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EMCO Gears and Action Express Racing a Winning Combination at Indy
Posted by: newsla on Aug 02, 2014 - 06:02 AM
IndyCar News
EMCO Gears and Action Express Racing a Winning Combination at Indy

EMCO Gears and Action Express Racing combined for a milestone and memorable victory in last Friday’s Brickyard Grand Prix at Indianapolis Motor Speedway where the No. 5 Action Express Corvette Daytona Prototype was driven to the win by Christian Fittipaldi and João Barbosa.


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Adding to its January victory in the season-opening Rolex 24 at the equally legendary Daytona International Speedway, Action’s wins at both iconic tracks were supported in a major way by EMCO components and personnel.

Action Express is one of EMCO’s premier team partners and uses the all-American company’s gears and related componentry and assemblies. The team is also one of the first to take advantage of EMCO’s trackside service program, which assigns a fulltime and factory-trained technician to participating teams. Action’s EMCO technician was once again a fully integrated member of the team, with them from the onset of preliminary testing straight through Barbosa crossing the legendary line of bricks for the race win last Friday evening. The win put the No. 5 team and drivers back on top of the IMSA TUDOR Championship standings by two points, 249 – 247, with three 2014 races remaining

“This was a new track layout for everyone, and being able to achieve the best ratios possible was key,” Barbosa said. “EMCO was always there and they did a phenomenal job with all the requests we had. This was a tough track for the transmissions and, once again, they performed at a high level, giving us another trouble free race. EMCO gears, steering and the related components held up to the rigors of this up and down race and a challenging Indy track.”

EMCO is well familiar with Indianapolis Motor Speedway and took its first steps into the sport at the Brickyard over 50 years ago with one of the Speedway’s legends, A.J. Foyt. EMCO later went on to win on the 2.5-mile oval in Indy cars and NASCAR stock cars but the Brickyard Grand Prix win was the first at the Speedway in sports cars.

“Winning at Indy never gets old,” said Dan Cota, EMCO Gears Director of Racing. “The dominating win by the Action Express and the No. 5 Corvette and Coyote chassis is the latest in a long line of success by EMCO Gears at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. EMCO Gears has been helping teams succeed since 1962 when A.J. Foyt needed help to overcome transmission gear train failures. EMCO Gears has won at Indy in Indy cars, NASCAR stock cars and now IMSA sports cars.”

In addition to the accomplished history at Indy, EMCO Gears has been involved in North American sports car racing for over 30 years with its proven gearboxes. The all-American manufacturer offers much more than race and championship-winning transmissions, however, and supplies a variety of technology and services for Action Express and other top IMSA competitors.

Designated the GA46-5.0, the EMCO gearbox used by Action Express and others is designed to have a long cycle life so no major changes are needed to the transmission at a race of any length. The speed-gear section of the transmission is also of a cassette design, easily removable for pre-race inspection or quick repairs. The gearbox case and its components are cast or milled using superior-strength-graded aluminum as holding gears and bearings at their designed positioning is everything in transmission reliability, particularly on a track as challenging as Indy’s twisty road yet fast road course.

“A very large part of the winning equation in all racing is efficiency of operation,” Cota said. “EMCO Gears has worked to manufacturer the strongest most fuel efficient gear train possible. That work became apparent with Action Express winning on a two pit stop strategy. Not only was the No. 5 the fastest car on the track the entire race it was also the most fuel efficient.”

EMCO technical components supplied to Action Express in total include not only gearboxes but also the manufacturer’s equally strong axle, tripod axle and rack-and-pinion steering assemblies.

While the gearboxes and Chevrolet V8 engines combine for the potent drivetrain on the Action Express Corvettes, it was EMCO’s axles and in-house designed tripod axle system that capably transferred the power to the track. A result of a long-term process of near misses, the tripod axle is an onboard component that is a critical marriage between a three-point joint and the internal dimensioning of the housing. The combination keeps the various moving parts in and coming out of the gearbox from crashing into each other, a critical balance that must be maintained for hours on end in IMSA TUDOR Championship endurance races.

The final EMCO component used by Action Express is the company’s rack-and-pinion steering system. EMCO manufactures its steering system with the same attention to detail given to a precision set of gears or a critical axle assembly. A light-weight, billet-aluminum housing is engineered to correctly hold the rack and pinion at the designed mounting distance while quality gear geometry makes for a very smooth operating system.

Other EMCO partner teams that shined at Indy included SRT Motorsports that won its first GTLM class race of the year with Jonathan Bomarito and Kuno Wittmer in the No. 93 Dodge Viper SRT GTS-R. The similarly EMCO-equipped No. 33 Viper Exchange.com Dodge Viper GT3-R of Ben Keating and Jeroen Bleekemolen also scored its second-straight GT Daytona (GTD) class podium finish in the IMSA TUDOR Championship, with third at the Brickyard following the team’s first win one race earlier at Mosport.

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