Red Bull driver Sergio Perez was involved in a crash during qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix. This required circuit marshals to use a crane to remove the RB19 from the accident site, revealing their intricate, sophisticated floor design. Teams such as Ferrari and Mercedes were expected to closely examine the photographs of the dominant RB19 following its unfortunate unveiling.
However, according to Ferrari team principal Frederic Vasseur, imitating Red Bull’s underbody would be an uphill task. Speaking to the media, he said, “I think that we all have a lot of pictures of the other cars. But then it’s quite difficult or even impossible to try to copy something because it’s more a global concept and you can’t copy just one part of the car.”
Since the switch to ground-effect cars in 2022, Red Bull’s underbody has allowed them to conquer the grid, establishing themselves as the dominant entity. Even comparisons drawn between the floors of Frederic Vasseur’sFerrari and Red Bull show the vast difference in complexity. It’s no wonder that the team from Milton-Keynes is so far ahead of its rivals.
Ferrari is still using Red Bull’s design as a foundation for their new upgrades
Ferrari’s major new upgrades incorporate a design influenced by the Supereme RB19, aiming to address the aerodynamic issues with their SF-23. This marks the beginning of a series of upgrades planned by the team for the upcoming races, focusing on enhancing their sidepod design for the race in Barcelona.
The in-wash sidepod concept they previously employed seemed to be the root cause of major drivability issues experienced by their drivers. Ferrari has recently taken a different approach and developed a design in an effort to keep up with their rivals. Although it is not a replica of the RB19 side pods, the new design showcases improved rear packaging and enhanced cooling channel configurations within the car.
Additionally, notable upgrades have been made to the floor, significantly departing from their previous specifications. The drivers now feel more in harmony with the car and have reported no issues. However, Ferrari still seeks to optimize their new design to extract as much pace as possible from the car.
Qualifying will be the first real indicator of the SF-23 compared to its competitors over a single lap, and should it produce good results, Ferrari could be on track for a positive outcome from Sunday’s race around the tarmac of Catalunya.
Tanuj is a motorsport content writer for FirstSportz from Bangalore. He is currently pursuing a degree in Computer Science. He is an ardent Red Bull Racing and Max Verstappen fan. Apart from religiously following Formula One every weekend, he is a passionate Real Madrid supporter, and is also his college football team's captain.
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