Formula One car development blog

Ferrari's make-or-break Singapore upgrade

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The Singapore Grand Prix weekend has repeatedly been dubbed as the decisive point in the season for Ferrari to see whether or not it should continue to develop its F138. In a final attempt to keep in the championship race, the team came up with a raft of updates and will evaluate after the race if it was enough to stay in the hunt for a championship. Initial Friday sings though show that Ferrari may have dropped back to the pace it had at Hungary and other high downforce tracks in t... Read more

McLaren runs simplest front wing of the year

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The McLaren MP4-28 hasn't been the greatest car of the year, particularly because of the change to a pull rod front suspension. The team admitted earlier that this is one of the reasons why the car is underperforming, as the aerodynamic effects of this change affected the entire car. McLaren largely underestimated the effort if would take, and consequently started changing the front wing early in the season to try to get the car back on track.

The result is a fairly simple front wi... Read more

Lotus tries extended wheelbase, no racing yet

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Lotus have been talking up their extended wheelbase E21 for a while now, but after strength testing was not completed in time ahead of the Belgian GP, its debut came at Monza. The team brought two sets of parts and opted to give Raikkonen only a chance to try it out in the Friday sessions.

The Finn though believed there was little or no performance gain in it, underlined by the fact that he and Grosjean - who still ran the shorter version - set identical best laptimes during FP2.

Wh... Read more

Red Bull pulling all stops for Monza

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Red Bull Racing appears extremely determined to break the competition and secure the titles as soon as possible to be able to focus 100% on the 2014 project. As Monza hasn't been the strongest of venues for RBR, the team has gradually been pinpointing its weakest points and improving those, resulting in the impressive form displayed by the RB9 on Friday.

The team have basically brought two new front wing configurations. The first one featuring a cut out upper flap as used by Sebasti... Read more

Ferrari's Monza package, front end

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Ferrari have traditionally put a lot of effort into their home Grand Prix package, and this year is no different, although it seems that the other top teams have put in quite some effort as well. Contrary to Spa-Francorchamps where one needs great front stability along with less drag, Monza is even more about drag reduction and top speeds, as there are less corners that require a large amount of front downforce.

Just like many other teams, Ferrari brought a new front wing that featu... Read more

How Red Bull retains consistency in different downforce set-ups

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Even though it has been a point of interest since the very beginning of the season, the possibility of Red Bull Racing to run such shallow rear wings and still retain great traction is something that draws much attention. The team continues to do this as it is seemingly the most efficient way for them to keep up their top speed nearby to what other cars can achieve.

Of course, at Hungary, maximum downforce is required, and there the team ran a very big rear wing, but so were all oth... Read more

Red Bull adopts serrated barge boards

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Red Bull Racing have been working on the sidepod area to better control airflow at the rear of the car. Part of its update package included a sidepod panel with modified bridge, making one of the vortex generators obsolete. Inward of the remaining vortex generator is a new flow conditioner, similar but less wide than the version seen on the Lotus E21. It is interesting to note that Red Bull's bridge that connected the sidepod to the vertical fence is very neutral, whereas the versio... Read more

Lotus brings new mirrors for more downforce

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Lotus have brought new mirrors to the Hungarian GP, or rather new aerodynamic shells that house the mirrors. The mirrors themselves are regulated to have a minimum area, and all teams are strictly adhering to this very minimum to create the least possible aerodynamic disadvantage. It is for this disruption in airflow that outboard mirrors were introduced a few years ago, only to be banned later on safety reasons.

But, with their location now more or less fixed ahead and above the si... Read more

Sauber surprises by testing ramp exhaust

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The Sauber C32 emerged out on track today at the Silverstone Young Driver Test with new bodywork, featuring a brand new downwash exhaust layout. The new sidepod and exhaust design relies on the same principles as the designs used by Red Bull Racing and Lotus F1. Just like with Sauber now, the sidepods slope down quickly and rely on this downward airflow to help push the exhaust flow down onto the car's floor. Additionally, small tunnels are built in the sidepod, underneath the exhau... Read more

Heat protective floor coating to shield against exhaust flow

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Red Bull Racing have likely kicked off a new trend in Formula One, as the team appeared with obvious coating on the car's floor, downstream of the exhausts. With the RB9 having one of the most effective designs to pull the exhaust gases down to the car's floor to seal the diffuser, its carbon fibre floor is also very much exposed to the heat of the burning hot exhaust gases flowing over the floor. Such single sided heat exposure is a risk for the carbon fibre laminate which may end ... Read more