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Hiroki Ohtsu, the first rookie winner, "I was only thinking about demonstrating my strength" [Round 6 Motegi ...

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"At that time, there were still many wet patches, and the road surface was very slippery when opening the safety car.

Round 10 of the 17 All Japan Super Formula Championship held at Twin Ring Motegi on October 2021th.Finals ... → Continue reading


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Safety car

Safety car(Safety car) isMotor sportsIn, if the machine causes an accident on the course and the car body and parts that have fallen off the road surface are scattered, or the machine body is stopped on the course, race to prevent damage and secondary crash due to the scattered parts. It is the leading car.

Not only in fine weather and cloudy weather, but also in stormy weather such as heavy rain, the organizer may decide to take the lead in the middle of the race.


IndyCar Series,NASCARGenerally in the United StatesPace carIt is called (pace car).

Normally, it is decided that only one safety car will enter the course in case of trouble.

Incidentally,24 Hours of Le MansDone ofSalt CircuitThe course length is very long likeSuzuka 8 time endurance road raceWhen the number of participants is very large, as in the case above, multiple safety cars may enter the course at the same time.

In addition,Formation wrap,NASCAR-SUPER GTSeen inRolling startIn case of, I will be dispatched and take the lead.

F1 etc.

F1MainlyEuropeIn other races, if the course is blocked by the accident vehicle itself, especially when there is a risk that the other vehicle will step on the debris and the tire will puncture, or the race will not be interrupted In case of a critical situation in safely performing a race such as a heavy rain that makes it difficult for the vehicle to drive, ensure the safety of competitors and officials and control the pace of the competition car A safety car will be introduced for this purpose.


When the safety car enters the course, yellow on all sections of the course.Race flagIs shaken,SCThe placard and the LED display board that says "" are displayed, and the driver is required to slow down the driving speed. What is "SC"Safety CAbbreviation for ar.

While the safety car is taking the lead after these signals are presented, all competition vehicles are prohibited from overtaking unless there is an unavoidable situation such as when the preceding vehicle slows down due to trouble.

The safety car is equipped with green and yellow revolving lights and flash lights on the upper part of the car body (in the center of the roof or on the rear window).The meaning of the color is exactly the same as the race flag.Generally, it is rod-shaped, with yellow lights on both ends and green lights in the center.The safety car flashes the green light for a while after entering the course.While this light is on, the competition vehicle is allowed to overtake the safety car.When the car running at the beginning of the race (the car in first place at that time) catches up behind the safety car, the safety car switches the lighting lamp from green to yellow.From this moment on, overtaking of the safety car is prohibited.

While leading the convoy, the safety car turns on the yellow lamp and turns off the lamp when it is confirmed that the course is safe and the next time to enter the pit, informing that the race will resume from the next lap.

When the safety car intervenes in the race,Side effectsHowever, even if a big lead is built with the following car before the safety car enters, all such differences will be reduced.Therefore, while there is an effect that the spectators can see the match again, there is an effect that even if the lead is built, it will be wasted due to the safety car intervention, especially for the previous runner.Therefore, it is one of the team's strategies to decide when the introduction of the safety car will be canceled and whether or not the driver will finish the pit stop during that time, and in some cases it will greatly affect the outcome.[1].

However, although the safety car is introduced only to ensure safety, there is an opinion that the safety car actually has a great influence on the competition itself and the result, so depending on the competition, it is not until the safety car is released. If there is no such condition, intermediate measures such as "virtual safety car" and "slow zone", which will be described later, are being sought.

History in F1

The first safety car race in F1 was in 1973Canadian GPIs. However, in this race, he accidentally took the lead in front of a driver who was one lap behind, which caused confusion in the race, and it took several hours after the end of the race to determine the winner.

after that,1992 ToregulationThe rules are officially established by the revision.1993 OfBrazilian GPIt was introduced for the first time after it was enacted.

At that time, the safety cars used were those prepared by each circuit. However, since the performance of the vehicles owned by the circuit varies, if the performance of the safety car is low, the driver in the F1 car that follows will be accompanied by a slower pace of the safety car, reducing the temperature drop of the tires. There were problems such as having a hard time keeping it.

Introducing a Mercedes-Benz exclusive vehicle

The organizer was able to address various issues related to such safety cars.International Automobile Federation(FIA) had a headache.

Meanwhile, the safety cartv setFocused on the high degree of exposure toMercedes-BenzOffered to the FIA ​​to supply a safety car. This1996 Or later,AMGVehicles made by us are provided free of charge, including maintenance costs such as maintenance costs, and are now used in F1 as official safety cars[2].. At the same time, the medical car is also provided by AMG mainly based on the C-class wagon model.

Two cars will be brought to all Grand Prix[2].

The driver will be hired by the FIA ​​and will be in charge of the same person throughout the year.F3championOliver Gavin, After 2000German Touring Car ChampionshipHave experience in racing, etc., and were good at handling similar vehiclesBernd MylenderHowever, I came to do that.

1997 OfCanadian GPAtOlivier PanisWhen a safety car was introduced due to the accident, it was decided that it would be difficult to continue the race, and the race ended with the safety car leading the line. Similar example2009 Australian Grand Prix(Remaining 3 lapsSebastian VettelとRobert KubicaIs entangled and crashed),Same year Italian Grand Prix(Lewis HamiltonHas crashed in the final lap).

This vehicle for a safety car is basically the same as the commercial vehicle of the same name made by AMG, but its contents are basically different. Especially,Vario roofThe adopted models (SL, SLK) have a fixed roof with the opening/closing unit removed, which is fundamentally different from the vehicle body structure. However, AMG also accepts sales of vehicles with the same performance as safety cars as a special order (Europeonly).

From 2021Aston MartinHas entered the supply of safety cars and medical cars, but the supply from Mercedes continues and the two companies are using together.[3].

Successive base vehicles (partial)


Since the safety car has the role of leading the race safely, there is no opportunity to fully open the car, but the leading platoon is a competition vehicle, so it is a high-performance vehicle with a margin in performance. Is required.

In the past, cars that raced were far superior to safety cars in performance. As an example, from the 1980s to the 1990sGroup CWas contested by the carAll Japan Sports Prototype Car Endurance ChampionshipAccording to (JSPC), if you drive at the slow pace created by the safety car, the fuel consumption of the race car will be lighter, and fuel consumption will reach a maximum of 17-18km per liter. At this time, the fuel efficiency of the safety car was said to be about 4-5 km/l, and the performance difference was remarkable.

However, there are regulations on race vehicles to control speed from the viewpoint of safety, while safety cars do not have to follow the rules that limit their driving performance, and it is prohibited in current F1 machines. Has beenActive suspensionIt is equipped with a large number of electronic control devices such as, and in many categories, it is not uncommon for a safety car to be faster than a formula car running in a race.Especially in bad weather, the difference is likely to be noticeable.

Virtual safety car

2014 OfJapan GPOccurred inJules BianchiThe FIA ​​tested after a major accident (Bianchi died the following year)2015 Decided to introduce a virtual safety car (VSC)[4].

This introduces a virtual safety car dispatch condition, during which the driver is required to slow down according to the specified delta time.[4].

The FIA ​​says, "The course of VSC is initiated by the instructions of the course clerk. In situations where it is necessary to wave a double yellow flag on the course, the competitor or the official may be at risk, but the (real) safety It is used when the car is not in a condition to be dispatched."[4].

Similar to this,24 Hours of Le Mansで2015 There is a "slow zone" introduced more. This is due to the instruction from the course marshall, which introduces a speed limit of 80km/h at only a part of the course.2017 The course is divided into 9 sections, and "slow zone" is designated for one or more sections as required.[5].. Excessive speed in the slow zone is a foul.

Indy 500

Indy 500The "Pace Car" has consistently been held since the first in 1911.Indianapolis Motor SpeedwayHas been selected by the official. The pace car is often a side prize for the winner.


Pace cars are introduced for reasons such as scattered debris on the course, serious collisions, and changing weather conditions. The entire course is warned of danger and this situation is called “Full Course Caution”.

By 1993 or later, while the pace car is leading the race (first car at that time), a yellow flag is swung and the home straight passes due to obstacles such as debris. The entrance to the pit lane will also be closed unless it is not possible.


The pacemaker for the first tournament in 1911 was Stoddard-Dayton, which was piloted by Karl G. Fisher.

The most used in nearly 100 years of historyChevroletThe brand car was first used for a relatively late start in 1948, but since then it has been repeated a number of times, and by 2006, it had appeared a total of 17 times.

Second World WarThe cars that were selected as pace cars more than three times in the subsequent Indy 500 areChevrolet camaro,Chevrolet corvette,, andFord mustangOnly. The most commonly used car is the Chevrolet Corvette, which has run a total of eight times by 2006 (it has been decided to make the ninth start in 8 as well).

As an automobile manufacturer, there is a speculation of advertising effects, so it will be prestige of each company to be selected as the Indy 500 pace car of the year. However, there are some cases in the past where this high “advertising effect” has backfired. Chosen as a pace car in 1971ChryslerCompanyDodge ChallengerHit a signboard beside the course and injured several spectators. The accident was made by the officials of the course, in the orange color for the pace car driver to confirm the braking point.cornOne of the main reasons was the accidental removal of (also known as the flag), but Chrysler was blamed for a long time after that.


Indy 500Formation wrapAs a kind of ceremony in, the celebrities from all over the world act as pace car drivers.

The driver's face is full of variety,Carol Shelby(1987, 1991),Johnny RutherfordThere are many examples of former American drivers such as (1997), but former F1 driversJackie StewartRan the Ford Mustang in 1979,Chuck Jaeger(1986 years),comedian OfJay Leno(1999), popular TV dramaERThe actor who was appearing inAnthony Edwards(2000) of the actorMorgan Freeman(2004), in the same yearThe United States of America OfSecretary of StateRetiredColin Powell(2005) in the previous yearTour de FranceRetired after achieving 7 consecutive victories (but later erasing records due to suspicion of doping)Lance Armstrong(2006), there are many people who have been attracting attention from time to time.

In the early days, there were many cases where the head of an automobile company acted as a pace car driver, and Chevrolet founderLouis Chevrolet(1926), the hourFordThe presidentEdsel Ford(1932 years),Henry Ford II(1947) and others are in control of the steering wheel.Even in recent yearsGeneral MotorsCompany executivesBob Lutz(1996) has become an example of a pace car driver. Has the most win record in the 100 race, which celebrated its 2011th anniversaryAJ VoithDrove.

Consistently during the normal period of the IndyCar SeriesJohnny RutherfordIs the driver of the pace car.

In 2016Sarah fisherIs the pace car driver for the series.


NASCARIn the case of, in the case of debris being scattered on the course, accidents or changes in the weather, a yellow flag was waved, a pace car was introduced, and the car leading the race (the 1st car at that time) To lead.

As a well-known episode,Dale EarnheartWas said to have hit the car "for fun" while he was leading the pace car, and the driver of the pace car, often left behind as the "victim" of the damage. He doesn't hit like him, but he often sees a front-row driver in a provocative move.


In many categories, races that include safety cars are included in the race distance, and laps are added, but one race is contested by a sprint of 1 to 10 laps.World Touring Car ChampionshipIn the case of (WTCC), if a similar method is adopted, the safety car run will occupy a considerable proportion of the race, so it will be excluded from the race distance up to two laps and will not be counted as a lap (2 Porting Regulation 2009).

Regarding the driver, since the first time it was held in 2005, the local athletes in the venue were selected every time, and they changed every time, but in the eighth round of the year held in Poe, France on May 2009, 5 , The safety car driver was on the track and driving to the top without any instructionFranz EngstlerAfter a crash with BMW, the need for a permanent driver was discussed, and on July 7, it was decided that Portugal's Brno Correira would be the first to serve. On the 2th of the same month, he made his first debut in the 5th round at Porto, Portugal, and performed his mission safely.

Super Formula (former Formula Nippon)

All Japan Championship held at Fuji Speedway on August 2008, 8Formula NipponIn the second race of Race 7, it started to rain heavily, and the start delay was repeated from 2:15, the scheduled start time, and the race started at 45:16 when the rain was weakening and the safety car led the race. However, the lap continued with the safety car leading, but the rain leg strengthened again and the red flag was posted at the beginning of the sixth lap and the race was interrupted. After that, the rain feet did not weaken and race 35 was ended with a red flag after 6:15. As a result, the race was established by regulationTakaaki MatsuuraWon the championship, but could not cover 75% of the planned race distance, so the championship points were halved.

On June 2009, 6, at the All Japan Championship Formula Nippon Round 28 held at Fuji Speedway, rain started the race with a safety car leading the race. The race went smoothly, but with the hairpin on lap 4Takuya IzawaSpun on and stopped the machine on the course, which introduced a safety car. While many players are pitting in and refuelingAndre Lotterer,Kazuya Oshima,Richard Ryan,Tachikawa Yuji4 players stayed on the course as they were, but the safety car ordered Yuji Tachikawa, who was behind the lap, to reach the end of the road. However, after this mistakenly, the top Lotteler also put forward and instructed him to arrive at the end. Lotterer is standing next to the safety car, waving his hand, and appealing if he is wrong, but in the end he goes forward. Immediately afterwards, the safety car noticed a mistake and decided to rearrange the platoon by putting all the cars in front. Here, Lotterer changed his strategy and tried to refuel with splash and go to return to the top, but just the safety car and the top machine arrived straight, the pit lane exit became a red light, and as a result, the tail end was reached. Has become. If the safety car does not give the wrong instruction,Loic DuvalThe result was that the management side's faults were exposed due to the fact that there was a fight for the top of.



SUPER GTThen as an official safety car2008 から2014 TheNissan GT-RBut,2015 から2016 TheLexus RC FIs used in all battles, but apart from thisNissan MotorIs based on GT-R,LexusAre participating in RC F based competition vehicles.2017 Then this timeNSXWith Honda NSX, which participates in the base competition vehicle, the vehicles of three manufacturers participating in the GT500 class were once carried around.

In addition, in the 2015th round of the 6 season, when the safety car was introduced, almost all the teams flooded into the pit at the same time, causing heavy congestion in the pit, so the introduction of the safety car was posted from the 2016 season. The rules have been revised so that a long pit stop penalty will be imposed if a pit stop is not possible or a pit stop is made, including instantaneous refueling and a prescribed driver change.However, vehicles that have already entered the pit road at the moment of posting and vehicles that are in the process of pit work can continue the work without any penalty.

However, as a weak point, the safety car time and the number of laps tend to be long because the alignment is done by class in the course of the competition.For this reason, during this time, some teams have had to refuel even if they accept the retirement due to lack of gas or receive a penalty (= almost abandon the game), or the driver cannot be changed by the specified number of laps. There was a danger.For this reason, full course yellow will be introduced from 2020, and if a safety car is unnecessary, this will be applied, and improvements such as shortening the time when the competition stops are being made.

Similar beings

aircraftDone byAir raceThen, like the safety car, it plays the role of leading the racing aircraft (air racer),Pace planeSometimes an aircraft called (pace plane) is used[6].


  1. ^ Mercedes F1 defends strategist who made a misjudgment when Austrian GP VSC was activated F1 breaking news July 2018, 7, browsing the same day 4.
  2. ^ a b Mercedes announces 2018 safety car Formula Web March 2018, 3.
  3. ^ Aston Martin safety cars and medical cars have been used since the F1 and 2021 seasons.Mercedes continues -Auto Sports2021 February 3
  4. ^ a b c 2015 F1 regulation: Safety car regulations such as VSC have changed AUTO SPORT Web Read on December 2014, 12, November 4, 2017.
  5. ^ Le Mans slow zone operation method changed. 9 adaptive areas set in advance -Auto Sports2017 February 6
  6. ^ PACE PLANE -NOS Air Race official website (English). Retrieved September 2015, 9.

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