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cross pollination

The BBC’s chief F-1 reporter Andrew Benson looks at yachting and Formula 1, and wonders how we can benefit from F-1′s decades of safety and reliability lessons…a great piece from a solid writer, and timely as hell.  The full story, including a video, is here, and you can discuss over here.

A chance meeting at the Monaco Grand Prix between one of sailing’s biggest stars and one of the leading names in Formula 1 has resulted in a plan aimed at revolutionising off-shore racing.

Record-breaking round-the-world yachtsman Brian Thompson found himself moored next to Caterham technical chief Mike Gascoyne, who has designed race-winning cars for Jordan and Renault.  They got chatting. Thompson revealed his love of F1 and Gascoyne, then running the technical side of Caterham’s F1 team before his recent move upstairs, his life-long passion for sailing.  Gascoyne took Thompson on a tour of the pits. They hit it off, and so started the relationship that has led to the launch of the Caterham Challenge team, an attempt to bring F1 technology, know-how and practices to sailing.

On the face of it, the two sports seem about as different as it is possible to be.  One is a high-speed circus taking place in front of tens of thousands of spectators and a TV audience of hundreds of millions.  The other is low speed and attracts nothing like the same attention, with races fought out on the open ocean, watched only by sea birds, whales and the occasional webcam.

In fact, though, they have more in common than might at first glance be obvious, and Gascoyne and Thompson are setting out to prove it.

Read on.


May 17th, 2013

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