Drayson Racing ran its World Electric Land Speed Record-breaking Lola-Drayson B12/69 EV for the first time this year at Silverstone, as its winter test programme continues to develop the electric-powered racing car. While running with reduced aero and power, test driver Jonny Cocker recorded the same lap time around the Silverstone National Circuit as he’d achieved at a test before Christmas, when the prototype ran in full downforce specification and with full power.
The aim of the latest test was to try a variety of new motor cooling options and traction control settings – and the extremely wet track conditions were ideal for gathering valuable wheelspin data from the B12’s one thousand data channels. Standing water prevented the vehicle reaching its top speed of 220mph, but the pioneering Drayson Racing Technologies technical team, who’re also setting-up a team in Formula E, were delighted with the results of the test – as the duty cycle of the powerful electric motors and cooling challenges faced doing a land speed record attempt are completely different to running circuit laps.
“Since our successful World Electric Land Speed Record attempt at Elvington last year, the B12 has been completely stripped and all the systems and motors checked,” explains Graham More, Drayson Racing Chief Engineer. “We came to Silverstone to primarily test a number of new parts that we’ve manufactured that will assist with motor cooling. We had six options that we want to try back-to-back, and despite the atrocious weather we did manage to test many of the options and gain a significant amount of important new data. We also did some work on the traction control, hence a different downforce level. We wanted to get more wheelspin data, so the wet weather provided us with the perfect conditions.”
“Every time we run the B12 we find a big chunk of information, and every test session is a big learning experience,” knows driver Jonny Cocker. “We were at Silverstone just before Christmas in very similar conditions, and then we ran the B12 in full downforce specification and with full power. This time we ran with reduced aero and power and achieved exactly the same lap time, which illustrates the developments that are continuously being made to the car. Silverstone in February, heavy rain blowing in sideways and two degrees Centigrade made driving quite exciting, yet we achieved pretty much everything we set out to do. We’ve gathered all the data we needed, and this latest engineering exercise has been well worthwhile.”
Source: Drayson Racing