Skip to main content

How To Fix F1

It's hard to see how F1 can fix its woes this season. In fact its going to be a season spent praying for inclement weather, safety cars and qualifying problems to mix up grids.

So what this graphic represents is a model for fixing the issues with overtaking and side by side racing.

1. Front wings and nose. My new formula calls for a standard single plane front wing devoid of Gurney flaps. With the need for air over the front of the car to generate front-end down force reduced, it should be possible for a car to follow another car through a corner in order to gain a tow down the subsequent straight. There will also be a requirement for the monocoque to have a flat floor with no gaps or twin keel type arrangements for the same reason.

2. Tyres and brakes. Tyres get wider - about 30% wider than today's Bridgestone. This further increases mechanical grip and coupled with the new front wing should see a car able to closely follow another through a corner in order to line up an attack. The greater tyre size should see extra drag to keep top speed manageable despite wing size reductions. Reintroduce a tyre war, use some of the funds in F1 to incentivise manufacturers and offset their development costs. Stick with two compounds per race but ban planned pitstops. Restrict pit crew to five people to ensure only necessary stops are made. Brakes must have steel discs in order to increase braking distances.

3. No airboxes or aerodynamic devices above the plane of the sidepods.

4. Fixed length sidepods between wheels, no other protrusions barring rear view mirrors. Defined minimum and maximum side pod height and no venting through the top or sides of the pod itself.

5. Standard rear wing mounted much further back and restricted to one plane and one Gurney flap. No bodywork to protrude beyond the centreline of the rear axle. Height and length of the rear wing support governed by min and max dimensions. Rear wing width reduced to 75cms.

How will this help F1? Firstly the concept of following a car through a corner will return. Also drivers will need to setup their cars for both heavy/new tyre and light/old tyre circumstances. Inevitably different drivers, teams and tyre companies will reach different compromises leading to different drivers being quick at different points in the race. Drivers will also have to balance speed and tyre conservation whilst second guessing their opponents.

For the teams expenditure will be reduced - the standard front and rear wings plus reduced scope for aerodynamic appendages should significantly reduce wind tunnel time and also limit the need for expensive 3d prototyping machines to run constantly.

Can the teams agree such a change? Probably not straightaway, but surely it should be possible to agree a package similar to the above ahead of the 2012 season... shouldn't it?


Popular posts from this blog

F1: Robert Kubica Impresses In Renault Test Run

The car may be old but its the performance of the driver that's the story here. Robert Kubica returned to F1, after a fashion, earlier this week with an extensive test run in a 2012 Lotus Renault F1 car at Valencia.
The age of the car and the circuit were likely determined by F1's current rules which ban testing, but the reason for Kubica being in the car is far more interesting. Considered by many to be a potential World Champion and certainly one of the fastest drivers of his generation, Kubica's F1 career seemed to be over after a 2011 crash whilst driving in the Rally of Andora. His Skoda Fabia was penetrated by a guardrail in the high speed accident partially severing his right arm.
Up until last year Kubica has been competing in rallying, with the expectation that the limited movement in his repaired arm would prohibit a return to single seater racing.
So this week's test is both interesting and confusing. Interesting because Kubica completed 115 laps of the ret…

Panos Panay's Defence Of Microsoft Surface Hardware Sounds Eerily Familiar

This weekend I went out with my ten year old daughter to select a laptop for her school year beginning in January. The schools requirements are quite specific, requiring a Windows 10 device, with a preference for a touchscreen and a stylus. She chose a Surface Pro, after trying a large number of different options. Having seen the way I use my own Surface Pro - and tried it herself there was only ever going to be two options - and the other was a Surface Laptop.
I tell you this so that you understand I am a buyer of Microsoft's products through choice, not compulsion. I'm on my third Surface device now. 
So when Panos Panay dismissed reports of the death of the Surface hardware line, I was very interested to see exactly how strong these denials were. Especially how they reflect what has gone before. To whit: Windows 10 Mobile.
Panay claimed that Microsoft is in hardware for the long haul. Almost exactly mirroring the words of Terry Myerson, when he claimed Windows Mobile was g…

WhartonBrooks Indiegogo Windows 10 Mobile Even More Doomed To Failure Than Usual

WhartonBrooks is currently crowd-funding its latest Windows Mobile smartphone on Indiegogo. If crowdfunding isn't already a bad enough idea, a company trying to crowdfund a Windows Mobile device should be warning enough for you.
Not that anyone seems to be taking the project too seriously. With a few weeks left to run the campaign has managed to ensnare just 2% of its $1.1m target.
If you want a better indication of how few Window Mobile loyalists remain I doubt there is one. Of 3,900 Windows Phone enthusiasts Wharton Brooks was seeking for its new phone, it has managed to entice just 50.
Windows for Phones is dead, even if the corpse hasn't stopped twitching yet.