Williams introduces new front wing at German GP to help stability

Williams has introduced a new front wing design for the German Grand Prix as part of a Formula 1 update package it hopes will make its car more predictable

Williams introduces new front wing at German GP to help stability

A fortnight after a disastrous British Grand Prix, where both its cars had to start from the pitlane in the wake of a floor stall issue that ruined qualifying, the team is hoping for a breakthrough with its new parts.

Rather than providing more downforce, the idea behind the wing change is to improve the car's balance to give drivers Sergey Sirotkin and Lance Stroll greater confidence.

Speaking about the wing changes, Sirotkin said: "It doesn't give us any more lap time on paper. But what we really expect from all of these bits to do is to give us a stable platform.

"As a consequence, it will give the drivers more confidence, but it all starts with getting the airflow stable to any other external situations."

Sirotkin said the potential for the wing to offer a breakthrough meant the Hockenheim weekend was a crucial one for Williams's season.

"It is quite important, because we've been working on these bits for quite a long time," he said.

"We do really hope that it will do this [provide more predictability] and if not, it will mean that we have some deeper correlation problem which will take more time to solve - and which are obviously more painful for the team."

Renault has also introduced a new front wing ahead of this weekend's race.

Key wing changes

By Matt Somerfield and Giorgio Piola

The new Williams wing sees features a number of altered design facets, in order to change the behaviour of the airflow across it and over the rest of the car.

As can be seen in Giorgio Piola's exclusive photographs, the mainplane's leading edge has been significantly altered (highlighted in green), as the surface is upturned in order to encourage more airflow to travel under the wing.

This tweak will also change the wing's pitch sensitivity, which is its relationship with the ground as the car brakes and accelerates. This should help make it more predictable than the older version.

Allied to this alteration is the connecting point with the neutral central section of the wing (blue arrow). This also has an impact on the generation and vorticity of the Y250 vortex that forms here.

The shape and characteristics of the first flap above it has also been changed in order to work with the aforementioned mentioned changes.

The 'r' shaped cascade (red arrow) now features a scrolled upper edge, in order to shape the vortex that is inevitably shed from its trailing edge.

The outboard flap geometry has also changed, with a more pronounced arch appearing in order to control how the airflow is distributed ahead of the front tyre. This improves the outwash effect.

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Series Formula 1
Teams Williams
Author Jonathan Noble
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