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Well it happened - I raced my electric Westfield in a proper, MSA approved, sprint race. Although other electric cars have appeared at various race events, I think that this might have been the first time in the UK that an electric car has officially competed in an approved series. It's thank's to the WSCC that I've been able to do this. 

 

The car is one of seven cars developed 3 years ago. It has a 120KW motor (that's about 130bhp at the wheels), one gear and weighs 900Kg !!! The motor generates about 300 ft lb from zero speed - even so, being geared to do 115mph with no gearbox means she's slow of the line. Power rises from zero to 120KW at 50mph - after that is a constant 120KW up to 110mph. Without a power band as such and no gear changing means the power sensation is more like thrust. 

 

Although not fast by Westfield standards, the car was still faster than some of the other cars - not a bad start particularly as both me and the car had never been on the track before. 

 

So, now I have to sort out the suspension (too soft), put the car on a diet, boost the power and find some talent - normal racing problems I guess. 

 

Cheers

John

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Terry Everall - WSCC Competition Secretary

We did not get chance to speak at Croft but I did see the power unit under the bonnet but wondered why you also have a separate 12v battery

Good to see you giving it a try at sprinting

when is your next event?

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I didn't realise these had made it out into the wild. Good to see upgraditus lives on even in the most modern of westfields!

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The 12v battery powers all the normal electrical stuff, lights, instruments plus the motor power controller and battery management system. The alternator is replaced by a 400v to 12v converter which keeps the 12v battery chartered.

John

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Andrew

More info and pics needed!

 

I have pics. :t-up:

 

Got to say it's the quietest Westy I've ever seen. (..or heard!) :laugh:

 

DSC_9018_zpsda0545b2.jpg

 

DSC_9156_zps342ddde0.jpg

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Paul Morcom

It looks just like a standard Westfield to me  :) .  Perhaps some pictures of under the bonnet would be interesting.

 

John, great to have you in the WSCC Speed Series and it sounds like you really enjoyed your first event.

 

With you we have reduced the carbon footprint of the WSCC Speed Series.

 

 

PS The only reason Terry was inquiring about your 12v battery is that he is always having battery problems and is constantly on the hunt for spares or a good battery charger :d

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Nick Algar

Great to see you at Croft John, a "proper" circuit for the cars first outing, pleased you made the trip north. And by the content of your post, it looks like oyu have caught the bug good an proper.

 

There is loads of help on here for info on setting the car up etc, just ask. We really look forward to seeing the car out at more rounds, especially the Blyton weekend on 12th & 13th July if you can make it.

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Yes, I need to organize myself to get to more events now that the car actually works. 

 

Chassis tuning is a big headache for me. The axle weights are 510Kg at the rear (with driver) and 420Kg at the front. Tyres are Toyo R1R 17/225 45 rear and 17/215 45 front with Hispec 280mm disks and 4 pot calipers all round. Brakes seem to work OK but car over steers and grounded the undertray at least once on a hot lap. Undertray ground clearance was set to 70mm. Coft pictures show the car leaning over quite a bit.

 

I figured the first step was to get the spring rates sorted but I'm open to suggestions. Help please !!  :)

 

New pictures posted in gallery.

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Andrew

What range does it have with that huge battery pack John? ..and if you intend to seriously sprint it, could you get away with a lighter pack? ???

 

The ground clearance problem can be seen here:

 

DSC_9070_zps80e2d515.jpg

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Really interesting project and great to see it out on the SS.

 

I'm no expert so please excuse me if my suggestions are completely stupid...

 

Looking at the pictures on your gallery and for the purpose of sprinting could you not -  

 

a) devise the charging unit so it could be removed from the car for events as this looks to be a heavy unit.

b) work out what batteries you would require for an event and only run with the minimum fitted per run changing them over during the day for charged units.

c) for the purpose of sprints run electrics from the main batteries, therefore allowing you to remove the additional 12 volt or alternatively use a small gel battery?

 

Potentially this looks as though it could be made to be extremely light and powerful machine and could certainly give anything a run for its money :t-up:

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Yes Hellski, the suggestions you make are all valid. Problem is that to really make a properly competitive electric sprint car is very expensive. 

 

The next car could have a sprint battery and lose 250Kg of battery weight but this would mean custom building a 400V very high discharge rate battery with at least a 30C rating. It would also benefit from a 2 speed transmission or at least overdriving the motor below 50mph.

 

You are correct that the potential for electric sprint racing is huge - recent technology advancements have mad this possible. Imagine an F1 KERS battery and 160KW KERRS motor in a Westfield!

 

However, the MSA are rightly concerned about safety issues. They let me race the SportE because it was professionally designed and built to OEM safety standards - thus it races in a road legal class. For any other modified class the Blue Book would have to include a raft of new high voltage and battery regulations.

 

For this year (and maybe next year) I will use my existing SportE and get the most out of it.

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stephenh

Can you fit a "stickier" tyre than the R1R? I know they are a list 1B tyre, but they aren't really in the same league as V70A or ZZr tyres. In fact, soft 888 tyres would be stickier in my experience. I should add that I've used all these on my car at various times, including the R1R which I used as a road tyre, and occasional trackday tyre. 

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