Greater Noida: When everyone is in the fast lane, his may seem a low-key job, driving a car at a slow speed. Never mind the speed, he has a crucial role - to ensure nothing untoward happens on the track and beyond. He drives what is known in Formula One a safety car and his responsibility is to make sure everyone around the circuit is safe and secure.
A safety car is out on the track to limit the speed of the race cars on the track in case of a caution period (in heavy rain, accident or debris on the track). At every Grand Prix, there is a silver-hued safety car which essentially sees to it the race is not disrupted because of a mishap on the track. When there is an accident or a breakdown, the safety car gets onto the track and the race cars make a formation behind it till all clearance is given to proceed.
The man behind the safety car wheel is unsung and for 13 years now Bernd Maylander is holding on to it with all the care in the world. On television it might seem that the safety car is going at a snail's pace but the truth of the matter is the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG, with an increase in power output to 435KW, is being driven on the limit.
"I am always prepared to go out to the track with the seat belt on. I have to be
05:25 PM, Oct 26, 2012