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GP Week : Issue 165
Spa is one of the most technical and complete track in the calendar. It requires in fact a car very fast on the long straight, but with a great balance in terms of set up, to perform at the maximum in the second sector, the one where there are plenty of corners of every kind, with a prevalence of medium to high speed ones. After the summer break most of the teams introduced new packages on their cars, although not as widely as we expected to be the case. McLaren introduced a revised aero package featuring a new rear wing (above) that was only adopted by Button, while Ferrari sported a long array of small refinements, with one in particular focused on increasing the efficiency of the bottom of the car, by adopting modified barge boards. In detail (right), it was a sort of evolution of the version introduced at Hockenheim. In particular it sports a series of very small and twisty fins placed in the lower section close to the connection with the sidepod. In this way these fins generate some vortices that help diverting outwards the airflow passing through that section of the barge board. It helps in terms of increasing the downforce generated by the undertray. It was on the other hand very interesting to see the first outing of an interim version of Double DRS for Mercedes. In particular it featured a similar assembly following the principle of the system introduced by Lotus. It featured an additional channel curved upwards exiting from the rear bodywork and blowing right under the main profile of the wing. This, as mentioned previously, was the first and obviously not definitive version of the device, while a refined version of it is expected in Monza to be used in the race, and throughout the weekend. Next week all the teams will introduce one-off special package for the ultra fast Italian track, and it will be particularly interesting to see how these changes will work alongside the DRS system. Spa-Francorchamps provides a unique combination of high-speed and flowing corners, which usually produces some interesting ideas, as Tech Editor Paolo Filisetti explains TECHNICAL Downforce or no downforce? 35 GPWEEK.com // F1 >>> SPA 35 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: