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Thread: Van-Uber Racing Team Profile

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  1. #1

    Default Van-Uber Racing Team Profile

    13 – Van-Uber Racing (Germany)

    Team Principal:

    Helmut Van-Uber ()


    “We’re not dead yet”


    If one was to ask a casual AG-racing fan who the best pilot that FEISAR’s pilot training programme ever came up with, there is no end to the number of suggestions. Belmondo, Johnson, De La Rente, Caluroso, Shawdeckler… the list goes on and and on. If one was to ask then for clarification who the best FEISAR pilot had ever been flying for that team alone, there would be a long pause. You’d get a few ‘Johnsons’ from the casual fans, maybe in this day and age a few would name Di’Rosso. Ask anyone with ‘taste’ in the classic era though and you’d get one answer back. Wolfgang Van-Uber.

    Coming from a hardcore racing fan family in Hamburg, Van-Uber was given the opportunity to enlist in FEISAR’s pilot development programme when his elder brother was admitted to hospital with spinal injury caused by a hovercar smash coming home from a bar late in the evening. Taking up the mantle of family racer, Wolfgang swore to fly for himself and his brother in equal measure, much of the funding he got from his sponsorship deals going to treatments to help his brother in hospital. Klaus Van-Uber never stoped thanking his brother for everything that he did, though he would bitterly remark that he wished it was he who flew the FEISARs that his brother did.

    Van-Uber’s skill gave him leave to fly in the F7200 league as a backup pilot, but as is a historic tale with FEISAR pilots, he began to rise up the ranks as more and more of his colleagues dropped out, fed up with the European squad’s poor management skills of their pilots. Especially now that they had a direct rival with Icaras as one of their member states, there was always someone and somewhere for their pilots to go. When Rocco Tiepolo, the man who’d brought home FEISAR’s first ever championship in a Venom series FEISAR retired to his life of awaited luxury in the Apennine Mountains it was left to Wolfgang to take the mantle of lead pilot.

    Wolfgang’s first season was a very poor one – finishing only just above Icaras in 6th place in the championship, but many saw the beginnings of greatness in the young German. His problem seemed to be a willingness to turn in too much on the slow speeds. Many reasoned that given a faster ship, he’d prove more apt at tackling the tricky tracks of the F7200. And sure enough, they were proven right as the engines were taken up to Rapier speeds.

    In almost every race, the man from Hamburg put AG-Systems to shame and was almost always duelling at the front with the now perpetually angry at each other Nathan Butler and Sascha Epprivov of Auricom and Qirex. The rivalry between the two pro pilots meant that often they were flying to defend rather than attack and meant that the blue-and-yellow bullet of a FEISAR could sneak right on up behind them and take daring dives. Van-Uber’s move down the inside of both pilots into the downward spiral at Mega Mall is considered the best passing move of the entire F7200 and is in hot contention for best pass ever in an AG-ship, though the one that always edges it out was partly his responsibility as well.

    A fantastic first Rapier season saw Van-Uber bring FEISAR up to third behind Qirex and Auricom by season’s end, signalling the beginning downward spiral of AG-Systems. It was no surprise when FEISAR took on board Wolfgang’s advice and made themselves an even better Rapier ship, clenching the second Rapier championship and making it two trophies for FEISAR. And then Wolfgang did something rather unexpected.

    The German began by giving his trophy to his still-immobile brother as an act of kindness that he’d promised many years ago, and then announced that he was leaving the European squad with the aim of starting up his own squad. His reasoning, when quizzed by the media, his family and FEISAR themselves, is that no team should continually have one pilot to take all the glory, and that another pilot should have a chance to shine in his place. And in turn, he would make sure that other young pilots had a chance to fly and be successful as he had been. The idea was met with rapturous applause, and in a move somewhat unusual for the normally defensive FEISAR squadron, they gave Van-Uber all their minor facilities in Germany to begin work on his home team. The belief is that Van-Uber would be a support team for FEISAR in the fight against Icaras (though that didn’t last long when Icaras was disqualified for the pit fight with Goteki 45) and later Xios, who had taken their Finland facilities by subterfuge.

    With two squads out for the F9000 league, and a merge of Assegai and Piranha, Van-Uber’s self-named team secured a place on the ‘Fusion’ series grid alongside their ‘bastard brothers’ Xios and the mysterious new eG-r team. Van-Uber soon became a crowd favourite and a close ally of Auricom and Piranha in the new and unusual system of the F9000. Van-Uber’s philosophy seemed to be a merge of Assegai and Icaras – as light a ship as possible, with handling and speed cranked up to maximum and no shield whatsoever. Perfect on paper, and in qualifying (not to mention time trials) the Van-Uber VU-1 was near-unstoppable on the twisty tracks. The issues arose when the race began and the red cross pads were lit. The lack of shield punished the Van-Uber team, and many potential fliers left the squadron in fear of certain death at the hands of Tigron, a team that took great pleasure in smashing the light Van-Ubers to pieces against the wall. As a result, it became a compliment to say that you had the balls to fly a Van-Uber, and especially in an Eliminator.

    Van-Uber stayed in the F9000 season right until the end of the Crius league, when they along with FEISAR quit the corrupt championship. Unfortunately, without much of a research division (Van-Uber had always been about the racing) the German squad folded, and lay dormant for many many years.

    Wolfgang’s son Helmut re-vitalised the name Van-Uber in early 2190 when AG-racing was a certified sport once more, and with his father’s blessing, he set to work with a team of crack engineers from the very best German universities to make the old VU-2s from the end of the F9000 fit to race in the FX250 league coming soon. Unfortunately, despite a rapturous welcome from the fans to see them back, Van-Uber 2 did not impress as much as its’ predecessors did. While the lightness of the ‘Fusion Ubers’ allowed them to pull off some incredibly sneaky moves (Nami Mishma’s giant-killing move on Jann Shawdeckler at Katmoda 12 is probably the best example), the old designs meant that they were often unreliable, and not quite as nimble as the ships they had been based on, the Assegais. Van-Uber was beaten by newcomers Harimau in their first season, and then in FX300 were trounced by just about every team on the grid save one. And then came the biggest injustice of them all.

    With limited funds and a sub-par ship, Van-Uber would have been the backmarkers for the FX350 and 400 series, though it was not to be. When EG-X applied for a place in those championships, the first idea mooted at meetings of the AG-racing Commission was that they could take the place of the disqualified and disgraced Triakis. The idea then was to drop the joke of a team at a time, Mirage, and let EG-X race in their place. However, Sheikh Mani Zayed had put in an application to the next seasons with a new budget demonstration, sponsor backing and a full ship design. Mirage had got their act together, and despite the best intentions of the commission, they had to admit that Van-Uber did not. As a result, Helmut found himself without a place in the FX series, having to fume at the Mirage squadron as they found their footing and his own team was left to dominate only the junior series.

    Van-Uber remains the reserve team for the FX500 – if any team should need to drop out for financial or political reasons, the German squad can return with their own ship, fully built and undergoing intensive testing. However, it seems that the only likelihood of that happening is if the now-fragile alliance between eG-r and Xios breaks down and EG-X leaves the championship. And judging by how determined the two halves of that team are to out-do each other on track, Van-Uber may be waiting a while.

    Allies: FEISAR, Auricom, Piranha
    Rivals: Harimau, Tigron
    Arch-Rivals: Mirage

    Searching AntiGravity Racing Archives for Subject ‘Mirage and Van-Uber’.
    14 Matches Found.
    Opening Files...

    My name is Helmut Van-Uber. I am team principal of one of the best-loved teams of all time, one that generated unexpected amounts of genuine public affection in the dark days of the F9000 when so much of it was no more than consumer hunger and desire for money. We have returned as the team we always were, the same design philosophy and the same drive for victory, to enjoy racing as we always have. So why are we given second place behind some crackpot Arab with a team that can barely pay for its’ many paintjobs?

    Mirage is a fake. It is nothing but a toy made by a bored businessman who wants to watch his little toy ships go round for his own amusement. Already there are Mirage caps, clothing items and die-cast ships. Van-Uber has never done such, it has never thought of AntiGravity racing as anything less than a sport. This is a travesty, a disgusting parody of how the greatest sport in the world should be run. People will cry and throw their hands up in the air when Mirage fails halfway through the FX350 season, when that disgusting ship of theirs snaps in half and falls off their useless mag-strips.

    I request to all great fans of AG-racing – you, who made Van-Uber great and who made this sport great in equal measure, you who are untouched by the black fingers of commerce and greed, I beg you to shun Mirage, to reject this false team. Only then can Van-Uber return to our rightful spot on the grid. I know you can do this.

    -H. Van-Uber, press conference after Van-Uber was denied entrance to the FX350 and FX400 leagues.

    Ship Details:

    Though never having fired a weapon in anger before, the images that Van-Uber has released of the VU-5 shows a radical design philosophy for the FX500 ‘Fury’ campaign design. The long air turbine scoop-probes that made the previous Van-Ubers so distinctive remain, but they are now found on the end of the wings, and one is located under the central cockpit, making the VU-5 the only tri-hulled ship to have ever been approved by the AG-race commission. Using the same sandy orange colour scheme as always, it now sports more prominent orange and yellow lettering across the cowling as well as a miniature list of every single pilot who flew a Van-Uber in history on each airbrake.

    Aside from the unusual ship design though, there is little to distinguish the Van-Uber in terms of statistics. It seems similar to the Assegai, with extraordinarily good handling and shield, but the engines are poor in the thrust department, and only come into their own at high speeds, particularly at Phantom. The ship also has an alarming tendency to decelerate hard in corners, meaning it takes a lot of effort to bring it back up to speed. The fragility of the shield also puts it at risk in Eliminator and weapons-heavy matches.

    Lead (and only) Pilot – Arne Johansson ()

    Van-Uber’s reckoning is that when they are given re-entry to the antigravity racing league, they can pick their pilots at will, either leftovers from the teams that dropped out or from the reserve ranks of existing teams to fill up their roster, perhaps taking a rookie from their junior squads such as the promising Mercutian De Gautet. However, there is one man who is destined for a Van-Uber spot, and with good reason. Trying to fly a three-hulled ship is no mean feat by any stretch of the imagination and it needs a pilot with precise and effective skill, not to mention serious balls to fly a Van-Uber with such low shields (it has been estimated that even the Icaras has Van-Uber’s latest craft trumped in the shield department). The man for the job in Helmut Van-Uber’s own words was Arne Johansson.

    Though the idea of triple-hulled craft has been in existence ever since Qirex made their first ship with two hulls, it has rarely been pulled off due to the sheer weight of most of the craft and the technicalities of putting the thrusters and AG-drives on all the wings. Qirex made a prototype midway through the F5000 league known as the LH-2.5 for the fact that it had ‘two and a half hulls’, but tests and the opinion of their main pilot at the time, Swede Stefan Geist scrapped the idea. That said, Geist sold the idea to a friend of his who had a small high-end luxury ship manufacturing company called Åland Tech, based in the islands of the same name.

    Åland Tech began producing versions of the Qirex LH-2.5 with a lengthened nose and cockpit, making it into a genuine 3-hull ship for the rich and famous, making them one of the main names to go to if anyone wanted a high-end luxury ship. They continued business throughout the fall of the F9000 and the period in between, albeit somewhat of lower capacity without Qirex to provide old LH chassis models. However, as the rise of AG racing began to grow once more, Åland Tech was asked to make more ‘sporty’ models.

    The Awtech Super-W, their initial attempt, was a complete and utter flop. It was too heavy and had extreme issues turning. Only one man was able to keep the bulky craft going round the test centre without hitting the walls, and Johansson was given the job of Åland Tech’s lead test pilot. His advice created the Super-W2, a much smaller ship made of lighter materials with better aerodynamics. Said aerodynamics came of course from Van-Uber’s wind tunnels in Germany on loan. The repayment for use of the wind tunnels was that the skilled Arne was kept on as a Van-Uber tester, a job which he accepted with some measure of glee.

    Very much a development driver in the mould of Jason Croshaw or Joest Peeters, Arne is expected if he ever does join up to the full FX500 league to be a solid points scorer, if not an outright winner. Certainly from his tests with the VU-5 and the success of the Åland Tech Super-W3 in several commercial vehicle tests, he isn’t one to be ruled out for proving that Van-Uber can still mix it with the big boys.
    Last edited by Challenger #001; 13th April 2011 at 12:39 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    South East England
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    Absolutely spectacular. I really enjoy reading these team profiles and immersing myself in the world of WipEout - fantastic job as always Chal, your imagination knows no bounds.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Bayamón, Puerto Rico
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    PSN ID
    MetaKraken (formerly MechaKraken)


    Van-Uber's back (but not on WOHD, however)!
    Last edited by MetaKraken; 6th April 2011 at 04:54 PM. Reason: Spell check

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Nuremberg - Germany
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    FlintFandango or RennFlint or Flint Fandango (PS4)


    I´m totally impressed by all of your Team Profiles, and the Van-Uber story is also great!
    It´s a pleasure to read and to be carried away by your ingenuity!
    Excellent work!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Tennessee, U.S.A.
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    Van-Uber is one of my all time favorite teams. I love how you made them sound so pure when it comes to racing philosiphy. I don't know if I like the idea of a three hulled ship but the story is simply fantastic. Despite being fan fiction it gives me hope that van uber might make a comeback one day

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
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    It’s the (first) logo from WipEout Fusion, but hopefully it will do the job.
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