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

Belgian GP: Latest key F1 technical developments at Spa

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Belgian GP: Latest key F1 technical developments at Spa
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Co-author: Matthew Somerfield

Join us as we delve into the latest technical developments on display at the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps, courtesy of Motorsport Images.

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

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Mercedes F1 W11 floor detail

Mercedes F1 W11 floor detail
1/15

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Mercedes has a new floor to trial at the Belgian GP, featuring three fins ahead of the rear tyre, which appear to line up to the corresponding holes on the floor’s edge.

McLaren MCL34 Rear Wing detail

McLaren MCL34 Rear Wing detail
2/15

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

This shot of the McLaren MCL35’s rear end shows the lower-downforce rear wing that the team will look to deploy this weekend, while the rear brake duct fin which extends quite a way forward is also noteworthy.

Mercedes F1 W11 Rear Wing detail

Mercedes F1 W11 Rear Wing detail
3/15

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A lower-downforce rear wing for Mercedes, featuring the single pillar arrangement that we’ve seen deployed at several races already this season. Also note what appears to be bulkier sidepod bodywork and a larger cooling outlet at the rear of the car.

Red Bull Racing RB16 Rear Wing detail

Red Bull Racing RB16 Rear Wing detail
4/15

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Max Verstappen’s car is set up with a lower-downforce, spoon-shaped rear wing. Alex Albon will try something with a little more downforce, as the team establishes which variant gives the desired speed through the corners for the least drag on the straights.

Haas VF-20 rear detail

Haas VF-20 rear detail
5/15

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

The lower-downforce rear wing that Haas has available to them at Spa features three very gentle curves on the top flaps trailing edge that create similarly gentle V-shaped cutouts that fall in line with the slot gap separators.

Alfa Romeo Racing C39 rear detail

Alfa Romeo Racing C39 rear detail
6/15

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Alfa Romeo has a spoon-shaped rear wing for the Belgian GP, with a deep central section that will create more downforce, while the outer sections are pared back to reduce drag.

AlphaTauri AT01 rear detail

AlphaTauri AT01 rear detail
7/15

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

AlphaTauri will also use a spoon-shaped rear wing but with a much gentler curvature, resulting in less downforce and drag.

The AlphaTauri AT01 at scrutineering

The AlphaTauri AT01 at scrutineering
8/15

Photo by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

The AlphaTauri goes down to scrutineering giving us this great look along the right-hand flank. Note the three-element sidepod deflector and how much overhang there is between it and the sidepod itself, which also allows for that generous undercut.

McLaren MCL35 comparison Spain vs Belgium

McLaren MCL35 comparison Spain vs Belgium
9/15

Photo by: Motorsport Images

A comparison of McLaren’s rear wings from Spain and Belgium and the difference that has on the level of downforce and drag that will be generated.

Racing Point RP20 front wing detail

Racing Point RP20 front wing detail
10/15

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

Racing Point’s front wing which obviously bears a striking resemblance to last year’s Mercedes but still worth noting the cut to the inner edge of the second, larger flap and also the metal inserts used to maintain the slot gaps between the elements.

Ferrari SF1000 front wings detail

Ferrari SF1000 front wings detail
11/15

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The upper wing might be mainly hidden behind the tape barrier on this image but we can still see that Ferrari has both front wing specifications available in Belgium, with the shape of the mainplane’s leading edge and the footplate arc the giveaways.

Alfa Romeo C39 rear detail

Alfa Romeo C39 rear detail
12/15

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Some interesting features on the Alfa Romeo C39 diffuser, the black arrow points at the inner strake which has been cut down for the Belgian GP, while in behind it’s nice to note the quite tall vortex generators used on the plank kickline. Above this, the central section of the diffuser has been altered, with the perforated Gurney profiles now not extended up and around the crash structure. Alfa continues to use some additional vanes pointed outward on the outer channel (circled).

Haas F1 Team VF-19

Haas F1 Team VF-19
13/15

Photo by: Steven Tee / Motorsport Images

The Haas VF-20 is pushed down the pitlane towards scrutineering, note the shallow rear wing that will be used this weekend to lower downforce and reduce drag.

AlphaTauri AT01 technical detail

AlphaTauri AT01 technical detail
14/15

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

The AlphaTauri mechanics prepare one of the cars for tomorrow’s action, making adjustments to the suspension.

Williams FW43 technical detail

Williams FW43 technical detail
15/15

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

A peek at the Mercedes power unit in the back of the Williams FW43, allowing us to see some of the exhaust, radiator layout and in the background the gearbox.

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About this article

Series Formula 1
Event Belgian GP
Sub-event Thursday
Author Giorgio Piola