When it comes to grace and quickness, a corps de ballet has nothing on a well trained pit crew. These days the best IndyCar and Forumla One crews can completely service a car in less than five seconds. In other words, they can change the tires, and refuel a racer in a shorter time than it took me to write this paragraph. So what the hell does that actually look like?
Thanks to Google Glass, we now have a better idea about that. In this video Graham Rahal equipped himself and his pit crew with Glass, as he piloted his National Guard Honda IndyCar around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Sadly, even on racers and pit mechanics Glass looks a bit doofy, the results though are anything but. You could do the same thing with GoPros, but there is a subtle difference, because Glass actually shows you things precisely from the wearer’s viewpoint.
Watching things from the mechanic’s perspective is especially mesmerizing; they replace the tires faster than I can change my socks. And the refueling? As someone who lives in a state where I can’t legally pump my own gas, can I say that I wish this guy worked at my local Chevron.
As impressive as these guys are, technology has also helped along this process. Quick-change tires and a high-pressure fuel system make a big difference. To see what I am talking about, check out this video comparing a pit stop in the ’50s to a modern Formula One stop.