The SF-23 will be presented in the first free practice with a different aerodynamic package than in Bahrain. The single pylon rear wing had been introduced in the collective testing, but a faulty mobile flap had made it advisable to return it to the factory for proper revisions. Tested again on track in free practice at Sakhir, to keep it under control, it had reported oscillations dictated not so much by abnormal flexibility but, from what we understood, by installation issues. The engineers have revised the hardware to fix the instability. .
The single pylon rear wing
This should come as no surprise as the single mast wing is a first for Ferrari. It has mounting adjustments that are extremely difficult to achieve in a short period of time. Other cars that – such as Red Bull – introduced it some time ago had problems at the start. The Maranello team in free practice for the Saudi Arabian GP in Jeddah will return to check whether the problems have been resolved. The fact that they are already installed in both Leclerc and Sainz cars seems positive. The wing in question has a slightly deeper main profile in the centre, combined with two possible versions of the beam wing based on the percentage of downforce to be achieved. But it’s the ability to bend backward more than the classic double pylon, which reduces resistance to high-speed forward movement, that makes this type of solution interesting. Essentially it is a wing that ultimately improves both cornering grip and straight line efficiency, especially when the DRS is closed, ie in the race.
The new anti-understeer front wing
After the tests revealed some unexpected understeer issues, engineers at the factory began to speed up some of the updates. Other large parts will be visible from Melbourne. The new front wing has been redesigned at the junction between the endplate and airfoils and tunnelled to produce forward downforce while improving the washout range of the previous specification, hence the downgrade quality. In other words, by pushing the amount of flow differently to the sides of the vehicle to direct a greater percentage to the body and rear. It’s possible that the new Ferrari could be a super-efficient single-seater, i.e. underload. That can be corrected with appropriate adjustments to the wings. The introduction of this sensitive element that slightly shifts the vehicle’s aerodynamic map is linked to the ability to have the correct front-to-rear load ratio to ensure proper balance.
The edge of the bottom has changed
Finally, the outer part of the floor edge was redesigned by raising the sill in front of the rear wheels. We are looking for some charging points near the SF-23 speaker. Modification that seems to be closely related to the front end and should help to increase the overall downforce values.
The trim node
On the fast-paced Jeddah street circuit, it will be crucial to provide the riders with the best possible setup combined with medium-low downforce. The main objective is very clear: to quickly give the pilots the right confidence, because the time is gained by passing a few centimeters from the Arab walls, but without losing top speed.
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