Monday, January 6, 2014

My Christmas Bonus

Just before Christmas I attended the 2013 version of The Performance Racing Industry Trade Show. This year the show moved back to Indianapolis after a 5 year run in Orlando Florida. This show is THE best trade show bar none in regards to showing what kind of technology is available to the racer or shop equipment that is available to the machinist/fabricator. Everyone in the all facets of racing are here for the week. This show also showcases racing that may be off of most peoples radar. Like the sprint car in the pictures. This car was built to go land speed racing at Bonneville or El Mirage. The goal was to reach 200mph. That is quite a feat with an upright style dirt car. Also on display was the new USAC national midget engine produced by Honda. Honda has always made first class equipment from lawn mowers to Indy car engines. The new Midget engine is an inline 4 cylinder, naturally aspirated with electronic fuel injection. The engine is a piece of artwork and makes about 450-500 HP on methanol. Plug that into a 1200 lbs race car and you have a rocket ship. I would love to see this run on pavement like Indianapolis raceway park. Also of interest is the amount of technology that is now available to the little guy racer like the rest of us. A few short years ago alot of this stuff was only available to F-1 teams. Things like rapid prototyping services, high tech aerospace coatings and metal treatments, computer machining like porting and crankshaft lightning and most of all components are available that in the past took knowing people in the right places or unlimited funding are now available to everyone. walking around the show taught me that the entire industry is healthy and despite the bad economy is still making it happen. We will see what happens next. One thing I noticed is that the nostalgia/vintage racing rage is getting even bigger and is becoming a major market. Lots of cool stuff was on display. It is a cool blending of old looks with new technolgy. That's just what appeals to me and what Rocket Engineering's business is based on. Hopefully it only gets better.

No comments:

Post a Comment