Giorgio Piola's F1 technical analysis
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Giorgio Piola's F1 technical analysis

Belgian GP: Key F1 tech updates, direct from the garages

Join us as we delve into the latest technical developments from the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps, courtesy of Giorgio Piola and Sutton Images.

Belgian GP: Key F1 tech updates, direct from the garages

Click on the arrows in the images to scroll through them…

Aston Martin AMR21 detail front wing
Aston Martin AMR21 detail front wing
1/27

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Aston Martin has revised the AMR21's front wing upper flap for the Belgian GP with a kinked section added ahead of the front tyre in order to influence the airflow slightly differently, whilst reducing drag.
Red Bull Racing RB16B nose and front wing detail
Red Bull Racing RB16B nose and front wing detail
2/27

Photo by: Uncredited

Red Bull have retained the larger front brake duct inlet introduced in Hungary, whilst the curved central section of the upper flap appears to have been reduced in height slightly to accommodate the lower downforce rear wing that the team will use.
Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing detail
Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing detail
3/27

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Red Bull's low-downforce rear wing was originally tested in Azerbaijan but wasn't raced, as the team felt they needed more downforce. However, the design returns for Belgium, with the outer section of the upper flap cut down to reduce downforce.
Mercedes W12 brake drum detail
Mercedes W12 brake drum detail
4/27

Photo by: Uncredited

We get a great view of the lower mounting point of the rear wing endplate on this shot of the Mercedes W12, which as you'll note has a section ahead and behind it that aren't mounted to the floor but provide aerodynamic assistance.
Mercedes W12 brake drum detail
Mercedes W12 brake drum detail
5/27

Photo by: Uncredited

In this shot of the Mercedes W12 without the rear wheel installed we're treated to a view of the competing surfaces of the brake duct assembly and suspension upright, both of which are fighting for the same real estate.
Alfa Romeo Racing mechanics carry the floor of one Alfa Romeo Racing C41
Alfa Romeo Racing mechanics carry the floor of one Alfa Romeo Racing C41
6/27

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

The floor of the C41 is carried into the garage by the mechanics as they prepare the car for this week's action. Note the complexity of the bargeboard cluster and floor, with the sensor harness giving an idea of how many pressure taps and sensors the team have built into the floor.
AlphaTauri AT02 detail
AlphaTauri AT02 detail
7/27

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The lower downforce rear wing mounted on the AlphaTauri AT02 this weekend as the team looks to reduce drag.
Williams FW43B front detail
Williams FW43B front detail
8/27

Photo by: Uncredited

A look at the front end of the Williams FW43B with the vanity panel exposed we're able to see some more of the inboard suspension details.
Haas VF-21 detail
Haas VF-21 detail
9/27

Photo by: Uncredited

Comparing the Haas VF21 we can see the different approaches taken in regards to suspension design.
Alfa Romeo Racing C41 nose and front wing detail
Alfa Romeo Racing C41 nose and front wing detail
10/27

Photo by: Uncredited

This top-down view of the Alfa Romeo C41's nose shows just how far outboard the camera pods are mounted due to the design of the stalks.
Alfa Romeo Racing C41 detail
Alfa Romeo Racing C41 detail
11/27

Photo by: Uncredited

Alfa Romeo's lower downforce rear wing with the Gurney tab removed to reduce the drag penalty on the likes of the Kemmel straight.
AlphaTauri AT02 front wing detail
AlphaTauri AT02 front wing detail
12/27

Photo by: Uncredited

A close-up of the AlphaTauri AT02's front wing, with its squared off footplate and small bypass cavity. Teams will likely trim the trailing edge of the upper flap during the weekend to help balance the car and downforce levels.
AlphaTauri AT02 brake drum detail
AlphaTauri AT02 brake drum detail
13/27

Photo by: Uncredited

An uncomplicated front brake duct arrangement on the AlphaTauri AT02 by recent standards, as the drum doesn't feature any complicated flow channeling on the outer perimeter.
AlphaTauri AT02 detail
AlphaTauri AT02 detail
14/27

Photo by: Uncredited

AlphaTauri's low-downforce rear wing sees the team utilise a low angle of attack, whilst a Gurney tab is mounted on the upper flaps trailing edge to help balance the car for the lower-mid speed sections of the track.
AlphaTauri AT02 detail
AlphaTauri AT02 detail
15/27

Photo by: Uncredited

The saddle-style cooler arrangement, which housed above the power unit, is on show here on the AlphaTauri AT02.
Aston Martin AMR21 nose and front wing detail
Aston Martin AMR21 nose and front wing detail
16/27

Photo by: Uncredited

This shot of the Aston Martin AMR21 allows us to see both the main L-shaped brake duct inlet, with its numerous openings and the outlet that feeds some of the captured airflow out of the wheel to alter the turbulence that would otherwise disrupt flow downstream.
Ferrari SF21 detail
Ferrari SF21 detail
17/27

Photo by: Uncredited

Ferrari's lower downforce rear wing with a small Gurney tab attached to the trailing edge of the upper flap.
Mercedes W12 rear detail
Mercedes W12 rear detail
18/27

Photo by: Uncredited

A rear view of the Mercedes W12's lower downforce rear wing, which features a single central mounting pillar and no Gurney on the trailing edge of the mainplane.
McLaren MCL35M rear detail
McLaren MCL35M rear detail
19/27

Photo by: Uncredited

A rearward shot of the McLaren MCL35M's diffuser which remains the only one to feature the longer central strakes that are connected to the diffuser's transition section. Also note the feather-like lower edges on the other strakes.
Alfa Romeo Racing C41 detail
Alfa Romeo Racing C41 detail
20/27

Photo by: Uncredited

Another look at the bargeboard cluster on the Alfa Romeo C41 as it's carried into the garage which shows off the complexities of the assembly.
Ferrari SF21 brake drum detail
Ferrari SF21 brake drum detail
21/27

Photo by: Uncredited

Peering along the length of the Ferrari SF71 we can see how the team use strakes on the surface of the drum to help divert the airflow in the gap between it and the wheel rim.
Alpine A521 detail
Alpine A521 detail
22/27

Photo by: Uncredited

This shot of the Alpine A521 without the vanity panel attached allows us a view of the inboard suspension elements that are normally covered.
Alpine A521 rear detail
Alpine A521 rear detail
23/27

Photo by: Uncredited

The low-downforce rear wing deployed by Alpine requires a more stylised pair of swan-neck pillars which also appear to have a different finish.
Alpine A521 rear detail
Alpine A521 rear detail
24/27

Photo by: Uncredited

The Alpine's rear wing has been given some strengthening bars once again, as the team look to prevent the strakes from moving around too much under load.
Alpine A521 detail
Alpine A521 detail
25/27

Photo by: Uncredited

Unchanged but still worthy of our admiration are the bargeboard cluster and sidepod deflectors, with their various surfaces used to help better manage the flow around the car.
Mercedes W12 brake drum detail
Mercedes W12 brake drum detail
26/27

Photo by: Uncredited

This shot of the W12 gives us some insight into the internal makeup of the front brake and suspension assembly, also note the cluster of winglet mounted in the lower half of the brake duct fence too.
Alfa Romeo Racing C41 detail
Alfa Romeo Racing C41 detail
27/27

Photo by: Uncredited

The diffuser on the Alfa Romeo C41 might seem less complex at first, owing to the lack of feather-like slots on the lower half of the strakes but note the smaller outwash strakes mounted in the outer channel.

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