Daily Archives: January 29, 2010

Yet another diffuser row?

McLaren's diffuser was blocked away

McLaren's diffuser was blocked away

The prospect of another diffuser row boiling up again appears to have come back, with many teams pursuing “extreme” solutions.

At the launch of the McLaren MP4-25 today, McLaren engineering director Paddy Lowe said the team had had pushed the diffuser regulations as far as possible. Not only this, but he believes that other teams will go for extreme solutions. He said:

“This is the first car in which we have had a clean sheet of paper to really exploit the interpretation [of diffusers] that was developed last year for a design of floors,” said Lowe.

“You will see we have produced a fairly extreme incarnation of that but we won’t be alone in that. We believe you will see some pretty extreme solutions on our competitors’ cars as well.”

The writing on the wall comes from the fact that, when the MP4-25 was launched today, the diffuser was blocked from view with black boards. However, Lowe believes there is no rule infringement, saying:

“We think the interpretation is very clear,” he said. “In certain aspects we have sought guidance from the FIA and they have come out with very clear interpretation, understanding and guidance – and we think that has been made available to all the teams.”

“We are hoping for a much cleaner start to the season then we had a year ago in terms of the teams’ collective understanding of the basis from which we go racing.”

Ferrari, however, say differently. Aldo Costa told Gazzetta dello Sport:

“We were and still are convinced that the double diffuser concept was illegal. We feel there may still be interpretation over this, as the rules leave the door open to many possibilities. It’s up to the FIA to supervise, but we are rather worried.”

This sort of thing coming up again would just be a disaster. The double-decker diffuser row last year put so much doubt into people’s minds and, as Fernando Alonso predicted, decided the outcome of the championship. Hopefuly, the FIA have learnt their lessons from last year, and hopefully the teams won’t have been too radical with this year’s design.

Stefan GP have deal with Toyota

Toyota's technical data may go to Stefan GP

Toyota's technical data may go to Stefan GP

Stefan GP have claimed that they are on course to enter Formula 1, as they have agreed a deal with Toyota.

A statement on the Stefan Gp site said:

“Stefan GP has just come to a basic agreement with Toyota Motorsport GmbH (TMG) that Stefan GP will receive technical supports from TMG.”

It’s good to see that Toyota’s technical data hasn’t been wasted. Martin Whitmarsh said earlier today that it was odd that nobody had yet aquired Toyota’s technical information.

Toyota had already started on their Tf110, so it is obvious that Stefan GP was planning to race that car as their S-01 for 2010. This is because they claim they have already passed the mandatory FIA crash tests, and was being sent for further testing.

At the moment, there are already 13 teams on the grid, and some teams (ie. Williams and nobody else, surprise surprise!) do not want 14 teams on the grid. So, at the moment, the only way for Stefan GP to get in is if another team drops out. Campos, USF1 or maybe Renault in a year’s time would be the only chances.

However, there is little to no chance of them getting to the grid for 2010 grid. However, another opportunity arises here, as that means that Stefan GP can offer unlimited testing to as many young drivers as they want, for an entire year. Not only would this be a brilliant opportunity for many young drivers, but it would give huge amounts of technical data to the team. Toyota did this in 2001, where they decided to stay out of entering F1 for an extra year, and do more testing.

Virgin VR-01 to launch online on Wednesday

Virgin Racing

Virgin Racing

Virgin Racing have announced that they are to launch their car online, on their team website, on Wednesday 3rd February.

The car, to be called the VR-01, will make its track debut at the second Valencia test.

Virgin have called it an “all-digital” launch, to coincide with the fact that they are only using Computer Fluid Dynamics (CFD) as opposed to normal wind tunnels.

The car will be launched at 10:00 GMT. Hopefully they have more server capabilities than Ferrari, whose site was overrun when they launched their F10 last Wednesday.

I have added this to my list of launches on the F1 2010 page.

McLaren MP4-25 launched (pictures)

The new McLaren MP4-25

The new McLaren MP4-25

McLaren’s new MP4-25 was released today, though some picture were leaked early online.

At the launch in Newbury, Lewis Hamilton was joined by new team-mate Jenson Button.

The most striking part of the new car is the shark fin engine cover. The red stripe on it looks brilliant! Otherwise, the wheelbase has been largely lengthened, with the driver area moved forward to accomodate this. The bargeboards are now shorter, with a higher angle of attack.

The front wing has many new sections, including a completely revised bridge wing. The endplates are also heavily changes, with two main vertical sections. Also, the front wing is higher, wider and more flat.

To be honest, I think it’s much vetter looking than last year’s car. I’m dissapointed that the paint scheme is nearly exactly the same, as I would have loved them to revert to their traditional black, or even orange!

F1 Fanatic have done some great pictures comparing the McLaren and the Ferrari, and the McLaren against last year’s car.

Here is a part of the launch (I didn’t include the full launch, it was just talk!):

More pictures from the launch:

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