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F1 Cars: Enough Downforce to Race Upside-Down?

by Kenny Hoeschen

There’s a story that the aerodynamics on Formula One cars have become so advanced and the cars generate so much downforce at speed that if you built a track on some sort of giant ceiling the cars could stay up and race upside-down.

The people at AeroDyn Wind Tunnel, who also happen to perform the wind tunnel testing for the majority of NASCAR race teams, decided to try it for themselves. A2Wind built a 70 pound, 40% scale replica of an Indy car and suspended it upside down in their wind tunnel to demonstrate the results. As you’ll see, when the wind approaches 100 mph, the car’s aerodynamics produces more than its own weight in downforce, and the car is held upside-down.

If you doubt the results, the good people at Mythbusters also confirmed that F1 cars could race upside down, but they suggest you not try it at home.

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