Another considerable update on the RA108

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I have mentioned it before and will say it again; it stuns me that Honda have mentioned in the beginning of the season that 2008 was just preparation and that they would focus on 2009 while at the same time they come up with new updates every single test.
This time around, the team fitted ears to the cockpit sides, similar to McLaren and Renault. The team also introduced a new barge board which is a compromise between the traditional smooth edge versus the jagged edge design. The new version has all the jags slightly curved down.
The most important novelty is however the extended sidepod panel, extending from the elongated traditional panel towards the barge board. Note that the connection to the bargeboard forms an aerofoil that direct air towards the ground, while another small winglet attached to the barge board does exactly the opposite. It is at least worth mentioning as no other team seems to have such combination.


By Henry2008 on 09-07-2008 at 17:10

Hi Tomba,
Have You seen the Williams F1 nose cone on

Congratulations for Development Blog,

By Menno Kroezen on 10-07-2008 at 11:32

Hi Tomba,

Thank you for all the effort you put in writing this blog. You are doing a great job. I check it daily.

In regard to the two divergent flaps on the bargeboard and the extension of the side pot panel: Pointing in opposite directions, these flaps are likely to create a venturi effect along the lower part of the side pot. This makes a lot of sense as this low pressure area would allow air heading for the rear wheels (creating immense turbulence) to pass through the coke bottle (between the rear wheels).
Any views on this?

Menno - Ma Student in Industrial Design Engineering

By Steven on 10-07-2008 at 14:01

@Henry: thanks!
Is there anything special that I need to check on that williams nose cone?

@Menno: thanks ;)
As for your mention of the venturi effect. You are most likely on top of it. Even more, the curve on the lower end of the extended sidepod panel helps to create a little channel. The venturi will then have the effect of slightly pulling away air from ahead of it (at that air will try to fill the lower pressure area in between the 2 flaps).
In effect it is however very hard to see where that will help downforce or reduce drag without actually testing that in Honda's windtunnel.

By Menno Kroezen on 10-07-2008 at 16:10

Hi All,

I also checked the Williams nosecone, can not seem to find anything new extraordinary about it however. The connection between the front wing bridge element and the nose cone has been forced upon the teams by the FIA to prevent flexing for a few races now.

@Tomba; Indeed, this channel is probably designed to streamline the turbulent air that comes off the checkered bardgeboard. The lower flap of the 2 will however create a higher pressure area (drag) between the termac and the lower flap. I do not see how that could be benefitial. Any views on this? I guess the pro's outweigh the con's.

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