Rapid development pace expected in 2014

2014 F1 season

Jenson Button, McLaren, Monza, 2013McLaren’s sporting director Sam Michael expects a hard-fought development race in 2014 following the changes to the technical regulations.

As well as switching to new 1.6-litre turbocharged engines with more powerful energy recovery systems, the aerodynamic rules include several changes, some of which are knock-on effects from the new engines.

“The narrower front wing, no rear lower wing, completely different cooling characteristics for the turbo, lower chassis – there’s a number of pretty first-order fundamentals that are changing on the chassis,” said Michael during a Vodafone McLaren Mercedes phone-in.

“Everyone’s busy going round the loop to try and understand how the flow mechanisms are working with the new rules to extract as much performance before the first race.

“The slope you get on when you have such a big rule change is very steep compared to normal. So I think during the course of next season as well the development race to try and claw back as much downforce as you can will be a significant part of the 2014 season.

“And probably one other point is the exhaust-blowing’s gone because of the position of the tailpipe. So there’s a lot to do there.”

Michael expects to see more reliability problems next year as the teams develop the new technologies: “You’re not going to have the same reliability as what you have on the current cars,” he said.

“Do I think it’ll mix things up? Probably. I’m sure there’ll be different results that wouldn’t have occurred or stood like they do now.

“It’s another thing that’s just part of the rule changes. It’s something you have to cope with. As well as performance you have to get reliability as quickly as possible.”

2013 F1 season


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15 comments on Rapid development pace expected in 2014

  1. Roald (@roald) said on 1st October 2013, 12:47

    I was disappointed by one of Brundle’s tweets… please no loophole in the regulations again, the broken noses were enough as it was.

    Martin Brundle ‏@MBrundleF1 29 Sep
    Did I mention 2 teams told me next year’s F1 cars will look particularly ugly at the front? Something to do with new nose height regs :((

    Matt Somerfield ‏@SomersF1 29 Sep
    @peterhayesf1 @MBrundleF1 185mm from the reference plane ;) expect plenty of anteater/walrus style noses

  2. Ivan B (@njoydesign) said on 1st October 2013, 13:25

    wut? my comment was deleted??? wow, this is something new. ..

  3. Pandaslap (@pandaslap) said on 1st October 2013, 14:04

    The reliability issues could make for some very exciting/frustrating races next season.

  4. W (@yesyesyesandyesagain) said on 1st October 2013, 15:03

    A fast development pace means the teams with the money to bring new parts every race will have a big advantage. You’d have thought that the relatively static technical standards of the past few years would have allowed the mid-field teams to compete for more wins. Williams’ win last year was the high-mark for mid-field teams under the current regulations and going into next year the gap between the haves and have-nots will likely widen again.

    • DaveD (@daved) said on 1st October 2013, 19:14

      Yeah, but I wonder if maybe lots of changes where people will have to make some “best educated guesses” might open up opportunities for mid-field teams. Look at Brawn with the double diffuser…that was not some overly expensive solution.
      I’m kind of hoping the wild changes in the regs will open up someone’s imagination and allow for that big surprise. :-)

  5. BasCB (@bascb) said on 1st October 2013, 15:57

    Lets see how they all do then next year!

  6. GeeMac (@geemac) said on 1st October 2013, 16:00

    Rapid development pace? In F1? Surely not! :p

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