Christian Horner Proposes Windtunnel Ban


Champion Elect
Just came across Autosport' s latest item and though it was worth a bit of debate.

Probably one of those "will-never-happen" ponderings that periodically prop up every now and then and I'm not quite sure as to how exactly such a thing could be regulated but well, worth a discussion I thought.
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I just finished reading that and I agree with what Horner says except for the part about standardized engine parts. He's on the right track when he says that a car's success should be about the driver, chassis and engine. I think far too much energy and money is spent on aerodynamics and I don't blame the teams for that, obviously they just want the cars to go faster and that's an area with the greatest gains. The teams do all have a lot of money invested into their tunnels but if Formula 1 put a long range plan into affect, like single plane front wings by 2020 and tunnel ban by 2025, then tunnel dependency could be wound down and new money would not be invested.
We took a pole on the best looking era of Formula 1 and it was the early 90's cars that won, if I remember correctly. These cars had big tires, slender bodies and single plane wings. If you watch races from back then, cars could follow right on each others gearbox and it was awesome. We could have cars like that again with the right rules changes. Increase mechanical grip, reduce aero grip and add power. I would still like to see some creativity with the engines and believe that having a variety of engine configurations would be great for the show.
Surprisingly enough, for once I agree with Horner. Wind tunnels suck up almost as much money as they do air, and the improvements yielded as so small as to be almost laughable in any other context.

I would much rather see chassis benefit from the "blinding flash of genius" like Chapman was famous for, rather than having the difference between winning and losing being decided by some technician in a wind tunnel.
I don't agree with this. The teams that don't get it right will be at even more of a disadvantage. Plus untested aero behaviour of a car can be dangerous.
I have mixed feelings on this. That cheeky chappie Horner suggested it, so there must be some alternative nefarious reason behind it. At first glance it sounds like a potentially good idea, but at the end of the day doesn't it mean that it'll just be down to the best aero virtual model going forward, i.e. whoever has the best modeling software and hardware to run it on?
Despite my dislike of Horner, in the same interview he did state that every team would be given the same modelling software. So any design advantage was down to the design team.
Exactly as Mezzer said, no wind tunnel equals huge investment in CFD.

Edit - My post was made at the same time as WBF1's clarification.
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All of Red Bulls success has been built on their aero program, what a stupid load of bollocks from the hypocritical yeah, no, erm, don't look at my teeth man.

"Horner believes that restrictions such as a windtunnel ban would be more effective than trying to cap spending in F1, as the richer teams will always find ways to spend extra money." now there's a ****ing oxymoron if i ever saw one.

Note, the above is an angry end of a very long day and I'm still in the office and I'm wound up, post.
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If F1 did ban or severely limit wind tunnel usage, the racing would go back to how I remember it from my childhood, and start to resemble how Formula E is right now. Sure, it's a Horner suggestion, but honestly, if it was implemented, it would be good for the smaller teams.
That's one check of a confidence vote in his design team.

I do suspect a Ferrari F666 concept car with an F1 front wing would be put through a wind tunnel though, before being scrapped for no reason.
Why don't they just mandate a wooden plank be bolted to the underside of the car, extending from the arse to the nose, as they did in the 90s when they first tried to ban downforce generating undersides? Then limit front wings to extending no further than the inner side wall of the front tyres, and consisting of no more than 1 element which can only be adjusted for angle of attack and has to remain immovable once set.
Despite my dislike of Horner, in the same interview he did state that every team would be given the same modelling software. So any design advantage was down to the design team.
I'm not exactly sure how that would be policed. And having worked in the software profession for the last 20 years I can assure you getting around standard software is easy. If a team can <allegedly> hide traction control behind 11 separate manual functions, playing with software at an offsite location that could be overwritten in a heartbeat would be child's play. Of course in no way would I suggest a team might in some way bend the rules, oh no ... ;)
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