How Force India is tackling its tough start to the 2018 F1 season

Force India has struggled to match its performance levels of the past two Formula 1 seasons, scoring just one point in the first three races of 2018

How Force India is tackling its tough start to the 2018 F1 season

One of the problems it has admitted to is a lack of correlation between the windtunnel/CFD and the racetrack, with technical director Andy Green saying "the tunnel and CFD match, but unfortunately they don't match reality".

This problem was only detected after pre-season testing was completed, meaning the first three race weekends have been all about trying to understand and fix the issue.

This is always very difficult to achieve, as anything running near the ground will always suffer from different airflow separation characteristics to what the research tools predict.

Sometimes you can live with it, but sometimes it masks the car's true performance.

In Bahrain and China, Force India introduced a few variations on the diffuser, with this drawing showing the latest version.

Every team's diffuser will stall to some degree when the rear of the car is close to the ground, which reduces the drag and allows higher top speeds.

But with that it reduces the downforce, and it is vitally important that this airflow reattaches the moment the rear of the car starts to rise. Otherwise, the braking area becomes a bit of a nightmare for the driver.

The upper rear wing and how the wing's airflow reattaches when the DRS is closed will also affect the diffuser airflow reattachment, as will some of the other aerodynamic components further upstream.

So when you have a problem, it is not easy to identify what area is instigating it.

And with any problem, it is vitally important to rectify it at source otherwise it is just a temporary bandage with the issue still waiting to bite you.

shares
comments
Fernando Alonso doesn't care about results of other F1 teams
Previous article

Fernando Alonso doesn't care about results of other F1 teams

Next article

Kimi Raikkonen: Formula 1 2018 order could change at every race

Kimi Raikkonen: Formula 1 2018 order could change at every race
How Ferrari’s Monaco headache became its Silverstone migraine Plus

How Ferrari’s Monaco headache became its Silverstone migraine

OPINION: Ferrari won the British Grand Prix with Carlos Sainz, but it ultimately cost Charles Leclerc a chance to make a bigger dent in Max Verstappen's title lead by leaving the Monegasque out on old tyres towards the end. Like Monaco, indecision over strategy proved to be the Scuderia's biggest issue - and if the team doesn't reflect, the headache can only intensify

The five factors behind Sainz winning a British GP he’d twice lost Plus

The five factors behind Sainz winning a British GP he’d twice lost

Formula 1 has a newest race winner, in a grand prix the victor appeared to have lost twice, only to charge back to headline a sensational and dramatic British Grand Prix. From a massive start crash to a late sprint finish, here’s how five factors saw Carlos Sainz take his maiden grand prix win

Formula 1
Jul 4, 2022
Why there was no case to answer in Aston’s latest F1 copycat saga Plus

Why there was no case to answer in Aston’s latest F1 copycat saga

The appearance of a revised Aston Martin in Spain caused controversy but PAT SYMONDS explains why the FIA investigation found the Silverstone team had no case to answer

Formula 1
Jul 3, 2022
Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone Plus

Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone

After a slow start to Friday at Silverstone, all the Formula 1 teams had to effectively cram in a day’s worth of practice into one hour. But there was still plenty to learn and while Ferrari topped the times, a three-way battle is brewing ahead of the British Grand Prix

Formula 1
Jul 2, 2022
Why the future is bright for the British GP Plus

Why the future is bright for the British GP

It wasn’t so long ago the situation looked bleak at Silverstone with the future of the British Grand Prix under threat. But a transformation has seen it restored to one of the most important races on the Formula 1 calendar, with bigger and better to come

Formula 1
Jul 1, 2022
Could mixed fortunes for F1's leading Brits turn around at Silverstone? Plus

Could mixed fortunes for F1's leading Brits turn around at Silverstone?

For the first time in many years, none of the local racers starts among the favourites for the British Grand Prix. But George Russell, Lewis Hamilton and Lando Norris could have reasons for optimism

Formula 1
Jun 30, 2022
Verstappen exclusive: Why F1’s champion isn’t fazed by Silverstone return Plus

Verstappen exclusive: Why F1’s champion isn’t fazed by Silverstone return

Max Verstappen is the world’s number one racing driver… and he’s determined to keep it that way. Speaking exclusively to GP Racing's OLEG KARPOV, the Red Bull driver explains why he’s relishing the 2022 championship battle with Charles Leclerc – and why he’s not worried about returning to Silverstone, the scene of the biggest accident of his career last year

Formula 1
Jun 30, 2022
Why Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar can help its F1 team Plus

Why Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar can help its F1 team

On Tuesday, Red Bull laid out its plans to develop and build a new hypercar - the RB17 - penned by Adrian Newey. As the project itself sates Newey as a creative outlet, it also offers Red Bull's Formula 1 team a number of new and exciting avenues to pursue

Formula 1
Jun 29, 2022