Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Sphere of Influence: TTXGP

The June 12th, 2009 inaugural TTXGP is, according to www.TTXGP.com, “the world’s first zero carbon, clean emission Grand Prix.” The definition of “zero carbon” and “clean emission” is arguable, but TTXGP truly will be the first REAL green motor race with tangible environmental benefits.

Motor racing in any form can be quickly dismissed as frivolous and a waste of resources, no matter the guise. After all, fossil fuels in some form will still be burned to generate electricity for the construction of race bikes and the recharging of batteries. Tires will be quickly worn out and disposed. Transportation will be required to move people and equipment to and from the venue. Etc. All for the purpose of seeing who the faster rider is, or who has the best machine.

Maybe the immediate results of a motorcycle road race like the TTXGP don’t appear to justify the means. However, the long term benefits will have the potential to change how all humans traverse the planet.

Motor racing drives technology that ultimately trickles down to production vehicles and puts those benefits in the hands of the people. Motor racing teaches competitors how to maximize their use of resources and eventually improves all aspects of personal transportation.

The TTXGP re-writes everything we knew about motorized competition, even environmentally friendly competition.

Most eco-races are distance or economy competitions. They do push technology, but are typically relegated to ‘freak’ races to see how far a car can travel powered by sunlight or a teaspoon of fuel. The real world application of many of these races is a bit diluted. How safe or practical is a car riding on bicycle wheels and carrying a single emaciated driver several thousand miles at 15 miles per hour?

Of course the TTXGP generally is far from the reality of your daily commute. But strength, endurance, durability, power, and performance are all tested in harsh conditions on real roads, and in real conditions. Conditions which the daily driver or commuter will experience.

The TTXGP is a REAL roads race, held in real conditions, being contested by competitors who are developing and building motorcycles for real people to ride. The bikes we’ll see racing at TTXGP will be the parents of zero carbon and clean emission bikes we will all be able to buy for ourselves within a few years, months, or even weeks.

TTXGP provides an honest, direct, and nearly instantaneous trickle-down of useable green transportation technology to the masses. That is what truly sets TTXGP apart from any other eco-race ever held before.

Photo: Wade Boyd at Isle of Man TT, from: Link

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