Updates have been coming thick and fast for teams in Austria for the second race of the 2020 Formula 1 World Championship, and Ferrari in particular have been leading that charge.
Although the Scuderia might not be leading the classifications, they are working hard to recover some ground and alongside a new front-wing they have also introduced a new floor, which was supposed to debut in Hungary until it was fast-tracked for this weekend’s Styrian GP.
Ferrari look to have concentrated on cutting drag with its new front-wing and to recover some of that loss of downforce, have introduced an updated floor, which has somewhat been inspired by Mercedes with a greater number of 45º angle slots (1) – a total of nine!
These help to channel a greater amount of air from the top of the floor, underneath to increase the efficiency. of the rear diffuser, whilst also reducing tyre squirt at the rear wheels.
The large slot (2) in front of the rear wheel has also been slightly modified, with a more curved profile, while on the previous solution it ran parallel to the floor.
Vettel and Leclerc took turns testing the new aerodynamic modifications on the SF1000 during free practice on Friday, and Ferrari seems to have improved overall by about a tenth of a second.
The new floor, if it works, is an important aerodynamic novelty since it allows you to increase the aerodynamic load of an F1 single-seater without paying in terms of forward resistance. An increase in the load due to the floor therefore allows Ferrari to act on the wings, and to discharge the aerodynamics to increase the speed on the straights – a major weakness of the SF1000.
McLaren has followed suit and introduced a very similar floor to that of Ferrari. The Woking team has been a real surprise of the pack so far together with the Racing Point. The machine designed by James Key has made a lot of progress in the past two years, and the technical direction taken with the help of Pat Fry seems to be the right one.