Thursday, 16 April 2009

Welcome to the Revolution

Its interesting F1 seasons 1983 and 2009 are looking very similar. Prior to the start of both seasons there were major overhauls of the rules. In 1983 was the year that "Ground effect" was banned, the side skirts on cars disappeared, no more sucking the ground for grip. One of the reasons for the ban was they were very dangerous to drive, if you lost the suction then the car took off.

This is the part of the claim against the Brawn BGP 001, ground effect is seen by many as against the spirit of the rules, it will be interesting to see the other teams catch up, it wont be easy. The Brawn has an ingenious step in its rear diffuser, which pushes the car down giving grip. More grip more power on the road, more speed. Simple.

In 1983 everyone was expecting the innovators of the turbo era Renault to walk away with the title, The did not reckon on Gordon Murray's little dart, the Brabham BT52, which for my money is the most beautiful Formula One car ever made. The aerodynamic profile of this car was near perfect, It was so good it was too quick so they had reliability problems with overheating, which was solved in the BT53 (good but not the 52)

Both years have produced fantastic innovation and very good looking cars, 2009 will have to go some to match the racing in 1983 when Brabham and Piquet nearly threw the whole thing away mid season, but 2009 is looking good.

1 comment:

Gordon McCabe said...

The change of rules at the end of 1982 was imposed upon the teams at very short-notice, given the lead-times for Formula 1 design and construction. I recall that Gordon Murray actually procured some prescription drugs from his doctor which enabled him to work the long hours necessary to design the BT52!