Nicholas Latifi, Force India, Hungaroring, 2018

First pictures: New front wings for 2019 season appear in Hungaroring test

2019 F1 season

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The first example of the new, wider front wing teams will use during the 2019 F1 season has appeared during today’s test at the Hungaroring.

Force India and Williams ran examples of the new designs as the test began on Tuesday morning.

The maximum width of the new wings has been increased to two metres, the full width of the car. This is to offset the loss in downforce from other changes to the wings, which have been greatly reduced in complexity, including around the endplates and upper surfaces.

Force India’s technical director Andrew Green explained the thinking behind the changes in an exclusive interview for RaceFans.

“It started with the ongoing analysis that F1 are doing for overtaking in 2021. They found some correlation between front wheel wake and the following car: The more outwash the leading car develops, the better the performance of the leading car, but the worse performance of the trailing car.

“With that information, and they were early on in their analysis, [they] concluded that part of the problem was the front wing, the outwash from the front wing. They did some preliminary analysis and found it had an effect on the following car.

“And there was a decision made by the FIA to introduced basically part of the 2021 regulations for 2019.”

The new wing is likely to only offer a modest improvement, Green believes. “I think it is probably too big a compromise. I think it needed more time.

“But saying that, is the theory’s correct, it should be a small step in the right direction.”

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Pictures: 2019 front wing tests

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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92 comments on “First pictures: New front wings for 2019 season appear in Hungaroring test”

  1. Matteo (@m-bagattini)
    31st July 2018, 8:32

    There will be nose changes during races, guaranteed.

    1. Everyone said that last time when the wings got wider and they’re weren’t anymore broken front wings… I don’t see an issue here with width, or looks! Good change.

    2. There will be tyre changes during races, guaranteed.

      1. There will be weather changes during the season, guaranteed.

        1. There will be engine changes during the season, guaranteed

          1. There will be costume changes during the off-broadway season, guaranteed

          2. @Martin @eljueta @darkstar @uneedafinn2win
            There will be steering wheel changes during the season, guaranteed.

          3. c-c-combo breaker

          4. There will be changes to all of these predictions of changes during the season, including this one. Not guaranteed, though…

  2. They look better. The cars are so big nowadays, that they actually don’t look disproportional, also the simplicity makes the overall car look much better.

    People were worried for nothing

    1. Yep, agreed. At least, our aesthetic senses are aligned here Joao. Others may disagree of course.

      I just hope the “small step in the right direction” doesn’t mean more complaining and result in another small step in a completely different direction, with a net result of nothing achieved. Sounds like it wont be solved until the magic year, 2021.

    2. People are always worried for nothing. Happens with every single small change in F1. And then everybody forgets about it. Except DRS, that’s still annoying.

      1. and the tyres

        1. @johnmilk what’s wrong with the tyres?

          1. they are mushy

          2. Mushy enough for one stop races though :)

          3. glad you brought that up @scottie If we already have one stop races at least they should make the tyres appropriate for racing, why they don’t is beyond me

          4. They take care of them due to thermal deg. I reckon give the carcass the grip, but make them wear limited (probably just a case of making the tread thinner, as they’ve already played with this season).
            Would be interesting to see how much more they might slide and give the impression of speed and effort. Whadya reckon @Joao ?

          5. @scottie I think the philosophy is flawed, they want to make tyres that create two stop strategies, but they failed and have a tyre that is too sensitive to temperatures and gets destroyed when following another car.

            I think they should get back to the drawing board and make only two compounds, a super grippy fast one and a slower harder durable tyre (they shouldn’t either have different tyres for different tracks, just those two). Abolish the mandatory compound rule and let them sort out what strategy they want to use.

            2, 1, 0 stops, that will then depend on the circuit and driver preference

        2. Those 2014 noses were terrible!

    3. I agree, they actually look better now

  3. To be honest after that article on aesthetics I was expecting worse but really the extra width is kind of compensated for by the lack of height. At least it no longer looks like a flight of stairs like the current ones do.

    If it improves the racing it really is a non issue.

  4. They look great. Looking forward to seeing these in action next season. The current front wings are overly complex and quite ugly.

  5. In that frontal shot of the Force India, you can see how they are using the inner ‘endplate’ of the metal support as a way of producing some outwash, with the part curved outward towards the outside of the wheel. Looks like a tiny loophole!

    1. This is total speculation – without a proper CFD or wind tunnel analysis we simply do not know how or where the vortices manifest themselves. the vast majority of the effect is from the underside of the wing anyway so you can’t see the activating surfaces in these pictures.

      1. I’m only pointing our a small part that looks very similar to the type of flaps and vanes you see on a 2018 car. I make no claim to know anything else beyond that.

  6. Paul Williams
    31st July 2018, 9:06

    They should also ask the the two cars to attempt to follow each other.

    1. Pat Ruadh (@fullcoursecaution)
      31st July 2018, 13:31

      Much too sensible

    2. They should have done that before making the decision to change the wings. Put a couple of scale models in a wind tunnel and with 3D printing they could quickly produce different wings to test how they worked and which if any produced the desired effect.

      1. @velocityboy And why should we presume Brawn’s team is not literally doing that as we speak and have been for months now, with their two cars sat in a wind tunnel? Is that not how they have decided outwashing front wings create more wake than these inwashing front wings?

        1. @robbie we don’t know if they did or didn’t. However, in the article it’s stated that coming to the realization that out-wash was the problem came early in the analysis. My assumption, and it’s an assumption, is that had they run numerous tests in a wind tunnel checking different configurations, someone would have stated something to that effect.

          1. @velocityboy Not quite sure what you mean but suffice it to say I think in general Liberty are trying to improve the racing a bit now with a minimal investment ahead of much bigger changes that will come when the teams can start building the first gen of Liberty cars with a much broader scope for F1 overall.

  7. joe pineapples
    31st July 2018, 10:01

    Rightly or not, I was expecting to see something a lot simpler.

  8. I wonder how the FIA will police this?

    Do they plan on having a sensor measuring the direction of airflow or are they going to rely on a team reporting that they had difficulty following another teams car?

    Perhaps someone can shed some light on this. It’s not like they’ll only have a single homologised wing design (is it?). Teams change their designs on almost a race by race basis at the moment so I’m struggling to see how much will change.

    1. What? They have a new technical specification for the dimensions, they stick within those dimensions, simple.

      They’ve written the regs in a way that makes it impossible to create the same level of outwash that the current wings do. If a team manages to create a small amount then good on them. There is no policing to be done apart from the dimensions and restricted elements!

      1. I can’t imagine anything in F1 being simple lol

        Bound to be some interesting interpretations and a whole lot of teams making allegations of impropriety in 2019.

        1. I bet not. Baffled as to why seemingly knowledgable F1 fans are struggling to understand this regulation tbh.

          1. I guess it’s because I’ve seen a heap of regulation changes over the years that leave enough room for smart engineering to circumvent even though they seemed to be quite clear when written.

            That being said, I agree that the regulation writers seem to be getting better at it but invariably som one tests their limits. Think oil burning as a recent example.

          2. They will make up the time on other parts of the car no doubt but for example, the 2009-2016 cars never got close to recovering the aero from the <2008 era, and that was as intended. I think they are not so much crippling performance here as simply moving it to other parts of the car where hopefully it will not create so much dirty air.

          3. RB13, if Adrian Newey is right, the cars from 2009-2016 probably actually exceeded the performance of the cars from before 2008 – back in 2014, he claimed that the 2010 RB6 probably produced the most downforce of any car to have ever competed in F1 until that point in time.

    2. +1 to what RB13 said. While they do write rules with an intended outcome in mind, there’s no way to police it, so they have to come up with rules that they can enforce like the measurements of the front wings which eliminate the current ways that teams are using to produce outwash. The fun part is now that the rule has been written down, hundreds of the best engineers and aerodynamicist in the world are going over ever word trying to find a loophole or trick to exploit for any possible advantage.

  9. They look better than current gen. The larger width suits these wide cars better, and the simplified “gills” look nicer, more streamlined and minimalist. Although i was expecting a bigger change that simplifies them a lot more, but maybe this is a just the first proposal of the new wing.

    1. To be honest I thought there would be more of a radical change. They are not that dissimilar to the current version. Maybe these are just preliminary examples?

      It will be interesting to see how much difference this really makes.

    2. I prefer them to the current wings also.

      The current ones are so intricate, so obscenely expensive and so susceptible to turbulence that its the single biggest thing that I would have changed. Really glad the powers that be saw sense.

  10. @keithcollantine you know what we need don’t you? Slidy thingy

    1. + 2 although I’m sure Keith is already getting them prepared. Give him time.

  11. They look like grandstand seats, maybe that’s a suitable name for them.
    Grandstand wing?
    Amphitheatre wing?
    Pew wings?

    1. Michael Brown (@)
      31st July 2018, 23:00

      The look like a shaving razor to me. I call them the Gillette Mach Speed!

  12. Hakk the rack
    31st July 2018, 10:48

    This looks very good IMO!

  13. Endplates should end inside of the tyres. Looks better, less outwash, less aero.

    1. I thought the endplates now should wash to the inside. Looking at some of the pictures some still seem to send the air tot the outside.

  14. Apart from the end plates I’m sure I won’t even notice the difference. And if it improves racing, it will probably be the most sensible change of the last few years.

  15. Someone please point out the flaw in my logic here..

    F1 seeks to be more road relevant. Aerodynamics doesn’t play a large role in the manufacture of road cars.
    F1 seeks to reduce the aerodynamic effects which inhibit overtaking.
    F1 seeks to make the sport less expensive for new teams.

    Standardize the outer shell of the car to a design which improves overtaking and allows teams to focus money on more road relevant items, mechanical grip, chassis, engine and save money on expensive wind tunnels and analysis.

      1. No you don’t see a flaw in my logic? Great :)

    1. Teams like Mercedes and Red Bull will spend whatever amount they feel gives a good return on investment for marketing purposes and teams like Williams and Force India will spend however much they can get their hands on chasing them.

      If you take a spending opportunity away from one area they just spend money elsewhere. The more rigid the rules the more you ensure the wealthier teams keep their dominance as there’s less scope to be innovative so all the money gets spent on tiny refinements rather than a poor team having the chance to think up something revolutionary.

      Plus I don’t think most fans want a spec series, they enjoy the technical developments and unique features of each car.

      1. @philipgb I agree that people like to follow the technical battles, including myself but I think if you can improve overtaking I think it would be worth it.

        I don’t agree with your rational about rigid rules benefiting wealthier teams. Reductio ad absurdum, no rules; wealthier teams can explore more options with more money/ man power wealthier teams win on average (with innovative exceptions which can be immediately copied) .. Fully standardized car all teams would be equal.. By this rational you tend towards all teams being equal as you restrict the rules.

        It then boils down to a preference would you rather see new innovative aerodynamic designs and terrible racing or no aerodynamic innovation and great racing?

        I know what I’d pick.

        1. @twentyseven For 2021 they indeed are working on innovative aerodynamic designs AND great racing. F1 will not rid itself of the fascinating science of aerodynamic downforce for creating faster cars. However, that doesn’t have to mean they will keep adding more and more harmful downforce such that they will never be able to race closely. The cars will combine front and rear wings that I predict will be efficient at creating a healthy useable amount of downforce, but not too much, and they will create much less wake for the trailing car. There will also be floor and diffuser work involved. The tire will be able to handle dirty air again too. It doesn’t have to be aero or no aero in the debate. What Liberty is doing now with Brawn’s wind tunnel team is to study and employ ways to still create some downforce while harming close racing much less than we have had now with teams that have only had to look out for themselves, not for the greater F1 picture. Don’t be fooled by what they are doing now, and with for example extending drs. These are only stopgap measure while they still deal with BE gen cars. Let’s give Brawn his chance to make cars (the rules for) that I predict will be like nothing we have seen before in terms of shapes and sizes of wings for example, and floor and diffuser work.

          1. @robbie I like your optimism (genuinely), I suppose it’s a case on not throwing the baby out with the bath water. If there’s still an aero battle teams can have while ensuring a cleaner wake is produced for the car behind, I’m all for it!

          2. @twentyseven Thanks. I truly believe there are much better days ahead in this regard, as it is in all the teams’ best interest to improve the product and hence the audience and the sponsor level. I’m so enthusiastic because what Liberty is doing with Brawn’s R&D team is unprecedented in F1.

        2. You’re not alone. Lots of people watch spec series. More watch F1.

    2. It is the aero that makes Modern F1 what it is. If they want to be road relevant then they should mandate that teams only use family cars that have a production run of at least 10,000 units and have road tyres. F1 has never really been about road cars it has been about racing. The fact that some road car manufacturers can uses success in that racing as a good marketing tool is just business. The fact that some tech will make its way to road cars is just a bonus.