Giorgio Piola's F1 technical analysis
Topic

Giorgio Piola's F1 technical analysis

The boomerang tweaks behind McLaren's latest F1 upgrade

McLaren has shown no signs of easing off in the development push of its 2021 Formula 1 car, with the latest upgrades coming at the Hungarian Grand Prix.

The boomerang tweaks behind McLaren's latest F1 upgrade

And, with rival teams all pretty much having switched off their work on current cars to focus on 2022, McLaren is still eyeing further updates after the summer break.

But the likelihood is that what appeared at the Hungaroring was probably the last 'major' upgrade for the team this season, with smaller tweaks to be made in the future to help find small pockets of performance without having a major impact on their development of next year's car.

McLaren arrived at the Hungaroring with a revised bargeboard package that concentrated on the boomerang and downwash wings, with both reorganised to help redefine their flow characteristics.

As part of this reorganisation the boomerang (red arrow) has been moved much further forward, taking up the position of the front downwash winglet (blue arrow).

McLaren MCL35M bargeboard comparison

McLaren MCL35M bargeboard comparison

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

This has effectively resulted in the convergence of the two elements with a thicker profile preferred, while the rearmost downwash winglet (green arrow) has been altered as a consequence. The obviously has to be much shorter to link up with the boomerang.

The repositioning of the boomerang exposes the feather-like top edge of the main vertical bargeboard element to a different flow regime too, and could help unlock their potential or be an area where the team looks to make further optimisations as a result.

It's also interesting to see the amount of metalwork that McLaren is including in its structures this season too, as the team hopes to prevent the various elements within the bargeboard cluster from fatiguing and flexing too much as this would ultimately result in a loss of performance.

 

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Cool under pressure

McLaren also looked at what solution would work best for it when it came to cooling at the Hungaroring, as the high track temperatures and the lower speed corners always lead to a compromise between engine and aerodynamic performance.

It set about evaluating this from the outset with both drivers back-to-back testing the largest rear cooling outlet it has on hand with the one introduced a few races ago that has been developed in line with this year's power unit parameters.

The team adopted the latter for qualifying and the race but did have to give up some aerodynamic efficiency as it installed the louvered cooling panels beside the cockpit on either side of both cars.

Lando Norris, McLaren MCL35M
Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren MCL35M
shares
comments

Related video

Alfa Romeo: F1 points will be harder to score for Williams after break
Previous article

Alfa Romeo: F1 points will be harder to score for Williams after break

Next article

How Ferrari has brought the best from F1’s smooth operator

How Ferrari has brought the best from F1’s smooth operator
Load comments
The impressive attitude that earned Albon his second F1 chance Plus

The impressive attitude that earned Albon his second F1 chance

Dropped by Red Bull last season, Alexander Albon has fought back into a Formula 1 seat with Williams. ALEX KALINAUCKAS explains what Albon has done to earn the place soon to be vacated by the highly rated George Russell

How Formula E factors could negate Red Bull's Jeddah practice gap to Mercedes Plus

How Formula E factors could negate Red Bull's Jeddah practice gap to Mercedes

Mercedes led the way in practice for Formula 1’s first race in Jeddah, where Red Bull was off the pace on both single-lap and long runs. But, if Max Verstappen can reverse the results on Saturday, factors familiar in motorsport’s main electric single-seater category could be decisive in another close battle with Lewis Hamilton

Formula 1
Dec 3, 2021
Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer Plus

Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer

Earning praise from rivals has been a welcome sign that Lando Norris is becoming established among Formula 1's elite. But the McLaren driver is confident that his team's upward curve can put him in the mix to contend for titles in the future, when he's hoping the compliments will be replaced by being deemed an equal adversary

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention Plus

What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention

After a disastrous 2020 in which it slumped to sixth in the F1 constructors' standings, Ferrari has rebounded strongly and is on course to finish third - despite regulations that forced it to carryover much of its forgettable SF1000 machine. Yet while it can be pleased with its improvement, there are still steps it must make if 2022 is to yield a return to winning ways

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations Plus

How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations

OPINION: The pressure is firmly on Red Bull and Mercedes as Formula 1 2021 embarks on its final double-header. How the respective teams deal with that will be a crucial factor in deciding the outcome of the drivers' and constructors' championships, as Autosport's technical consultant and ex-McLaren F1 engineer explains

Formula 1
Dec 1, 2021
Why Ferrari is sure its long-term Leclerc investment will be vindicated Plus

Why Ferrari is sure its long-term Leclerc investment will be vindicated

Humble yet blisteringly quick, Charles Leclerc is the driver Ferrari sees as its next
 world champion, and a rightful heir to the greats of Ferrari’s past – even though, by the team’s own admission, he’s not the finished article yet. Here's why it is confident that the 24-year-old can be the man to end a drought stretching back to 2008

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2021
The downside to F1's show and tell proposal Plus

The downside to F1's show and tell proposal

Technology lies at the heart of the F1 story and it fascinates fans, which is why the commercial rights holder plans to compel teams to show more of their ‘secrets’. STUART CODLING fears this will encourage techno-quackery…

Formula 1
Nov 29, 2021
How getting sacked gave Mercedes F1’s tech wizard lasting benefits Plus

How getting sacked gave Mercedes F1’s tech wizard lasting benefits

He’s had a hand in world championship-winning Formula 1 cars for Benetton, Renault and Mercedes, and was also a cog in the Schumacher-Ferrari axis. Having recently ‘moved upstairs’ as Mercedes chief technical officer, James Allison tells STUART CODLING about his career path and why being axed by Benetton was one of the best things that ever happened to him

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2021