PERU — A Dixfield stock car driver taught Dirigo Elementary School students Wednesday how math plays a role in his success.

Scott Robbins brought his car and his racing gear, giving students an opportunity to look inside the car and see how some of his equipment worked.

While some students bombarded Robbins with questions about driving at Oxford Plains Speedway in Oxford, Robbins directed their attention to how math has helped him as a driver over the years.

“One way that I use math as a driver is with the tires,” Robbins said. “Tires are really important. I’ve had flats before, and it’s not good when your tires aren’t working properly.”

He asked the students if they knew why the tires on his car were different sizes.

When the students said they didn’t know, he took out a small tape measure.

“This tire is 85 inches,” he said. “If you had two tires that were 85 inches, and then attempted to make a sharp left turn, you wouldn’t be able to turn. However, if you had an 80 inch tire on one side and 85 inches on the other, it allows for much easier turning.”

He added, “In order to be successful at racing, it’s not just a matter of sitting in the car and driving. You have to pay attention to how your car runs. That means knowing about physics, and geometry, and other types of math.”

After speaking to the students inside, he took them outside to look at his race car.

While some students had the chance to sit behind the wheel of the car, he showed others how a pyrometer works. It measures the temperature of a surface.

Using the pyrometer, he explained that it’s important that one tire doesn’t have a temperature drastically higher than the other, or the tire may wear out.

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