Racecar Engineering May 2019

Racecar Engineering is the world’s leading technology publication for the motorsport industry. From aerodynamics to engines and from handling theory to manufacturing practice, Racecar Engineering is read by motorsport’s top professionals. Only Racecar Engineering brings this insight every month.

United Kingdom
Chelsea Magazine
12 Issues

in this issue

5 min
freight expectations

My thoughts on politics tend to be scathing, so I usually keep them to myself. It’s not so much of the politicians, venal banalities that they are, but more the voters themselves. After all, they are the ones that vote the scoundrels in, and so they shouldn’t really complain about the outcomes. This column is being written before one of the votes that could determine how and where the UK will align itself with Brexit, One of the multiple outcomes of all this could take us back to an increase of the paperwork that will be needed to take racecars, equipment and crew to whatever venue they will perform at. This has only dawned latterly on me, as for a considerable time travel within Europe had been seamless and bother free…

5 min
aiming high, hitting lowe

Only those of a schadenfreude disposition can have enjoyed the very public fall from grace suffered by Williams technical director, Paddy Lowe, an engineer with a high reputation and considerable experience at the forefront of Formula 1 (see page 96). Lowe is not the first to go as part of Williams’ recent adoption of professional football club habits and its frequent hiring and firing of managers. Even so, it is difficult to understand how an F1 car can be conceived these days that is more than two whole seconds off the front-of-the-grid pace. Especially when it has one of the best power units. This is despite all the previous design and engineering data and digital simulation technology available, and the wealth of information that Lowe must have accumulated while at Mercedes…

14 min
air warfare

There has been a lot of hype surrounding the start of the 2019 F1 season, and for good reason. Forgetting the 12 driver swaps, the three rookies and the change of power unit for Red Bull, there has also been a new set of technical regulations that have been specifically designed to spice up on-track action. But how can changing the dimensions of aerodynamic components equate to better racing? We have all watched eagerly as F1 drivers on the charge hunt down their next victim to overtake. Yet when they get to within a second or two of the car in front they almost seem to quite suddenly switch to cruise control, never quite dipping under the one-second gap to gain the benefit of DRS, leaving the team frustrated, and the…

6 min
fade to grey

Just in case the Formula 1 teams didn’t have enough regulation changes to get their heads round for 2019, the tyres have completely changed this year too. Not only has Pirelli brought new compounds and new constructions for this season, but also a new naming convention – the latter providing some entertaining commentary as everyone continues to accidentally revert to last year’s terminology. Blistering was a regular occurrence with last year’s rubber and in an attempt to rectify this Pirelli has completely redeveloped its tyres Instead of the colourful rainbow of seven compounds from last year (Superhard – orange, Hard – blue, Medium – grey, Soft – yellow, Supersoft – red, Ultrasoft – purple, Hypersoft – pink), we now have only five slick compounds to contend with, but only three colours. Puzzled?…

13 min
proving a point

‘We are now able to put on track the car we want to put on track, and not just the car we can afford to put on track’ The Force India name is absent from the F1 entry list for the first time since the start of the 2008 season, as a result of the team’s financial collapse halfway through 2018. The team still exists, though, now under new ownership and bearing a new name, Racing Point. It’s the same team that saw out last season using a Force India VJM11, and it is also a continuation of the team which started life in 1991 as Jordan. Force India’s financial failure came at a crucial time in the development of the team’s 2019 design, then called the VJM12, and some very tough…

1 min
tech spec: racing point rp19

Chassis Carbon fibre composite monocoque with Zylon side anti-intrusion panels, based on Force India VJM11. Power unit Mercedes-AMG F1 M10 EQ Power+ 1.6-litre V6 turbocharged engine plus energy recovery system. Transmission Mercedes Formula 1 (2018 spec), composite casing with metallic cassette insert, semi-automatic with eight forward speeds and one reverse. AP Racing multi-plate clutch. Suspension Aluminium uprights with carbon fibre composite wishbones, track-rod and pushrod (front), pullrod (rear), inboard chassis mounted torsion springs, dampers and anti-roll bar assembly (front), full hydraulic package (rear). Brakes 920E brake calipers and in-house design brake by wire system with carbon fibre discs and pads. Electronics FIA single ECU (by McLaren) with in-house electrical harness. Dimensions Width, 2000mm; Length, 5600mm. Weight Overall vehicle weight 743kg (including driver, excluding fuel) Weight distribution between 45.4 per cent and 46.4 per cent front.…