Inside the Caterham garage at the U.S. Grand Prix

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by HEATHER KOVAR / KVUE News and Photojournalist MICHAEL MOORE

Bio | Email | Follow: @HeatherK_KVUE

kvue.com

Posted on November 16, 2013 at 8:33 PM

AUSTIN -- Inside the Caterham garage trackside at the United States Grand Prix, crews took the cars apart after each race to inspect the critical elements.

Tom Webb, Head of Communications for the United Kingdom based team, said they try to make sure nothing is broken or overheated.

"Fabio here, he's cleaning the car. F1 is all about the show as much as the go," said Webb.

There are sensors on the cars that generate about 20 gigabytes of data during a typical practice session.

However, Friday's first practice session was cut short. First, heavy fog delayed the start, then after only 14 minutes on the track, the session was red-flagged and stopped.

The pilot of the medical helicopter found a loose antenna that would prevent him from communicating with the Federal Aviation Administration. Engines roared and fans cheered when a replacement helicopter finally arrived.

David Barrett and his wife came to Austin from Atlanta.

"For us to have an opportunity to have F1 in the United States, we wouldn't miss it for the world," said Barrett.

As one of only two Americans to win F1 Drivers' World Championships, Mario Andretti was spotted chatting with media.

Reserve driver of Caterham, Alexander Rossi, is the first American to take part in an F1 race weekend at Circuit of the Americas. He was behind the wheel in morning practice.

"As I've said before, you kind of need to have an American driver. So, I'm kind of hoping to drive that show forward and maybe one day have an American team," said Rossi.

KVUE was inside the Caterham garage as mechanics refitted the car Rossi drove in the first practice session to fit his teammate, who drove the second session.

"It might sound like all you need to do is move the seat a little bit. The seat doesn't move. It's the pedals and all the other control systems inside the car that are having to be fixed," said Webb.

Information is sent to drivers from the data center in the garage, which travels to all the races around the world. Round Rock-based Dell built the data center for Caterham.

"It's the data that gives the drivers the information that then enables them to drive quicker," said Webb.

Speed in F1 is not only critical, it's technical.

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