties are awarded for being late to the start line. Sebastian Loeb of France is the world’s most successful rally driver.
Sedan racing refers to the Silhouette racing car class which resembles the original production model but has extensive modifications. The rules and classes vary from country to country but overall, each and every component is modified except for the standard car body. Some cost controls have been put in place to regulate unfair use of advanced technology. Popular classes include V8 Supercars, NASCAR and the German “Touring Car” Series.
This sport involves racing a snowmobile over snow-covered terrain. It is one of the most extreme auto sports, requiring great courage, skill, and precision by the drivers. The races are further classified by engine displacement. This sport is generating a lot of interest in the US, Canada, and Europe and the major events are now televised. The drivers compete on a short course track for a fixed number of laps.
This form of racing is run on a short oval circuit. Various classes of purpose built race cars are used, including Midgets, Modifieds, Mini Sprints and Sprint Cars. Sprint Cars have a high power to weight ratio, with an approximate weight of 640 kg and generating up to 900 horsepower. The feature large wings to help with the car control. Depending on the length of the track, these cars can reach up to 200 kmh. Speedway is popular in the US, Australia and New Zealand. A three nation Sprint Car Series in held in Auckland each summer.
Sports & GT
This form of auto racing involves sports cars with two seats and enclosed wheels. These cars were originally designed for high speed and long distance. A lot of importance is placed on endurance and reliability. The FIA World Endurance Championship is an example of a sports car racing series. The top manufacturers of these sports cars include: Porsche, Audi, Corvette, Ferrari, Jaguar, Bentley, Aston, Lotus, Maserati, Lamborghini, Alfa Romeo, Mercedes-Benz, and BMW. The 12 Hours of Sebring, 24 Hours of Daytona, and 24 Hours of Le Mans are considered the trifecta of sports car racing