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Spanish Grand Prix - Tech Corner

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Learn from F1 Coffee Corner - Terry Widdows - our technical correspondent about all things tech and car upgrades during each Formula 1 weekend!

F1 Coffee Corner's top technical advancements we've seen in Spain including major Ferrari upgrades, Red Bull, and VCARB sidepod changes... Find out what makes these upgrades important for the season.

Welcome to round 10 in Barcelona and the Spanish Grand Prix. The Tech Corner is a little late as I am bringing it to you this week from the track after traveling out to Spain today! Super excited to see these cars up close and there have been a few surprises in terms of updates!

The expected Mercedes floor has been classified as a weight saving measure rather than an update meaning the team from Brackley announced no changes today... Although the reality is that weight saving will enhance some performance from the W15. However as always, let’s look at the ones that have caught my eye in the pit lane today. 

Let’s start with the champions Red Bull who have brought their planned Silverstone update early to Barcelona with a series of planned changes.

Red Bull

Sidepod Inlet and Engine Cover

Red Bull Sidepod in Spain
Red Bull Sidepod in Spain, Source NicolasF1i via X

Red Bull have brought with them a new, revised sidepod inlet to the RB20 which has also meant that they have had to introduce a new engine cover! The inlet has been introduced due to the European Legs of the season. The simulations to exploit higher pressure for cooling efficiency show that the byproduct of this change will benefit the team. It will produce more space for airflow to the coke area due to narrower sidepod shape - therefore increasing performance.

The other updates for Red Bull relate to more track specific features which are the Beam Wing and the Endplate on the Rear Wing (to accommodate the new Beam Wing).


New Rear Wing

Ferrari Rear Wing Spain
Ferrari Rear Wing Spain, Source TheRace via X

Ferrari are another team who have rushed through an update for Barcelona. The introduction of the new rear wing on the SF24 caught my eye. It’s a more 'loaded' top and lower rear wing - allowing different modulations that should offer more possibilities on mid to high downforce tracks. 

New Floor

Ferrari Floor Spain
Ferrari Floor Spain, Source @NicolasF1 via X

A new floor has been introduced by Ferrari which consists of new floor edges, body, and fences. They have been brought with the aim of ultimately improving the flow of air to the rear of the car and the diffuser area. In conjunction with a diffuser update, the whole package is looking at increasing load and downforce in conjunction with the rear wing update. Ferrari hope will see these updates return their cars back to the top after a disappointing weekend in Canada.

The biggest update of the weekend is from Red Bull... but not the main team... Yep, that’s right! Visa CashApp RB have brought a sizable update to Barcelona in a hope they can cement their recent success and take a step up. 

Visa CashApp RB (VCARB)

Sidepod Inlet and Engine Cover

(as well as a Track Specific Beam Wing, New Rear Wing, New Floor Edge, New Front Corner, and New Floor Body)

VCARB Sidepod Inlet and Engine Cover
VCARB Sidepod Inlet and Engine Cover, Source - Amus Via X

Visa CashApp RB have brought as one of their updates, a new sidepod inlet and engine cover. These upgrades will help condition the flow of air when combined over the top of the bodywork and around the side of the car. This will also help aid the flow from the new floor edge - all pushing the air towards the rear of the car. The rear also brings an update with a track specific beam wing and a new rear wing all combined to cope with the new aerodynamics this update has brought to the team including a new front corner and floor body. This combined with the sidepod and engine updates makes this round a very substantial upgrade for the team.

As you can see the development race is in full flow with not many expected next weekend due to the sprint meaning that the teams who haven’t brought an update will most likely be looking at Silverstone now to get theirs on track. 

Keep your eye out for some up close shots of I can get them over on my FanAmp channel as I’ll see you all next week.

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