Current F1 cars making overtaking more difficult - Daniel Ricciardo

Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo believes the width of modern Formula 1 cars plays a part in making overtaking more difficult

Current F1 cars making overtaking more difficult - Daniel Ricciardo

A noticeable drop in overtaking opportunities has been apparent since F1 shifted back to wider, high-downforce cars in 2017, and the 2018 season opener in Melbourne provided just five genuine on-track passes after the first lap.

Much has been made of the aero and its effect on a following car, but Ricciardo said the wider stance of the cars was also reducing passing opportunities.

"I feel now with the wide tyres and wide cars, they already take up a lot of space on the track," he told Autosport.

"It's hard to find clean air. It's getting to a point where I think some racetracks are going to be hurt by the racing. There's not going to be much.

"I think narrower cars were great. It's like motorbikes, because they're so narrow there's always room to get past. And they lap 30 seconds slower than us.

"I think it proves it's not necessarily about the lap time. We do need the raceability, because that's the spectacle."

According to Ricciardo, the 2014 version of the lower-downforce cars used between 2009 and '16 hit the sweet spot in terms of racing and lap time.

"They were slow for our standards, but for a spectator they don't know necessarily that much different," he said.

"But the racing... you could follow, you could pass. As far as overtakes went, I thought 2014 was good.

"Aerodynamically, they're very strong now. You see the sidepods of the car, there's so many bits. It looks sick, but all it means is the car behind is going to get pretty messed up.

"It's at a point now where at Barcelona, we were going fast. Turn 2, 3, was full, Turn 9 was full.

"It's impressive, but the faster we go, the harder it's going to be to overtake and the harder it's going to be to follow close.

"So do we want to see cars doing 1m22s as opposed to 1m25s, but not being able to race on Sunday? Or do you want to see slower cars but they can race?

"They still need to be fast but there's a balance."

Ricciardo also said a simplification of engine regulations is the place to start if F1 wants to save on costs.

"I don't understand a simple engine, but these ones I definitely don't," he said.

"I think a lot of money's invested in that and it's not really for much reason.

"With some of the stuff, the automotive industry can learn a little bit. But I think there's a lot [of money] wasted in how technical it all is, and it doesn't sound good.

"So probably the power unit is the place to start [cost-saving]. And then I don't know.

"Less engines? We've got that now.

"They cut testing to save money but then everybody just built multi-million dollar simulators."

shares
comments
Toro Rosso: Honda has 'big plan' to prove its F1 engine is 'proper'

Previous article

Toro Rosso: Honda has 'big plan' to prove its F1 engine is 'proper'

Next article

Magnussen: Dallara has upped its game in F1 partnership with Haas

Magnussen: Dallara has upped its game in F1 partnership with Haas
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Jordan King , Daniel Ricciardo
Author Andrew van Leeuwen
What the Spain result tells F1 about the next phase of the Mercedes/Red Bull title fight Plus

What the Spain result tells F1 about the next phase of the Mercedes/Red Bull title fight

OPINION: Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes have recovered from their pre-season woes to take three wins from the opening four races of 2021. But each time Red Bull and Max Verstappen have pushed them hard. So, what clues did the latest round of that battle – the Spanish Grand Prix – tease about the next stage of the season?

How Brabham’s one-hit wonder was boxed into a corner Plus

How Brabham’s one-hit wonder was boxed into a corner

The Brabham BT46B raced once, won once, then vanished – or did it? STUART CODLING reveals the story of the car which was never actually banned…

Formula 1
May 11, 2021
The changes Barcelona needs to provide a modern-day F1 spectacle Plus

The changes Barcelona needs to provide a modern-day F1 spectacle

Formula 1’s visits to Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya over recent years have been met with familiar criticisms despite tweaks here and there to the track to improve racing. With the 2021 Spanish Grand Prix largely going the same way, proper solutions need to be followed to achieve F1’s wider targets

Formula 1
May 10, 2021
Spanish Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Spanish Grand Prix Driver Ratings

Often described as Formula 1's laboratory, the Circuit de Catalunya-Barcelona gave the clearest demonstration yet of the pecking order in 2021. And it's the key discrepancies from that order which illuminate who is excelling, and who needs to hit the reset button

Formula 1
May 10, 2021
How Red Bull’s deja vu set Hamilton on the winning path in Spain Plus

How Red Bull’s deja vu set Hamilton on the winning path in Spain

An aggressive first corner move from Max Verstappen appeared to have set the Red Bull driver on course for victory in the Spanish Grand Prix. But canny strategy from Mercedes - combined with the absence of Red Bull's number two from the lead group - allowed Lewis Hamilton to pull off a demoralising reversal

Formula 1
May 10, 2021
The toe-in-water origins of Lotus’s groundbreaking F1 journey Plus

The toe-in-water origins of Lotus’s groundbreaking F1 journey

In the first part of our history of Lotus, DAMIEN SMITH recalls how Formula 1 wasn’t an immediate priority for team founder Colin Chapman – but once he got a taste for it he just couldn’t stop…

Formula 1
May 9, 2021
How Hamilton’s qualifying record compares to Senna and Schumacher Plus

How Hamilton’s qualifying record compares to Senna and Schumacher

Lewis Hamilton has just become the first driver to record 100 world championship Formula 1 pole positions. Time to revisit a debate we discussed when he reached 150 front row starts in 2020.

Formula 1
May 8, 2021
Why sustainability is being mandated by F1 Plus

Why sustainability is being mandated by F1

Continuing to be socially acceptable as public views shift globally is vitally important to the future of motor racing, says PAT SYMONDS - especially in Formula 1, the championship that represents the technological peak

Formula 1
May 8, 2021