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

Bahrain test: Latest F1 2021 technical developments

Join us as we delve into the latest technical developments from the second day of pre-season testing in Bahrain courtesy of Giorgio Piola and Sutton Images.

Bahrain test: Latest F1 2021 technical developments

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

Red Bull Racing RB16B rear detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B rear detail
1/18

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Note the high angle of the Red Bull RB16B’s rear suspension as it’s mounted to the side of the gearbox carrier, which clears room for flow over the top of the diffuser. Also note the angled strakes within the diffuser which help to align the flow as it moves through it.

Mercedes AMG F1 W12 floor

Mercedes AMG F1 W12 floor
2/18

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The Mercedes W12 floor solution which caught the eye on day one of the pre-season test. Note the shape of the bulge over the diffuser and the tunnel created in the coke bottle region that the team ran last year but expands on the solution in order to mitigate the issues faced by the new regulations.

AlphaTauri AT02 bargeboard and turning vanes detail

AlphaTauri AT02 bargeboard and turning vanes detail
3/18

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A close-up view of the AlphaTauri AT02 from the front, which shows how the upstands on the bargeboards align with the front wing tips and Y250 region (red arrow). It’s also interesting to see the width and scope that the elephant ear winglet has (blue arrow), whilst the trailing edge of the cape and footplate of the turning vanes likely create a cascading effect that draws the airflow down onto the bargeboards footplate (red arrow).

Alfa Romeo Racing C41 front wing detail

Alfa Romeo Racing C41 front wing detail
4/18

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Alfa Romeo has an interesting new solution on the front wing which features a hole in the footplate that will allow airflow to migrate to the underside of the assembly and change the way the wing generates outwash. It’s similar to a solution we saw AlphaTauri introduce last season and will be interesting to see if any other teams follow suit in the coming months.

McLaren MCL35M floor detail

McLaren MCL35M floor detail
5/18

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

McLaren trialled a new floor solution on the second day of testing which holds some similarities to the looped flap configuration they tried in combination with a 2021-specification floor in 2020. The flap installed on the MCL35M is used to bridge the gap between the two vertical strakes and add more definition to the flow that’s being pushed around the rear tyre.

Alpine A521 floor

Alpine A521 floor
6/18

Photo by: Uncredited

Alpine trialled a new floor on the second day of testing which featured three strakes on the outer boundary of the floor ahead of the rear tyre. Much like the aerodynamic furniture mounted on the bargeboard they appear to have been covered by a chromium alloy too.

Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes W12

Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes W12
7/18

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

The Mercedes W12 with flo-viz paint applied to the underside of the front wing which the team would photograph upon return to the garage as it looks for visual clues as to whether it’s behaving as anticipated.

McLaren MCL35M rear detail

McLaren MCL35M rear detail
8/18

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Another view of the strake in the central section of the McLaren MCL35M’s diffuser and is formed by the extension of the floor’s transition.

Ferrari SF21 detail

Ferrari SF21 detail
9/18

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A side view of the Ferrari SF21’s floor which we can note has the three twisted vanes midway along the floor and a series of fins on the edge of the floor ahead of the rear tyre.

Ferrari SF21 detail

Ferrari SF21 detail
10/18

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The three-quarter view of the Ferrari SF21’s rear end gives us more of an idea of how far out the angled the vanes are in the middle of the floor. The pitot tubes mounted on the floor will help the team to collect more data about the airflow in towards the coke bottle and over the top of the diffuser.

Fernando Alonso, Alpine A521

Fernando Alonso, Alpine A521
11/18

Photo by: Zak Mauger / Motorsport Images

A side view of the Alpine A521 shows that the team is already working with different cooling configurations as the bulky bodywork behind the airbox has been reduced and a larger shark fin used.

Nicholas Latifi, Williams FW43B

Nicholas Latifi, Williams FW43B
12/18

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

Side view of the Williams FW43B shows the exaggerated sidepod ramped bodywork.

Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren MCL35M

Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren MCL35M
13/18

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

McLaren with a kiel probe rake mounted behind the front wing and ahead of the front tyre to capture data on how the airflow is performing.

Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren MCL35M

Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren MCL35M
14/18

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

More than a splash of flo-viz on the side of the McLaren MCL35M gives an overall impression of what the airflow is actually doing as it downwashes onto the floor and also how the flow streaks down from the halo over the raised cooling outlet.

Yuki Tsunoda, AlphaTauri AT02

Yuki Tsunoda, AlphaTauri AT02
15/18

Photo by: Charles Coates / Motorsport Images

A rear view of the AlphaTauri AT02 not only gives us a good view of the diffuser but it’s also worth noting the use of a double wastegate pipework, whereas Red Bull have moved to a single outlet.

Nikita Mazepin, Haas VF-21

Nikita Mazepin, Haas VF-21
16/18

Photo by: Charles Coates / Motorsport Images

Nice rearward action shot of the Haas VF-21 and the diffuser but also note the T-Wing which appears to be moving around more than perhaps the team has planned for. It was also using a much smaller cooling outlet today as it clearly proved out what the larger one could achieve yesterday.

Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin AMR21

Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin AMR21
17/18

Photo by: Glenn Dunbar / Motorsport Images

A top-down quarter view of the Aston Martin AMR21 shows off the notch in the floor where the diagonal cutout required by the regulations commences.

Antonio Giovinazzi, Alfa Romeo Racing C41

Antonio Giovinazzi, Alfa Romeo Racing C41
18/18

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

Note the additional camera equipment being carried aboard the Alfa Romeo C41 in this image, with thermal imaging cameras placed within the pods on the side of the airbox that look at the front and rear tyres and capture temperature information throughout the course of a lap.

 


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