The important thing updates in F2’s daring new design


As one chapter in System 2’s historical past closes, with the retirement of its 2018 automobile, one other begins in 2024 with the introduction of its new mannequin. The brand new Dallara-built F2 2024, which will probably be raced for at the least the following three seasons, options the newest FIA security improvements, and aspires to be as shut as attainable to the newest System 1 equipment to assist put together younger drivers for the ultimate step on the single-seater ladder.

The radically redesigned automobile, unveiled over the Italian Grand Prix weekend at Monza in September, has a number of options that transfer it extra in the direction of F1’s present era. It options floor results and comparable wing ideas, with a rear wing not dissimilar from that utilized in Japan’s Tremendous System championship, for which Dallara can also be the constructor. Powered by a 3.4-litre turbocharged Mecachrome engine, it is going to proceed to run on Aramco 55% bio-sourced sustainable gasoline for 2024 earlier than transferring to artificial sustainable gasoline in 2025.

The primary section of testing was accomplished on the finish of October, with 5000 kilometres achieved throughout a number of days of operating at Magny-Cours, Jerez and the Bahrain Worldwide Circuit within the arms of 2022 F2 champion Felipe Drugovich and former sequence driver Tatiana Calderon.

The 11 groups have now obtained one automobile every, which was delivered earlier than Christmas, with the second because of arrive in mid-January. There will probably be a shakedown, with the groups operating one automobile every, earlier than the primary official pre-season take a look at in Bahrain subsequent month. Though there have been some “little changes right here and there”, newly appointed sequence technical director Pierre-Alain Michot is “fairly proud of what we now have achieved”.

“It’s very nice what we’ve performed,” affirms Michot. “The method to design the automobile has been fairly lengthy and intense over the previous winter as a result of we needed to design a brand new automobile fully… not from scratch, as a result of the philosophy is identical, however we needed to accommodate lots of new options and ensure that we’re getting nearer to the F1 household look that we needed to attain.

“We have now considered the look, but in addition the efficiency, and all the brand new technical necessities from the FIA by way of security. All the rules that they needed to attain with F1 with the newest laws, we needed to comply with these as properly, simply to ensure we enhance a bit extra the following-car efficiency that we already had in our DNA. It’s one thing that we at all times needed to have and we now have made slightly step extra for this automobile.”

Williams driver Logan Sargeant has labelled the gap between current F1 and the outgoing F2 car as “most likely a bit too huge for what it needs to be”, and addressing this was an essential concern for Michot.

Picture by: FIA

F2 technical director Pierre-Alain Michot has led growth of the brand new automobile

“We have now at all times needed to ensure that we will put together the driving force as a lot as attainable for the following step, which is F1, which implies we now have to comply with what they’re doing,” he says. “One of many foremost targets was to comply with it by way of look, by way of efficiency and the entire aero bundle. That’s why we now have this good automobile now with all of the F1 options.

“It was actually pushed by the very fact we needed to get the drivers in a good condition for the following step. That’s why we now have a automobile which seems to be so near F1.”

Corrado Casiraghi, the FIA’s technical head of single-seater feeder classes, says the automobile’s growth priorities had been strategically aligned to “enhance racing, improve security requirements, elevate the sequence’ visible attraction, and guarantee financial viability for all stakeholders concerned”.

The automobile options extra adjustability than ever earlier than, together with a compulsory cap on steering load, a modified steering wheel for smaller arms and a cockpit in a position to match drivers from 1.5 metres to 1.97m tall

“The event crew targeted on incorporating key insights gained from the mission undertaken to plot the newest set of laws in System 1 that got here into impact in 2022,” explains Casiraghi. “By adopting and adapting these learnings [lessons], the purpose was to incorporate developments in aerodynamics and automobile design to facilitate nearer racing.

“The 2024 F2 automobile underwent a design transformation to seize the essence of System 1 aesthetics. This concerned a meticulous course of to create a recent and visually interesting picture, establishing a transparent lineage to its F1 counterpart.”

For Casiraghi, security was a “prime precedence” within the automobile’s growth, particularly given the prolonged lifespan of some chassis: “Any updates and modifications should be as superior and future-proof as attainable.”

One space wherein growth was targeted was the roll hoop with incidents in each F1, involving Zhou Guanyu, and F2 on the 2022 British Grand Prix when Dennis Hauger was launched into Roy Nissany prompting a strengthening of its construction to bear a load 20% greater than the earlier era.

A number of modifications have additionally been made to the survival cell, which has been topic to a take a look at producing a deceleration 30% greater than the previous-generation chassis. The entrance affect construction can now take in 50% extra vitality, and the intrusion protected surfaces have been prolonged, overlaying the total sidewall and the entrance floor of the survival cell. The sidewall across the cockpit space is now designed to withstand 380kN, defending the driving force in case of a T-bone crash such because the one wherein Anthoine Hubert tragically misplaced his life at Spa in 2019.

Lessons learned from Zhou’s 2022 Silverstone crash contributed to safety improvements

Picture by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

Classes discovered from Zhou’s 2022 Silverstone crash contributed to security enhancements

The automobile can also be more accommodating for a variety of shapes and sizes in the cockpit in a bid to extend accessibility to feminine expertise. Complying with the FIA 2024 specs by way of braking, steering effort and ergonomics, the automobile options extra adjustability than ever earlier than, together with a compulsory cap on steering load, a modified steering wheel for smaller arms and a cockpit in a position to match drivers from 1.5 metres to 1.97m tall.

Casiraghi says the driving force match concern was “acknowledged as a major impediment to better inclusivity,” and believes the modifications “purpose to create an setting the place driving expertise and ability take priority over bodily traits”.

Calderon, nonetheless the one feminine driver to have raced within the fashionable period of F2 after competing in 2019 and 2022, has praised the brand new automobile on each its security and accessibility, and says it’s “undoubtedly a step ahead by way of steering effort and luxury for small drivers”.

“It was a privilege to be one of many first drivers to get the decision to drive the automobile,” she enthuses. “I believe by way of efficiency it’s a really comparable automobile to the earlier one, however for me the most important variations had been the place that you’re sitting within the automobile, the view and for me it was a lot simpler to be comfy right away.

“Typically I take two days to do a seat match and this time it was very easy. The steering effort as properly is one thing we labored on actually arduous throughout testing. As feminine drivers, we now have much less muscle than males, and typically the F2 automobile was actually heavy. We managed to discover a actually good compromise with the steering effort, so we by no means actually had any points by way of driveability. It felt very comparable however all these facets and the security facet are an enormous step ahead.

“They actually took lots of care within the design of the automobile to have the ability to accommodate small drivers and have a bit extra flexibility with the pedals, with the steering. Typically the steering wheel could be very thick and so they have two choices, so they’re undoubtedly taking a step ahead to accommodate extra drivers into their automobiles.”

From a security perspective, Calderon says the seating angle feels completely different: “They made the facet of the cockpit stronger and they’re actually taking a step even additional than F1 will get in 2026. They [were looking at] the incidents we had previously, and took a very huge step in that regard. As a driver, you at all times wish to know you’re driving one thing that’s very secure.”

With Positive suggestions from each groups and take a look at drivers alike, 2024 seems to be set to be the start of a glittering new period for F1’s main feeder sequence.

Calderon raced the previous generation of F2 car and feels from testing the new model that it's significantly more accommodating for smaller drivers

Picture by: Carl Bingham / Aston Martin

Calderon raced the earlier era of F2 automobile and feels from testing the brand new mannequin that it is considerably extra accommodating for smaller drivers

Group perspective

Trident crew supervisor Giacomo Ricci is not any stranger to new automobiles – each in his present function and as a driver.

Having raced in System 2’s GP2 forerunner and its Asian-based winter sequence, successful races in each in 2010, Ricci has skilled all 4 earlier generations of the Dallara-built equipment. He raced the unique 2005-07 chassis in Asia, began 25 races within the GP2/08 of 2008-10, and likewise sampled the GP2/11 in a non-championship spherical on the Yas Marina Circuit in 2011. Since becoming a member of Trident in 2014, he additionally collected in depth expertise with GP2/11 and the outgoing GP2/18 from the opposite facet of the pit wall.

With that in thoughts, what are his impressions of F2’s newest automobile?

“It’s trying wonderful to me, like a extra fashionable automobile and nearer to F1 in look, in order that’s the very first thing,” the Italian displays. “The most important modifications for me, 100% can be the aero bundle. The ground, the bodywork and all the things is totally completely different, so I strongly consider the precedence will probably be to position the automobile in the appropriate [set-up] window from an aero bundle perspective. This would be the greatest distinction for me in comparison with the {old} automobile.”

“It’s exceptional, as a result of considering a lot in regards to the future and the security of the driving force is completely a precedence” Giacomo Ricci

Ricci additionally praises the championship’s response to the groups’ suggestions, and believes this will probably be “a plus for the way forward for the sequence”.

“I believe the organisation made the appropriate selection following the recommendations of the varied groups,” he says. “Sure, it’s a brand new automobile, however essentially the most smart components – for instance, within the first yr [of the previous generation] we had a little bit of a difficulty with reliability – are remaining the identical. They made some small upgrades within the areas that also had some issues – I’m speaking small points – as a result of ultimately, a very powerful half is the reliability.

“I like the truth that the chassis is perhaps a tiny bit heavier in comparison with the {old} one, however by way of security it respects F1’s requirements for 2026. I’ve to say that it’s exceptional, as a result of considering a lot in regards to the future and the security of the driving force is completely a precedence. That is very good from the sequence and likewise from the FIA.”

The new car earned plenty of attention when it was launched at Monza last year

Picture by: Jake Grant / Motorsport Images

The brand new automobile earned loads of consideration when it was launched at Monza final yr

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