Symonds: 2019 F1 aero rules probably a mistake

Formula 1's chief technical officer Pat Symonds has admitted that the rushed 2019 aero rule changes aimed at helping overtaking were probably the wrong to do in hindsight.

Symonds: 2019 F1 aero rules probably a mistake
Listen to this article

The sport tweaked the front wing designs for last season in a bid to try to help make it easier for cars to follow each other.

Using some of the concept ideas that were triggered by early analysis for the 2021 rules, it was hoped that the revisions would offer some insight into how successful the future regulations would be.

However, the 2019 cars proved no easier to run close to each other and Symonds admits that the way last year's rules turned out were far from ideal.

Asked at the Autosport International Show about whether there had actually been value from the 2019 aero lessons, Symonds said: "In shaping these 2021 regs, probably not as much as I would have hoped for. They were done in a bit of a hurry. And, you know, with the benefit of hindsight, I wouldn't have done them.

"In terms of what they did to the wake of the car, relative to what we've done for 2021, it is minuscule. And, in fact, we had never run exactly the sort of configuration that the rules came up with. We'd done a lot of research by that time [the 2019 rules came out] in mid-18 and we were starting to understand critical areas, but we hadn't run the configuration we had to actually get some rules out for.

"So I think we could have done that whole exercise a bit better. But I don't regard that in any way as a precedent for what we've done into 2021."

Read Also:

Despite the overtaking difficulties, F1 produced a series of good races last year – something Symonds thinks will continue for 2020.

He also thinks teams will face a tough task when it comes to working out how best to split their development work between their current cars and their 2021 models.

"If there is domination at the front, then that dominant team, whoever it may be, can probably afford to switch a little bit earlier," he said. "But I think there's not going to be domination in front. I think there's going to be a good fight to the front.

"And that I hope will stop the teams from sitting back and just getting on with the '21 cars. Whereas some of the teams towards the back may be able to have a little bit more effort on the '21 car. So we should see a good season this season.

"And even though change generally will initially separate the cars before they start coming together again, I hope that in 2021 we're going to see good racing as well."

shares
comments
McLaren unveils partnership with long-time Williams sponsor
Previous article

McLaren unveils partnership with long-time Williams sponsor

Next article

Pirelli: F1 tyres likely to overheat more in 2020

Pirelli: F1 tyres likely to overheat more in 2020
Nicholas Latifi: The under-fire F1 driver fighting for his future Prime

Nicholas Latifi: The under-fire F1 driver fighting for his future

Personable, articulate and devoid of the usual racing driver airs and graces, Nicholas Latifi is the last Formula 1 driver you’d expect to receive death threats, but such was the toxic legacy of his part in last year’s explosive season finale. And now, as ALEX KALINAUCKAS explains, he faces a battle to keep his place on the F1 grid…

Formula 1
Aug 13, 2022
The strange tyre travails faced by F1’s past heroes Prime

The strange tyre travails faced by F1’s past heroes

Modern grand prix drivers like to think the tyres they work with are unusually difficult and temperamental. But, says  MAURICE HAMILTON, their predecessors faced many of the same challenges – and some even stranger…

Formula 1
Aug 12, 2022
The returning fan car revolution that could suit F1 Prime

The returning fan car revolution that could suit F1

Gordon Murray's Brabham BT46B 'fan car' was Formula 1 engineering at perhaps its most outlandish. Now fan technology has been successfully utilised on the McMurtry Speirling at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, could it be adopted by grand prix racing once again?

Formula 1
Aug 11, 2022
Hamilton's first experience of turning silver into gold Prime

Hamilton's first experience of turning silver into gold

The seven-time F1 champion has been lumbered with a duff car before the 2022 Mercedes. Back in 2009, McLaren’s alchemists transformed the disastrous MP4-24. And now it’s happening again at his current team

Formula 1
Aug 11, 2022
Why few would blame Leclerc if he leaves Ferrari in future Prime

Why few would blame Leclerc if he leaves Ferrari in future

OPINION: Ferrari's numerous strategy blunders, as well as some of his own mistakes, have cost Charles Leclerc dearly in the 2022 Formula 1 title battle in the first half of the season. Though he is locked into a deal with Ferrari, few could blame Leclerc if he ultimately wanted to look elsewhere - just as Lewis Hamilton did with McLaren 10 years prior.

Formula 1
Aug 9, 2022
The other McLaren exile hoping to follow Perez's path to a top F1 seat Prime

The other McLaren exile hoping to follow Perez's path to a top F1 seat

After being ditched by McLaren earlier in his F1 career Sergio Perez fought his way back into a seat with a leading team. BEN EDWARDS thinks the same could be happening to another member of the current grid

Formula 1
Aug 8, 2022
How studying Schumacher helped make Coulthard a McLaren F1 mainstay Prime

How studying Schumacher helped make Coulthard a McLaren F1 mainstay

Winner of 13 grands prix including Monaco and survivor of a life-changing plane crash, David Coulthard could be forgiven for having eased into a quiet retirement – but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, in fact he’s busier than ever, running an award-winning media company and championing diversity in motor racing. Not bad for someone who, by his own admission, wasn’t quite the fastest driver of his generation…

Formula 1
Aug 7, 2022
Could F1 move to a future beyond carbon fibre? Prime

Could F1 move to a future beyond carbon fibre?

Formula 1 has ambitious goals for improving its carbon footprint, but could this include banishing its favoured composite material? Pat Symonds considers the alternatives to carbon fibre and what use, if any, those materials have in a Formula 1 setting

Formula 1
Aug 6, 2022