Ross Brawn has rejected claims the aerodynamic changes for the 2021 F1 season will make the cars “nasty to drive”.warned there are “fundamental issues” with the planned overhaul in the sport’s technical regulations. He believes the ground effect-generating ‘tunnels’ which are being added to the cars’ floors will be affected by ‘dirty air’ generated at the front of the car.
However Brawn said he does not believe Racing Point have been able to simulate the new regulations accurately enough to make that claim, due in part to the move towards 18-inch wheels.
“The knowledge and complexity of the cars we have today is incredibly refined in terms of what the teams are doing,” he said. “It wasn’t that long ago, for instance, there didn’t exist a decent tyre model in terms of the aerodynamic impact the tyre has, because the front tyre is incredibly influential on the way the aerodynamics work.
“One reason we’ve gone to an 18-inch wheel is partly to reduce that, because the movement of the sidewalls are so extreme on a 13-inch wheel. You can imagine in cornering, you’ve got this very dynamic tyre that’s distorting like mad at the contact patch and not distorting halfway up. I’d be amazed if Andrew Green has got a tyre model yet of an 18-inch tyre that tells him what the tyres are doing in cornering. We have. I don’t think he was.
[icon2019autocoursempu]”But just stepping back, this refinement has only existed in the last few years. I can remember 10 years ago we didn’t have the knowledge or simulations. We didn’t know what was going on. And I don’t think the cars 10 years ago were nasty to drive. I think we were a bit less refined than where they are now. So I think it’s a bit premature to say that.”
Brawn suspects Racing Point have done less work on assessing the 2021 rules changes than their rivals.
“When we started work on the aero programme, Force India/Racing Point declared they would not be able to support the 2021 programme and have not been able to contribute anything to this program because of the resources they have. So they’ve probably done the least amount of work on this program of any of the teams we’ve been involved.
“So it’s a bit of an unfortunate statement to be critical at this stage as I think it’s premature and not based on any facts they have, maybe opinion. I think once he gets into it properly designing his car he’ll smooth out any anomalies he may have imagined.”
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