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News

Ferrari Racing Team uses Solvay Advanced Polymers

Solvay Advanced Polymers Llc : 10 September, 2003  (Company News)
When the Houston-based Risi Competizione Ferrari race team became frustrated with having to change the suspension bushings on their three Ferrari 360GTs after every race, they upgraded to suspension bushings made from TORLON 4435 polyamide-imide. TORLON resins are produced by Solvay Advanced Polymers, L.L.C.
“The press-fit suspension bushings must withstand severe impact loading without fracturing, wearing or creeping,” said Steve Quance, president of Drake Plastics, Ltd., the Houston area-based company that manufactures the bushings for the team utilizing their extruded TORLON PAI Seamless tube capability.

During a race, the eight upper and eight lower suspension bushings in a car will undergo a huge amount of strain with no lubrication or maintenance. Worn bushings allow lateral movement of suspension components, which results in increased wear on the tires, reduced stability in cornering and braking, and poor handling in general.

“Before they began using bushings made from TORLON PAI, the Risi Team was changing bushings on their cars after nearly every race,” Quance said. “Team engineers started seeking a solution before running the Daytona 24 Hours, where a car’s handling becomes very sloppy due to bushing wear that occurs during the race,” Quance added.

“Since TORLON 4435 was used, the bushings have exhibited ‘zero wear’ in four races, including Sebring, Daytona and LeMans,” said Richard Taylor of the Risi Team.

“TORLON PAI solved the problem.”
TORLON PAI is widely recognized for its unmatched wear performance under severe service conditions without external lubrication and at high temperatures, up to 260 degrees Celsius (500 degrees Fahrenheit).

Additionally, TORLON PAI offers metal-like thermal expansion, eliminating fit
and clearance problems. The material’s high strength and stiffness enables it to replace metals in many applications.

In addition to bushings, TORLON PAI is a popular choice for rotating and
sliding components used in automotive, aerospace and industrial applications for bearings, seal rings, thrust washers, wear pads, fasteners and thermal insulators. Risi Competizione is a professional racing team organized and managed by Giuseppe Risi, the owner and dealer principal of both the Houston and Dallas Ferrari and Maserati dealerships. The team, which races its own Ferrari 360GT cars as well as providing full racing services for select private clients, is considered one of the world’s top teams in sports car and endurance racing.
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