Formula 1 : Bosses of “F-1”, even after a super-successful season for them, are trying to improve the regulations and make the fight on the track more spectacular. In 2022, a new technical regulation comes into force, which is designed to make it easier to chase a car and improve the situation with overtaking.
For more than 70 years of history in the “Formula 1” technical rules have been adjusted many times. Sometimes they were revolutions, sometimes they were just small adjustments to improve safety. And if, in the case of minor amendments to the rules, practically nothing changed in terms of the speed of the cars, then with a complete change in the regulations, there was almost always a change in the leader.
You don’t have to go far for examples. In 2009, Brown found a loophole in the rules and unexpectedly won the championship for everyone, and in 2014, Mercedes built such a fast and reliable car that only Red Bull managed to catch up with them eight years later.
In general, the new regulation was supposed to come into force in 2021, but the pandemic intervened, and they decided to postpone its implementation for a year, and the teams had additional time for engineering and design work.
What was the purpose of the F1 bosses when they wrote the new regulations? It’s no secret that in the “royal races” for several decades there has been a problem with the pursuit of cars and overtaking. It’s all about the design of the cars, namely the numerous wings, flaps and multi-story structures in front of the side pontoons, which are designed to structure the air flow and direct it in the right direction.
But these same elements of the car’s design then direct the airflow back directly onto the car behind. And since the flows come in very scattered, the aerodynamics of the pursuing car stops working, the car loses downforce, starts to slide and overheat the rubber.
There are calculations that show that in order to overtake the car in front, the pursuing car must be about a second or a half faster in order to comfortably stay in the disturbed stream and carry out an attack. To simplify overtaking, 15 years ago, an electronically controlled flap was added to the rear wing design, which the pilot can open if he is less than a second from the car in front. We know her as DRS.
This helps to increase the speed on the straights by an average of 10 km / h and carry out an attack. At the same time, this element in any case makes overtaking more artificial, which of course is not as popular with the fans as a pure fight.
What will change in the design of the car from 2022? Firstly, numerous flaps will disappear, the front and rear wings will be significantly simplified. Thus, it is expected that the dependence of the machine holder on the air flow will be drastically reduced. Secondly, the so-called “ground effect” will return. Its essence is that a special bottom design is allowed in the car, which will allow the car to literally stick to the asphalt, regardless of the quality of the air flow coming to the car.
Similar technology was already used in F-1 in the 1980s, but it was decided to be abandoned in favor of complex wings. The thing is that the cars of those years were very light, and coupled with the “ground effect”, an unsuccessful collision with an obstacle lifted the car into the air.
But now the cars are almost twice as heavy, so this should not be a problem. But in theory, the new technical regulations can really help with overtaking. Let’s not forget about the fact that there are always gray areas in any F1 rules, and this or that team regularly finds them.
In fact, even Haas can shoot if they find a solution that provides a sufficient advantage over the rest, as Brown did in 2009. About a month is left before the official presentation of the cars, and another week before the official tests. Very soon we will find out who did the best job in the winter.
Among other notable innovations, we note the appearance of 18-inch wheels instead of 13-inch ones. The new wheels look more modern, but are about 15 kg heavier than the previous ones. So, at least for the first time, it will be possible to forget about pit stops of 2-2.5 seconds.