Twists and turns! That has been the story so far of the JK Tyre Racing India Series with new twists every season, turning around the careers of many budding drivers in the country. The latest is the introduction of BMW-powered FB02 international Formula cars.
What is this FB02? A much simplified version of the Formula One car, where one can accelerate from 0 to 100 kmph in under four seconds. It is one of the most successful junior driver development racecars in the last 10 years, nothing short of a blessing in disguise, as it’s made available to these youngsters in their own backyard at subsidised costs.
Akhil Khushlani, who is a pro when it comes to driving this mean machine, says it’s a big step forward for racing in the country.
“I have driven this car in the Asia series for two years, at Silverstone and other international circuits. But to race the FB02 in India is unbelievable.”
“The actual cost of this car is around 250,000 euros but we are getting it for subsidised rates (`8 lakh). It’s advanced and one of the high-end cars I have raced at competitive level. Getting international experience in India is just amazing,” the Hyderabad racer added.
One of the safest racing cars in the offing, its modern monocoque made of carbon-fibre and Kevlar makes the FB02 all the more reliable. And Indian racer Karun Chandhok couldn’t agree more. “The ideal shift for youngsters should be from karting to FB02. Formula 4s are the cheapest single-seater racing cars anywhere in the world. But the FB02 is also safe, easy to adapt and helps overcome any kind of wheel-banging. The bike engines and solid gearbox give immense power. I feel FB02 is a great entry formula,” he said.
Precision is the key when it comes to handling this speed monster.
“There is more downforce, it has an aero wing. The car is assembled in such a way that you gather pace in straights and use it all in the corners for better results. For this, precision is required and there’s no room for any mistake,” said Vishnu Prasad, who is competing in the FB02 this season.
“It’s nothing like what I have driven before. It took me a whole week to figure out which goes where. I am still getting used to it but I am glad to get the opportunity to drive such a car,” he added.
Definitely, another step forward for Indian racing!