BULL RUN by ProQuest


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                                ome of it is Adrian Newey’s creative     downforce from the non-ride-height-critical over-body rather
                                way with design, the way he can          than the very ride-height-critical under-body is perfect. The
                                “see” airflow. But a significant part    pull-rod rear suspension puts the suspension rockers down low
                           of the reason the Red Bull RB6 has left       which prevents you from having the ultimate dimensions and
                           the pack behind is circumstantial.            shape for your double diffuser but creates a huge, unrestricted
                           Regulations that combine low-fuel             airflow passage from the sidepods to the rear wing and beam
                           qualifying with parc ferme conditions,        wing. In other words, it facilitates a car that has fantastic upper
                           prohibiting changes to a car’s setup are      body airflow that’s relatively immune to ride height. It may
                           ideal territory for the unique pull-rod       not generate quite as much under-body airflow as conventional
                           suspension layout Red Bull used even          push-rod-suspended cars, but that just means you will be even
                           before these regs were decided.               less sensitive to variations in ride height than those cars.
                               Why? Because the layout allows for an         Besides, as a final and extreme Newey flourish, the RB6
                           aerodynamic “map” that works over a           features a step-up gearbox that negates much of the restriction
                           broader range of ride heights – which is      imposed on the diffuser area by the suspension layout. It’s a
                           precisely what is required of a car under     car that has its cake and eats it; which is why it’s been the
                           these regulations where you have to qualify   absolute class of the field in the opening rounds of the World
                           with a ride height that will allow the car    Championship. Reliability hasn’t been quite so impressive,
                           not to scrape the ground when you load        Sebastian Vettel losing the lead in Bahrain with a spark plug
                           it with 330lbs of fuel the next day. Under    failure (he finished fourth) and spinning out of the lead in
                           these circumstances, a car that derives a     Australia with a loose left-front wheel. It wasn’t until
                           slightly greater proportion of its total      Malaysia that he opened the team’s winning account, thus
                                                                         giving Ferrari and McLaren opportunities they were quick to
                                                                         capitalize on in the opening two rounds.
                                                                             It does appear, though, that the RB6 may have trumped the
                                                                         opposition in its basic format, something so fundamental in
                                                                         the car’s concept that the others may not be able to respond
                                                                         this season. It happens sometimes that the sport evolves in a
                                                                         way that, entirely unforeseen, favors a particular existing
                                                                         design concept. It happened a few years ago, when Renault’s
                                                                         rearward-heavy cars ended up being ideally suited to the
                                                                         characteristics of the Michelin tires. The cars weren’t
                                                                         intended to be rearward-heavy; it’s just that the 2001-’02
                                                                         engine was overweight which led the team to stumble upon

                                                                         For 2010, Adrian Newey (LEFT) has
      Charles Coates/LAT

                                                                         designed yet another car that is the
                                                                         class of the F1 grid, and when it has
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