How F1’s biggest 2021 update shows Aston Martin’s ambition

Aston Martin endured a pretty tough start to the 2021 season, with Formula 1’s new aero rules having hit the team’s low-rake concept harder than its high-rake rivals.

How F1’s biggest 2021 update shows Aston Martin’s ambition

But while its senior bosses were upset about a situation it felt was unfair, its technical staff were fully focused on trying to get itself out of the hole it found itself in.

A series of small updates that appeared over the early phase of the season did the job in turning things around. From scoring just five points in the opening four races, it scored 39 in the next four.

And although it did not add to its tally in the Austrian Grand Prix last weekend, the team laid down its marker at the Red Bull Ring with what was perhaps the single biggest update we have seen from any team on the grid so far.

Aston Martin AMR21 front wing comparison

Aston Martin AMR21 front wing comparison

Photo by: Uncredited

The changes start at the very front of the car, with a small but meaningful change to the front wing's uppermost flap. Whilst the majority of the flap has remained unchanged, the tip section now has a prominent bulge that will alter the airflow’s path downstream (red arrow).

The revised bargeboard cluster changes are the linchpin in the overhaul, as the alterations will undoubtedly have an impact on the flow structures arriving at them, whilst also boosting the performance of the new components fitted to the car downstream.

Aston Martin AMR21 bargeboards cluster comparison

Aston Martin AMR21 bargeboards cluster comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

As we can see here in the comparison, there were only enough parts available at the track to install them on one car, with Lance Stroll being given preference even though the team had previously stated the running of updates would be based on championship order.

The alterations include a more pronounced lower boomerang winglet (green arrow), extra slots added into the main vertical element to create a feather-like surface (blue arrow), whilst the axehead section of the floor now also rises to create a wave section like the floor behind (red arrow).

Aston Martin AMR21 new fins

Aston Martin AMR21 new fins

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The team has also added two vortex generators on top of the sidepod wing, as it looks to coerce the airflow that’s passing by the sidepod’s shoulder, which already has an imposing fin sticking out at a 45 degree angle.

Aston Martin AMR21 floor comparison

Aston Martin AMR21 floor comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The floor also received attention, with both additions, deletions and modifications made to help improve its overall performance.

Alongside the sidepod, the team added an additional fin (highlighted in green), taking the count from three to four. But where it previously had two clusters of half-moon shaped fins mounted around the floor cutout, it opted to remove one set entirely (highlighted in red). 

Aston Martin AMR21 floor detail

Aston Martin AMR21 floor detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Aston Martin also paid close attention to the area just ahead of the rear tyre, with the large winglet cluster sat on the floor's edge given a more sinuous transition, rather than the step-like approach taken before (inset).

Aston Martin AMR21 diffuser comparison

Aston Martin AMR21 diffuser comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The team also made some delicate adjustments to the outer corner of the diffuser too, with the shape of the Gurney-like flaps that surround the main diffuser body rounded off (marked in green).

The uppermost slot has also been shortened and, as a consequence of the alterations, the metal stiffeners have also been relocated (highlighted in yellow).

Race Rewind

Aston Martin Racing AMR21 new halo fins

Aston Martin Racing AMR21 new halo fins

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The suite of updates that arrived at the Austrian Grand Prix came after a series of steps had been introduced in the early phase of the campaign.

The team had a decent upgrade package for the Portuguese Grand Prix and made some smaller changes at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix too.

The changes introduced for Baku dealt with the flow around the cockpit, with a serrated set of wing mirror stalks similar to Mercedes deployed, whilst the boomerang winglet atop the halo was discarded in favour of a pair of small fins on either side of the halo.

Read Also:

shares
comments

Related video

Russell "not sure" if Silverstone F1 sprint race will be good for Williams

Previous article

Russell "not sure" if Silverstone F1 sprint race will be good for Williams

Next article

Why Ricciardo doesn't want McLaren struggles to leave him 'resenting' F1

Why Ricciardo doesn't want McLaren struggles to leave him 'resenting' F1
Load comments
The signs that point to F1's rude health Prime

The signs that point to F1's rude health

OPINION: Formula 1's calendar might still be facing disruption as the pandemic affects travel but, says Mark Gallagher, the business itself is fundamentally strong thanks to the epic rivalry taking place on track and the consistent arrival of new sponsors.

The unexpected benefit of F1's sprint race repeat Prime

The unexpected benefit of F1's sprint race repeat

OPINION: Formula 1's sprint race trial at Silverstone drew mixed feedback on Saturday, but there remained the true test of how it would impact Sunday's Grand Prix. While fans were busy marvelling at Fernando Alonso's progress, a key lesson was being learned that would directly contribute to the dramatic lap-one clash at Copse the following day

Formula 1
Jul 22, 2021
The off-track considerations that led to Hamilton/Verstappen F1 shunt Prime

The off-track considerations that led to Hamilton/Verstappen F1 shunt

OPINION: Formula 1’s 2021 title fight turned ugly last weekend when Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton collided at the start of the British Grand Prix. Verstappen thankfully walked away unharmed, but this had been a clash long-since coming.

Formula 1
Jul 21, 2021
British Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

British Grand Prix Driver Ratings

The 2021 British Grand Prix will live long in the memory for the dramatic clash between Formula 1's two title protagonists, which opened the door for other drivers to capitalise. One did so in spectacular fashion, while others fluffed their lines

Formula 1
Jul 19, 2021
How Leclerc almost defied Hamilton after Silverstone clash Prime

How Leclerc almost defied Hamilton after Silverstone clash

A poor start for Valtteri Bottas and the lap one clash between Formula 1's 2021 title protagonists gave Charles Leclerc a surprise lead in the British Grand Prix that he almost held to the end. Here's how the Ferrari driver came close to a famous victory, ultimately denied by a recovering Lewis Hamilton three laps from home

Formula 1
Jul 19, 2021
The signs that suggest Mercedes can win at Silverstone Prime

The signs that suggest Mercedes can win at Silverstone

Red Bull and Max Verstappen scored an early blow against Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes at Silverstone, with sprint qualifying race victory. But that doesn’t mean Sunday’s grand prix is a foregone conclusion. Although Verstappen starts as the favourite, here’s why Mercedes still holds hope of winning

Formula 1
Jul 18, 2021
Uncovering Silverstone's engineering secrets for F1 success Prime

Uncovering Silverstone's engineering secrets for F1 success

Formula 1 returns to Silverstone this weekend, but despite its familiarity to all the teams it is no picnic. Here are five of the key points for engineers to consider prior to the British Grand Prix.

Formula 1
Jul 16, 2021
The 'special relationship' Ferrari will hope to exploit at Silverstone Prime

The 'special relationship' Ferrari will hope to exploit at Silverstone

Ferrari might have snubbed the very first world championship race on British soil but the Scuderia and the UK went on to enjoy some deep connections. As BEN EDWARDS explains, theirs is a shared history that is waiting for its next chapter to be written...

Formula 1
Jul 15, 2021