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The development of a visualisation tool for acquired motorsport data


Data acquisition and analysis are an intrinsic part of motorsport, helping a race team objectively evaluate the performance of both their car and driver. Over time, data acquisition has become almost universally employed through all levels of racing. While large teams in the sport’s highest ranks have many resources to derive answers from these data, users in more minor ‘stepping stone’ categories often find themselves unable to successfully exploit the full potential of the information gathered because of its volume and their limited resources. Further to issues associated with the volume of data, recent trends in racing have seen cuts to the time available for driver and car testing through all levels of the sport to reduce escalating competition costs. While users are faced with ever more data and less time in which to extract useful information, the tools provided by commercial analysis packages have shown little development. This article describes the investigation into a new three-dimensional graphical display method, which aims to help the user more rapidly assimilate acquired motorsport data to the race car producing it. The first two preliminary stages of development of this system are presented, demonstrating the ability of the system to operate with two levels of complexity, which might be considered to suitably represent different levels of user. Together, results from both demonstrate the system’s potential for further development as a useful tool for accelerating a race team’s analysis of acquired data.