Click to view our fantastic subscription offers

Instant access to the F1 paddock

You have 10 views remaining

You have read 5 stories this month. After 15, you will need to register or subscribe.

Register with us for free to view 60 stories a month.

Or subscribe to AUTOSPORT+ for unlimited news stories and access to our exclusive subscriber-only content.

Our commitment to quality journalism

We've introduced metered access to AUTOSPORT which will ensure that the majority of our visitors can continue to view the site for free. But we think that is worth a small investment from those who use it most, so that we can continue to send the leading experts in their field to motor racing paddocks all over the world to break the latest news and produce the most compelling interviews and race reports.

Every visitor gets 15 free page views per month. Once you reach the limit you can register to get 60 views or choose one of our value-for-money subscription packages to continue viewing and to get additional access to a range of features including:

  • Unlimited access to AUTOSPORT with news and views from the paddock
  • Enjoy AUTOSPORT+: subscriber-only analysis, comment and top-quality pictures
  • Get AUTOSPORT magazine in a digital format on your computer or iPad every week
  • Full access to FORIX - the world's best motorsport statistics website

We greatly appreciate your continued support to keep AUTOSPORT at the forefront of motorsport coverage, and we look forward to welcoming you as a new subscriber.

Glenn Freeman Editor
Find out more about our subscriptions

Mercedes limited by double DRS system - Ross Brawn

Mercedes F1 2012Mercedes team boss Ross Brawn believes his squad's pioneering use of double DRS ended up proving costly in other development areas.

The innovative system was seen as pivotal to Mercedes' strong start to the 2012 Formula 1 season, which included a win in China.

But rival teams were slow to introduce their own versions of the concept - and when the likes of Lotus and Red Bull did so, their devices acted entirely on the rear wing, rather than channelling the airflow to stall the front wing, as Mercedes' system did.

Video: Red Bull's double DRS explained

Brawn accepts that ultimately Mercedes' double DRS limited how much the team could do with its front wing at a time when other teams were believed to be pushing boundaries of flexible bodywork rules.

"One of the conclusions we have reached is that the double DRS was a valid concept, but it slowed us down on other things," he told Autosprint.

"These days there's plenty of...'cunning' technology, let's call it that, around the front wing. But we had our system and our wings were designed around that concept.

"When it became clear what potential a different philosophy had, perhaps we should have taken a step back. In any case, next year's car won't have the double DRS, because the regulations don't allow it. So, we are evaluating alternative solutions."

He added: "With our DRS, we make our wing stall, and we indeed need a wing that can stall when we use the system, but this limits us in the profiles and shapes we can use.

"Then there are several structural considerations that have caught on this year. This will disappear, or it should do so, next year. With the new tests, the level of freedom some have taken should be eliminated."

Brawn also conceded that Mercedes' focus on trying to eliminate its tyre issues had taken its attention away from other important areas.

"In the races where the tyre factor was decisive, we had more difficulties," he said. "So, we thought that was a key point to work on over the second half.

"We focused on tyre use, we introduced a new gearbox and new suspension. In fact, I think we've managed to keep tyre wear in check.

"What we've lacked, however, is overall performance. We haven't worked enough on parameters like aerodynamics and engine mapping.

"This is also because we've gone through deep restructuring, especially in the aerodynamics sector, also by moving from 50 per cent scale models to 60 per cent, which requires different technologies.

"We have invested heavily in the future, in the meantime paying heavily for it in the second half of the season, where a few tenths make a big difference."

  More news  
Read the AUTOSPORT Digital Edition
Visit the shop
See highlights from 60 years of AUTOSPORT
Breaking news feed
Live commentary feed