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Old 04-09-2011, 06:48 PM   #1
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Post F1 Teams Retool Cars for Malaysian GP at Sepang Practice

By Mike Lawrence, AutomotiveForums.com

KUALA LAMPUR - Dominated by Red Bull Racing at the Australian Grand Prix, many of the teams prepping for Sundayís Malaysian Grand Prix scurried to make several technical updates to catch Ė and hopefully keep pace with Ė the current series leader.

Friday afternoon at the hot and humid Sepang Circuit in Kuala Lampur revealed what was to be a test of trials and tribulations with each teamsí technical updates. McLaren, who struggled to find an answer to Red Bullís Sebastian Vettel in Melbourne, updated the MP4/26 with a new carbon fiber diffuser similar to Red Bullís. The team caused quite a stir in Australia with a diffuser composed of titanium rather than the standard carbon fiber diffuser.
McLaren was not the only team to update their diffuser.

Red Bull Racing had developed their own diffuser using a perforated gurney to allow air to pass above and below the gurney flap. McLaren, who have disagreed with Red Bullís practices before, continued to protest the flexible front wing, which was the center of a heated debate during the 2010 season.


Photo Courtesy of Motorsport-Magazin.com
Red Bull Racing's RB7 fitted with the perforated gurney flap on the diffuser

Tired of the ongoing debate surrounding his teamís technical decisions and hardware, Christian Horner, team principal of Red Bull Racing, responded to McLaren, assuring that there is no foul play going.

ďI think our front wing has been tested more than any other in the pit lane and it complies with the regulations, and that is what we have to do. We donít have to pass a McLaren test, we have to pass an FIA one Ė and it complies fully with that,Ē Horner said.

Adding to the tension at Sepang, Renaultís driver Nick Heidfeld suffered a lock up in the front, right brake, which could not be unlocked. Renault was promptly pushed back into the garage for inspection of the brake failure, which completely destroyed the bottom of the Pirelli tire.

Just as Heidfeld was being pushed out of the garage, ready to complete the remainder of Free Practice One (FP1) teammate Vitaly Petrov suffered a massive failure of the front left upright, taking the wheel and tire with it. Renault quickly backed Heidfeld back in to the garage for further inspection of his previous brake failure to determine the root cause of the problem.


Photo Courtesy Motorsport-Magazin.com
Renault's massive upright failure

Renault was not the only team to suffer mechanical failures. HRT Cosworth, who failed to qualify on the grid for the Australian Grand Prix, had engine malfunctions during FP1, which were highlighted by large plumes of blue smoke from Nahrain Karthikeyanís car. The team believed they had solved the engine problem, but upon firing up the Cosworth V8 for Free Practice Two, they were once again surrounded by smoke.

With all three sessions of the Malaysian Free Practice completed, and no real pace set by any team, qualifying would prove to be a closely-watched battle of drivers, mechanical reliability, and technical updates.
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Old 04-09-2011, 10:42 PM   #2
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Re: F1 Teams Retool Cars for Malaysian GP at Sepang Practice

Red Bull's car design just still seems to be way beyond McLaren or Ferrari. They just have way more downforce/grip.

Haven't watched the qualifying yet, so please no spoilers!
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Old 04-30-2011, 05:29 PM   #3
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Re: F1 Teams Retool Cars for Malaysian GP at Sepang Practice

What's next? Diffusers made out of platinum? On a serious note, lets hope they are not attempting to continue the Lotus tradition of notoriously fragile race cars.
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Old 05-24-2013, 04:34 PM   #4
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Re: F1 Teams Retool Cars for Malaysian GP at Sepang Practice

Red Bull ha become un-compete-able. Nothing can stand in its way.
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Old 06-17-2013, 03:15 AM   #5
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Re: F1 Teams Retool Cars for Malaysian GP at Sepang Practice

Personally i like the design of the Ferrari but redbull is giving the tough competition.WIll be interesting to see the designs next season with all the latest technology evolving.
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