Senior technical figures in Formula 1 believe the sport is doing the right thing by following IndyCar’s lead on aerodynamics to improve racing in 2021.Concept drawings of how F1 cars could look following sweeping changes to the technical regulations indicate the sport’s owners want to use the car’s floor to generate a greater proportion of total downforce than its upper surfaces. This has been a trend in IndyCar racing for several years, notably when the championship introduced its new aero kit last season.
“Moving towards more of a ‘ground effect’ car going forward, I think that definitely comes from the north American series,” said Racing Point technical director Andrew Green. “Which, if we’re looking at trying to have the cars race closer together, then I think that’s the right thing to do, that makes complete sense.”
However Green believes F1 must retain the cutting-edge technical which is part of its identity. “We need to keep Formula One at the pinnacle,” he said. “It needs to be a technological amazement really.
“That’s where I think the sport needs to be, it’s not just about having cars that are close, it’s about a bit more of a wow factor and we need to make sure we don’t lose any of that.”
Red Bull chief engineer Paul Monaghan agreed F1 “can learn from other series” like IndyCar. “I think in that the way they generate their downforce is of interest to us.
“The question becomes can they run closer, can we still maintain differentiation between the cars as opposed to stock bodywork as they would call it over there?
“So I think you keep an open mind and you look and you learn and you don’t assume that you have perfect knowledge. I think that open-mindedness will serve us well.”
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