Event>>autosport International Part Four

Autosport is renowned for its Formula One coverage, some folks think that it follows this pinnacle to the exclusion of other branches of the sport. I suppose that the casual fans DO want to read about the expoits of Jenson and Lewis, plus it must be good for the bottom line. Certainly the company motto is "Follow The MONEY!" but if you want to know what is going on read it and the sister publication F1 Racing. So it was no surprise to see a display of current Grand Prix cars on their stand. It is not often that outsiders get a chance to get up close and personal with these extreme machines, so I thought why not?

What does this do? Lord alone knows but the cost of developing details such as this drove Honda out of Formula One.

I decided that the Brawn would be a good car to focus on as it was the class of the field for the first half of the season.

The detail and precision of this design is stunning, even if like me you have not a clue what it's all about.

The Brawn BGP001 will go down in history as a unique achievement and now their success has led to Mercedes Benz acquiring the company……………and once again we have the Silver Arrows.

Not a spare inch…………

In the long term the big loser from the Benz Brawn deal will turn out to be McLaren. Despite the fine words the focus of the German giant will be their own team, didn't take long to Schumacher back in the circus. Also the revenue stream from McLaren building up the specialist sportscars like the SLR and the 722 will also disappear.

However if 2009 proved one thing it is that you never should under estimate the men from Woking. The initial car was a dog and by sheer skill, hard work and bloody mindedness McLaren turned it into a winner. This in a period of a ban on testing and with the disruption caused by the "Lie Gate" affair. Few other teams could pull this off and it is an achievement worthy of salute.

One team that will be hoping to make the jump to Champions will be Red Bull. By common consent they had the best package by the end of the season. Mark Webber will now be fully fit and will push Sebastian Vettel all the way.

The business end…………………..

Williams had a frustrating year………………..

As did Ferrari, at least by their own lofty standards

On track Renault had problems, off track it was a nightmare……………….

One team that came of age in 2009 was Force India. Mercedes power and a tidy aero package meant a podium and points by the end of the season.

Of course there were a few veterans dotted around the Show, the classic lines of a Lotus 79.

More JPS memories……….Lotus 72

The car that started all the tobacco sponsorship era………….Lotus 49

Back to the future………………an ex-Fangio Maserati 250F, timeless and graceful.

Final feature from the NEC tomorrow.

John Brooks



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I'm honestly a bit surprised by one of the pieces of text in this entry; about the Brawn/Mercedes deal. There are, in fact, no big losers in that deal. McLaren and Mercedes' contract ended in 2009 anyways, so they're not really losing anything (except possibly fans) by the Brawn/Mercedes deal.


Why do some of the F1 cars have "hubcaps" on the front wheels? I've never been able to figure out what it's for. On a side note, it's nice to see some more F1 coverage on Speedhunters.


I agree with Syn City.... Mercede's only direct involvement with the Woking outfit was in ownership and engine supply. They'll still be supplying the engines. Not sure where Brooks gets off assuming this deal will do anything to damage McLaren.

RG, they're called spats and they're there for aerodynamic and brake cooling reasons. I believe they help smooth airflow over the wheel as it spins without obstructing the brake cooling too much. Most if not all of the current F1 teams used them this year.


Thanks for the explanation JJ. They're on an F1 car, so I was thinking they had some kind of use. Speaking of Brawn's deal with Schumacher, I knew that he couldn't stay outof an F1 car for too long.


wow, some serious aero work there


RG: its for cooling the brakes.


It allows for further brake cooling from what I know , like a duct


All these high resolution F1 pictures are making my ding ding hard.



That 250F...simply stunning.


More on the RB5 please!!! Mark Webber FTMFW!!


what are those fin like covers on the wheels? they don't come off do they? F1 cars are getting weirder as time goes by, the time and money spent in making this cars safer to drive takes all the fun away, its now "who has a more intelligent and easy to drive F1" rather than skilled driver.


the hubcaps are for cleaner airflow around the wheel, not really for cooling the brakes since they need a very high temperature to work properly


I have read that the F1 wheel covers on most of the cars are dual purpose. The first purpose is for cooling the brakes because those brakes see some serious heat. The second reason is to help eliminate aerodynamic fluctuations around and inside the wheels well.


The 'hub caps' are on a bearing so they don't rotate with the wheel, allowing the inlet you can see to remain in the same place, chanelling cooling air to the front brakes. This is their primary function, if they were to improve aero then dont you think teams would use them on all 4 wheels?


From what I understand : they are to direct the hot air OUT of the wheel well, to "help eliminate aerodynamic fluctuations" (as BoostGear said). The different teams direct this hot air in different places.

I dont believe they are not used to direct cool air IN, all the cooling comes from behind the brake disc.

To satisfy everyones curiosity, I think Speedhunters needs to do an article on them :)