Analysis: Sebastian Vettel’s 2014 issues explained

Sebastian Vettel has had his worst Formula 1 season to date, comprehensively beaten by his younger teammate and generally never getting to grips with the Red Bull RB10. A lot has been said as to why this is the case, so I decided to throw my thoughts up on Richland F1 from a technical perspective.

I don’t talk about the mind games or the internal politics in this piece: this is 100% looking at the potential reasons behind Vettel’s poor performances from a driver/car relationship perspective. It’s already had quite a few comments left by readers at the bottom and I’d love to see some more. Read it here – http://richlandf1.com/?p=31939

Apologies for the lack of posts up on here. I am primarily concentrating on the Mercedes W05 eBook (which is coming very, very soon by the way) and also revising for January exams!

I hope to get a post or two up before the end of the year, hopefully something on why some drivers are more sensitive to rear brake locking under the new regulations plus my 2015 prediction drawing.

A short message: thank you so much for reading this blog. I’ve had an amazing year and my following only continues to grow. I couldn’t really have imagined how far I would get with this blog and I hope this is just the start of something bigger. I always want to improve my content and I’ve got some ideas lined up for 2015 which you might enjoy. 

Merry Christmas and a happy New Year!

Analysis: The success behind the Mercedes W05 Hybrid

Mercedes W05 review

 

Whilst a more in-depth summary of the Mercedes W05 will be available in mine and @SomersF1‘s eBook series (see here for more details), I have written a summary piece for Richland F1 that covers the fundamental reasons behind its dominance. It includes a few drawings (one of which is the unique power unit layout), plus how the W05 compares to other dominant cars in F1 history – http://richlandf1.com/?p=30920

The above illustration was an absolute pain to do but I’m very satisfied with it! Hope you guys like it.

Analysis: Red Bull upper flap flexing

 

Not for the first time in their short F1 history, Red Bull have caused controversy regarding flexible bodywork around the front wing area. In Abu Dhabi both RB10s were excluded from qualifying after the FIA discovered that the upper flap on the front wing was flexing far too much, induced by an illegal device that is believed to be in the form of a leaf spring. Continue reading

2014 Abu Dhabi GP Tech Highlights

As F1 extends its stay in Abu Dhabi for a two day test mid-week, it was no surprise to see further developments on the cars during free practice despite being so late into the season. An early analysis of some components on Friday will help give the teams a headstart when the test begins, whilst also providing data that little bit earlier back to the factory as preparations for 2015 are well underway. Continue reading

2014 Brazilian GP Tech Highlights

Back-to-back events never really give teams a chance to bring anything new to the table at the second GP event and Brazil was a classic case of this as the F1 circus headed straight from Texas to Interlagos.

Much of the weekend’s practice sessions was spent analysing components ahead of 2015, using large pitot tube arrays to gather information about critical areas where airflow is passing. Whilst CFD and wind-tunnel testing are pretty reliable it is important to transfer the knowledge gained in the factory to the track, hence why the often-used C-word, correlation, is vital to the performance of an F1 car. Continue reading

Announcements 4 (a bit more important than usual)…

Before I say anything, Tech Highlights from Brazil will be up tomorrow! Small changes here and there but are nonetheless important as usual.

The main purpose of this post is to announce an eBook that myself and Matt Somerfield (you will probably know him as @SomersF1 via Twitter) are producing, explaining the ins and outs of the Mercedes W05 which will in time – if not already – be marvelled as one of the finest creations in Formula 1. In Brazil last weekend it took the record for the most one-twos in a season, defeating the classic 1988 McLaren MP4/4 with a race to spare in 2014.

We have covered the Mercedes pretty well this year because, naturally, we want to know why it’s so damn fast. To bring all the details into one title, however, we need your help. That is why we are using Indiegogo as a crowd-funder in order to get it started. A link to our page is at the bottom of the post.

The first issue (four in total) is due around Christmas time and it’s an ideal present for the F1 fan or motor enthusiast: the eBook combines writing and illustrations from both myself and Matt plus the use of multimedia features from Mercedes themselves, all for just £5. We have even managed to grab interviews with Paddy Lowe and Andy Cowell, two of the numerous masterminds behind the car.

We really need your support on this and I’d really love it if you could donate even a small sum, even pennies. A lot of work is going into this project and if it is as successful as we hope it to be it could even become a hard back book in the future! Without you it won’t happen.

Please visit the Indiegogo page and read some more details about the eBooks series – https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-w05-understanding-the-championship-winning-car

Cheers!

2014 United States GP Tech Highlights

In terms of tech droughts it would be fair to say that the past month has certainly been through one. Thanks to customs regulations in Russia there were little new parts three weeks ago and the teams had to compensate in Japan. Thankfully after a healthy break and more relaxed laws over goods, the US GP was a perfect opportunity to bring developments. Some teams even brought 2015 prototype components for evaluation. The Circuit of The Americas is an ideal proving ground for such parts as the track tests aerodynamic performance to quite an extreme: high speed corners and long straights force teams to cut drag whilst retaining a high level of downforce. Continue reading