The race that opens the 73rd Formula 1 championship this Sunday in Bahrain (10 am Star+ TV) It will not be one more in the statistics because it contains the premiere of numerous technical changes in the vehicles, several of which this time go beyond the abstract technical content to also move to the aesthetic plane.
A modification “delays” the tires that were mounted on 13-inch wheels, obsolete today even in popular street cars.
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The wider and taller tires are shod on 18-inch wheels.. This implies that the shoulders of the wheels are lowerthese deform less when leaning on curves and generate a more stable and predictable behavior.
The wider wheels allow for larger brakes, which is another important addition to the standards.
There are two other major hits to the eye. To better channel the air to the rear wing and kill the turbulence generated by the wheels when the car is running at 300 kilometers per hourfins similar to the fenders of a car but that respect the concept that they are cars with open wheels are allowed.
With the same purpose, on the rims you will now see some caps assimilable to the
trim cups of a normal car.
Although the shapes of the bodies are very different according to the aerodynamic studies of each team and walk through various proportions of the silhouette of a Coca-Cola bottle, all the cars have now been designed so that the floor and the sides conform a wing that generates a very important load without so many appendages and windows that contributed little to the figure and complicated the costly work in the wind tunnels.
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Now the full car produces what worked many years ago and was banned because it made cars move like a railway and became known as the “ground effect”.
It is such a way as the “floor sucks the car” that compresses the springs to the top and when they rebound they make the car jump at high speed on the straights, phenomenon called “porpoising” in the jargon of the track, and that has afflicted everyone in rehearsals and does not seem fully resolved despite the high doses of circulating engineering.
All this aerodynamic hygiene was regulated to cancel the turbulence that each car generates behind its spoiler. In that dirty air, the chase cars were not stable and trying to get out of the predecessor’s tunnel to overtake was very dangerous.
Although no one has complained, no one has said that the result is remarkable, but for this we will have to see the 22 races on the calendar.
Curiously, this time the rules did not touch the engines, although it has been complex to adapt them to the new, more ecological fuel with 10 percent ethanol, which is the same proportion that our cars consume on a daily basis.
Gone through the back door the Russian pilot Nikita Mazepin, along with the juicy check from his father’s fertilizer firm (Uralkali)and the race in their homeland, all because of the blockade against Russia, the Haas team called in their old acquaintance and expert at the last minute: Kevin Magnussen.
a chinese pilot
The payroll omits the name of Kimi Räikkönen, who requested voluntary withdrawal from the Alfa Romeo team, to which Valtteri Bottas ended up after leaving seat two of the Mercedes team free for the Englishman George Russel, next to Lewis Hamilton.
In turn, Russell’s job has been handed over to another veteran, Alex Albon, who is returning from a gap year.
The other novelty in the staff is the arrival for the first time of a Chinese driver in F1, Zhou Guanyu, who will be the only rookie in a tournament in which the premieres are essentially mechanical rather than human.
Max Verstappen will defend his title and Hamilton comes out for the eighth, overcoming the world controversy that unleashed the definition of last year’s championship after unconcealable mistakes by the race director, the Australian Michael Massi, who was belatedly relieved of his position in a tacit acceptance by the FIA of the mismanagement of such a decisive event and that went down in history more for being scandalous than for a juicy product of fair play to designate a champion.
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And a small word in the regulation that governs now clarifies the norm of coleros cars under “pace cars”, which was ambiguous and gave rise to such nonsense.
The cars are now 43 kilos heavier (driver included) due to larger tires and wheels and other accessories which are why they go slower than last year, but, as has always happened, before long the speed gurus will be put back in the record book.
To date, 770 drivers have raced in the 1,057 grands prix, but only 34 have been champions and four are active: Hamilton, Verstappen, Alonso and Vettel. The sieve has a fine mesh: Verstappen and Hamilton pass as favorites for 2022, but teams like McLaren and Ferrari arrive with many improvements, still to be certified against the clock, after only six days of testing that left more doubts than truths about the potential of each team. We will see what Bahrain says today.
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