Ferrari will benefit from a more powerful fuel at this weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix after partner Shell developed a new blend of its V-Power mixture.
Engine development may have been ‘frozen’ in Formula 1 for several years but fuel is one area where improvements can still be made by the technicians of the various fuel companies involved in the sport. Shell is confident it has managed to make a “significant step change” with the latest blend without compromising on the previous version’s consumption levels.
“Despite the freeze on engine regulations in F1 and F1 fuel regulations being the most strictly governed in motor racing, together with Ferrari, we have still been able to find a power gain with this new blend of fuel,” explained Shell’s technology manager Cara Tredget. “In a world where thousandths of a second can make a difference, this is a significant step change in the fuel and one we are most proud of. Of equal importance to us is that we have been able to maintain the fuel-efficiency of the previous blend, thus offering the extra power at no cost to efficiency.”
Ferrari’s engine and electronics chief Luca Marmorini is expecting the new version to prove a real benefit for the team’s cars over a full race distance: “The new Shell V-Power blend represents a significant step forward in the power output from an engine which has fundamentally remained unchanged for four years now. With only one tank of fuel available to the driver for each race, this performance gain is a substantial benefit over the course of a race.”
The latest blend was developed at Shell’s research base in Chester in the UK and is one of around 20 new blends that the firm will submit to Ferrari per year, with any new mixture subsequently having to be cleared by the FIA before being used in a grand prix weekend.
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