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First race this weekend https://www.autosport.com/f1/feature...-for-melbourne Anyone expecting a real smorgasbord of upgrades for the second stint of pre-season Formula 1 testing at Barcelona was probably left a little disappointed, as

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Old 03-09-2020, 09:40 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 2020 Formula 1 thread

First race this weekend


https://www.autosport.com/f1/feature...-for-melbourne

Anyone expecting a real smorgasbord of upgrades for the second stint of pre-season Formula 1 testing at Barcelona was probably left a little disappointed, as the cars appeared with only minor changes between the two weeks.

There was no repeat of last year, when Mercedes notably turned up with a W10 completely rehashed from two weeks earlier, while other teams brought numerous items as they grappled with the new-for-2019 aero regulations.

Speculation suggested that a couple of teams would perhaps try that approach this time around, but ultimately the second week lacked the overall technical intrigue that last year's tests provided. Perhaps, with a stable ruleset, teams are finding that the law of diminishing returns is beginning to bite.

Although there were a few new parts peppered throughout the field in the final week, there were no innovations that could command the same column inches that Mercedes' dual-axis steering system could - at least, until the FIA released a statement that it had reached a settlement with Ferrari over the legality of its 2019 powertrain...

Let the controversy begin.

--Wright or Wrong?
--Tim Wright's view on the Ferrari fallout

Last year several teams questioned how Ferrari had a straightline speed advantage and whether it could be getting around the 110kg/hour fuel-flow limit with its powertrain.

The FIA supplies the same fuel-flow sensor to all teams, and this year there will be two units, so it should be a fairly bulletproof system. Could it be that Ferrari was using some electronic wizardry to fool the recorded signal?

It seems strange that it has taken the FIA three months to investigate; surely it must be obvious from data if the limit has consistently been breached, or that in the wiring loom there wasn't an extra piece of kit. Surely, if everything was legal, the FIA would have declared that. The timing of the announcement is also strange, released just as the teams will be packing up to fly off to Australia.

It would seem that the FIA was softening the blow, but it also leaves more questions unanswered. What is the deal that Ferrari has agreed to that lets it off the hook? Agreeing to help the FIA "to improve the monitoring of all Formula 1 power units, as well as assisting the FIA in other regulatory duties and in its research activities on carbon emissions and sustainable fuels" sounds to me that something was spotted in its investigations but, not wanting to risk losing Ferrari from the F1 championship, the FIA has come up with a deal.

It is curious that Ferrari has not shown the same speed as last year during this year's two tests, and it's telling that Sebastian Vettel has suggested that the car is too draggy! Trackside viewing has shown that the car suffers greatly from understeer, which might suggest that the team has taken off front downforce to help the straightline speed and instead is protecting the rear with more downforce.

I saw the state of the rear tyres during the first test and it does seem that the team is suffering at both ends trying to fix the problems. With the current engines, the turbo spins at very high speeds. Therefore it is a battle for the designers to ensure that bearings and seals perform correctly at very high temperatures.

Oil is fed to the turbo and compressor at high pressure, so it's inevitable that over the course of a race some of it will leak past the seals. Given that teams are restricted on the number of engines they can use, it becomes critical that each component works at an efficient level, so as the compressor feeds air through the intercooler to the engine inlet it is likely that oil will then end up in the intercooler.

Teams have used oil-burning as a way to boost performance, and so being able to control those leaks and vapourise the oil to bring it into the combustion chamber seems to be another method of boosting overall power. Ferrari finds itself embroiled in another scandal and still needs to close the gap to Mercedes.

--Rear wing changes

Generally speaking, the development of a rear wing is a lot more restricted compared to its front-mounted counterpart, although there is some wiggle room for variation.

They come in different shapes and sizes, of course, and both Williams and Ferrari tacked on spoon-shaped wings at different points of the test last week, perhaps looking to assess parts for some of the more high-speed venues on the F1 calendar.

By keeping the full-camber central section, the most effective part of the wing is retained for downforce, but reducing it on the outboard sides inhibits the amount of drag it produces.

Further rear-wing explorations at Barcelona were pursued, particularly in the way the teams mounted them to the car. In recent years teams have used 'swan-neck' mounts, which connect to the upper (pressure) face of the wing's mainplane, rather than the lower (suction) side - boosting the overall downforce output.

Mercedes did try a single-pillar wing mount, perhaps attempting to reduce drag. It had foregone the full swan-neck design and used some of the DRS housing to strengthen the mounting, but the team ultimately reverted to its usual twin-pillar design, presumably unconvinced by the overall strength of the single variation.
Red Bull retools cooling

As is traditional in Formula 1, designers are forever pushing the limits of cooling. Red Bull, thanks to the boundaries set out by esteemed design chief Adrian Newey, has always been at the forefront of keeping its packaging as tight as possible.

For some races where the temperatures are lower, cooling rarely becomes a problem, but as the season waltzes towards climates far more befitting of summer, it must be considered a lot more. Perhaps looking forward, Red Bull nestled some extra cooling ducts next to the cockpit sides, giving the car a bit more leeway in hotter temperatures.

This is part of the panel next to the halo mounting, which is frequently adjusted depending on the cooling requirements of the circuit. It's interesting to see such an obvious inlet design mounted here, however.

Either Red Bull is simply exploring options for hotter races - giving the team options for scenarios such as occurred at the Austrian GP last year, where the temperatures were unexpectedly high - or the RB16's cooling is a little bit borderline for the demands of the Honda power unit.

Red Bull also had a new set of turning vanes, developing a design similar to Mercedes' combination of vertical and horizontal elements to straighten out the turbulence from the tyre and turn it around the sidepod.

---McLaren steps up to the (end)plate

Having managed to fight its way up to fourth in last season's constructors' championship following a few lean years, McLaren has quietly gone about its business at Barcelona in its efforts to move closer to the top three teams.

The team in orange seems to be particularly sanguine as a result, with team principal Andreas Seidl calling testing "by far the best start since many, many years for McLaren going into a winter test".

It managed a total of 802 laps across the six days with no major incidents, so the team outwardly looks to be in good shape too. Minor tinkering to the front wing heralded a slightly innovative approach to the footplate, raising the edge to presumably help the airflow spill outwards with greater guidance than before, and using the lip at the trailing edge in addition. It's a tiny change, but the front wings are so sensitive in modern F1 that every tweak can create a larger impact further down the car.

---Alfa Romeo's week-two update

After spending 2019 firmly among the midfield, Alfa Romeo has its eyes on climbing up the order hoping to challenge for the pseudo-honour of 'best of the rest'.

For week two, the team brought a flurry of new additions to its C39, aiming to build on an encouraging first week of running. A slightly reworked front wing emerged, building on the team's eventual move to a full five-element wing at the end of last season, and featured a detached second element to strengthen the overall tip vortex built by the wing elements.

The wing still follows the dramatic anhedral arrangement, so it's interesting to see the scope of development Alfa Romeo has had within quite a restricted regulatory box. Also at the front, Alfa returned to using a smattering of winglets mounted to the chassis bulkhead - albeit different to last year's 'eyebrow'-style fins.

Now mounted as two elements either side of the S-duct outlet, these break up into four little horizontal winglets to deflect airflow around and down the flanks of the car. Overall, each one develops a little bit of lift, but the overall aim is to manage airflow, so taking a minor hit on downforce in that area may yield more further down the car.

Alfa explored the effect of heightening its wing mounts, presumably looking to understand whether the airflow could be tidied up immediately before the rear wing. Those pair up with the fins added to the flanks - which appeared last year - to send airflow to the bottom of the sidepods. The team also tried numerous engine-cover arrangements, returning to the mini shark-fin design used last year - to which the T-wing is mounted.

Although the full-size fin will help to reshape airflow as it leaves the trailing edge of the engine cover, Alfa has probably found a way to keep the air sufficiently tidy on its old design before it reaches the rear wing.
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Old 03-09-2020, 09:40 PM   #2 (permalink)
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https://www.espn.co.uk/f1/story/_/id...g-f1-team-2020

The biggest issue facing each F1 team in 2020
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Old 03-09-2020, 10:18 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I caught the Formula 1 bug last season. The Prime and Netflix series have really got me ready for the 2020 season. I am also enjoying your posts!
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Old 03-09-2020, 11:04 PM   #4 (permalink)
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SKY F1 offer this overview of the season start - https://www.skysports.com/f1/news/36...ns-big-preview
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Old 03-10-2020, 04:14 AM   #5 (permalink)
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This year should be a interesting one to say the least. Just glad that the racing season is Officially Here. Start your Engines!!
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Old 03-10-2020, 08:26 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Old 03-10-2020, 11:07 AM   #7 (permalink)
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yes, and hoping it is exciting
-- secretly hoping Max wins it
-- Nice if Hamilton gets 7, but he's proven he is one of the best
-- will Haas be able to perform, or will it be the last year, --interesting reading on some articles with it being its last year in the 5 year plan, fingers crossed
-- just want to see williams do better..

time to enjoy
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Old 03-10-2020, 07:30 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Nice over-view of the new F1 season here with BBC - https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/formula1/51801768
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Old 03-11-2020, 01:27 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I'm off to the Aus GP on Saturday ............... hopefully no COVID-19 induced mass gathering bans until after the weekend.
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Old 03-11-2020, 04:02 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BGTV8 View Post
I'm off to the Aus GP on Saturday ............... hopefully no COVID-19 induced mass gathering bans until after the weekend.
You will be fine, just wash yours hands more often and enjoy the race.
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Old 03-11-2020, 07:49 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Already setting up my mental reminders for watching and following practice at my local time (EST)! I am juiced for some F1!
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Old 03-12-2020, 09:56 AM   #12 (permalink)
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McLaren withdraws from Australian Grand Prix


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Old 03-13-2020, 01:13 AM   #13 (permalink)
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OZ GP cancelled and support events are permited to continue BUT without spectators ..... as of 4pm local today.

I expect the support events will be cancelled shortly as well

WOFTAM

EDIT: Whole event cancelled ......... my state level sports car championship event (Round 2) at the end of March also looks like being cancelled. Australian Football League matches played behind closed doors, Cricket between OZ and NZ played behind closed doors, Womens AFL finals played behind closed doors ......... Pharque

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Old 03-13-2020, 05:09 PM   #14 (permalink)
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F1 is calling the first 4 races of the season off officially. "Postponing" actually, but it is highly unlikely that they can schedule these in later in the year.

2020 season is now expected to start no earlier than the end of May.

https://www.formula1.com/en/latest/a...uzVuu7lEa.html
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Old 03-14-2020, 05:51 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZCanadian View Post
F1 is calling the first 4 races of the season off officially. "Postponing" actually, but it is highly unlikely that they can schedule these in later in the year.

2020 season is now expected to start no earlier than the end of May.

https://www.formula1.com/en/latest/a...uzVuu7lEa.html
This is not going to end well. On another note, my wife and I decided not to go the Long Beach Grand Prix this year. Boy did we make the right decision. We will just have to wait a little longer for racing to start.
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