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Formula 1 Australian GP

Australian GP: F1 technical images from the pitlane explained

Join us as we delve into the Formula 1 technical features on display in the Melbourne pitlane as teams prepare for the Australian Grand Prix, courtesy of Giorgio Piola and Sutton Images.

A mechanic works under the car of Zhou Guanyu, Alfa Romeo C43

Giorgio Piola's F1 technical analysis

Giorgio Piola is the preeminent Formula 1 technical journalist. View our full selection of Giorgio's technical illustrative content

A mechanic works on the car of Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB19

A mechanic works on the car of Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB19

Photo by: Lionel Ng / Motorsport Images

As Red Bull’s RB19 is prepared for action we’re treated to a view of the front brake assembly at different stages of the build, with the brake caliper fairing installed on the left-hand side of the car, while it’s naked on the right.

Note that the fairing doesn’t have the central window closed at this stage either, which is an option should the team want to alter the way heat moves between the various nests of the brake drum.

The small cooling tube fins can also be seen on the exposed caliper, along with the larger central vents that the team has employed for 2023 to allow heat rejected by the brake disc passage through the caliper.


A mechanic works under the car of Zhou Guanyu, Alfa Romeo C43

A mechanic works under the car of Zhou Guanyu, Alfa Romeo C43

Photo by: Lionel Ng / Motorsport Images

The Alfa Romeo C43’s front brake assembly, without the main drum cover in place, shows us how differently the arrangement is configured, with the caliper mounted towards the rear, which in-turn results in the brake disc fairing wrapping around the front of the disc.

Note that Alfa Romeo has extended the length of the nose for Australia, with the tip now reaching forward to the leading edge of the mainplane, rather than sitting back behind it on the second element. As a consequence, changes have also been made to the front wing to accommodate the alteration.


Williams FW45 technical detail

Williams FW45 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Williams is another team to sport the tube fin design on their front caliper, albeit only present on the front and rear of the caliper, with horizontal fins present in the central section.


Williams FW45 technical detail

Williams FW45 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

The FW45’s front brake assembly, now with the fairings in place that wrap around the caliper and disc, is very similar to the design used by Red Bull in 2022.


Ferrari SF-23 technical detail

Ferrari SF-23 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Ferrari’s caliper is fed cool air by two channels, one either side of the fairing, while ports in the central section of the caliper and fairing allow heat rejected by the drill holes in the disc a passage to move through the assembly.

The SF-23 also has a disc fairing this year, not shown in this image, although that does give us a glimpse of the X-shaped drill pattern in the disc.


AlphaTauri AT04 technical detail

AlphaTauri AT04 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

AlphaTauri’s front brake arrangement differs in how the caliper is fed cool air by pipework that crosses over the face of the disc and is then routed down to the fairing that wraps around it.

It too has a disc fairing, albeit this is higher due to the other features.


Mercedes W14 rear detail

Mercedes W14 rear detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A look beneath the covers of the Mercedes W14 gives us a glimpse of the power unit and its packaging. Note how the main exhaust pipe is routed over the top of the rear suspension leg and the mounting position of the main rear floor stay, which intersects the bodywork when it’s present.


AlphaTauri AT04 technical detail

AlphaTauri AT04 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

As the AT04 is prepared for action, we are privy to the brake cylinder, steering assembly and inboard suspension details of the AlphaTauri.


Alfa Romeo C43 technical detail

Alfa Romeo C43 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

The complex interaction of the front wing flaps and endplate on the Alfa Romeo C43, with the two rearmost elements turned outward and a chunk of the lower section of the endplate is removed entirely to encourage more outwash.


McLaren MCL60 technical detail

McLaren MCL60 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

The McLaren MCL60’s flaps are also turned outward to encourage outwash but, without the cutaway section in the lower rear section of the endplate, it will likely be de-powered in comparison to some rivals.


Mercedes F1 W14 technical detail

Mercedes F1 W14 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Mercedes’ solution to this region, which also attempts to recoup some of the outwash effect that the regulations were designed to reduce, includes a cutout in the lower rear section of the endplate, detached flaps and two fins.


Ferrari SF-23 technical detail

Ferrari SF-23 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Ferrari has quickly adapted its design, having seen some rivals’ attempts in this region to recoup the outwash effect, with a small cutout made in the lower-rear corner of the endplate.


Red Bull Racing RB19 technical detail

Red Bull Racing RB19 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

A top-down view of the RB19’s front wing endplate and canard reveals how much curvature the endplate has and the bump this adds to the inner edge of the diveplane.


Ferrari SF-23 technical detail

Ferrari SF-23 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

A look beneath the Ferrari’s front wing and nose shows how much these regulations have reduced the complexity of the surfaces compared with the previous generation. Also, note how the outboard flap adjuster has a strake-like appearance to it on the underside.


Mercedes F1 W14 technical detail

Mercedes F1 W14 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

We’re peeking over the top of a tool chest to see some of the inboard suspension elements of the Mercedes W14 here, including the Belleville spring arrangement being employed with a heave damper.


Mercedes F1 W14 technical detail

Mercedes F1 W14 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Minus DRS pod, we’re able to see the mechanism used to deploy the top flap on the Mercedes W14’s rear wing.


McLaren MCL60 technical detail

McLaren MCL60 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Similarly, here’s a close-up of the DRS mechanism on the McLaren MCL60, owing to the cover not being in place as the car is being prepared for action.


Ferrari SF-23 technical detail

Ferrari SF-23 technical detail

Photo by: Uncredited

This view of the Ferrari SF-23’s front wing shows how far the slot gap separator bracket fins are angled outwards to help direct flow across and around the front tyre.


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