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Cardiff Racing team (part of Cardiff University) have just launched their 2017 car ahead of their first race of the season at Silverstone over the weekend of 20-23 July. The team is a combination of mainly final year engineering students at Cardiff University and volunteer undergraduates from the years below.

Axminster Tools & Machinery is one of the team’s sponsors and team members have been making use of an Axminster CNC Technology iKX3 mill to manufacture parts for the car.

Tribute to an icon

The car called CR13 is also known as ‘Gwyneth’ as a tribute to Tom Pryce the Welsh racing driver, whose mother’s name was Gwyneth. Tom is an icon in Wales and famous for winning the 1975 Brands Hatch Race of Champions, a non-championship Formula One race. Highlighting motorsport within Wales, Cardiff Racing decided to vinyl the car similar to Tom Pryce’s most famous car – the Shadow DN5. This year marks the 40th anniversary of Tom’s death.

Complete re-design

The 2017 model has undergone a complete re-design with several significant improvements over last year’s car. The biggest change is that it is much more aerodynamic with more drag and more side wings. Team CEO Alex Goff said: “This year’s car has 448.4N of downforce with only 164N of drag at 15m/s (a typical testing speed) which is 54% increase with a 10% increase in drag. This has been correlated at 78%.”

The team have also been working closely with Triumph Motorcycles at Hinckley in Leicestershire. As a result, CR13 is one of the most ambitious and innovative vehicles in recent years, with a new Triumph 675 Street Triple engine, electronically controlled clutch and specially tuned exhausts. It weighs approximately 205kg and has 90bhp, providing acceleration performance akin to supercars.

Another change is that there are two rather than three pedals: the accelerator and brake; the clutch is now on the steering wheel. Furthermore, the fuel is different, moving from regular petrol to E85. This is more energy efficient and dissipates heat more readily thereby cooling the engine, delivering a denser charge and hence is more powerful.

Silverstone and Most lie ahead

Among the drivers at this summer’s competitions are Luca Di Mario and Max Manns. The team has about 30 members, led by fourth year students: Luca (Chief Technical Officer), Alex Goff (CEO), James Willis (Chief Electrical Officer) and Alex Cason (Engine Lead).

The Cardiff team will be competing at Silverstone on 20-23 July where, at the very least, they are hoping to achieve a good position within the UK entrants. This year many of the German and Dutch teams will be absent because a Formula Student race is taking place in the Netherlands from 17-20 July. And some teams have opted to attend that race meeting.

Then in early August the team go to Most in the Czech Republic for their second and final race of the season. So, we wish the team all the very best for the 2017 season.

Cardiff Racing team members are keen to encourage an interest in engineering among much younger students. Hence, they have a prototype car which they take to schools in the area. The team also support the Welsh charity Tŷ Hafan, which offers comfort, care and support to life-limited children and their families throughout Wales, helping them make the most of the time they have left together.

For more about Cardiff Racing, please visit their Facebook page.

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