The 2017 season of Formula One has officially kicked off in Barcelona, Spain for pre-season testing. This year will be interesting with some notable driver changes, rule changes and design changes for the cars themselves.
The cars of this year’s Formula One season have gone through a major overhaul, shaping up for an exciting year of action. The changes are pretty drastic, making the cars faster and harder to navigate, all in the pursuit of more speed and better racing. Only time will tell how it will play out, but it looks as if it’s shaping to be an exciting season. Let’s look deeper into the changes of the cars.
The tires have been the biggest change from 2016 to 2017, and I mean that literally. The 2017 Pirelli tires have undergone a massive width expansion, growing by 25 percent to a whopping 305mm width up front and 405mm out back. This change is to accommodate the new massive amount of downforce, allowing for even more lateral G-forces. The other aspect of the wider tires is hilarious yet very important part of a successful series, image. If the cars look good while on track and also go fast, then even the most novice race enthusiast will appreciate it. If you build it, they will come type of mentality. There is no denying the fact that the cars look great for 2017.
Aerodynamics have also been changed for 2017, aiding in that massive amount of downforce we spoke of earlier. I won’t bore you with specifics, the gist of it all is the cars are wider and lower, allowing for a better aero profile, gluing those massive Pirelli’s to the tarmac. But surely the biggest change is the re-introduction of the shark fin. Oh, the glorious shark fin, one of the most controversial concepts in the pinnacle of racing. It seems you either love it or hate it, with nothing in-between. Personally, I love it. Seriously look at it. Not only do I love the aesthetics of it, but it also serves several functions that improve aerodynamics, assisting with the new rules that lower the rear spoiler closer to the body. Formula one has always been the pinnacle of automotive racing, leading the charge with extreme ingenuity using only the most functional technology they can manage within the rule set. To remove something that is functional purely for aesthetics is not a direction I feel F1 should even consider going. Embrace the shark fin and all it has to offer.
The standard turbo V6 hybrid configuration will continue throughout the season; most likely through 2020. Some of the technical rules have changed, allowing for some slight re-workings from each engine manufacturer. As far as shock and ah value, the FIA is looking into a device that could make the engines sound a little meatier, something race fans have desperately wanted since the introduction of the V6 platform. It’s understandable, the glory days of V10’s screaming around the track definitely leave remnants of wanting more sound, but for me, the V6 snarl is starting to win me over; if you don’t believe me just check out the video below of the new Ferrari SF70H bellowing the song if its people.
How can you not get pumped hear that growl? With all the new rule changes 2017 could be shaping up to be a phenomenal year of racing. For now, let us enjoy some pre-season testing and some Hi-def pictures from Barcelona.