Formula 1 racing is full of thrills and spills – and because of the speed at which the cars travel and the lack of space on the track, it is rare that a race will pass without some kind of incident. Crashes can often result in blockages and debris being strewn across the track. In such instances, it is crucial that safety of the drivers comes first, and to ensure that this is the case, what is known as the safety car is often deployed – with the objective of reducing the speed of the cars on track to a safe level. The safety car is also sometimes deployed if the track becomes waterlogged after heavy rain.
When the safety car is deployed, it is allowed to pass all cars that are on track until the race leader is immediately behind. It will then lead the cars around the track at a speed that means the tyres do not cool down too much.
The safety car allows for stewards and track staff to clean the track of any debris & oil as well as allowing any damaged cars to be moved or to return to the pit lane for repair. The pit crew work in state of the art surroundings with incredible equipment and items for almost every part of the car. Some of which will have been created using Rubber Injection Moulding like the service that is offered by https://www.meadex.co.uk/rubber-moulding/. The crew are all highly trained individuals that can repair most items on the car and reset the electronics.
From the point that the safety car joins the track, no overtaking is permitted.
Upon starting its final lap, the safety car will turn off its flashing orange lights. This is a sign to drivers that although they must remain in formation for that lap, at the beginning of the next one they will be officially racing again. At the end of its final lap, the safety car will head into the pits and as they cross the start-finish line the competitors can resume racing.
The safety car
Since 1996, the official Formula 1 safety car has been supplied by Mercedes-Benz. In 2018, the vehicle used was the 430 kW (585 hp) AMG GT R.
Since 2000, the driver of the safety car has been former touring-car racer Bernd Maylander.