Giorgio Piola's F1 technical analysis

Tech analysis: How Force India optimised its design in Bahrain

Force India surprised with a raft of revised parts available for the Bahrain Grand Prix.

While we often talk about new parts arriving during a race weekend in order to improve performance, many of these parts are intrinsically the same, simply optimised in order to get the best from them.

All of the updated parts run by Force India represent incremental improvements, designed to rectify inefficiencies and work as a unit to lift the car's overall aerodynamic performance.

This is ahead of a much larger package of updates that will arrive a little later in order to meet the cooling targets, which the team openly admits it missed in the original design.

Turning vanes

Force India VJM10 turning vanes comparison
Force India VJM10 turning vanes comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The turning vanes, which are hung under the latter part of the nose and beginning of the chassis, saw the leading surface's main slot removed entirely (arrowed), while the shape of the rearward one was also revised (yellow line).

These changes have been made to rectify the positioning of the airflow as it is passed rearward to surfaces like the bargeboards, which were also amended.

Bargeboards

Force India VJM10, barge board
Force India VJM10, barge board

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

The bargeboards installed last weekend feature nine vertical slots placed in their upper edge, in comparison with the four that previously traversed the same-size bargeboard, meaning the aim is to work the airflow a little harder.

Furthermore, the pre-bargeboard has been significantly increased in length, almost mirroring the length of the main bargeboard and joining the floor's axehead.

The flow conditioner that previously straddled the entire width of the sidepod and was joined to the side of the cockpit has been truncated, simply framing the sidepod's shoulder and meeting with a vortex generator that has sprouted up from the upper surface of the sidepod.

A new conditioning vane has also sprouted up below the main structure (arrowed), wrapped closer to the sidepod's surface. This should help to maintain flow around the sidepod's undercut more effectively.

Splitter extensions

Force India VJM10 floor detail
Force India VJM10 floor detail

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

As part of a common theme that has sprung up among the teams, another section of floor now occupies the space between the bargeboard and leading edge of the main floor.

In the case of Force India, its updated pre-floor features three slots (arrowed) emanating from the leading edge, with a distinctive upturn presented to the airflow on the subsequent leading edge of each slot, allowing the airflow to migrate between the surfaces.

Shark fin

Force India VJM10, shark fin comprasion
Force India VJM10, shark fin comprasion

Photo by: LAT Images

The shark fin was optimised for Bahrain and now features a very different shape on the trailing edge (yellow line), in order to improve its performance and stabilise the car more in yaw.

Diffuser

Esteban Ocon, Force India VJM1
Esteban Ocon, Force India VJM1

Photo by: Sutton Motorsport Images / sutton-images.com

The diffuser was also modified, with the outermost and central channels raised in their profile (arrows) in order to entice more performance from their shape.

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Event Bahrain GP
Track Bahrain International Circuit
Teams Force India
Article type Analysis
Topic Giorgio Piola's F1 technical analysis