Mercedes revert to long wheelbase W01

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Mercedes has confirmed it will revert to using the long wheelbase version of the W01 in next week’s Turkish Grand Prix.

Ross Brawn added the team have “major and very challenging upgrades” planned for the next few races:

I am encouraged that we have made progress over the last two races and that we have identified our areas of weakness which we are working hard to rectify. We have some major and very challenging upgrades for the next few races which have been made possible by the commitment and hard work of everyone at the factory over the past weeks.

In Turkey, we will return to our previous suspension system and longer wheelbase car, we have the latest iteration of our ‘F-duct’ rear wing plus further aerodynamic developments.
Ross Brawn

The longer W01 has only been used at the Spanish Grand Prix so far this year – the team believed the shorter wheelbase car was better-suited to the Monte-Carlo track.

Nico Rosberg said he was looking forward to racing at Istanbul Park, especially because of the track’s distinctive and challenging turn eight:

Istanbul Park is a great circuit and one of the best of the newer tracks that we visit. From a drivers’ point of view, the layout provides some good opportunities for overtaking with a very wide track, lots of late braking zones and gradient changes. Turn Eight is the corner that everyone talks about. The triple apex is probably one of the longest corners that we drive and it has very high G levels. It’s great fun to drive and you can make up a lot of time there if you get it just right.
Nico Rosberg

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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28 comments on “Mercedes revert to long wheelbase W01”

  1. With upgrades coming for Vettel, the question is can anybody catch Red Bull?

    1. Vettel’s getting a new chassis, rather than specific upgrades not available to his team mate, just to be clear.

      1. Do you think Vettel’s chassis been deteriorating? I think they are getting a new chassis for Vettel for the psychological boost.

        1. Ferrari did that for Raikkonen in 2008, as I recall. Hard to tell what effect it had because it was in time for Spa, his/one of his(?) favourite track(s).

          1. I remember Ferrari giving a new lightened chassis to Raikkonen in 2009 due to fix weight distribution with KERS and because he was a bit heavier than his team mate Massa..

      2. “Vettel’s getting a new chassis, rather than specific upgrades not available to his team mate, just to be clear.”

        Unless they introduce their F-duct in Turkey.

        1. Aussie Fan
          22nd May 2010, 7:37

          In which case I’m sure BOTH drivers would get the wing stalling device (F-Duct is a Mclaren only thing, unless the others have been running “Vodafone” signs on their rear wings without me noticing????)

      3. Keith do you believe on this recent news about cracked chassis im remebering schumacher senna and now vettel do they discovered that problem on this year spec or they werent used to check chassis.or may this be just an excuse

        1. I don’t believe they’d wheel out a new chassis as a vanity exercise. Remember Alonso won one of his championships using the same chassis for every race.

          1. Also, Button won the championship with the same chassis from Australia to Brazil and used a different chassis for Abu Dhabi.

    2. Does that mean that he is divorcing “Lucious Liz”?!?!?

      1. Relationships can be so fickle.

      2. What will he name the next one??

        1. Lucious Liz’s dirty sister? :P

        2. Mark’s dirty sister?

          1. inc0mmunicado
            21st May 2010, 15:08

            The girl’s names for his cars seem to have been alphabetical for a while. How appropriate it would be Mark’s dirty sister!

          2. If nothing else surely that’ll start a row between them!

          3. Ha ha…he’ll get hammered by Mark if he even thinks about it

          4. Didn’t Mark get a specially lightened chassis for Spain?

  2. Er is it me or are the teams finding faults that can allow them to change their cars parts?I’m not sure but aren’t the teams not allowed to alter their chassis?

    1. newnhamlea1
      21st May 2010, 14:25

      no the chassis design is homolhogated not the actual chassis itself, they could have a new chassis for every race if they wanted one, but they would all have to be identical.

  3. Is it me or are the teams using these so called faults as a reason to change parts of their cars they are not supposed to change?please clarify this for me I’m sure they not supposed to alter their chassis!

    1. The chassis has to be the same specification as the one that was homologated at the start of the year. In general damaged chassis are being replaced with ones that have been used in pre-season testing, not brand new ones, so there isn’t any scope for teams to make alterations.

      1. Can I ask for a little more explanation of this point?
        It seems to me that Mercedes now have two different chassis, the ‘long’ and the ‘short’ wheelbases, and they are allowed to pick which one they want to race at each circuit?
        I find it particulary strange, since they revised the chassis for Old Schuey, but both drivers had the old chassis in Monaco.
        Now are they both getting the new chassis for Turkey?
        Why do none of the other teams feel the need to have two different chassis?
        If this goes on, Schuey will just have to moan before every race and he will have a completely different car built for qualifying and racing!

  4. They did a good job in Spain with the longer wheelbase car & if the upgrade is good then it should help them in those awesome turn 8.Red Bull too will introduce F-Duct in Turkey, but the question will the track help overtaking as Nico said?

  5. I really liked the look of Nico in that shorter wheelbase car. If it did have a touch of understeer, then to me that’s something that worked well with his smoother driving style. He just looked so balanced in those opening rounds, unlike the ‘upgraded’ car, where you could almost sense the back end sliding out from him every time he got on the throttle. If this basic premise is true and his driving style is more or less the opposite of Michael’s, then it’s a real pity, because I can’t see him being as big a threat as he was before. I feel he’s much underrated and was hoping that image would change at some point during the season with a win, or continuous stream of high finishes. As well as hoping for Mark to perform a three-peat in Turkey, I’ll be watching Nico with interest and hope that he’s not having to work that wheel too hard.

    1. Electrolite
      22nd May 2010, 22:04

      Nice has said himself his style is ‘the same as Michael’s’, so I don’t we need to worry about that. My guess is that sooner or later Nico was going to come behind Schuey in a race – it just so happened to be after they’d changed the wheelbase, so obviously everyone was quick to assume they’d changed it in Michael’s favour when Nico’s said it himself he prefers the changes too!

  6. keith is the half moon shape on the wing of the mercedes there version of the f-duct or the rw80 shell i say and if it is how much of advantage does it give them thanks

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