Forged aluminium wheels forge win for Stuart Oliver08 August 2011

The campaign to move European Truck Race teams onto forged aluminium wheels has gained momentum after leading outfit Team Allgäuer changed its set-up at the recent Nurburgring meeting.

Having received permission from the FIA Truck Commission, two units ran with forged aluminium on the outside of the rear axle, with steel rims inside, to see if they could withstand the rigours involved in the sport.

Trucks currently race with steel wheels on the outside, to avoid the problems with cast alloys, which have been known to shatter or crack in collisions. Forged aluminium wheels, however, can absorb the impact.

The forged aluminium wheels campaign is being led by xlite distributor Motor Wheel Service and Stuart Oliver – 10 times winner of the British Truck Racing Championships, five of which were on xlite wheels.

"Operating solely with quality forged aluminium wheels, such as xlite, not only increases safety, but it improves the performance of the trucks by decreasing weight," states Oliver.

"Given that this makes it more exciting for the audience and ultimately cheaper for the teams, I believe a decision is close," he adds.

Oliver explains that forged aluminium wheels are lighter – meaning less unsprung weight on the axle, creating less wear and tear to surrounding parts and greater grip between the tyre and the circuit.

Ross Garrett, technical delegate for the FIA Truck Commission, will report back to the FIA in Geneva at the end of the season, when the decision to allow forged aluminium wheels on the outside of race trucks should be ratified.

Brian Tinham

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