Lower teams can gain a second with €3 million spent wisely in R&D. Marianne Hinson said for the CT01 they have focused on 3 or 4 areas in detail to get gains that they think are easily got.
What would you have, Red Bull style sidepods that can gain 7 or 8 tenths or a KERS system that can give you 4 tenths for the same money. The KERS units themselvs dont cost that much, its the specialist staffing cost that is where the money is. And if 70% of the KERS money is down to staffing, id rather spend 70% of 3 million on R&D costs and spend 30% of the €3m on labour costs. For 7 tenths at Red Bull they mau have to spend €30m, so for 4 tenths, €3m is a no brainer, buy for a small team €3m can be spent better else where, really focusing on a specific area.
There once was a reason Patrick Head spent 90% of the time on the pre race grid down the tail end, he ssaid he gained more insperation from seeing something done really well and in detail than something done by the top teams that was just done well. Top teams cover the macro well, the lower teams do the micro well in other words.
The top teams have 10 areas done to a good standard, the lower teams may have 3 or 4 areas done to a satisfactory level, another 2 or 3 done to a level above that, however they have another 3 or 4 areas done to a really high standard. The top teams have less satisfactory areas, they have those areas developed to a higher standard than that.
If i found that by spending €3m on a satisfactory area would bring it into a really high level, and gain 7 or 8 tenths, id spend it.
Yes KERS will give teams a good boost into a DRS zone, but if the Marussia car is developed to the level that it is strong enough in the corners to draw away from a KERS car, the KERS car just simply wont overtake, even on the longest straights as it dosnt have the performance in the corners. An extra 10kmh arround a corner is worth more than an extra 10kmhon the straight stuff, even at Spa or Canada, there is more time to find on the corners than on Kemmel. Monza is the exception tho, however an extra 10kmh carry into Ascari or Parabolica will also generate laptime.
This argument will gather, i know, but i know that Marussia spending money on aero and mechanichal improvement now will see an even larger performance gain when KERS is bolted in.