Three Indianapolis 500 winning designers join the race to build the next IndyCar
For immediate release
5 March 2010
Indianapolis, IN–Three of the most successful designers in recent IndyCar history have joined forces, and will look to return to the winners circle at Indianapolis Motor Speedway with an innovative new IndyCar design once again starting in 2012.
Bruce Ashmore, Alan Mertens and Tim Wardrop announced on Friday the formation of BAT Engineering (Bruce, Alan, Tim) and will be submitting a comprehensive proposal to the Indy Racing League as the next chapter in IndyCar racing is being written.
The BAT proposal focuses not only on creating a dynamic new competitive platform for the IndyCar Series, but it also brings an extensive plan for job creation in Indiana.
The three designers, each of which have been part of milk-drinking outings at the Indianapolis 500, bring experience, innovation, and extensive research to the process. The opportunity to develop a clean-sheet design was one that all three principals found too exciting to pass up.
The next IndyCar design will bring the next chapter in the sports history by providing a safer environment for the drivers, delivering a compelling on-track racing product for the fans, and pushing the sport forward through a concentration on clean aerodynamics and high-efficiency energy use.
The BAT Engineering design has not only produced a very fast car, but it also provides the strength and structure to allow the drivers to race hard and go wheel to wheel without ending their race early. This close racing and the durability of the car design, will add to the on-track spectacle and competitive format with more entries making the dash to the checkered flag.
IndyCar is well positioned to introduce a new product and take full advantage of the exciting new shows that the BAT Engineering project car will promote.
The BAT Engineering entry is the right car to help this process, and will serve as the catalyst for re-energizing the motorsports industry that surrounds the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The new design proposal will create new opportunity for the region through the design, build, and support of the next generation IndyCar. BAT Engineering’s proposal will best address each of these targets as the team puts their technical capabilities, years of experience, and design innovation on display once again.
Following meetings with renowned Indianapolis surgeon, Dr. Terry Trammell and IndyCar’s Safety and Technical Directors, Jeff Horton and Les Mactaggart to ensure maximum safety, BAT Engineering started the design process with a core consideration-driver safety.
With the very latest in Computer Aided Design and Computational Fluid Dynamics software to develop the shape and aerodynamics of the new race car, BAT Engineering is putting technology on their side for the design, and the firm has also made agreements with various software and simulations companies to most efficiently manage the modeling and pre-build testing of the entry long before it hits the pavement.
BAT’s bid is based on a program that would see the design entirely built within a 30-mile radius of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, using highly skilled American labor. Further details of the concept, which features strength, protected wheels and stable aerodynamics to ensure close racing, will be announced in the near future.
About BAT Engineering:
As Chief Designer at Lola, Ashmore was responsible for four consecutive IndyCar championships as well as the 1990 Indianapolis 500-winning car. The latter has been described as possibly the most efficient IndyCar design to date. He went on to become President of Reynard North America as Reynard captured victory in the 1995 and 1996 Indianapolis 500 and totally dominated the CART series during the time when the series experienced the most competitive engineering challenge. Ashmore went on to steer several race teams to victory as a technical director, and also continued to design race-winning cars as head of Ashmore Design.
IndyCar Championships-1990, 1991, 1992, 1993 (Lola)
Cart Championship 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 (Reynard)
Alan Mertens was the Chief Designer and Engineer throughout all levels of European Motorsport for March. He gained many successes in both Formula 3 and Formula 1 before he was selected to head up the design of the very successful March IndyCar series of cars, which gained four Indy pole positions and won five consecutive Indy 500’s from 1983 to 1987, and the IndyCar Championships in 1985 and 1986.
He left to form his own company, Galmer Engineering, and was again successful at the Indianapolis 500. In 1992, Merten’s design won both the Borg Warner Trophy as well as the “Louis Schwitzer Award for Innovation and Engineering/Design Excellence in the Field of Race Car Design.” Mertens has also recently concentrated on designing disaster recovery systems in the Nuclear Power industry.
Indianapolis 500 Wins 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1985, (March) 1992 (Galmer)
Cart Championships 1985, 1986 (March)
Tim Wardrop has been involved with IndyCar and the Indy Racing League since its inception. Wardrop developed the first two generations of the first dominant chassis in the IRL at G-Force which resulted in two poles at Indy with Arie Luyendyk and two race victories with Luyendyk and Juan Pablo Montoya in his role as their race engineer.
Wardrop still holds the record and the setup parameters for the fastest lap ever turned at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in practice of 239.260 mph, as well setting the fastest ever single qualifying lap speed (237.298 mph) and four-lap record (236.986 mph).
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