America’s Haas F1 is out in front.
The VF22’s most striking visual features are the cleaner-looking front and rear wings that, combined with the addition of underbody “ground effects” downforce-producing tunnels, are designed to reduce wake turbulence and allow the cars do stay closer together on the track through curves, with the aim of delivering more frequent passing opportunities.
The 2021 cars lost 35 percent of their downforce when they came within four car lengths of the vehicle in front of them and nearly 50 percent at three lengths, according to Sky Sports. The new cars aim to trim those figures dramatically to four and 18 percent.
The cars will still be equipped with a drag reduction system (DRS) that allows drivers to “stall” the rear wing to reduce drag and gain a 10-15 mph passing advantage on certain defined sectors of the tracks, but it may be eliminated during the season if the other updates prove to deliver more competitive racing.
The series has also switched from 13-inch to 18-inch wheels that better reflect those on today’s production vehicles and are fitted with tires that have shorter sidewalls, but are wider to provide increased mechanical grip and durability.
The engines in the 2022 cars follow the previous 1.6-liter turbocharged V6 hybrid formula, but will now run a 10% ethanol blend. Drivers Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin both return for the team’s sixth season.
Haas F1 finished the 2021 season dead last among the 10 teams in the series, failing to score a single championship point after it decided to focus its efforts on developing the 2022 car. The team’s official headquarters is in Kannapolis, N.C., where the Stewart-Haas NASCAR team is also located, but it’s main base of operations is in in Banbury, U.K., near where many of the Formula One teams are located.
Formula One has also further cut its team spending cap to $140 million, which is down from $175 million in 2020, to help level the playing field for smaller teams like Haas as they go up against outfits will relatively unlimited resources like Ferrari, Mercedes-AMG and Red Bull, which used to spend upwards of $400 million annually.
The new Formula One cars are scheduled to have their first on track test sessions at Spain’s Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya from February 23 to 25.
Source: FOX News