What a dull and boring winter it has been without any weekend races, fierce rivalries or action to keep us entertained. That dull feeling is finally coming to an end with the introduction of all the new car designs which we have seen in the past couple of weeks. All the designs that have so far been presented were very exciting and all have a twist to them! Some designs have completely changed as a result of sponsor changes (ehm.. Haas) whereas other’s have gone for more subtle changes. We’ll get into some of the most notable design changes below! Starting with my personal favorite: The Red Bull design!
The RB15 was presented in a unique red and blue color combination during the cars first appeareance in Silverstone
Red Bull have really outdone it this year with a unique and distinct design which has certainly created a stream of positive reactions in the Formula 1 community. With the team now pairing up with Honda as their engine supplier, Red Bull has taken this opportunity to make it clear that this is the start of a new era with the Japanese based supplier. Before you start saying “Oh wow, I can’t wait to see it on track!”, well I’m sorry to burst your bubble but the chances of this livery remaining until the season starts is quite low given previous trends. Red Bull tends to launch their cars in a special livery, before returning to their usual red bull colors once the season is set to start and have made quite a habit out of it.
On a more positive note, Max Verstappen has already taken the RB15 car out for a maiden run at Silverstone earlier this week and has come back with some very pleasing comments: “ It felt good and we had no problems, so I’m very happy with that. Of course today is a filming day, so there’s a limited amount you can get out of it, but it’s really important to have a day like this, before you go to the official tests.”. Seemingly, Max is quite satisfied with the RB15 and getting used to it already whilst his new teammate was eagerly watching from the garage – seeing Max fly around the Silverstone circuit.
The VF19 was launched in the ever so elegant Royal Automobile Club in the heart of London
Haas has gone all out with their launch and turned it into quite an exotic event – I mean how else are they going to present their completely redone black and gold livery, right? The launch of the VF-19 took place at the elegant Royal Automobile Club in London and has received some exciting and positive reactions with their black and gold colors. This color combination was chosen as a result of Haas’ partnership with “Rich Energy” which will be proudly worn by the Haas cars throughout the season. The black and gold livery isn’t a completely new color scheme though, as it has lastly been featured on the Lotus F1 team just a few seasons ago (2015 season).
On that note, Haas team principal Guenther Steiner had some very optimistic comments on their partnership: “Our partnership with Rich Energy is another positive example of moving forward as an organisation. We’re pleased to see their colours on the VF-19, we welcome them as they join our valued partner group in utilising Formula One as a global marketing platform.” Rich Energy CEO had similar thoughts and even added that this partnership has “already significantly raised our profile”. We’re very excited to see what comes ahead for this new team!
The W10 Challenger debuted in a simillar fashion to Redbull’s RB15 – on track in Silverstone
Now for the reigning double-champions for the last 5 consecutive seasons, the Mercedes AMG HPP team!
Their W10 challenger was unveiled during the “shakedown” at Silverstone on February 13th with Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas each getting to drive the challenger before the official tests starting next week (February 18). The car sees the same color scheme that the team has been sporting since the 2010 season.
From a technical perspective, given the new aero regulations of the 2019 season which aims to minimize disruptions in the air behind the car for a better chance of overtaking, Mercedes has opted for a downforce oriented front wing seen in the picture above. They have taken a very unpopular approach of creating a sort of “inwash” on the front end plates which would theoretically drive the coming air inwards but in contrast have implemented front wing flap adjusters to be angled very aggressively outward which is supposed to compress the air, cancel out the inwash effect and force the air outwards through a high-pressure stream of air. There’s a lot more we could get into with technical changes however the main point of concern this season is the aero package that the teams will be implementing in response to the new aero regulations.
Former Chief Technical Officer replaces Arrivabene as Team Principal for the coming seasons
Ferrari has gone through a bit of structural change over the winter with Matia Binotto replacing Maurizio Arrivabene as Team Principal for the seasons ahead. Binotto will be moving up from his previous role as Chief Technical Officer in hopes of finally gaining the championship they need! Binotto has been with Ferrari for over 20 years now – since 1995, and undoubtedly has a lot of experience in his field of expertise. Arrivabene left as a result of a clash in goals and ideologies between Arrivabene’s personal goals/motivations and those of the team overall. Some may even say that his leadership style was questionable. Furthermore, Binotto is the one person responsible for the spontaneous gains in the power unit department over the years, giving Ferrari the edge in that respective field. Enough with politics… now onto the actual car!
The SF90 was revealed in Maranello in a distinct matte Rosso Corsa
The SF90 comes with some notable changes worth mentioning (both in regard to the regulation changes and general functionality). Before getting into the technical side of things, Ferrari has opted for a matte Rosso Corsa as far as the aesthetic design is concerned.
Ferrari, as it has been doing for the past two seasons now, has gone with a high-rake setup and is seen with the newly designed front wing with outwash features. Ferrari has supposedly reworked their cooling package back in their home base in Maranello and have done this through making their air box inlets considerably smaller and more triangular shaped than on last years SF71H which saw oval shaped inlets. As a result, their side pods are seen to have increased in side to accommodate for the smaller air box inlets.
What a season to look forward to!
Overall, the iterations in design of all cars for this coming season (whether it be regulation-related, pure aesthetic design or functionality) seem to make all these cars more aerodynamically efficient and less prone to air turbulence behind the cars which will definitely to lead to significantly more overtakes. With Mercedes taking a nontraditional approach to the aero situation, Ferrari having changes in their team structure and new names on the grid; this season will definitely be something to look forward to so mark the dates down because the Australian Grand Prix is just 1 month away!
Who do you think will come out on top? Which one of the three will it be? Are there any underdogs to look out for? I would be really interested to hear your thoughts below!
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