Formula 1 has opened several fronts this year, and one of them is if with the change of regulation will be more or less overtaking. The new legislation gives the cars more downforce, but also more mechanical grip thanks to the wider tires.
it Is estimated that the combination of both things will allow the cars of a step curve that will allow pilots to roll an average of three seconds per lap faster than in 2016. Obviously this estimate will depend very much on each circuit, but what is obvious is that the cars are going to earn performance in a very remarkable manner.
Now, how will all of this influence the overtaking? There is a division of opinion in this regard and several are the protagonists of the Formula 1 which have been pronounced on the side more pessimistic.
Pat Symonds, until a few weeks ago the Technical Director of Williams, stated that “the more grip aerodynamic to have the car, the more difficult it will be to follow the front. In 2017 we will have more grip aerodynamic, so that regardless of the quirks and shortcuts that the Working Group can be found in against of a true scientific process, the fact is that with more grip aerodynamic is more difficult to overtake. It may be a little simplistic, but it is true”.
Adrian Newey has a point of view similar to that of Symonds and affects a very important aspect: the braking distance. The higher the downforce, the less will be the distance to get the car a higher capacity brake and that causes that the faster rider has less space to mark differences and to consummate the overtaking. “it Is a mixture of things, feelings are found. Downforce extra is quite large, and that means that the fast corners like Copse at Silverstone, will be at the bottom now, even in the race, so some of them will simply be a twist in the straight line rather than fast cornering. The cars will be more physical, but what that means for the overtaking is a bit worrying. It means that the braking distances will be very short”.
“we Want to make sure that the tires do not reach the peak temperature that has prevented the riders to advance in some occasions“.
on the other hand, Paul Hembery, the maximum responsible of Pirelli, believes the Italian brand will be able to offset the increase of aerodynamic load and, therefore, the turbulence generated by the car that is intended to be advance, complicating the pilot driving behind you can approach. A higher ratio of mechanical grip makes it possible to compensate these turbulence and allow the pilot to get closer to your opponent. To this end, Pirelli has chosen two solutions: the first to increase the width of the tires and the second work in a lower overheating of the same to not force the rider to lift your foot to lose grip and durability. “The downforce is increased significantly. The performance requirements are to improve five seconds with respect to the lap times of 2015. In reality, having seen an improvement of two seconds, since the last year, this year is likely to be a substantial improvement in the times. The change is huge, increasing the width of the tire front and rear on six and eight centimeters respectively, look good. The intention is that it is easier for teams to advance: if you are following another car, we want to make sure that the tires do not reach the peak temperature that has prevented the riders to advance in some occasions. Of course, this will only work if you also reduce the impact of the aerodynamics of a car with respect to another. It is assumed that we will improve on aerodynamics. I would not say that there is an opinion universal on this”.
In terms similar moves Charlie Whiting, which points out the increase of mechanical grip as the key of the subject. “it Is incorrect to say that the improvement of the lap times will come only from the downforce, simply because I should not be so. We have had countless meetings with the technical directors of each team and we have had a wide range of proposals, from a huge amount of downforce to a very low level. Everything is based on the premise that there will be a significant increase of the mechanical grip, so that, inevitably, we ended up at an intermediate point. Half of that improvement will come from the mechanical grip, and the other half of the downforce. One of the aspects that we have discussed is that we should not make it more difficult to follow another car, has been one of the fundamental principles. I think we have done the best we can, given that we have to have all points of view. We’ve discussed it in depth with Pirelli”.
“For me, an overtaking with DRS is not something memorable, it is only a solution for the cars to come forward“.
in Parallel, there are other aspects that could have an impact on overtaking. On the one hand, the relaxation of the regulation to sanction certain actions, that will pursue only those actions clearly dangerous and in which a pilot is totally at fault. In addition, the DRS will have a greater influence on the tenor of what is said by characters in the paddock as Adrian Newey, although it remains to be seen that this improves the show. “of course, can be solved with the DRS, but for me, an overtaking with DRS is not something memorable, it is only a solution for the cars to come forward. The overtaking that we remember are the really risky: Mark Webber passing Alonso in Eau Rouge. It was a movement very brave and well executed, but it was immediately corrected by Fernando on the following straight by having DRS”.
Kevin Magnussen also believes that the increased downforce this year will lead to an increase of the influence of the DRS and that could help the indexes of overtaking is maintained at levels similar to those in 2016. “The DRS should have a greater effect than the last year, since the rear spoiler to generate more downforce and drag. When we open the DRS, the difference with the car ahead of him should be greater. I think it will be more difficult to stay close with more downforce, but we have to esperar”.
#EncuestaF1 | How to Reduce the new regulations from 2017 overtaking? Votes and comments: https://t.co/ALPczKUuDb #EncuestaMotorEs
— engine.is () February 13, 2017
Thus, what is your point of view? do you think that Formula 1 will return to create long processions characteristic of the Operation Output of Semana Santa, or the new tires -along with the DRS – will allow us to continue enjoying alternatives in the race? say what you think through comments of this article, Facebook, the survey on twitter or the hashtag #EncuestaMotor.is and the Friday, February 17, we will discuss the results and your comments more relevant.