Giorgio Piola's F1 technical analysis
Topic

Giorgio Piola's F1 technical analysis

F1 upgrades that helped Verstappen pull further clear of Mercedes

Red Bull has continued to turn the screw on Formula 1 rival Mercedes with yet more upgrades having lifted the Milton Keynes-based team clear at front.

F1 upgrades that helped Verstappen pull further clear of Mercedes

With fresh arrivals of new Red Bull parts continuing to be spotted in the Red Bull Ring paddock last weekend, it was little wonder that Max Verstappen hailed the progress the team had made in delivering a car that felt like it was ‘on rails’.

Red Bull is clearly backing Verstappen in his fight with Lewis Hamilton for the drivers' title too, with the Dutchman regularly receiving updates ahead of teammate Sergio Perez.

This came in the form of two changes in Austria, as Verstappen adopted a different front wing specification to the Styrian Grand Prix. He also enjoyed further changes to the sidepod deflector array as Red Bull made a bid to further boost the performance of his RB16B.

Red Bull followed the trend started by Haas some time ago of a Venetian blind-like deflector array. However, it has continuously modified the assembly to cater for alterations to the surrounding aerodynamic surfaces, whilst also generally looking for extra performance that comes as a result of direct adjustments too.

Read Also:

Red Bull Racing RB16B old bargeboard detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B old bargeboard detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

In this case, the latest update appears to be as a result of the alteration that the team made to the tall deflector in Portugal, when its shape was changed and placed at the front of the floor's axehead.

This resulted in the lower two elements becoming boxed in behind the deflector. So now, the team has added a third element and extended them so they reach further back down the floor.

The Venetian blind-like structure that bridges the gap between the two vertical deflectors has also been altered as a consequence, with the third and fourth slat up from the bottom the most affected.

Red Bull Racing RB16B front wing comparison

Red Bull Racing RB16B front wing comparison

Photo by: Uncredited

The front wing used on Verstappen’s RB16B featured a new mainplane design for the second race at the Red Bull Ring, with the leading edge at the transition point with the neutral section of the wing swooping upwards quite dramatically.

This has a dramatic impact on the well-known Y250 vortex, which is generated by the surface and pressure differential created by the two surfaces joining one another. It is often an area where designers will look if they need to tweak flow down the car.

Any alteration here, be it to the mainplane, or the shape of the flaps and their tips just behind, can have a sizeable impact on vorticity, with the shape, direction and strength of the vortex all affected by the changes to those surfaces.

Red Bull RB16B diffuser detail

Red Bull RB16B diffuser detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Meanwhile, a week on from the Styrian GP and Red Bull had a fresh delivery of parts that meant the fully serrated diffuser configuration that was enjoyed by Verstappen in the first race could also be found on Perez’s car this time around.

shares
comments

Related video

McLaren needs to be "realistic" about true F1 pace - Seidl
Previous article

McLaren needs to be "realistic" about true F1 pace - Seidl

Next article

Reutemann in serious condition after return to intensive care

Reutemann in serious condition after return to intensive care
Load comments
The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver the goods for McLaren Prime

The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver the goods for McLaren

From being lapped by his own teammate in Monaco to winning at Monza, it’s been a tumultuous first season at McLaren for Daniel Ricciardo. But, as he tells STUART CODLING, there’s more to the story of his turnaround than having a lovely summer holiday during Formula 1's summer break...

The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title Prime

The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title

As the battle continues to rage over the F1 2021 drivers' championship, teams up and down the grid are turning their attentions to the prize money attributed to each position in the constructors' standings. But F1's sliding scale rules governing wind tunnel and CFD use will soften the blow for those who miss out on the top places

Formula 1
Nov 25, 2021
The invisible enemy that's made Hamilton's title charge tougher Prime

The invisible enemy that's made Hamilton's title charge tougher

After winning his past few Formula 1 titles as a canter, Lewis Hamilton currently trails Max Verstappen by eight points heading into the final double-header of 2021. Although Red Bull has been his biggest on-track challenge, Hamilton feels that he has just as much to grapple with away from the circuit

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2021
Why F1's inconvenient penalties have to stay Prime

Why F1's inconvenient penalties have to stay

OPINION: Quibbles over the length of time taken by Formula 1's stewards over decisions are entirely valid. But however inconvenient it is, there can be no questioning the importance of having clearly defined rules that everyone understands and can stick to. Recent events have shown that ambiguity could have big consequences

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2021
The mistakes Red Bull cannot afford to repeat in F1 2021's title fight climax Prime

The mistakes Red Bull cannot afford to repeat in F1 2021's title fight climax

OPINION: Red Bull has had Formula 1’s fastest package for most of 2021, but in several of the title run-in events it has wasted the RB16B’s potential. It cannot afford to do so again with Lewis Hamilton motoring back towards Max Verstappen in the drivers’ standings with two rounds remaining

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2021
Qatar Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

Qatar Grand Prix driver ratings

Qatar was a virtual unknown for most as Formula 1 made its inaugural visit to the Gulf state, and tyre management quickly emerged as an even more critical factor than normal. Perhaps then it should come as no surprise that two of the championship's elder statesmen produced standout drives

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2021
How Hamilton dominated in Qatar despite missing a key Mercedes advantage Prime

How Hamilton dominated in Qatar despite missing a key Mercedes advantage

There was simply no stopping Lewis Hamilton on Formula 1's first visit to Qatar. The Mercedes driver eased to pole position and led every lap to secure an utterly dominant victory - even without a key Mercedes weapon in his arsenal to increase the heat on Red Bull heading into the final two races of the gripping 2021 title race

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2021
Qatar's long-term plans for a "World Cup every single year" Prime

Qatar's long-term plans for a "World Cup every single year"

Qatar is preparing to host the football World Cup next year, but will be thrown into the sporting spotlight this weekend as Formula 1 prepares to race in the country. Ahead of a 10-year deal to hold a grand prix from 2023 onwards, it's a much-needed opportunity to highlight reforms in the country

Formula 1
Nov 20, 2021