"pilot, road racer and renowned aeronautical engineer" died July 28th at his home in Williamsville, New York
"one of the world's foremost researchers on vehicle dynamics, the study of improving how a car handles on the road by using mathematical calculations...wrote a book on vehicle dynamics that is considered the "bible" of Formula 1 race car design"
a turn of the original Watkins Glen circuit is named after his infamous rolling crash there in his Bugatti Type 35 during the 1948 event......he "competed in more than 100 car races" and recently drove his "infinitely variable" formula "camber car" at a Goodwood revival
I met and worked with Bill many times. The first time when I was a graduate student and working at NHTSA when he was working with Lotus to sell their active suspension technology within a research vehicle and then many times at Ford. He was an amazing person and could tell some pretty cool stories about the early days. He will be missed.
I watched the ALMS race this weekend and saw the Milliken logo in the cockpit of one of the P2 cars and wondered why. Now I know.
His autobiography Equations of Motion: Adventure, Risk and Innovation is one of the most exceptional, fascinating, insightful books I have ever read. His flying exploits alone would make a great documentary. And, man, did this guy ever know a lot about vehicle dynamics! If you like great tech books, this one belongs on your shelf.
I met Bill when I was working at Ford on our Kinematics and Compliance Machine. I was project engineer at Ford for the Project and Bill was working with MTS on the project. To say that there were some illuminating (for me) discussions would be an understatement. Bill was a phenomenal GROUND BREAKING engineer and an amazing person on top of that.
One of the great moments in my life was years ago when I was in the Kansas City Westin Plaza Hotel at a reception talking to Oscar Koveleski and Toly Aruntoff about racing Triumph Spitfires in the Prod classes. Oscar called Bill Milliken and(!) John Fitch over to talk to me about how crazy I was to still be racing with swing axles and try to make them work. Here I was just a kid standing with these legends and having them ask me questions and talk to me! I told Mr. Milliken that I kept his book Race Car Vehicle Dynamics on my bed stand as nightly reading and he replied, "You need a better reading to sleep by.", in which Oscar replied, "...and a better car to race than a Spitfire!". As they all laughed I realized...I was in racer bliss, and I was so lucky to be there.
Last edited by edzeb; August 7th, 2012 at 10:31 AM.