None of the motorsport competitions I do actually require much safety gear but my car has a few bits anyway. I wouldn’t hillclimb or sprint a Midget (or any other open car) without them.
Most dramatic is a substantial roll cage, complete with door bars (these might be a problem in a competition Midget – see below). You’ll nned to read the Blue book for details about how to mount the cage but you’ll need to weld some steel plates to the floor and then bolt the cage to them. Slightly strangely the scrutinneers will let you race without a cage but if ou have one that isn’t fitted as per the blue book they won’t so you’ll need to get it right.
My Midget’s cage still allows the roof to go up and down as normal. Not all do nd this might be something you want to check first.
I have seen a Mini barrel roll during a sprint a Goodwood. It must have rolled 3 or 4 times and the guy just opened the door and got out.
Obviously a rollcage is pretty heavy and in such a low powered car as a Midget every gram counts. But I think it is probably worth a few tenths by making me feel safe enough to push pretty hard. It also stifens the whole car up which should make it handle better.
I’ve also got a big set of harnesses too. People say these have the bonus of holding me very still and therefore making it easier to drive accurately (though when I’ve competed in my Boxster using just a three point belt I haven’t found this as a problem).
I really ought to get a competition seat too. The MSA insist the car has head restraints and my car does – the tiny standard ones. But – and here’s a warning for those thinking of new seats – the space between the door bars and the seats is so small that standard competition seats won’t fit. They are available in smaller sizes but hey are really expensive – £400 rather than the £120 that basic competition seats cost.
I’ve got a fire extinguisher that mounts neatly on the monocoque which has a beam that just infront of the seats. This allows a fairly bulky item to mount within easy reach of the drive without getting in the way of the passenger.