Revealed: Red Bull's trick front wing secrets

Formula 1's closed events this year have made it much harder for the technical secrets of teams to be revealed, with photographers not able to get as close to the cars as before.

Revealed: Red Bull's trick front wing secrets
Listen to this article

Eventually, however, the key details of all the designs do emerge – as happened in Russia when Ferrari's latest upgrades were exposed by Sebastian Vettel's qualifying crash.

The lack of action on the opening day of the Eifel Grand Prix has meant more time to analyse what the teams are doing in their garage, and that has helped us get a brilliant insight in to an interesting front wing solution on the Red Bull RB16.

The team's mechanics are normally very careful about how they present the wing to the front of the car, well aware that viewing it from the right angle can reveal its inner workings.

And that is what happened at the Nurburgring as the team inadvertently exposed the underside of the wing momentarily, giving us sight of a furrow that's been ploughed in the underside of the footplate region. (See red arrow below)

Red Bull Racing RB16 front wing footplate detail

Red Bull Racing RB16 front wing footplate detail

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

While it is not entirely clear what the intent of this furrow is, it has raised the question about whether it is simply a crevice to alter the distribution of pressure, or whether there's a larger system at play that helps improve the outwash effect and reduce the turbulence created by the front tyre.

Read Also:

Red Bull Racing RB16 front wing end plate detail

Red Bull Racing RB16 front wing end plate detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The intricate design of the footplate, both on the upper and lower surface, would suggest the latter and indicates that a hollow endplate may have been deployed by Red Bull. This design appears to feed two blowholes on the trailing edge of the endplate.

This could help simulate the sort of effect that taking a notch out of the corner might have, given that many teams favoured such a solution last season when the regulations were fresh.

Red Bull Racing RB16 front wing footplate detail

Red Bull Racing RB16 front wing footplate detail

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

Irrespective of the actual makeup of this solution, it appears that Adrian Newey and Red Bull are once again pushing the aerodynamic boundaries in their bid to close the gap to Mercedes.

The RB16 has been a tricky car to handle this season, with it suffering from some aero imbalances, but the team has been working hard on improving its consistency and mastering this front wing area could have been a key part of its focus.

shares
comments

Related video

Honda's F1 exit won't impact Tsunoda's future - Tost
Previous article

Honda's F1 exit won't impact Tsunoda's future - Tost

Next article

FIA reveals contingency plan for Eifel GP

FIA reveals contingency plan for Eifel GP
The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants Prime

The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants

OPINION: Mercedes endured its worst season of the hybrid Formula 1 era, but was mercifully spared its first winless campaign in over a decade late on. It has owned up to the mistakes it made which led to its troubled W13. And while its task to return to title-challenging contention is not small, its 2022 season seems more like a blip than the beginning of a downward spiral.

The physical focus bringing out the best from Esteban Ocon Prime

The physical focus bringing out the best from Esteban Ocon

Esteban Ocon likes to point out he’s the first driver since Lewis Hamilton to emerge from a spell as Fernando Alonso’s teammate with a superior overall points record. While some may disagree, as LUKE SMITH discovered, the 2021 Hungarian GP winner reckons it’s not just luck which has made him France’s pre-eminent Formula 1 driver of the moment…

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2022
How Red Bull's dynamic leader Mateschitz shaped its F1 philosophy Prime

How Red Bull's dynamic leader Mateschitz shaped its F1 philosophy

The death of Dietrich Mateschitz last month has not only deprived Red Bull of its visionary founder, it has shorn Formula 1 of one of its most influential benefactors. Mateschitz himself was famously media-shy, preferring to let the brand do the talking on his behalf. And, while it’s now normal to speak of Red Bull F1 titles and champions made, Mateschitz never assumed it would be easy or even possible – as ANTHONY ROWLINSON discovered during this previously unpublished interview from 2006…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2022
Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom? Prime

Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom?

OPINION: Teams that have dominated for long periods throughout Formula 1's history often take years to get back to the top of the tree once they've slipped down. But it remains to be seen whether the same will happen to Mercedes after a challenging 2022 season

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2022
What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi Prime

What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi

Arguably the favourite in the battle to finish second-best in 2022's Formula 1 standings, Sergio Perez's two-stop strategy at Abu Dhabi couldn't take him ahead of Charles Leclerc when the music stopped - and several key factors ultimately precluded him from the much-coveted runner-up spot.

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2022
The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success Prime

The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success

OPINION: Charles Leclerc achieved his target of sealing runner-up in the 2022 world championship with a masterful drive behind Max Verstappen in Abu Dhabi. And that race contained key elements that may help him, and Ferrari, go one better in Formula 1 2023

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2022
2022 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

2022 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Driver Ratings

The 2022 Formula 1 season came to a close at the Yas Marina Circuit, where the battle for second in the standings was decided, the wins in a season record extended and a retiring four-time world champion bowed out on a high. Here's how we rated the drivers

Formula 1
Nov 21, 2022
The factors that stopped Perez catching Leclerc in Verstappen's Abu Dhabi triumph Prime

The factors that stopped Perez catching Leclerc in Verstappen's Abu Dhabi triumph

Max Verstappen ended the 2022 Formula 1 season in fitting fashion with a dominant drive to victory in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. But behind him, early season rival Charles Leclerc achieved his target of securing the runner-up spot with a well-executed a one-stop strategy to beat Sergio Perez, whose pursuit on a two-stop strategy was hampered by several critical factors

Formula 1
Nov 21, 2022