Motorsports began less 10 years after the internal combustion engine was invented at the end of the 19th century. From the 1920s to the 1960s, it developed independently in Europe and the U.S., but subsequently there was deepening interaction between the two, and motorsports began to take off in Japan in the 1960s. Since the beginning of the 21st century, F1GP events have increasingly been held in Asian countries. Over a history of more than 130 years in pursuit of safety, famous drivers and cars have appeared, and fans have thrilled to famous races. As genres and categories become increasingly diverse, there is potential for further change in the nature of power units and the involvement of drivers themselves.
Motorsports have a variety of aspects, including racing, technical competition, and entertainment business. Consequently, their regulations are determined, revised and enforced by professional organizations, while striving for an overall balance of fairness, competition, safety, stability/sustainability and entertainment value. In technical regulations for four-wheel motorsports, there are two contrasting types of rules: those for vehicles built from scratch specifically for competition, and those for modified stock production vehicles. Therefore, various interpretations and technical developments are deployed using distinctive approaches suited to each type.
In motorsports, vehicles run in a condition exposed for long periods to large forces and high temperatures, and this is punishing for engines and bodies. By using these characteristics, motorsports have functioned as an arena for forging the technologies used in future mass-produced vehicles. The focal points of development have changed according to the requirements of the times, and in recent years, the mainstream has been hybrids combining electrically-driven components with high-efficiency engines. Electrical automobile racing has also started. This paper introduces the latest engines and electrification technology in motorsports, as well as aerodynamic and vehicle maneuverability technology. It also discusses the outlook for the future.
There continues to be a strong need for two-wheeled vehicles equipped with an engine (motorcycles) as handy means of locomotion and transport. However, due to their agility, motorcycles have the character of a vehicle for amusement to a greater degree than four-wheeled vehicles. A prime example of amusement using motorcycles is motorcycle motorsports. These sports include various types of competition, and each type is comprised of stages ranging from the grass roots level to world championships. Also, the technical specifications of the motorcycles used are truly diverse. This paper breaks down the various categories of motorcycle motorsports, and provides an overview of the technical changes in motorcycles used in the highest class of road racing-the category with the broadest popularity.
This paper traces the background of how we arrived at today's racing tires, with a particular focus on tire development for Formula One(F1). Tires have been transformed due to the effects of engine output and vehicle weight distribution. Some of the main developments have been widening of tires, the appearance of slick tires due to the development of synthetic rubber formulation technology, and innovative changes in ply structure from bias tires to radial tires. This paper also presents the unique point that state-of-the-art technology created in racing tire development - which tends to be regarded as unconnected with fuel consumption - is used in commercial fuel-efficient tires.
Suzuka Circuit was born from the passionate belief of Soichiro Honda, the founder of Honda Motor Co., Ltd., that "racing is a running testing lab oratory" and "Japanese automobiles will not improve if they are not put through their paces on the racing circuit." Racing yields technology that can only be obtained only by pushing cars and motorcycles to the limits of their performance. However, testing in all eras has been conducted by people, and minimizing harm when limits are exceeded is always the most important issue. When the technology cultivated through racing is incorporated into commercial vehicles, it improves safety for people in vehicles. In this presentation, I will introduce some of the safety measures at Suzuka Circuit, where we have been constantly improving facility safety based on our mission as "a running testing laboratory."
Based on uniform rules, Formula-style racing machines are planned, designed, and fabricated in each country of the world, with the aim of providing practical education through fabrication by students. Competitions of such machines have already been held 16 times in Japan as the "Student Formula SAE Competition of Japan". About 100 teams from inside and outside Japan gather, and intensely competitive events - both static and dynamic - are held over a one-week program. This paper presents an overview of the content of this competition.