Red Bull: here is the fund that produces the most load, but weighs a lot

Red Bull struggles against the weight of the RB18: Adrian Newey’s car does not adopt the two steel tie rods that the FIA ​​allowed after very strong declines in some bottoms of other cars already during testing.

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB18

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

In particular, Mercedes and Ferrari have taken advantage of the opportunity that the technical commissioners headed by Nikolas Tombazis have granted in an attempt to reduce the harmful effects of hopping at high speeds.

Porpoising is a phenomenon that is triggered only at high speeds when the stationary forces in the bottom push the car down due to the thrust of the ground effect and the suspensions are not able to absorb the stress with the suspension, causing that annoying pumping that loses a lot of downforce over speeds of 250 km / h.

Ferrari F1-75: detail of the hollowed out belly and air vents

Ferrari F1-75: detail of the hollowed out belly and air vents

Photo by: Erik Junius

The Ferrari, thanks to the showy bellies with the upper excavation, was able to limit the damage, slightly lifting the F1-75 from the asphalt, but being able to count on the vertical thrust generated by the unusual bodywork.

Mercedes, on the other hand, was unable to address the problem: the W13 has practically non-existent bellies and, to make the silver arrow driveable, it travels very high from the ground, losing a lot of load.

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W13

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W13

Photo by: Zak Mauger / Motorsport Images

Already in the design phase, Red Bull seems to have tackled the pumping problem, creating a bottom that flexes much less than the more qualified competitors, and thanks to the attention to porpoising that Pierre Waché’s technicians have put in, the RB18 is the car that the more grazing the track is, allowing for more downforce from the car body, allowing for a decidedly more discharged rear wing that allows Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez to reach the highest maximum speeds.

Milton Keynes’s car, however, is at least ten kilos heavier than the minimum weight (798 kg) and Helmut Marko admitted that a lightening plan has been launched. According to the information that Motorsport.com has collected, there is talk of a cost that can be estimated at around 250 thousand euros per kilo: a figure that heavily impacts the constraints of the budget cap.

It is therefore legitimate to ask whether Adrian Newey will try to limit the weight of the bottom, risking that this delicate part of the cars will begin to flex, losing the downforce that has made Red Bull the most challenging F1 of Ferrari.

Detail of the Red Bull Racing RB18 bottom characterized by the keel shape

Detail of the Red Bull Racing RB18 bottom characterized by the keel shape

Photo by: Giorgio Piola

Giorgio Piola’s drawing shows us the complexity of the Red Bull fund: you can’t see the Venturi channels, which are below, but you can see the keel shape of the RB18…

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