Open Wheel Cars by Patrick Callahan

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I love open wheel cars. While they may not look very similar to the cars you and I drive every day, they are remarkable in the singular purpose of their design: to race. While we replace parts and even systems of parts, every nut, washer and fastener on an open wheel car has already been optimized for speed.

I have two things to share on this topic. The first is the current crop of F1 cars. These are on many levels the baddest machines in all of racing, requiring hundreds of millions of dollars to build and run each season. The level of design complexity in the cars this year is astounding. Just look at some of the front wings! You can find pictures of all the latest models here including some exciting new teams and the return of Lotus F1.

To bring this post back around to being relevant to this blog, it’s worth higlighting how many aftermarket companies have had involvement in some form of open wheel racing. Some companies like Cosworth got their start in open wheel racing and have more recently brought their know-how to parts available to the public. Other companies like HKS with their F1 project are interested in showing off their technical abilities and building brand image.

For TODA, involvement in F3 has been an integral part of how the company is run for decades. F3 is a tightly governed and highly competitive international racing series with high-level national championships in many countries including Japan. If you can be competitive in F3, you can certainly make parts that will meet the needs of enthusiasts. To highlight one small example of the demands of F3, engines are fully stressed components and stock blocks are integrated into the chassis using gorgeous valve covers and oil pans that bolt to the carbon tub.

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