F1 News, Views and Reviews

Toyota and Williams Could Be In Trouble Over Aerodynamic Irregularities

It has been revealed in this week’s Autosport magazine that both the Toyota F1 Team and the Williams F1 Team could be in trouble over designs of their rear diffusers which other teams believe to be illegal.

The design is certainly an interesting one, and something that went relatively unnoticed at launch time as everyone was caught up in the shocks over the new front and rear wing elements – completely different to anything we have seen before.

However technical analysis has proven that there is the possibility that the rear diffusers fitted to these cars breach regulations.  The diffuser is split into two parts.  The centre of the first part which is underneath the main ctrash structure is said to be below the 175mm height restriction.  The second piece, which protrudes out of the back is said to be 35mm over the regulation limit for the length of bodywork allowed.

The above may seem slightly trivial but being longer it allows the air to flow better, and with the longer tunnel of air it could potentially lead to Williams and Toyota having more grip through slower speed corners.

It is interesting that Toyota now find themselves in the dock over a design breach after their bosses were so open in criticising Ferrari for having exhaust pipes which allegedly are 10mm over their length restriction.

Toyota and Williams did not want to comment, but Renault technical director Pat Symonds talked about what he thought of the device.

“They (the diffusers) are certainly interesting, although I don’t think I can comment on their legality.” He told Autosport

“That’s something for the FIA to comment on. For sure we will be asking the FIA about it, for clarity.”

Meanwhile an FIA insider had this to say;

“The FIA has had some correspondence with Toyota about diffusers but hasn’t actually seen what they’ve been testing.

“One design has been approved by the FIA but I do not think it is the one in question.  I could not say, meearly that a design has been clarified as legal, whether this is it or not is unknown”

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