Mercedes eased the “porpoising”, but lost downforce and speed


April 2, 2024 2:29 pm

Mercedes has been facing difficulties since the change in Formula 1’s technical regulations in 2022. The main problem at the beginning of the new era of regulations was ‘porpoising’, the car’s excessive jumps at high speed.

For Lewis Hamilton, the big challenge now is finding balance. Reducing ‘porpoising’ required Mercedes to reduce downforce, an aerodynamic element crucial to cornering speed.

“In the first race of 2022, we had to remove around 90 points of downforce from the car. We had downforce, but we couldn’t use it because the car was ‘bouncing’ too much. So we lost a lot of performance, and every time we added more or tried to get it back, the car would ‘bounce’ again,” Hamilton told MotorsportWeek.

Reducing downforce, consequently, ends up limiting the Mercedes’ speed. The German team seems to have resolved the initial problem, but the search for ideal balance still remains an obstacle for the team, which for this reason has remained far from competing for the title since 2022. Currently, Mercedes is in fourth place in the championship of constructors, even behind McLaren, a Mercedes engine customer team.

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The article is in Portuguese

Tags: Mercedes eased porpoising lost downforce speed



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