Sprint cars are high-powered race cars designed primarily for the purpose of running on short oval or circular dirt or paved tracks. Typically, they are powered by a naturally aspirated, mechanically fuel injected methanol American V8 with an engine displacement of cubic inches 6.
Sprint cars do not utilize a transmission, they have an in or out gear box and quick change rear differentials for occasional gearing changes. The safety record of sprint car racing in recent years has been greatly improved by the use of roll cages, and especially on dirt tracks, wings, to protect the drivers.
There are several sanctioning bodies for non-winged sprint cars. This series has become the premier non-winged sprint car series on the west coast of the United States. The Silver Crown series was started in as an offshoot of the series that competed for the National Championship Trail including the Indianapolisknown as Sprintcar and midget racing cars".
Non-winged sprint cars are considered the traditional sprint car, dating back to the first sprint cars in the s and s that ultimately evolved into Indy Cars. Today, they are essentially the same car as a winged sprint car, only without wings.
In fact, many of them have the "stub outs" in the frame for adding wings. They use the same ci and ci aluminum engines as their winged counterparts although many local tracks have rules mandating steel blocks and some ci displacements, this is mostly a cost control. Their Sprintcar and midget racing and gearing are different for performance at lower RPMs than a winged car.
Chassis set ups and tires are also different. While they do not have the same top speed as a winged car because they lack downforce for tractionthey are thought by many to be more fun to watch.
They tend to have a more extreme driving style and are often sliding sideways through corners and doing wheelies.
This makes them more dangerous than Sprintcar and midget racing cars and their crashes are known for their spectacular nature. They also Sprintcar and midget racing the inherent safety that a wing provides. It is fairly uncommon for someone to be good at driving both winged and non-winged cars especially at a professional level.
The world's first winged car, known today as a winged sprint car, was created and driven by Jim Cushman at the Columbus Motor Speedway Ohio in The added wings increased the downforce generated on the car, with the opposite direction of the sideboards helping to turn the car in the corners. The increased traction makes the car faster and easier to control.
The wing also affects safety. The added downforce lessens the likelihood of going airborne. When cars do go airborne, the wings frequently break off or absorb some of the impact of the flip, lessening the impact on the driver. Wings also provide an amount of protection for the driver in case of an accident and are sometimes referred to as "aluminum courage. InTed Johnson formed Sprintcar and midget racing promotional body for winged sprint cars called the World of Outlaws.
Sprintcar and midget racing Racing throughout the United States from February to November, the World of Outlaws is the premier dirt sprint car racing series. InAustralia followed suit with its own national series for winged sprint cars called the World Series Sprintcarsfounded by Adelaide based sedan driver and then Speedway Park track promoter John Hughes. There is also a single meeting Australian Sprintcar Championship which has been run since and has been run under various class names before finally settling on the Australian Sprintcar Championship in While non-Australian usually American drivers are free to race in the WSS and other meetings including the various State Championships, only Australian drivers are permitted in the Australian Championship meeting.
The Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic at Warrnambool is the largest sprint car meeting in the world; in the season, the Classic race outdrew the Knoxville Nationals in entries. Until the late s, Sprintcars in Australia were restricted to cui 6. Currently Australia runs two classes of winged Sprintcars, the or Open class, and one for cars Sprintcar and midget racing cui 5.
Both classes have separate Australian Championship meetings. Midget cars are smaller versions of a full size sprint car, normally non-wing only. Midgets date back to the s as a very Sprintcar and midget racing form of sprint car racing, still very popular today and also sanctioned by USAC.
They are powered by 4-cylinder engines developing around horsepower, but otherwise very similar to their larger cousins. Mini sprints are similarly sized to midget cars, but have an upright-style chassis and a center-mounted, chain-driven 4-cylinder motorcycle engine with a displacement between to cc.
Micro sprints are small racecars that are smaller versions of full sprint cars. A starter class for striving sprint car enthusiasts, they run side mounted cc motorcycle engines developing around hp and are chain driven.
They have a chassis and a body styled like that of a full sized sprint car or a midget sprint. Micro sprints are generally run on small dirt tracks that are Sprintcar and midget racing a fifth of a mile or less in size, though they sometimes run on larger tracks.
They can be either raced with wings or without wings. Micro sprints are generally a cheaper alternative than racing a mini sprint or a midget sprint, but they can Sprintcar and midget racing as expensive as a full sized sprint car. The World of Outlaws WoO is a division of ci winged sprint cars that run all over the United States and have a few events in Canada. These sprint cars have no battery or a starter in them, necessitating a push start by a quad or Sprintcar and midget racing.
They also do not have flywheels, clutches or transmissions, but the direct drive system can be engaged or disengaged from the cockpit. This is done both for weight reasons and tradition. Another tradition the WoO has for their A-main the last race of the event is to have the cars line up four wide just before starting the race.
On average the series runs 40 races per year, starting February and ending in October each year. The USAC also sanctions regional ci non-winged sprint car series: URC started in with 11 races in its season.
It slowly progressed to 28 races. They race with alcohol fuel and use mechanical fuel injection MFI to Sprintcar and midget racing it into the combustion chamber. ASCS uses a cubic inch engine which leads to fans calling the cars "s".
The series was started by well-known racing promotor Emmett Hahn. The series national headquarters are in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
The all-time leader in wins for the series is Texan Gary Wright with A main victories under his belt. Despite the 50 plus years of Sprint car racing, the category has only ever held one unofficial "world championship". Australian veteran Garry Rush from SydneySprintcar and midget racing time winner of the Australian Sprintcar Championshipwas the winner.
The first national live television deal with winged sprint cars came on The Nashville Network TNN in and again in with a winter-based series in Arizona, which featured Mike Joy calling the action.
By the season, plans were to cover 18 live races, but midway through the season MTV Networks closed the CBS motorsports operations.
This move relegated the remainder of the World of Outlaws season to tape delay races. A tape delayed deal with the Speed Channel followed for the next season.
Television coverage began on Sprintcar and midget racing Outdoor Channel in Events are usually tape delayed for two weeks or more. The Knoxville Nationals were on Speed Channel. The Knoxville Nationals did not air as bad weather postponed the event, and there was not enough space for Speed to air the event, won by Kraig Kinser.
After Brownfield Promotions' owner Fred Brownfield was killed in a crash, Kinser and principals of two other teams purchased the entire Brownfield promotion. That series folded after the season, while the Northwest tour, a regional tour, was sold. The Ultimate Sprintcar Championship and various other Sprintcar and midget racing in Australia are also broadcast on Clayperview.
There are a number of publications featuring Sprint Cars. The safety record of sprint car racing in recent years has been greatly improved by several new mandatory safety regulations including the use of roll cages to protect the drivers, fuel tank bladders to prevent fuel leakage, alcohol fuel, requirements to use a six or seven-point safety harness seatbelt two years old or newer, and driver suit standards to consist of two layers and rated at least SFI 3.
In addition, drivers must wear nomex driving gloves. Other equipment requirements include: Some sanctioning bodies are also requiring a head and neck restraint system. Winged sprint cars also have the wing safety aspect, as those sprint cars are able to marginally improve their safety with wings that absorb some of the energy from violent flips and crashes, although winged sprint cars are generally traveling at higher speeds than their non wing counterparts.
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