Ferrari have predicted Formula 1 cars to be “1.5 seconds slower” in 2019 due to the new regulations.
Several aero changes have been introduced for this season, introducing simpler front and rear wings, brake ducts and bargeboards to try to make it easier for cars to follow one another and overtake.
At the launch of Ferrari’s 2019 car, the SF90, new team principal Mattia Binotto – who was chief technical officer until last month – spoke of the development race which will break out as teams try to recover lost ground.
“We predicted an impact of 1.5s per lap when we [first tested] in the wind tunnel [and] it’s what we got,” Binotto told Motorsport.com.
“So, these cars are heavier compared to last year, and the aerodynamics, especially the front wing, has been simplified a lot. The expectation has been 1.5s and that has been [proven].
“So, now it is how much we recover of the 1.5 seconds during the entire period of development. How much the others recovered, only the track can tell.”
Less complex designs on the front wing to manage air-flow over the car have been the main impactor on aero performance, something which Racing Point technical director Andrew Green characterised it as “a lot of optimisation and redesign work”.
“Ultimately we may struggle to find out if these new rules improve the racing and unfortunately I don’t think they will help close the grid up,” he informed Motorsport.com.
“But what we know from looking at our data is that they produce a significant loss of performance, one we are still fighting to recover.”