Tag Archives: Formula 1

Groundhog

Lego Lotus 79

As detailed in yesterday’s post, Ferrari are back on top after a few years in middle of the F1 pack, but there was a time when they barely won anything. And not because they had a bad car either.

Ferrari (and everyone else’s) woe was due to the utter dominance of one car, the pioneering Lotus 79, the first car to make full use of ground effect aerodynamics.

The first Formula 1 car designed using computer design aids, Lotus took downforce to an entirely new level, with the 79 producing 30% more of it than even their own car from the previous year. The suction generated by the 79 at speed was so strong that early cars suffered chassis fatigue and had to be strengthened to allow them to cope with race distances.

Lego Lotus 79 RoscoPC

The strengthening worked, and the cars went even faster in setting. Upon the 79’s debut at the 1978 Belgium Grand Prix Mario Andretti took pole by over a second, and won the race ahead of the next Lotus in second place by ten seconds, with Ferrari in third almost half a minute behind. In fact, so fast were the new Lotuses that Ferrari could only win if the 79s retired.

Lotus finished the season with 50% more points than the next nearest team, securing the 79’s position amongst Formula 1’s most dominant ever designs.

This spectacular homage to one of Formula 1’s greats is the work of previous bloggee and TLCB Master MOCer Luca Rusconi aka RoscoPC. Built eleven years ago, Luca has recently uploaded his model to Flickr, and despite its age Luca’s 79 is still one of the finest Lego F1 replicas you’ll see. Accurate decals, a working V8 engine, steering and suspension are all included, and there’s lots more to see at Luca’s Lotus 79 Flickr album by clicking here.

Lego Lotus 79

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Scuderia Ferrari SF70H – Picture Special

Lego Ferrari SF70H F1 Car

After a few years in some decidedly un-Ferrari-esque positions, Scuderia Ferrari are now back at the sharp end of Formula 1. Whether or not you’re a fan of the prancing horse, it is most definitely a Good Thing that F1 finally has a challenger to Mercedes-AMG.

This is the car that has returned Ferrari to the top step of the podium, the beautiful SF70H. With the aero rules relaxed a bit this year F1’s designers finally have a bit more freedom to create some interesting shapes, in doing so adding variety both to the grid and to the race results. The door has barely shut behind Bernie Ecclestone on his way out and the sport is already more interesting.

Lego Ferrari SF70H Formula 1 Car

This wonderful Lego replica of the 2017 Scuderia Ferrari Formula 1 car comes from previous bloggee Noah_L, one half of the duo ‘LegoBuilders’, and he’s recreated the complicated aero-channelling shape beautifully in brick form. The car also features removable front and rear wings and engine cover, under which is an accurate V6-Hybrid power-plant.

There’s are lots more stunning images to see at the Ferrari SF70H album at Noah’s photostream – make the jump via the link in the text above – and you can see the model on MOCpages by clicking here.

Lego Ferrari 2017 F1 Car

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Forced Induction

Lego Renault RS10 Formula 1 Car RoscoPC

This is a 1979 Renault RS10, and it was the first turbocharged car to ever win a Formula 1 race. It’s been faithfully recreated in Lego form by Master MOCer Luca Rusconi aka RoscoPC, whose recently re-uploaded creations have featured heavily here over the past few months. This is Luca’s first entirely new build, allowing him to take advantage of LEGO’s latest parts to brilliant effect.

Powered by a tiny 1.5 litre twin-turbocharged V6 engine the Renault RS10 produced over 500bhp… when it worked. Which to be honest it didn’t all that much, but when it did the RS10 was phenomenally fast. Renault’s single 1979 win with the new turbo engine forced every other front-running F1 team to hastily begin turbo engine development, and if it weren’t for F1’s constantly changing (and pointless) restrictions banning turbocharged engines by the late-’80s (when they were producing as much as 1,400bhp), we doubt any naturally-aspirated engine would have won an F1 championship again. Of course those same pointless restrictions now mandate the use of 1.6 litre turbocharged V6 engines, so the sport has come full circle…

Lego Renault RS10 Formula 1 Car RoscoPC

Renault never won a Formula 1 Championship with the technology they pioneered though (although they did earn some excellent results), but the RS10 can be credited with completely changing the landscape of F1, ushering in the wonderful insanity of the ’80s turbo-era until forced induction was outlawed in 1989.

There’s more to see of this stunning recreation of one of Formula 1’s most game-changing cars at RoscoPC’s Renault RS10 Flickr album – click the link to make some boost.

Lego Renault RS10

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You Can’t Leave Your Hat On

Lego Ferrari 312T RoscoPC

This is Ferrari’s 1975 312T Formula 1 car, recreated in spectacular detail by TLCB favourite and Master MOCer Luca Rusconi aka RoscoPC. Rosco continues to upload his huge back-catalogue of stunning historic racing cars to Flickr, and his latest is one of the most successful single designs ever to race in F1.

Launched in 1975 the Ferrari 312T was the first Formula 1 car to feature a transversely mounted gearbox, with the ‘T’ donating that layout rather than the turbocharger you might expect, the engine being Ferrari’s long-standing naturally aspirated flat-12.

The clever gearbox position gave the 312T superb handling, something that its 312B predecessor wasn’t blessed with, and it delivered immediate results, winning Ferrari’s first F1 title in eleven years. During its long racing life from 1975 to 1980 the 312T won three Drivers and four Constructors World Championships, evolving over this time to take into account the changing regulations. Even losing its characteristic high air-box in 1976 due to an FIA ban on the design didn’t stop it winning.

The 312T was finally replaced in 1981 by the new 126C, Ferrari’s first turbo-charged Formula 1 car, leaving the 312T to be remembered as one of Ferrari’s greatest ever Formula 1 designs, and the car that made World Champions of Nikki Lauda and Jody Scheckter.

There’s much more to see of Luca’s incredible Lego replica of the Ferrari 312T at his Flickr album, and you can read our interview with the builder as part of Season 2 of the Master MOCers series by clicking here.

Lego Ferrari 312T RoscoPC

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Formula 1 Sucks

Lego Brabham BT46B Fan Car

This is the 1978 Brabham BT46, designed by the legendary Gordon Murray and powered by an Alfa Romeo flat-12 engine, and it was amongst the front runners of the 1978 Formula 1 World Championship, securing a Constructors third place for the Brabham team.

The BT46 won two races in the ’78 season, but its win at the Swedish Grand Prix is one of the most unusual in the sport. You see this is the BT46 ‘B’, a design which raced only once, and which won by over half a minute.

Designed to take on the ‘ground effect’ Lotuses, Murray engineered an engine-powered fan to literally suck the car to the ground. Whilst it was claimed at the time the fan was used to cool the Alfa Romeo flat-12, it became obvious what its true purpose was when the drivers revved the engine, as the BT46B visibly squatted down on the track.

Effectively a reverse hovercraft, the Brabham BT46B dominated the field, which of course meant that like other ingenious developments in Formula 1, it was immediately banned. Because Formula 1 sucks.

The BT46B was never allowed to race in Formula 1 again and Brabham were forced to revert to their non fan-assisted variant, however TLCB regular and Master MOCer Luca Rusconi (aka RoscoPC) remembers one of Formula 1’s cleverest designs with his stunning Lego replica of the one-race-wonder.

Added to his ever growing portfolio of historic racing cars on Flickr, Luca’s BT46B includes working steering, suspension, a flat-12 engine, and – of course – a working fan. There’s lots more to see at Luca’s Flickr Album – click this link if you’re a fan.

Lego Brabham BT46B Fan Car

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Tyrrell P34 | Picture Special

Lego Tyrrell P34

This is not a Hot Wheels car. Nor is it an outlandish concept of what Formula 1 could look like in the future. This is the mid-’70s Tyrrell P34, and it really did look exactly like this.

Designed to minimise the drag caused by the front wheels protruding above the front wing, Tyrrell opted for tiny wheels with specially made Goodyear tyres that could sit behind it. However, tiny wheels meant a tiny contact patch, and therefore less grip, so the wheels were doubled to keep the grip levels on par with its larger-wheel counterparts.

The P34 was revealed in September 1975 to astonished onlookers, many of whom thought it was a publicity stunt, however all six wheels duly hit the track the next month, and following testing the Tyrrell P34 entered the 1976 Formula 1 season.

Lego Tyrrell P34 6-Wheel F1 Car

Solid results followed, including a 1-2 result for Team Tyrrell at the ’76 Swedish Grand Prix – the only time a six-wheeled car has won a Formula 1 race (and probably the only time one ever will, seeing as the FIA outlawed cars with more than four wheels several years later, in another pointless addition to the rule book…).

The P34 remained competitive for a few years, before the advancement of other teams and Tyrrell’s reliance on the specially-made Goodyear tyres led to the team returning to the conventional four-wheel layout in 1978, however such was the P34’s unique design that the retired race car became a collectors item overnight.

This perfect Lego replica of Formula 1’s most innovative race winner is the work of Luca Rusconi (aka RoscoPC) and it recreates the incredible Tyrrell P34 in breathtaking detail. Accurate bodywork is enhanced by a period-correct stickered livery, and like the real car all four front wheels are steered, plus there’s a working V8 engine and suspension too.

There’s lots more of this amazing build to see at Luca’s Tyrell P34 Flickr album by clicking here, and you can read our interview with the builder as part of the Master MOCers series by clicking this link.

Lego Tyrrell P34 6-Wheel F1 Car

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Retro Racing Replicas

Lego Ferrari F189 RoscoPC

TLCB Master MOCers Hall of Fame is the place to find the world’s very best Lego vehicle builders. Fame, glory, and an imaginary trophy await those that make it into the Lego Community’s most exclusive club, and today we recognise the fourteenth builder to enter, joining such legends as Firas Abu Jaber, Sariel, Crowkillers and more.

Luca Rusconi aka RoscoPC has appeared here several times in recent months, as he continues to upload his incredible garage of beautiful historic Formula 1 cars to the photo-sharing platform Flickr.

Lego RoscoPC

With new cars in the works, two of which we can exclusively reveal here before their upload (the iconic Ferrari F189 above and the wonderful Renault RS10 below), now seems like the perfect time for Luca to share his Lego story.

Find out how it all started, and how he creates the stunning racing replicas you see here by reading his Master MOCers interview via the link below.

Master MOCers Series 2, Episode 3

Luca Rusconi 

Lego Renault RS10

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Brabham BT52 | Picture Special

Lego Brabham BT52

This is a 1983 Brabham BT52, one of the most powerful Formula 1 cars of all time, and the first turbo-charged car ever to win a World Championship. Designed by legendary engineer Gordon Murray, the BMW-powered BT52 took Nelson Piquet to his second World Championship, after the earlier BT49 had given him his maiden Championship in 1980.

Brabham won six World Championships in total, four Drivers and two Constructors, and founder Jack Brabham remains the only driver ever to win a Formula 1 World Championship in a car of his own design. However, after two periods of huge success in the 1960s and 1980s, Bernie Ecclestone – who owned the Brabham team in the ’70s and ’80s – sold it to a Japanese investor, and a few years later Brabham collapsed due to financial difficulties.

Lego Brabham BT52

Sadly Brabham haven’t raced in Formula 1 since, but TLCB has ears, and rumour has it that Formula 1 team Force India, who are currently in good form, need a new owner. With their current billionaire owners on bale for serious fraud offences and Brabham looking to build their own road-cars, we could see the famous Australian-British brand back at the sharp end of Formula 1 very soon. You heard it here first!

Back to the ’80s, and this incredible replica of Brabham’s last Championship-winning car comes from previous bloggee Luca Rosconi aka RoscoPC, who continues to re-publish his huge collection of classic Formula 1 cars to Flickr. There’s more to see of the Brabham BT52, as well as his other stunning replicas, at Luca’s photostream – click the link above to make the jump.

Lego Brabham BT52

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Lotus 49B | Picture Special

Lego Lotus 49B

Modern Formula 1 is almost all about aerodynamics. The art of directing airflow around a car seems quite mundane today, but when Colin Chapman first added ‘wings’ to his Lotus 49B in 1968 in order to generate downforce it was a revolution.

As is often the way with innovation, the other teams first tried to ban the Lotus, and then copied it, including its innovative use of the Cosworth DFV engine as a structural component in the chassis, and much of Chapman’s design is still in standard use in F1 today.

Lego Lotus 49B

Chapman’s Lotus 49 won both the Constructor’s and Driver’s World Championships twice, and also lays claim to being the first ever Formula 1 car to feature a racing livery, again – normal now, but a revolution in the 1960s.

This exquisite recreation of one of the greatest (perhaps the greatest) Formula 1 car ever designed comes from previous bloggee Lucas Rusconi (aka RoscoPC) who continues to upload his extensive catalogue of beautiful historic racing cars to Flickr.

Luca’s 1968 Lotus 49B features working suspension, steering, and a beautiful replica Cosworth DFV V8 engine, and you can see more of the build as well as his other incredible creations by clicking the link to his photostream above.

Lego Lotus 49B

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Lotus 43 – BRM H16 | Picture Special

Lego Lotus 43 BRM H16

Race car building legend Luca Rusconi (aka RoscoPC) has been building his stunning historic racing cars for the best part of a decade. He’s recently uploaded another one of his glorious creations to Flickr (where we hope many more will follow), and thus we’re able to publish it here. It’s also one of the weirder racing cars in Luca’s garage, although it might not look remarkable at first glance.

Any classic racing fan will know of the incredible performances of the Lotus F1 team. Led by Colin Chapman, and powered by the legendary Cosworth DFV engine, the partnership delivered four Driver and five Constructor World Championship titles. However, before the DFV was ready Chapman needed an engine to put into his new 43 Formula 1 car for the 1966 season. He turned to previous Championship Winners BRM, and their unique P75 H16 engine.

Lego Lotus 43 BRM H16

Yup, H16. Basically two Flat-8 engines stacked on top of one another, yet only 3 litres in capacity. Unfortunately the unusual design was unusual for a reason – reliability. Or lack of it.

Heavy, extremely complicated, and constantly breaking, the BRM engine in Chapman’s Lotus 43 caused it to retire from every race bar one during the 1966 season. However, that one finish was a race win at the United States Grand Prix at Watkins Glen, showing that when it worked, the Lotus 43 was quick. Really Quick.

The following year in ’67 the new Cosworth DFV 3 litre V8 engine was ready, Ford added their sponsorship to it (in a stroke of marketing genius), and the year after that the DFV starting a Championship Winning streak that went unbroken for seven years.

Lego BRM H16 Engine

BRM’s mental P75 H16 engine was quickly forgotten, although the team continued to produce Formula 1 cars until the late 1970s, and Lotus forged on with a Cosworth partnership that was to become one of the most successful ever seen in the sport.

However, we think the Lotus 43 BRM H16 deserves a little recognition. It was a race winner after all, and for a brief moment two of Britain’s greatest F1 teams combined to produce something, well…  a little bit crap.

RoscoPC’s homage to that disastrous partnership pictured here was first built in 2010 and is now available to view in wonderful detail on Flickr. It features working steering, suspension, beautiful detailing, and – of course – a recreation of one of the maddest engines ever seen in Formula 1.

You can see all of the images of Luca’s incredible Lotus 43 build at his photostream via the link above, and if you’re curious to know what an H16 Formula 1 engine sounds like, click here…

Lego Lotus 43 BRM H16

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The Killer Years

Lego Ferrari 126C F1 Car Villeneuve

Formula 1 is – whilst not without its risks – relatively safe today. For almost all of the sport’s history however, it was a insanely dangerous place to be. Even as late as the 1980s Formula 1 drivers (and others involved in F1 trackside) were dying on a regular basis. This car belongs to one such driver, the hugely popular Gilles Villeneuve, who was tragically killed at Zolder in Belgium after just 5 years in the sport.

Gilles joined Formula 1 after winning the Formula Atlantic championship in both the US and Canada in 1976, debuting with McLaren in ’77 before World Champions Ferrari took him on for the ’78 season. In May of 1982 Gilles collided with the back of Jochen Mass’ car during qualifying, with Mass on a slow lap and Gilles on a fast one. Both drivers saw each other at the last moment, both took evasive action, and both moved to the right…

The Ferrari disintegrated, and Gilles, still strapped into his seat, exited the car and hit the catch fencing, fatally breaking his neck. Formula 1 had lost one of it’s most loved drivers.

Lego Ferrari 126C2

Gilles is now remembered at his home track in Canada, renamed in his honour, and both at Zolder in Belgium and San Marino in Italy, each with a corner named after him. Yesterday marks 35 years since Gilles’ death, and race car building legend Luca Rusconi aka RoscoPC has paid tribute by uploading his incredible recreation of Gilles’ 1982 Ferrari 126C2 Formula 1 car to Flickr, 5 years after he first designed it.

Luca’s model is one of the most spectacular Lego recreations of a classic Formula 1 car that you will ever see, and its beauty lies as much within as it does on the surface, with working suspension complete with anti-roll bars, a 6-cylinder engine and full remote control drive and steering.

There’s more to see of Gilles Villeneuve’s Ferrari 126C2 at Luca’s Flickr gallery – click here to make the trip.

Lego Ferrari 126C F1 Car Villeneuve

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Scuderia Ferrari – Picture Special

Lego Scuderia Ferrari

We may only be four months into the year, but we’re pretty sure we’ve found our favourite creation of 2017 already…

This breathtakingly beautiful scene comes from Michel Van den Heuvel aka Start Bricking on Flickr, and it is -of course – Scuderia Ferrari’s 1950s workshop, recreated wonderfully in mini-figure scale.

Lego Scuderia Ferrari

Inside Michel has taken care of every detail, from tools to trophies, rubber to race cars, nothing is missing, and it’s all been thoughtfully replicated in miniature from our favourite Danish plastic.

Outside the workshop and underneath some stunning brick-built lettering are a trio of historic Scuderia Ferrari Formula 1 racing cars, complete with a superb Fiat team transporter ready to take the cars to their next race.

Michel hasn’t stopped with Formula 1 either, as Ferrari’s legendary endurance racers and sports cars have also been exquisitely recreated in Lego form.

Lego Scuderia Ferrari

There’s a whole lot more to see of Michel’s incredible build at his Flickr photostream by clicking here, and if anyone from LEGO is reading this; please make this an official set. You know you want to!

Lego Scuderia Ferrari

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Brick Built Brabham

Lego Brabham BT24

This is a Brabham BT24, and it won the 1967 Formula 1 Constructor’s Championship. However, it was not the fastest car of the season – that honour went to Lotus – but it was much more reliable, and thus its consistency meant that it took the overall championship ahead of the faster Lotus design.

This neat mini-figure scale recreation of the championship-winning Brabham is the work of Pixel Junkie of Flickr, and it contains some wonderfully inventive parts usage. See more at Pixel’s photostream via the link above.

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Lego Livery

Lego Scuderia Ferrari Truck

The finest brick-built livery ever? If not it’s a sure top three. This brilliant Iveco Scuderia Ferrari transporter from the 2008 F1 season is the work of Ryan Link of Flickr, and it has some of the most intricate brick-work we’ve ever seen. The whole truck opens up too, with a double-deck car ramp, sliding tool storage and a flip-up awning. See more via the link above.

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An Mg Racing Car

honda-f1

Not a product of the Morris Garages car builders but a Formula 1 racing car with a body made from lightweight magnesium. This car is yet another fascinating piece of auto-racing history from Greg_998 on Flickr. In the late 1960s Honda saved 80kg from the weight of their previous F1 car by giving its body a magnesium shell, instead of an aluminium one.

This author fondly remembers setting fire to strips of magnesium in chemistry lessons, something which is now probably banned under Elf & Safety. Magnesium burns at roughly 3,100°C, making it great for things such as distress flares, sparklers on bonfire night and those things that Boy Scouts start fires with. Tragically these properties make it an incredibly dangerous material to have built a car from if it crashes and catches fire. You can see more images of this unusual car and read a full history by following this link to Greg’s Photostream.

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