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Glasurit Paints Sparkle on Formula Racers at the Hockenheimring

Published on 2008-02-11. Author : SpecialChem

Münster / Hockenheim -- Car racing involves teamwork, the utmost precision, high quality, and, of course, a large dose of passion. As part of a joint project between Glasurit, BASF Coatings' automotive refinishing product brand, Hockenheim-Ring GmbH, and the up-and-coming painters enrolled at the Mosbach trade school, all these requirements are covered. Glasurit paints are being used to refinish Hockenheim-Ring GmbH's 14 formula racers. Five of them are already wearing their new "clothes". But the Glasurit touch isn't limited to the racers at the huge racetrack. Two huge advertising banners at the motodrome and the paddock proudly display the Glasurit logo. At the presentation of the formula vehicles and the advertising banners, Dr. Karl-Josef Schmidt, CEO of Hockenheim-Ring GmbH, Erika Koski, Glasurit Marketing Germany, and Markus Stieglbauer, head of Sales for Glasurit South, were visibly pleased about the partnership. "The Hockenheimring is one of the world's best-known racetracks. In view of the top-class events at this venue, our presence with our global Glasurit brand is extremely important," Koski said.

However, prior to the presentation of the formula vehicles, the spotlight was on the heroes behind the scenes, the future master painters and vocational students at the Mosbach trade school, which is located less than an hour from the Hockenheimring. Under the watchful eye of master painter and refinisher Werner Fuggis, one master student and one trainee each from the second and third year of the training course were assigned to each racer, investing their talent and energy to produce their own personal masterpiece. "This project was a huge shot in the arm for our students. It's not every day that they get to show off their skills by refinishing a racing car," said Fuggis, joined by Otmar Bangert, dean and vice principal of the Mosbach trade school.

First of all, however, the students were introduced to the "other side" of car racing. Loads of time and effort have to be invested in a racer before it proceeds to the starting line, gleaming amid the flashing of cameras. For instance, up to now, the Lotus formula vehicles, at 160 horsepower, have zipped around the racetrack in a rather mundane shade of burgundy. They urgently needed a new coat of paint, one that was supposed to match the blue and silver Hockenheim-Ring GmbH logo. "Our Color-Profi System (CPS) color matching system made finding a solution quick and easy," Stieglbauer said. But before they could start with the refinishing, the young spraypainters used a lot of elbow grease priming and sanding the surface. "The intensive racing had caused extensive stone-chipping damage and cracks in the bodies," Fuggis explained.

Finally, it was time for refinishing - with a 90 Line waterborne basecoat and a clearcoat. "All of the Glasurit paints used to spice up the cars are VOC compliant and even exceed the standards defined by European environmental legislation," said Stieglbauer. In all, 14 formula vehicles need to be prepped and refinished. "The students work late into the night, and the tasks can be backbreaking. But it has given them a great deal of hands-on experience," Fuggis said.

However, seeing the finished racers has compensated for the many hours of hard work. And they were able to witness the hot rods "on the job." At speeds of up to 270 kilometers per hour, they are genuine racers. Driving them is no picnic, though. They don't have power steering or power brakes, and the driver's head and neck are subjected to high levels of centrifugal force.

As an added bonus, the students had a chance to look behind the scenes at the Hockenheimring. They ventured into places that normally have restricted access, including race control, the high-speed racetrack itself, and the VIP facilities. And since the young painters have proved they are real refinishing winners, too, they climbed up on the podium and posed for pictures for posterity's sake.

For Koski of Glasurit Marketing Germany, one thing is clear: "The Hockenheimring is a true multipurpose arena for mega-events, as well as smaller-scale events, and is the venue for a breathtaking car racing experience. It's a fascinating world for all kinds of experience. It's great to be a partner here and to have the opportunity to present Glasurit to a wide public."

Source: BASF


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