Giorgio Piola's F1 technical analysis

Bite-size tech: Toro Rosso airbox pipework

Left in the mire during the very public falling out between Red Bull and Renault, Toro Rosso has had its 2016 preparation complicated by the need to find a new engine partner.

The Italian arm of the Red Bull outfit returned to the Scuderia's stable but was forced to use a 2015 power unit rather than the revamped one that Ferrari's works team, Haas and Sauber would enjoy.

An early decision from within the technical department to switch focus to a Ferrari power unit installation rather than wait for the outcome of the Renault power struggle has proven pivotal in a season that can be characterised as one of two halves.

It was expected that STR's best results would come early in the season given that the other teams around them would receive power unit updates that it would not. That, however, did not deter Toro Rosso as it went in search of performance from the STR11's chassis instead.

At the start of the season the car featured several interesting aerodynamic concepts that have since found their way onto other cars this season, proving once more that the Faenza-based squad is capable of punching above its weight.

Its target of finishing the season in fifth seemed somewhat ambitious from the outset, but was scuppered further when its B-Specification aero package stalled its progress for several races after its implementation at the German GP.

The package gave the requisite downforce boost Toro Rosso was looking for but came with a much larger drag penalty than the team might have had in the pre-hybrid era given the need to be as efficient as possible, be that from the power unit or aero.

Mid-season strife aside, the team hasn't done too badly and can be pleased what it has achieved, especially as it was working with a new power unit layout, given its 2014 and '15 supply had come from Renault.

It's not surprising though that Toro Rosso tried to keep the footprint for changes as low as possible and as we can see in the image above it retained one of the cooling characteristics it ran with the Renault power unit too.

The airbox inlet (pictured) is divided into three main channels. The upper of the three feeds the turbo compressor, whilst the inverted V-shaped pipework goes on to feed two oil coolers that flank the power unit, a layout that is unique to Toro Rosso but seemingly very efficient.

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Event Abu Dhabi GP
Track Yas Marina Circuit
Teams Toro Rosso
Article type Analysis
Topic Giorgio Piola's F1 technical analysis