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

F1 2021 tech review images: Mercedes & Red Bull

Join us as we take a look at some of the best technical illustrations and images, courtesy of Giorgio Piola and Sutton Images, focusing on the development stories of Mercedes and Red Bull.

F1 2021 tech review images: Mercedes & Red Bull
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MERCEDES

Mercedes AMG F1 W12 brakes duct comparison

Mercedes AMG F1 W12 brakes duct comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Mercedes made an interesting change to the layout of the front brake duct inlet going into 2021, with the L-shaped design inverted when compared with the W11.


Mercedes AMG F1 W12 floor

Mercedes AMG F1 W12 floor

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Mercedes began the season with a new floor design featuring a wavy scroll section and a flap just above it.


Mercedes AMG F1 W12 floor

Mercedes AMG F1 W12 floor

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Unable to use the fully enclosed holes in the floor it had in the previous few years (inset), the team expected these wavy floor sections to help bridge the aerodynamic performance gap. The team also had the Z-shaped floor cutout that many others copied in the opening few rounds of the season [2] but had an upturn to the rear portion of the floor [3] along with numerous aerodynamic surfaces to help direct the airflow mounted above it.


Mercedes AMG F1 W12 floor

Mercedes AMG F1 W12 floor

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A top down overview of the Z-shaped floor cutout used by Mercedes, with a small taper ahead of the first cutout, which then squares off before tapering to the rear ahead of the tyre.


Mercedes AMG F1 W12 front suspension

Mercedes AMG F1 W12 front suspension

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Mercedes introduced a one-off front suspension and brake duct design for the Monaco Grand Prix, featuring a revised wishbone and steering arm layout to improve maneuverability and assist aerodynamically.


Mercedes AMG F1 W12 front suspension

Mercedes AMG F1 W12 front suspension

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The top-down overview shows how much further thicker the wishbone was at the outboard end and how closely aligned the two elements were.


Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes AMG F1 W12 rear wing, Azerbaijan Grand Prix

Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes AMG F1 W12 rear wing, Azerbaijan Grand Prix

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Valtteri Bottas’ W12 was outfitted with a rear wing with the twin pillar layout in Baku.


Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W12 rear wing, Azerbaijan Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W12 rear wing, Azerbaijan Grand Prix

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Lewis Hamilton’s W12 featured the single pillar arrangement in comparison for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.


Mercedes AMG F1 W12 steering wheel back protection detail, French GP

Mercedes AMG F1 W12 steering wheel back protection detail, French GP

Photo by: Giorigo Piola

The brake magic button on the rear of Lewis Hamilton’s steering wheel was engaged by the Brit at the restart in Baku resulting in him going straight on at Turn 1. From the French Grand Prix onwards a sleeve was placed around the button to prevent it being accidentally pressed again (inset).


Mercedes AMG F1 W12 old full side

Mercedes AMG F1 W12 old full side

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Mercedes introduced a raft of changes for the W12 at the British Grand Prix, mainly focused around the bargeboard cluster, sidepod deflectors and floor. This is the arrangement prior to the changes.


Mercedes AMG F1 W12 new full side

Mercedes AMG F1 W12 new full side

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The new aerodynamic package saw the venetian blind-like slats increased in length, with the tall vertical deflector in front of them reduced in height to allow for it. The main vertical deflector beside the sidepod was fully fixed to the floor, whilst the joint between it and the sidepod wing was removed, resulting in an endplate being added to the sidepod wing. The wavy floor that had previously been a prominent feature was also redesigned, with the waves removed, the scroll on the edge of the floor shortened and the flaps behind it split into two. Also note the addition of more angled floor fins between them and the sidepod.


Mercedes W12 cockpit cooling comparison

Mercedes W12 cockpit cooling comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A look at the cooling options beside the halo that the team had at their disposal, with everything from a blanking panel to an enlarged outlet and louvered panel combo.


Mercedes W12 rear wing comparison

Mercedes W12 rear wing comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola


Mercedes evaluated a few rear wing options for the Belgian Grand Prix, with both drivers using similar wing specs during Free Practice, albeit with Hamilton on the lower downforce option of the two, without the Gurney. Entering qualifying, given the conditions, all that changed though, as they both fitted a higher downforce option.


Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W12 rear wing detail

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W12 rear wing detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The low downforce rear wing used at the Italian Grand Prix was a one-off used only for the hi-speed nature of the Monza circuit.


Mercedes W12 front wing comparison

Mercedes W12 front wing comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Mercedes began trialling a revised front wing design from the Russian Grand Prix but, having been used in a few Free Practice sessions it was never raced. The alterations created a different ratio between the outer static portion of the wing and the moveable flapped section.


Mercedes W12 brakes ducts open

Mercedes W12 brakes ducts open

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The W12’s front brake assembly without the drum cover attached gives us some insight as to where the airflow collected by the inlet is sent. Note the silver duct running across the top of the assembly which has a wide nozzle that delivers the airflow out of the wheel face for aerodynamic gain.


Mercedes W12 brakes ducts side

Mercedes W12 brakes ducts side

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

From this angle we can see how that nozzle emerges from the brake duct and can imagine how the airflow mixing with the air rotated by the wheel rim might be affected.


Mercedes W12 brakes drums closed

Mercedes W12 brakes drums closed

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

This illustration with the brake duct bodywork attached shows how the drum's design creates another bypass channel in the lower half of the assembly, allowing the airflow a way of interacting with the wheel rim as it rotates around the brake duct.


Mercedes W12 rear wing comparison

Mercedes W12 rear wing comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Mercedes ran a low downforce rear wing option at Silverstone and Spa but as we can see, while the low downforce rear wing used in Saudi Arabia and Azerbaijan used the single pillar arrangement and took up a similar amount of space in the box region, the upper flap design differed in order to reduce drag.


Mercedes W12 bargeboard detail

Mercedes W12 bargeboard detail

Photo by: Uncredited

A close up of the aerodynamic furniture mounted on the upturned floor ahead of the rear tyre.


Mercedes W12 nose and front wing detail

Mercedes W12 nose and front wing detail

Photo by: Uncredited

A rare glimpse under the front wing, nose and cape of the Mercedes W12 as it’s carried into the garage.


Mercedes W12 deflectors detail

Mercedes W12 deflectors detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Looking back over the top of the W12’s suspension, we can see the various surfaces that make up the bargeboard cluster and sidepod deflectors. Also note the two rows of outwardly angled fins mounted between the edge of the floor and sidepod.


Mercedes W12 detail

Mercedes W12 detail

Photo by: Uncredited

In this shot of the W12 without the sidepod and engine cover bodywork attached we’re not only treated to a view of some of the power unit but also note the side impact support spar, which is placed in the lower position, allowing a more direct route for the airflow into the high-mounted sidepod inlet.


Mercedes W12 brake drum detail

Mercedes W12 brake drum detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Plenty of detail to take in, in this shot, from the design of the rear brake drum, the aerodynamic furniture on the floor ahead, the design of the endplate and its mounting to the curved outer portion of the diffuser.


Mercedes W12 rear detail

Mercedes W12 rear detail

Photo by: Uncredited

A good look at the rear end of the W12 at the Dutch Grand Prix, with the diffuser, crash structure winglets, lower T-Wing and rear brake duct winglets all clearly visible.


Mercedes W12 brake drum detail

Mercedes W12 brake drum detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Another angle showing off the rear brake duct design but this time we’re able to see how the inlet merges with the upright.


Mercedes W12 detail

Mercedes W12 detail

Photo by: Uncredited

A close up of the sidepod deflectors which had the venetian-blind like slats extended forward as part of their upgrade package at Silverstone.


Mercedes W12 front wing detail

Mercedes W12 front wing detail

Photo by: Uncredited

With the W12’s front wing placed on the ground we can see how much the leading portion of the footplate is upturned.


Mercedes W12 brake drum detail

Mercedes W12 brake drum detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Another of the options available to the team in terms of rear brake drum design was this version with a slotted outer loop.


Mercedes W12 rear wing detail

Mercedes W12 rear wing detail

Photo by: Uncredited

A close up of the W12’s rear wing endplate, noting the contouring required to get the serrated rear cutout to work effectively.


Mercedes W12 steering wheel detail

Mercedes W12 steering wheel detail

Photo by: Mercedes AMG

Peering into the cockpit of Lewis Hamilton’s W12 we’re treated to a view of the steering wheel with the various buttons, switches, paddles and rotaries used to help control the various chassis and power unit parameters and help him communicate with the team.


Mercedes W12 steering wheel detail

Mercedes W12 steering wheel detail

Photo by: Mercedes AMG

An extreme close up of the three rotaries at the base of the wheel, which control strat modes (left), power unit functions (HPP, right) and chassis / steering wheel functions (centre).


Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes W12 wheel nut detail

Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes W12 wheel nut detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The front wheel rim on the W12 featured a ring in the centre to help from an aerodynamic perspective.


Mercedes W12 rear wheel detail

Mercedes W12 rear wheel detail

Photo by: Uncredited

The rear wheel rim design featured the large fins to help control tyre temperatures.


Mercedes W12 rear brake detail

Mercedes W12 rear brake detail

Photo by: Uncredited

This shot of the rear brake and suspension assembly allows us to see some of the details ordinarily masked, including the tether attached to the upright, the slim lower, rear outlet and the shape of the lower suspension element, which blends with the winglets around it.


Mercedes W12 detail

Mercedes W12 detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Another look at the outwardly angled fins mounted on the floor between its edge and the sidepod.


Mercedes W12 detail

Mercedes W12 detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Overview of the W12’s bargeboard cluster, sidepod deflectors and leading edge floor strakes. Also note the canards mounted below the sidepod inlet to help improve flow around them.


Mercedes W12 floor detail

Mercedes W12 floor detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Noting the small triangular fin mounted on the edge of the floor beside the rear tyre (white arrow).

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RED BULL

Red Bull Racing RB16B rear suspension

Red Bull Racing RB16B rear suspension

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Red Bull was one of the teams that tested a 2021 specification floor ahead of the season, taking some time to understand the impact the rule changes might have. Its initial design for the RB16B followed the same principles as the test item, with a simple tapered edge. However, a Z-shaped floor was quickly unveiled at the first test to usurp it.


Red Bull Racing RB16B floor comparison

Red Bull Racing RB16B floor comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The Z-shaped floor introduced by Red Bull featured a notch between two tapered sections, with an angled strake added on the Z junction in order to help influence the airflow.


Red Bull Racing RB16B comparison rear suspension

Red Bull Racing RB16B comparison rear suspension

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Red Bull spent its two development tokens at the rear of the RB16B, with a new gearbox carrier design deployed in order that it could make further aerodynamic gains, also allowing it to repackage the suspension. The changes in the track rod and wishbone layout being altered to improve their aerodynamic packaging (see insets).


Red Bull Racing RB16B rear suspension

Red Bull Racing RB16B rear suspension

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A comparison of the upper rear suspension points on the RB16 and RB16B, showing how much the team raised them for 2021.


Red Bull Racing RB16B gearbox suspension

Red Bull Racing RB16B gearbox suspension

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The gearbox carrier, rear suspension, crash structure and brakes from below, which not only highlights the packaging of the suspension but also the shape of the keel to aid aerodynamically.


Red Bull Racing RB16B front wing

Red Bull Racing RB16B front wing

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A top down overview of the RB16B’s front wing, nose and cape.


Red Bull Racing RB16B nose comparison

Red Bull Racing RB16B nose comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

In the side view of the front wing, nose and cape we can see how the team created an additional box section on the rear of the cape to help close in the section as it’s inserted under the chassis.


Red Bull Racing RB16B nose detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B nose detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Here it is again from the rearward view, with the box section inserted beneath the chassis in order that airflow making its way under the nose is channeled out further down the body of the car without interruption. Also note the ‘S’-duct pipework which carries airflow to the small exit atop the vanity panel.


Red Bull RB16B sidepod deflector comparison

Red Bull RB16B sidepod deflector comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Changes were swiftly made to the sidepod deflectors in the early part of the season, as the forward-most vertical element was repositioned ahead of the two upper axehead extensions, made full length and an almost full-length vertical slot was added.


Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing

Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The high downforce rear wing used by Red Bull featured a more conventionally shaped mainplane, the sinuous louvres on the overhanging section of the endplate, upwash strikes and a serrated rear cutout.


Red Bull RB16B front brake duct comparison

Red Bull RB16B front brake duct comparison

Photo by: Uncredited

Red Bull utilised several different front brake duct inlets during the opening few races of 2021 in order to find a balance between the cooling required and the capture of airflow for aerodynamic purposes.


Red Bull Racing RB16B diffuser comparison

Red Bull Racing RB16B diffuser comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The team added some serrated edges to the outer sections of the Gurney-like extensions that reached around the RB16B’s diffuser at the Monaco GP, but only on Max Verstappen’s car.


Red Bull Racing RB16B flexing rear wing

Red Bull Racing RB16B flexing rear wing

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Controversy over the use of flexible rear wings reared its head at the Spanish Grand Prix, with it suspected that many teams, including Red Bull, had found a way to subvert the static load tests and gain a straight-line speed advantage.


Red Bull Racing RB16B flexing rear wing

Red Bull Racing RB16B flexing rear wing

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The teams in question had found a way to tilt the entire rear wing structure back under load, reducing some of the drag being generated.


Red Bull RB16B rear wing, Azerbaijan Grand Prix

Red Bull RB16B rear wing, Azerbaijan Grand Prix

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The low downforce rear wing introduced by Red Bull at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix featured a more pronounced spoon section, owing to the much shallower mainplane in the outer sections. The endplate was also more basic, with the sinuous louvres and upwash strakes removed, while a standard rear upper cutout was deployed instead.


Red Bull RB16B diffuser detail

Red Bull RB16B diffuser detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The team continued to develop the serrated diffuser concept at the Styrian Grand Prix when it added them to the entire length of the two Gurney-like flaps that were sandwiched between the outermost flap and the diffuser wall. The serrations were also added to flap under the crash structure but once again, Sergio Perez was a step behind, as Verstappen’s car was fitted with the new specification first.


Red Bull Racing RB16B front wing comparison

Red Bull Racing RB16B front wing comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Red Bull also began running different front wing specifications between its two drivers as it searched for the optimum setup on cars that were out of kilter in terms of the developments on its cars.


Red Bull Racing RB16B floor detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B floor detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

To further enhance the effect that the team was looking for with the floor solution it added a step ladder-like winglet to the RB16B at the British GP. The structure featured three steps that fanned out relative to the angle seen on the other fins and strakes used by the team to help turn the airflow outboard.


Red Bull Racing RB16B floor detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B floor detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

This led to the optimisation of the area around the cut out, with an additional angled strake added to create more of a nozzle.


Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing comparison, Italian GP

Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing comparison, Italian GP

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A comparison of the two wing specifications seen at Spa and Monza, with the low downforce option tested at Baku before the team reverted to a top flap specification without the graduated outer trailing edge. The one-off Monza specification was even shallower, as the team looked to reduce drag as much as possible.


Red Bull RB16B front wing comparison

Red Bull RB16B front wing comparison

Marginally different front wing specifications were deployed on the Red Bull cars in Russia, with the wing on Perez’s car (right) featuring a small Gurney in the upper corner and a slightly different shape to the flap's trailing edge.


Red Bull Racing RB16B front wing detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B front wing detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A look at the front wing from the Turkish Grand Prix when the team ran the car with a one-off livery to celebrate Honda’s involvement. Note how the flaps are turned upward at their tips in order to encourage the shape and strength of the vortex spilled from the Y250 region.


Red Bull Racing RB16B stiffer rear wing

Red Bull Racing RB16B stiffer rear wing

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Red Bull started to see some issues arise with the rear wing assembly at the United States Grand Prix, as the bumpy surface at COTA wreaked havoc and cracks appeared in the wings surface that it felt compelled to repair (yellow highlighted sections were areas where the team made repairs). The medium downforce rear wing used at the event would cause them further issues down the line too.


Red Bull Racing RB16B lower cooling detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B lower cooling detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Red Bull took a novel approach to heat rejection from the sidepods on the RB16 and RB16B with the ability to have outlets on the inside of the halo, rather than a louvered cooling panel on the outer face. This obviously has some aerodynamic benefits with the heat released into an area where it will do less damage.


Red Bull Racing RB16B cooling detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B cooling detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

In Mexico these outlets were opened up even more than usual to help deal with the effect that altitude has on cooling the cars.


Red Bull Racing RB16B cooling detail, Qatar GP

Red Bull Racing RB16B cooling detail, Qatar GP

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

In Qatar the team ran an asymmetric layout, with the larger panel on the right-hand side of the car.


Red Bull Racing RB16B front brake duct comparison, Mexican GP

Red Bull Racing RB16B front brake duct comparison, Mexican GP

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The ongoing search for performance continued as the team looked to the front brake assembly as a means of making up the difference. In Mexico this led to the team trying various solutions, with not only a different inlet trialled (inset) but also different panels within the bypass section of the drum. Usually it would utilise a full coverage panel which is also painted to reduce thermal transfer. For Mexico it split the panel in order to allow the heat rejected from the brake disc a way to mix with the airflow that usually bypasses it.


Red Bull Racing RB16B DRS comparison

Red Bull Racing RB16B DRS comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

As problems with Red Bull’s rear wings persisted it became evident that a combination of fatigue and extra load, owing to the nature of the circuits being visited, was causing an issue with the DRS. A noticeable oscillation of the top flap when DRS was open was apparent, with the actuator and linkages seemingly unable to maintain the gap when DRS was deployed. The team tried various fixes but a solution wasn’t really found and with the actuator and linkages subject to the homologation and token system the team were unable to make wholesale changes.


Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Repairs being made to the rear wing in Qatar, including the upper corner of the top flap, just around the pivot and the central section of the wing, both front and back.


Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing comparison

Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

As a consequence of these issues the team were forced to use the high downforce wing at the Qatar Grand Prix, even though their favoured choice was the medium downforce, which they’d used throughout Free Practice but couldn’t find a way to prevent the DRS oscillations.


Red Bull Racing RB16B DRS actuator and linkage comparison

Red Bull Racing RB16B DRS actuator and linkage comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A look at the two DRS linkages that the team homologated for the 2021, note how the main linkage has an impact on the design of the pivot points.


Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing detail, FP2 Saudi Arabia GP

Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing detail, FP2 Saudi Arabia GP

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The Saudi Arabian Grand Prix was a similar story, as the team ran the medium downforce rear wing for FP1 but switched to the low downforce wing from FP2 onwards.


Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB16B battery detail

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB16B battery detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The energy store from the RB16B was an element that Honda upgraded during the season, which was the first time it had done so since its return to the sport.


Red Bull Racing RB16B detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B detail

Photo by: Uncredited

A look at the various fins, strakes, flaps and winglets mounted on the floor ahead of the rear tyre.


Red Bull Racing RB16B front detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B front detail

Photo by: Uncredited

The narrow ‘S’-duct outlet is housed within the vanity panel and the ‘r’-shaped chassis fins beside it.


Red Bull Racing RB16B front brake comparison

Red Bull Racing RB16B front brake comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The shape of the front brake duct was altered during the season, with the lower quarter enlarged.


Red Bull Racing RB16B detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B detail

Photo by: Uncredited

As the floor is carried into the garage we’re treated to a different view of the various fins, strakes and flaps mounted on its edge.


Red Bull Racing RB16B bargeboard detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B bargeboard detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A top-down overview of the boomerang elements from the bargeboard cluster - note the slots in the surface which are required to match the slots in the elements below them on the reference plane.


Red Bull Racing RB16B engine detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B engine detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

With no engine cover on the RB16B we’re treated to a view of the Honda power unit.


Red Bull Racing RB16B detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Looking across at the diffuser with its serrated Gurney-like flaps that surround it but also note the vertical strakes on the lower edge of the rear wing endplate.


Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB16B

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB16B

Photo by: Uncredited

Repairs made to the rear wing at the United States Grand Prix included patches on the upper surface of the mainplane.


Red Bull Racing RB16B brake drum detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B brake drum detail

Photo by: Uncredited

The internal details of the rear brake and suspension components are exposed here as the bodywork has not been attached.


Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB16B

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB16B

Photo by: Uncredited

A look at some of the rear cooling options deployed by Red Bull, with the largest exit seen in the main image taken in Mexico.


Rear wing detail of Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB16B

Rear wing detail of Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB16B

Photo by: Uncredited

Fixes had to be made to the high downforce rear wings in Mexico, with the outer sections of the upper flap and the sinuous louvered sections on the endplates both patched up.


Red Bull Racing RB16B brake drum detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B brake drum detail

Photo by: Uncredited

The RB16B’s gearbox carrier, rear suspension and brakes are on display here as it’s worked on away from the car. Note the geometry difference in the rear suspension element as it morphs into a brake winglet. Also note how the lattice-like rear wing support is finished in gold to reflect the heat generated by the exhaust.


Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB16B

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB16B

Photo by: Erik Junius

Peering into the RB16B’s cockpit we can see the steering wheel and the various buttons, switches and rotaries used by the driver to control power unit, chassis functions and communicate with the team.


Red Bull Racing RB16B diffuser detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B diffuser detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A good angle at the rear of the car here to see how much the diffuser ramps upwards from the nested section under the crash structure.


Red Bull Racing RB16B in the garage

Red Bull Racing RB16B in the garage

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

This shot of the RB16B on the stands not only gives us a view of the front brake duct assembly but with the floor off the car we can see the shape of the strakes mounted on its leading edge.


Red Bull Racing RB16B front suspension detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B front suspension detail

Photo by: Uncredited

A look at some of the inboard suspension elements on the RB16B without the vanity panel in place.


Red Bull Racing RB16B front brake detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B front brake detail

Photo by: Uncredited

The front brake assembly on the RB16B without the drum cover in place gives us a view of some of the internal elements. Note the pipework running across the top of the assembly that takes airflow from one of the channels within the inlet and delivers it across the face of the axle.


Red Bull Racing RB16B engine detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B engine detail

Photo by: Uncredited

Without the engine cover in place we’re able to see the saddle cooler mounted above the Honda power unit.


Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B rear wing detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The DRS pod and pillar bodywork is not in place in this image from Saudi Arabia, which allows us to see the housing, actuator and linkages in use. Also note that the team have patched the wing due to some of the issues seen earlier in the season.


Red Bull Racing RB16B rim detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B rim detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The surface of the wheel rim that’s rarely seen due to the tyre being mounted on it - note the ribbed design used to help with heat transfer and how the ribbing changes depending on the shape of the rim.


Red Bull Racing RB16B airbox detail

Red Bull Racing RB16B airbox detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

A look at the pipework at the front of the Honda power unit, including the upper airbox which feeds coolers mounted above and behind it, the cobra-shaped compressor feed and the turbo inlet and outlet boost pipes.


Red Bull Racing RB16B DRS gap checking

Red Bull Racing RB16B DRS gap checking

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

One of the Red Bull mechanics checked that the wing complies with the 85mm gap allowed when DRS is open.

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The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push

As the driver of Formula 1’s medical car, Alan van der Merwe’s job is to wait – and hope his skills aren’t needed. James Newbold hears from F1’s lesser-known stalwart.

Formula 1
Jan 15, 2022