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Thursday Nights fun racing / Re: Season 18 - Group 2 1973
« on: July 18, 2019, 09:39:06 AM »
Thanks everyone for the well wishes and I will give Android Discord a try 8).

Thursday Nights fun racing / Re: Season 18 - Group 2 1973
« on: July 17, 2019, 11:21:57 AM »
Hi all , I will be absent from Thursday nights till about the 12th of Sept . I will miss the online chat and friendly racing :'( :'( :'( so have fun while I am away :) but not too much fun ;D ;D, I do not want to miss out on anything special :(.


I've started doing ACC 90 min enduros at ROOZ on Monday nights. My racing time budget only allows 2 nights a week, so sadly I'm going to give Thursday's a miss for a while. I'll miss the good racing and the friendly banter. I might still turn up occasionally if time allows.
I understand Wally, but you will be missed :'(.

Thursday Nights fun racing / Re: Phils Friday Drunken music ramblings
« on: July 13, 2019, 08:46:48 AM »
Some amazing songs there Phil, some very obscure favourites of mine, from a very long time ago 8). Mungo Jerry  :) :) :).

General Discussion / What is wrong with F1
« on: July 10, 2019, 08:36:12 AM »
From Motorsport Magazine.

MPH: 'These knots are strangling the life out of F1'
by Mark Hughes on 28th June 2019

The drivers battling to change Formula 1 need the backing of the FIA, F1 itself, and us

The F1 drivers line up before the 2019 Spanish Grand Prix Photo: Motorsport Images

Lewis Hamilton would not normally be as expressive about his feelings of the sport’s future as he was after the French Formula 1 Grand Prix. He was talking as the postponement of the 2021 regulations from around now until October had apparently opened a late opportunity for change. But although it’s unlikely in the extreme we’re going to see anything unexpected – the current hybrids and an all-new aerodynamic package and low-profile Pirellis – his critical voice as the highest profile driver will reverberate.   

“It’s really important for people to realise it’s not the drivers’ fault,” he said after the dull race at Ricard. “This is a constant cycle of Formula 1 for years and years and years, even before I got to Formula 1, and it’s because the way Bernie had it set up and the decisions they were making back then, it’s still the same. Until that management structure changes, it will continue to be the same, in my opinion.”

He'd been to an FIA World Motor Sport Council meeting – along with Nico Hülkenberg and Alex Wurz – representing the Grand Prix Drivers' Association. “I was really happy to be a part of it,” Hamilton said. “We were allowed to comment on anything…. I gave my opinion of three key points: weight, aero and tyres.”

He’s pretty adamant that the direction F1 has gone regarding weight is wrong. The hybrid cars require so much hardware – battery, intercoolers, electrical motors, plumbing etc – that they are up to 200kg heavier than F1 cars of 20 years ago. Seeing the current Mercedes alongside, say, a 1970s Brabham is to be shocked at how much the cars have grown. The Mercedes W10 has a wheelbase about the same as a long wheelbase Ford Transit. That sheer bulk is partly to accommodate the intense technology of the hybrids, partly to generate aerodynamic performance. But it makes for cars that are truck-like through slow corners and – more importantly – are the heaviest, torquiest and most aerodynamically powerful F1 cars of all time.

More: Bernie Ecclestone: 'Here's how I'd fix F1'

Then we put them on control tyres that, unsurprisingly, cannot really cope. So we can have thick-gauge tyres that blister and have to be driven two-three seconds off the pace or thin-gauge ones that many teams cannot get working properly. That may not be a Pirelli thing, but may simply be what happens when you try to put that much load through any tyre of that size.

Which tells us that the whole concept of the car is wrong. F1 has tied itself in knots through:

    Being beholden to automotive manufacturers who have defined the wrong engine formula
    Having a single tyre supplier rather than tyre competition
    The top teams becoming too big, with too many resources, widening out the gap to the rest of the field and giving no hope to any team of breaking into that league.

In sporting regulations it has done much the same thing through: 

    Defining tracks by white lines, and as a consequence introducing
    Codified sporting penalties with
    A system whereby the stewards – once they’ve decided to look at an incident - must apply the penalty if they feel the wording has been broken.

These knots are slowly strangling the life out of F1. The new regulations show great promise in simulation regarding the aerodynamics. But there’s a general feeling – expressed by Hamilton and thereby carrying some real power – that they otherwise are nowhere near radical enough.

At the very least F1 needs most of the sporting penalty system ripped up and thrown away, replaced by a tough referee, one not afraid to use a black flag where appropriate. It needs a light and simple engine so the cars can be small and manoeuvrable, allowing the tyres to work. It needs a tyre war to help give competitive variation and better mechanical grip.

2019 Austrian Grand Prix preview: has Bottas run out of porridge?

The timing of a Hamilton-led campaign to get the drivers – who have traditionally been sealed out of such discussions – involved comes in this tiny window of opportunity created by the postponement of the regulations from now until October. It might be the only way to get F1 out of the stalemate it’s landed in because of the restrictive alliance between the manufacturers, FIA, teams and Liberty.

A wild public support of the drivers’ position on this might be the only thing that could make F1 stop and think again, at the 59th minute of the 11th hour.

General Discussion / MotoGP Honda in the 60s
« on: July 10, 2019, 08:22:21 AM »
This is why I have so much respect for Honda. For a few years the most efficient 4stroke engine in production in the world (bhp/litre) was the 90cc engine in the  Honda C90 StepThru, your humble Postie bike.

Article below is from Motorsport Magazine

The birth of modern motorbike Grand Prix racing: talking with Kunimitsu Takahashi
by Mat Oxley on 2nd July 2019

It’s very nearly impossible to speak to the dawn of modern racing. But it happened at Assen, with Kunimitsu Takahashi, the first Japanese rider to win a motorbike Grand Prix

Kunimitsu Takahashi at the 2019 Dutch TT in Assen

To celebrate the 60th anniversary of its first world-championship race, Honda flew Kunimitsu Takahashi to the Dutch TT. Nineteen-year-old Takahashi joined Honda in late 1959, taking part in the factory’s first Continental campaign in 1960, after its exploratory visit to the Isle of Man TT the previous summer.

But why was this the dawn of modern Grand Prix racing? Because racing was never the same after the Japanese factories arrived in Europe: Honda in 1959, then Yamaha and Suzuki in 1960.

Until then, Grand Prix racing had mostly trundled along at tick-over speed. The MV Agusta four that won the 1959 500cc world title was designed by Piero Remor, the same man who created the Gilera four that won the 1950 crown. When Remor arrived at MV he basically copied his Gilera design. Most of the rest of the 500cc grid was populated by Manx Nortons, which used a single-cylinder engine first raced in the 1930s. In other words, technical development was slow.

That all changed when the Japanese got involved. Within six years Honda’s original 18-horsepower, twin-cylinder 125 had been replaced by a five-cylinder 125 that revved to 21,000rpm and made 250 horsepower per litre, about ten per cent less than a 2019 MotoGP bike. The five’s bore and stroke measured 35.5mm by 25.14mm.

The rate of technical development was at its maddest in the teeny-weeny 50cc class. Honda started the 1962 50cc season with a single-cylinder machine that shrieked out 9.5 horsepower at 14,000rpm through a six-speed gearbox. By the end of that same season, the single was replaced by an all-new twin that revved to 18,000rpm through a nine-speed gearbox.

Honda was stunned when they travelled from Japan to Europe, which would be something like travelling from the Earth to Mars now.

Takahashi remembers all of this, but not as well as he remembers arriving in Europe in 1960.

“At that time we had lost everything due to World War Two, so we started from ground zero, with absolutely nothing in our hands,” the 79-year-old recalls. “Arriving in Europe was a total shock, because everything was different, everything.

“At that time Japan didn’t have paved roads, whereas in Europe the roads were paved and proper race circuits were available, so the level of racing was totally, totally different. It was a huge shock for me.”

Indeed the entire Honda team was stunned by what they found when they travelled from Japan to Europe, which would be something like travelling from the Earth to Mars now.

“We flew into Amsterdam airport and drove on the E10 to Honda’s workshop in Rotterdam,” recalls Michihiko Aika, the mechanic who became one of the main architects of Honda’s 1960s successes. “It was a very beautiful highway but I felt immediately that our job was impossible. I realised the west was much further ahead, the speeds were very different, in Japan it was bumps and dirt and everyone doing 40 to 50kph [25 to 30mph], in Holland they were moving at 100 to 120 [60 70 75]. It was a big gap.”

Takahashi had only raced on dirt roads in Japan, so his very first race on asphalt was his first Grand Prix, the 1960 West German 250cc race at Solitude, where he finished sixth on a four-cylinder RC161, two minutes behind MV Agusta’s Gary Hocking.

Born in 1940, son of a Tokyo motorcycle dealer who imported Nortons and BSAs into the country, Takahashi made his race debut when he was 19-years-old. He entered the 1959 Asama Plains race – one of Japan’s top events – and won the 350cc class aboard a BSA. Honda signed him soon after that.

“Honda was a new company, no one had heard of them, so no European riders wanted to ride for Honda,” he explains. “That’s why Honda looked for young Japanese riders with potential.

“At that time, because I was brave and had a kind of kamikaze spirit, I thought I could win easily in Europe. At my first race at Solitude I was thinking I am Japanese, I am quicker, but then many riders passed me, round the outside. I was very shocked.

“We were destroyed by the skills of the riders and the machine technology. But Soichiro Honda told us: we have to make the best motorcycles in the world! And he never, ever gave up challenging.”

Related content

    Honda's first trip to the TT
    2019 MotoGP Dutch TT: why Yamaha won
    My only F1 grand prix — Kunimitsu Takahashi

The first decade of Japanese involvement in Grand Prix racing is still considered to be one of the sport’s Golden Ages.

The racing was an almighty clash between the two greatest types of internal combustion engine: the four-stroke and two-stroke. Soichiro Honda hated smoky, dirty two-strokes, so his engineers built four-strokes that revved twice as high as the two-strokes, which produce a power pulse every revolution, instead of every other revolution. The 250 six, 125 five and 50 twin all revved way past 20,000rpm, an incredible number now, let alone in the 1960s.

Inevitably, the two-stroke manufacturers raced down the same road of cylinder multiplication. Yamaha built 125cc and 250cc V4s, while Suzuki built a square-four 250 and a three-cylinder 50, until the rule-makers finally cried: enough! Imagine the concept of Honda’s 50cc twin extrapolated into a 40-cylinder 1000cc MotoGP bike.

In May 1961 Takahashi became the first Japanese to win a Grand Prix, when he won the West German 250cc race on a four-cylinder Honda RC162. When he returned to Tokyo he was greeted by Honda san and Honda vice-president Takeo Fujisawa.

“When they came to greet me at Haneda airport – that’s still in my mind,” he says. “It’s my most memorable moment.”

Takahashi was signed by Honda just like any other factory employee – he clocked in to test race bikes and then he raced them. And all team members multitasked when they went to Europe – there was no room for prima-donnas.

“At that time the team was eight or ten people, with many, many motorcycles to prepare, so everyone did everything. I ground valves, washed bikes and built engines. I really enjoyed working on the bikes.”

Kunimitsu Takahashi leads the 1961 Ulster Grand Prix

Takahashi leads the 1961 Ulster GP Photo: Honda

Takahashi won his second Grand Prix at Dundrod in August 1961. In the above photo he leads team-mates Tom Phillis (No19) and Jim Redman (No3), plus MZ’s Ernst Degner (No17) as they attack the circuit’s no-longer-used Leathemstown bridge section.

Takahashi may have become Japan’s first world champion the following year. He won the first two races of the 1962 125cc season to lead the way into the Isle of Man TT, where he crashed heavily, sustaining serious injuries that eventually ended his motorcycle racing career. In fact he was one of the lucky ones. During his brief sojourn in Europe, no less than 14 riders lost their lives at Grand Prix events.

On Sunday at Assen Takahashi climbed into a traditional, sober black leather racing suit (adorned with the letters HSC, for Honda Speed Club, the company’s first collective of speed-crazed youngsters) and set off on a lap of honour aboard an RC142 125cc twin, the bike with which Honda began its world-class adventure at the 1959 TT.

His lap of honour around the modern Assen MotoGP circuit, accompanied by Mick Doohan on a 1989 NSR500, connected those six decades of motorcycle Grand Prix racing: 1959, 1989, 2019.

Takahashi’s lap was a poignant and memorable moment for all kinds of reasons, most especially because this kind of connection won’t be possible forever, just like D-Day veterans walking the beaches they first trod back in 1944.

We should appreciate these moments much more than we already do.

Racing general / Re: AB156 does the UK, 2019 version
« on: July 10, 2019, 08:18:01 AM »
Beautiful photographs AB, weather not too kind though. Most of these cars will probably stay on for the Goodwood Revival.

Racing general / Re: KartKraft
« on: July 09, 2019, 06:47:55 PM »
Oh ye of little faith ;D ;D

Racing general / Re: KartKraft
« on: July 09, 2019, 09:25:50 AM »

Hardware & Reviews / Re: VR recommendations in 2019
« on: July 09, 2019, 08:45:02 AM »
We are getting closer to reality :o

Racing general / Re: KartKraft
« on: July 08, 2019, 08:04:38 PM »
I will get this if it gets multiplayer for sure, not going to buy it now as I have learnt my lesson on buying early access games,  its only taken my like 5 years or more, so I can thank ACC for something I guess
I understand where you are coming from Phil, but in this case, while it is on sale at Steam @ $20 , I would consider it a donation to a worthy cause to maybe give them the funds to finish it. Then it may have enough sales to develop further content.

Racing general / Re: KartKraft
« on: July 08, 2019, 05:47:37 PM »

Racing general / Re: KartKraft
« on: July 08, 2019, 04:08:26 PM »
I think it is very good  8) and deserves a bit of love. Would also be fun for any very young people you may know and be game enough to let near your sim rig

Quote from developer below:

    When I envisioned KartKraft all those years ago, I wanted to make the game I’d always dreamt of when growing up playing racing games in the 90’s. To say I was heavily inspired by Geoff Crammond’s GP2/3/4, Dave Kaemmer’s GPL, Gjon Camaj’s SCGT, and Stefano Casillo’s NetKar Namie would be an understatement.

    After racing karts competitively, there wasn’t anything that came close to replicating what it felt like to drive a kart on the limit with 30 other competitors around you and engines screaming at 21,000RPM. And for good reason; despite their deceptively simple appearance, modelling their physical dynamics accurately is an incredibly complex task. Regardless of a kart’s complexity, you won’t ever play a racing game that’s more fun and as close or rewarding than KartKraft.

    Much to the detriment of the development schedule, little did I know that making the game with the features I wanted was going to be such a monumental task. With a comparatively small development team of 3 programmers and 3 artists, not only did we play catch up to our competition who all had existing foundations to build upon, we also needed to innovate and exceed what they had already developed. We never settle for second best.

    When we released the Closed Beta Test in 2016 it was evident that there were several shortfalls and fundamental issues that prevented giving you that experience. Most notably, the tyre and chassis models weren’t behaving correctly, replay and photo mode were missing, leaderboards didn’t promote competition and game settings kept resetting. Whilst most testers gave incredibly positive feedback, there was no way I could have released KartKraft and ask you to pay for it when I knew we could do better.

    Since the end of 2016, and based on the CBT feedback, we completely rebuilt the game from the ground up and have now written over 1 million lines of code. It may not have looked like it, but there hasn’t been a day the game hasn’t been worked on, played or tested with over 15,200 code and art submissions in that time. Let’s not even begin to count the amount of laps driven in that period!

    And that only fixed the issues we encountered during CBT. It was even more critical that we had a game framework capable of allowing us to consistently maintain a weekly or fortnightly update cycle for content and new features. Secondly, the framework needed to be flexible enough to quickly implement ideas from the community without having to rewrite large parts of the codebase. I’m proud to say we’ve achieved both of these and more. We’ve added a physically based tyre model, rebuilt the physics engine, remodeled all the karts, improved the AI, added cloud saving, leaderboard ghost modes, all the while creating the most advanced customization system ever seen in a racing game. This is the game I dreamt of all those years ago and I can’t wait for you to play it!

    And now the reason for the update. Given our previous track record with release dates, we weren’t going to make the same mistake of announcing again and disappointing so many of you, until we knew with absolute certainty that KartKraft was ready for Early Access. After an incredible journey, KartKraft will be released on Steam Thursday, November 1st at 9.00am PST

    Over the coming week, we’ll be releasing new screenshots, gameplay trailers, our Early Access roadmap and an in-depth look at some of the new features we’ve added. It’s going to be an exciting journey and one I and all of you have been waiting for! So set your alarm clocks and add KartKraft to your Steam Wishlist to be notified when it launches. We’re launching!

Racing general / KartKraft
« on: July 08, 2019, 01:14:54 PM »
This is very good and VR as well :)


On sale till to tomorrow.

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