The Spanish Grand Prix has traditionally been an event where big changes are expected, and there are a number of reasons why this is the case and why it may be even more so this year. When Formula One returns to Barcelona this weekend, anticipate a slew of modifications to the vehicles across the board, which might change the standings in 2022. Formula 1 facilities are humming with designers, technicians, and machinery working throughout the winter for the initial test. Components can be created as plans are finalized, but the design process continues, which is why fresh revisions of parts are churned out throughout testing and up until the first race.
With a race in May, designers will have more time to try to discover some substantial performance increases, based not only on simulation data, as the original basic vehicle is, but also on how the cars behave on track, and with an eye on what the opposition is doing. Because Barcelona is so close to all of the manufacturer’s factories, there is a bit more breathing room for components to arrive on time, or even for parts to be returned to or changed by flying in overnight on Thursday or Friday. It provides far greater freedom.
Barcelona is an excellent test track since it is a comparatively brief lap with a variety of sectors in its 16 corners. A short track is advantageous for considering improvements since features such as slipping out for an install lap or returning round for a front wing adjustment require less time than on longer circuits. You can be a little more aggressive with aggressive run plans since you have time for a couple extra loops. Barcelona kicks off a run of more twisty circuits which include Monaco, Spielberg, Paul Ricard, Budapest, Zandvoort and Singapore.
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Catalunya is very well known to all Formula One drivers. Given existing testing constraints, it’s where they spend the most of their time driving, whether in junior divisions or throughout F1. This means that when they arrive at FP1 on race weekend, there will be no need to spend time getting up to speed in terms of driving, and the focus will be directly on car performance and back-to-back upgrades.
As a new generation of automobiles is being introduced in 2022 everyone beginning from zero, it promises to be a season with significant advancements as everyone studies more about these vehicles. And this might have a significant impact on championship outcomes in the future.