Lance Stroll, Williams, Hungaroring, 2018

Williams reintroduce Silverstone rear wing which caused spins

2018 Hungarian Grand Prix

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Williams is running the high downforce rear wing specification which it was forced to remove during the British Grand Prix weekend after it caused a series of spins.

Both the team’s drivers suffered high-speed spins when they closed DRS due to the airflow stalling. It chose to the rear wing for an older specification after qualifying, which meant both drivers had to start the race from the pits.

Following other changes to its car in Hockenheim it has now reintroduced the high-downforce rear wing for this weekend’s race in Hungary.

Sergey Sirotkin confirmed the wing is now working as it should. “We don’t see so far any single issue of what we had in Silverstone,” he said.

The team has been able to solve the problem with only minor changes, Sirotkin told RaceFans. “A little bit around the floor. A little bit of set-up of the wing itself. A few very little things but altogether seems like it makes the job.”

Chief technical officer Paddy Lowe said the problem which occurred while using DRS at Silverstone was a “side effect” of changes the team had made elsewhere on the car to improve the performance of its FW41.

“The problem we had in Silverstone was primarily a result of some change we made to the floor in the diffuser area, some fences,” he explained.

“In the position we’re in we were very aggressively, let’s say, with our attempts to improve performance. We used Fridays intensively to test parts and work with new parts.

“In Silverstone we made a step on Friday with modifications to the diffuser which were actually an improvement in cornering, took them forward to the race, but they had a side-effect of putting the car intermittently into stall in relation to use of DRS. It was effectively a side-effect of a step we’d introduced for cornering performance.

“So very unfortunate, very visible consequences to have to correct that for the race starting with cars in the pit lane. but we had no choice. It was something that had been entirely unexpected as a side-effect.”

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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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3 comments on “Williams reintroduce Silverstone rear wing which caused spins”

  1. So if they can find a way to get that effect only when in a straight line, they could make another step ;)

    Glad to see some indicators of progress from the team

  2. Would it be smart for the drivers to manually close the DRS ~25m before the braking zone, given that’s what was causing the issue before? Or would what Paddy alluded to with the diffuser mean they can brake normally and the DRS will close normally?

  3. Do you work around a problem, or do you find, and implement, a solution.?
    Sounds like they have done the latter. Not good news …. this is GREAT news.
    It shows that they are getting on top of the correlation issue from the simulation to the real world. Usually the key, it seems.
    Of course the next this is …. results. Good luck fellas. Already got the Bubbly in ice.

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