Changing F1 Tires in Total Darkness: 2.84 Secs

Red Bull Racing Mechanics Provide Pitstop
The First EVER Pit Stop In Complete Darkness!

In a bid to set a new record, Red Bull Racing recently made the bold decision to attempt a pitstop in complete darkness. The target was to shave off precious milliseconds, and thus replace the current 1.8 second mark established by McLaren at the 2023 Qatar Grand Prix. Although it remains to be seen whether they will succeed in their endeavor, their mechanics are confident that they can best the time put forward by Norris’ crew.

In spite of having to labor in utter darkness, the mechanics of RBR were only roughly a second delayed. Indeed I realise that often a single second is enough to swing a race one way or another; however this is still an astounding feat. To alter out those center-lock wheels on Max Verstappen’s RB23 at an awe-inspiring 2.84 seconds and sightless is nothing short of remarkable.

Initially, the mechanics of RBR were requested to execute the pitstop when the lights were activated, but their face shields were covered. After some efforts, their top speed noted was 4.93 seconds. Later, the lights were switched off and only two jackmen as well as the driver were authorized to put on night vision goggles. Before long, they achieved success with eliminating in excess of two seconds from the velocity accomplished when the luminosity was still bright.

In the future, Pirelli’s medium tires will be a common sight. Come October 2023, the Italian tire corporation agreed to an arrangement with FIA for keeping their monopoly on all racing tire supplies through the 2027 season. Plus, the agreement also included an option for extension should they choose to stay on for the 2028 season. Furthermore, Pirelli will be the definitive source of tires for Formula 2 and Formula 3 events spanning that period.

Fervent enthusiasts of Formula 1 will remember pitstops meant a lot more than just changing tires. Mechanics would replenish the automobile too but it was disallowed in 2009. But why was this, precisely? Safety risks for chauffeurs was the main factor mulled over by FIA; plus, the significant expenditure associated with transporting bulky fueling gear to every race were also considered upon making the final decision.

Source: Oracle Red Bull Racing / YouTube

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