Some unfinished business
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More details on the new Ferrari
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More details on the new Ferrari
Posted By:   |  07 May 2009   |  3:35 pm GMT  |  0 comments

Both Ferrari drivers will have a major upgrade this weekend, but Kimi Raikkonen will have a new chassis which is 10kg lighter than Felipe Massa’s to accomodate him and the KERS system. Raikkonen himself is 10kg heavier than Massa, he revealed today.

Ferrari’s biggest problem has been a lack of downforce compared to the opposition. “The car is handling well, the balance is good, there’s just not enough downforce,” said Raikkonen.

The new Ferrari has detailed aerodynamic changes everywhere. The sidepods are more rounded, there is a new engine cover with new exhaust exits as well as a new floor and a new double diffuser. The engineers have had a lot of redesigning to do at the back end of the car to reposition electronics and hydraulic systems to fit in the new diffuser.

The car is expected to feature modifications to the front and rear wings. Neither driver wanted to say what the expected gain is from this package, but it will need to be a minimum of half a second to get them closer to the front of the field. “I hope we can improve more than the others so we can step forward, ” said Massa. “We have good numbers, so I hope we improve very well.”

Most teams have brought updates which should be worth between two tenths and half a second, depending on the scale of the project.

Brawn GP has its first major update of the season with a new floor and new engine cover among other modifications. Meanwhile Renault has been delivering boxes into the paddock this afternoon in a very public way. New rear wings in bubble wrap and boxes of parts were wheeled through the paddock just after lunchtime to be fitted to the cars before practice tomorrow.

With no track testing allowed during the season, this will be the first time any of the teams will be able to get a sense of what effect their updates make on the track and how much they help lap time. It’s going to be fascinating to see who’s up and who’s down.

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  1. Jon says:

    Very exciting time. Like a rebirth of the season.

    I hope for Ferrari’s sake this update gets them to the front, otherwise it might be a long season.

    In similar weight news, Webbers RB5 will have a lighter carbon fibre gearbox this weekend, and Vettel will get this gearbox in Monaco. Where they will both have the first step of the double diffuser.

    I also read today that Renault won’t use KERS for the next 7 races? (What the..)

  2. Kirk says:

    Instead of Ferrari building a new lighter car just for Kimi wouldnt it be cheaper for him to lay off the booze, ice cream and fizzy drinks for a while? ;-)

  3. tom says:

    hi james have you seen how big the mclaren development is?? i know that it was said that they were introducing a new front wing and diffuser thanks

  4. doomguy says:

    it is NOT easy for a finn to lay off the booze, no…

  5. Dudu says:

    Will Massa get a lighter chassis in the future????????????

    Thanks!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Don says:

    James, any sign of a set of pedals for the inside of the Ferrari’s… hey every little helps! :)

  7. Malcolm46 says:

    James, slightly off topic, but… You got any info on the Brawn-Virgin deal? Just that I see that where the Virgin logo was on the Rear wing end plates previously, has been replaced by Terminator advert this weekend in Spain.

    I’m guessing if there is to be an announcement on the deal it will be tomorrow, but have you got any idea James?

  8. noomi514 says:

    I was very disappointed with the start of the season, but I must say that I am growing to like the way this is going more and more everyday…
    It seems that by denying the penalties to the double diffuser teams, the FIA has pushed the runner ups (especially the big guns) to work very hard and come out with new upgrades.
    I hope the red car finds its way back to the front very soon… but in the meantime, I am happily surprised by the supreme talent of Sebastian Vettel; would be nice to dress him in red one day :D

    thanks for publishing and keep up the great work James. I don’t live in England (I live in Montreal Canada) so I’ve gotten to know you through your blog… keep digging up them stories for us, your work and efforts are much appreciated mate :)

    cheers.

  9. matthew says:

    James,

    is the new chassis will be 10kg lighter? Could you please share the source of the information? 10kg will be too good to be true.

  10. radifan says:

    Unfortunately KIMI does seem to have lost his drive for good.

    the faster the guys in ferari realize that, the better. Surely they have a lot on their heads to sort out right now.

    i hope they don’t overcook their spaghetti’s:))))

    come along spain already:)

  11. aslan the bandit says:

    lee seems to jump to conclusions a bit too hasty it seems.
    his driving style might be darty, not smooth like button. careening from one corner to the next, banking on sheer engine power to handle the corners.
    he bounces off kerbs and wakes up.

    ok. i am sorry. i just like informed opinion.

    if not, then some humility
    ;-)

  12. Dex says:

    Kimi is the best ever! That’s all i’m gonna say!

  13. Spenny says:

    Perhaps Ferrari have been able to do more testing than it would at first appear. The “straight line” test track that they use has two useful loops at either end, and a kind soul filming showed the Ferrari making good use of them.

    It seems rather against the spirit if not the letter of the testing rules – the spirit because the FIA have approved the use of the track.

    Is this a straight line test?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pXWWP_ggTc8

  14. paska says:

    Why don’t you go learn some facts about Kimi instead of talking here?

    Do you really want to make yourself look like a fool?

  15. Andy says:

    Kirk’s comment here clearly is just a joke on the stereotype that we have of Kimi and we should of course be allowed to have a laugh like that. However, Lee below seems to genuinely think that Kimi is a drunk and that that hinders his success. Can Lee actually provide some evidence that his alleged lifestyle has in any way affected his driving? Not great managing his PR? I believe many people actually like Kimi just because he doesn’t try to create a PR mask that is presented to people instead of the real person who doesn’t care about the off-racing aspects of the sport.

    Here are a couple of recent articles on how Kimi actually does take care of himself, doesn’t sound a lifestyle of a drunk, does it?

    http://www.ferrari.com/English/News/Pages/090507_F1_daily_life.aspx

    http://www.hs.fi/english/article/Formula+One+Slimmed+and+trimmed+Kimi+R%C3%A4ikk%C3%B6nen+in+best+shape+of+his+life/1135244594289

  16. Lee Gilbert says:

    Paska – any serious F1 fan knows the fact about Kimi. In fact any passive fan knows the controversies about Kimi and is within their rights to comment on his behaviour and performances.

    I though have watched F1 for 20 years, understand the sport greatly and offer an unbiased opinion. I have followed his career and his performances since his flourishings at McClaren

    Let me tell you this – he should lay off the booze, ice cream and fizzy drinks. No debate.

    He maybe one of the best raw talents ever – he maybe a genius in a great car, that is when the car is gifted to him – but he is still an inconsistent driver that is not great at managing his own PR

    Also, lets face it his WDC in 2007 was not exactly emphatic – a further debate could be had here about the merits of that. I for one am glad he won a WDC, but he is not and never will be one of the greats of F1 champions

  17. Spike says:

    Lee Gilbert – I am a serious fan of F1 and I find your “facts” about Kimi totally wrong. Your attempt to manipulate by generalizing is not a good thing if you ask me. “any serious fan..”. Come on.

    You can read his personal trainers take on Kimis everyday life and physical preparation here:
    http://www.ferrari.com/English/News/Pages/090507_F1_daily_life.aspx
    Kimi wouldnt be in F1 if he couldnt lay off the booze or fizzy drinks. But if you dont know – ice cream and coke is in fact a very good way to quickly get some carbs and energy in you after a race. Its not a problem when you exercise as much as he does.

    By his skill alone – he is truly one of the greats. Just like Gilles was and is. And Kimi is on top of that atypical of a lot of todays politically correct poster boys in F1. And I happen to like that.
    I hope the lighter chassis will help him. Although 10 kilos sound a bit too much.

  18. Mon Pen says:

    Shouldn’t you attack the post, not the poster? A reasoned argument would be far more interesting than abuse. I am surprised you weren’t moderated out.

    Kirk’s comment is fair in the way it sums up the caricature that is Kimi, or are you denying the falling off the yacht, the sleazy nightclub behaviour, the copulating with a life size plastic dolphin?

    Kimi as a driver was an awesome talent, now he just seems he’s more interested in the rock n’ roll than the driving. Fair play. Did James Hunt no harm.

  19. Lee Gilbert says:

    I don’t think it is very significant.

    BMW and Ferrari etc have bet large on thsi weekend. McClaren have taken the strategy of baby step improvement since Melbourne.

    So bottom line – the car will not be much different to Bahrain

  20. Jake.. says:

    Yea apparently at the next race.

  21. Lee Gilbert says:

    I wasnt saying that his lifestyle affected his driving

    I was saying:

    1) he is inconsistent
    2) is not good at his own self PR

    That is all I said

    I did also add:

    1) I think he is one of the best raw talents ever
    2) he deserved to win a WDC

    How can anyone argue with any of that?

  22. koord says:

    No, the chassis is 3 kg lighter. Massa revealed it in an interview where he also said that Kimi is 10 kg heavier than him. So Kimi will be in a slight disadvantage, at least until the next season when the minimum weight of the car is raised. So far Kimi’s been on Massa’s pace and even faster too in many occasions so the weight thing doesn’t seem to have hurt him so much.

  23. James Allen says:

    That’s very cool, thanks for sharing that with us, Spenny

  24. jano says:

    That straight line testing facility has a loop at each of his ends in order to turn around without the driver having to get out and push the car.
    Those loops are negotiated with the rev limiter on.

    Stop searching for what isn’t there.

  25. Spenny says:

    >> Stop searching for what isn’t there. <<
    Like the fuel filler cap? :)

    I did wonder about the pit lane speed limiter (not rev limiter), but it doesn’t sound limited.

    Checking out elsewhere, the other teams who used runways typically have enough room to turn the car around.

    It doesn’t sound like the driver is pushing hard round that section, but they are still running at speed and have the potential for getting more information than a simple straight line test. I don’t see that the convenience of turning a car around is a reason to give a dispensation on a straight line test.

    Max goes on about having rules the public can understand. It is not helpful for the FIA to condone the appearance of something other than what a rule states.

  26. rpaco says:

    Well I would agree until I watched the video, the straight bit of the test, the bit which is allowed, was only about one third of the lap. So much for Ferrari moaning about the “Spirit of the rules”, they are just the same as the others, read it, exploit it!

  27. rpaco says:

    Spaghetto – singular one strand.
    Spaghetti – plural – many strands.
    Spaghettis – No such word
    Spaghetti’s – possession belonging to the Spaghetti. Strictly the apostrophe should be after the “s” since it is a plural possessive.
    Panino- singular – one sandwish.
    Panini – plural more than one sandwich. There is no such word as Paninis, cafe owners please note. :-( Please delete the “s” from the end on all blackboards you pass.

    As we all know overcooking spaghetti is a serious crime, leaving it edible only by the English. Kimi has obviously been poisoned! [ one "sandwish", Paco? Some probably taste that way, but ... shurely there has been shome mishtake?! - Il Moderatore ]

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