IndyCar-style tweak for S5000 push-to-pass in Adelaide

S5000 push-to-pass

S5000s at the Gold Coast

The S5000 push-to-pass system has been tweaked ahead of the Tasman Series round at the Valo Adelaide 500.

A throttle-based push-to-pass system made its debut in the first round of the Tasman Series, at last month’s Boost Mobile Gold Coast 500.

Then, drivers were allowed a discrete number of activations per race whereas, for the category’s first appearance in Adelaide, they will be limited only by a 90-second time allocation in each encounter, somewhat similar to how IndyCar uses the system.

As before, S5000’s push-to-pass will be active until the driver turns it off manually and/or applies the brakes.

They will, however, run at lower power in general due to Adelaide’s circuit grading.

According to Stefan Millard, of category Technical Partner Garry Rogers Motorsport, the push-to-pass change will enhance the strategic battle.

“The revisions to the push-to-pass system for Adelaide will introduce more strategy into the racing and we think will make for a better product,” said Millard.

“Much like how it is used in IndyCar racing, drivers can pick and choose how they utilise it rather than being stuck with a set number of deployments per race.

“They can turn it off when they have pushed the button, so if they see the car in front using it, they can save their time for later.

“Similarly, it allows the system to be used on shorter straights to set up a pass for later in the lap.

“At the Gold Coast we were aiming for approximately 0.4 to 0.5 seconds gain on the straight and Adelaide will be similar.

“We will continue to tune the system throughout the weekend.”

IndyCar does stipulate both a maximum time per push and maximum total time, the latter of which is always 10 times the former, and hence a maximum of 10 pushes per race (but more if drivers do not use the maximum push each time).

Whether mere coincidence or not, according to S5000 organisers, their cars should transit Adelaide’s longest, 640m straight, Bartels Road, which links Turns 7 and 8, in around nine seconds.

It would stand to reason that Bartels Road would thus be a sub-nine-second proposition when push-to-pass is active for its length, but suggests a maximum number of activations of just over 10 if only used in such a fashion.

S5000’s three races in Adelaide are still time-certain per the supplementary regulations, although will likely be converted to a prescribed lap count once practice is complete and hence race pace can be more accurately predicted.

However, with the category tipping lap times of about 77 seconds, and time needed for a formation lap, that would suggest Races 1 and 2 (allocated 20 minutes) would be around 13 laps, and Race 3 (25 minutes) around 17 laps, which gives some indication of how push-to-pass might be used.

A 15-car field headlined by Formula 1 grand prix winner Giancarlo Fisichella is set to take to the Adelaide street circuit from this Thursday.

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