by Dale Ross October 27, 2021
When Tyler Reddick, driver of the No. 8 Chevy Camaro ZL1 1LE for Richard Childress Racing, hit the track at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway this year, he began delegating the responsibility of staying hydrated to FluidLogic™.
After the previous week's race in the grueling heat at Watkins Glen, Reddick suffered from dehydration, which is common for racers competing in the hot environment of a racecar cockpit. With all the tasks drivers have to focus on during a race, remembering to take in fluids often falls to the bottom of the list. Drivers typically will drink at the beginning of a race, and then during caution laps or a pit stop. But, as a recent study conducted by Dr. David Ferguson, associate professor at Michigan State University shows, the key to proper hydration is consistency—small amounts of fluids on a consistent basis throughout the race. This not only keeps the driver properly hydrated, but results in better driver performance and ultimately less driver errors and faster late-race lap times.
Reddick now has the benefit of an innovative hydration system than prompts drivers when to drink and delivers fluid frequently through a hose connection that runs through the air hose and attaches to the driver’s mic.
“Racecar drivers routinely compete in hot environments while wearing fire protective suits,” said Dr. Ferguson, who recently completed a study on driver hydration methods. “The thermal strain can increase core body temperature by four degrees Fahrenheit, eliciting seven pounds of sweat loss. This type of strain can induce mental and physical fatigue, impacting their performance and reaction time. Consistent and proper hydration during competition can help mitigate these impairments. Unfortunately, most drivers hydrate on an inconsistent basis throughout a race, with methods that do not provide the precise amount their body needs when they need it.”
A constant level of optimal hydration, as provided by the FluidLogic™ system, can keep a driver rehydrated, resulting in better reaction time, and less driver errors as the study shows. In the study, the drivers using the FluidLogic system delivered a 1-second faster late-race lap times.
The FluidLogic™ “smart” hydration system is an automatic hydration system that precisely measures and delivers the right amount of fluids right when they are needed to achieve optimal performance. The frequency and amount of fluid can be pre-programmed through the FluidLogic app. The computer alerts the driver that it is time to hydrate with an LED light on the steering wheel. When the light flashes, the driver pushes the button and the “instant-on” pump delivers the perfect amount of water to keep them hydrated during the race through a 4-mil hydration hose that runs through the center of their MagLock® fresh-air hose to a mouthpiece designed to attach to their radio mic.
The FluidLogic system was developed by Ed Jaeger, an entrepreneur and racer himself, and his company, Rainmaker Solutions, Inc., where he is president and CEO. It is designed to integrate with the Maglock magnetic connection, also developed by Rainmaker Solutions, Inc. The Maglock magnetic coupler is the most popular clean-air connection system used in most motorsports series today.
“Drivers who use our system tell us that they can now focus more on driving without having to think about getting the proper amount of fluids,” said Jaeger. “They delegate that responsibility to the FluidLogic system. The end result is they can focus more and perform better during the race and feel better afterwards.”
After three years of iterations to perfect each and every component, the system underwent a year of extensive on-track testing by drivers in race conditions and the FluidLogic and Maglock Air systems are now in full production and available to motorsports athletes everywhere.
In Best Season Yet, Colton Herta Stayed Hydrated with Innovative FluidLogic™ System. One thing that paid off for Colton Herta Racing this year was trusting FluidLogic™ for his in-car hydration. “Delegating my hydration needs to FluidLogic has meant one less thing I need to think about when I’m racing,” said Herta. "FluidLogic does exactly what I need it to when I need it. It keeps me hydrated throughout the race, and it’s made a big difference for me this year.”