Formula 2000 at PIR
Phoenix is the first event of 1999 for the U. S. F2000 series.
Dan Anderson and Mike Foschi are the guys behind this series
and they deserve a lot of credit for getting it going. Most of
the emphasis in racing is on the top-level series. That's a mistake!
If it weren't for Dan and Mike racers would have one less place
to start. The IRL has stepped up as a sponsor of F2000. I don't
understand why Ford doesn't put some money into the series. Ford
engines (the 2 liter Pinto SOHC engine) are used exclusively.
Two F2000 cars in Turn 1. Most of the spins and crashes occurred
here. A driver told me the cars are on the absolute edge here
and just a throttle lift can move the rear end out. A bump in
the middle of Turn 1 has managed to endure through all the track
repairs and resurfacing.
This next series of photos was taken about 10 minutes to 8
am. F2000 practice was the first session every day. It's the
lot of a support series to practice early. This is a Carbir.
It's made in the U.S. and that's about all I know about it. All
the F2000 cars have the water and oil coolers mounted very low
in side pods to keep the center of mass low.
A front view of a Bowman chassis. Notice the high and narrow
aero strategy as compared to the Carbir The front wing has a
dihedral center section unlike the Carbir. Some aero guys want
the air to go around the car so there isn't a large plan-view
(horizontal) area for a boundary layer to build up on. If the
car is high and narrow it has less plan-view area. The goal is
clean air to the rear wing and the top of the diffuser duct.
The Carbir looks pretty slick, actually. The Bowman is made in
England and was designed by Sergio Rinland, a Formula 1 designer.
I'm not sure I spelled his name right.
A rear view of the Bowman. All the F2000 cars have a flat
bottom with a diffuser. That makes ride height critical and mandates
stiff springs. No big deal on an oval I guess. Too bad they can't
mount the lower plane of that rear wing a foot or so lower where
it could augment diffuser flow.
This is a French chassis manufacturer new to F2000, Mygale,
pronounced "my gaul." They had a representative at
Phoenix but he was a sales guy who didn't know squat about the
car. What good is that?
DSP Motorsports manager, Steve Cameron, wouldn't tell me much
about the car either. Kiwi, as Steve is known, must think the
car is an advantage or he wouldn't mess with it. They did OK
at Phoenix, qualifying 10th and 11th and finishing the race in
11th and 14th. The car looked pretty standard to me with pushrod
suspension front and rear. But what do I know?
A rear view of the Mygale shows a wider, simpler diffuser
than the other cars--no strakes or fences.
The older Van Diemen chassis sported a monoshock front suspension.
Compare the simplicity of this with the Dallara IRL suspensions
in the report from the Phoenix CART/IRL test. As I explained
in that report forces from the pushrods rotate the link about
its shaft (bump) and also want to slide the link laterally (roll)
on the shaft. The spring/damper works in bump/rebound only. I
think there are coil springs inside the covers at each end of
the shaft that provide an adjustable roll stiffness as an anti-sway
F2000 Page 2