At the F1 Grand Prix of Spain, Mercedes brought a number of significant upgrades, which improved the car from the previous races. Mercedes F1 are believed to have stiffened the floor to reduce the ‘ground effect’ air flow as the old floor flexed and created a vacuum with the track.
Now in Monaco, after 9 minutes of FP1 , George Russell complained to the team the car was too stiff. Unlike at the Circuit de Catalunya, the track in Monaco is quite bumpy and it could be the new stiffer Mercedes floor isn’t compliant enough to help iron out the bumps.
Further, the new tyres in Formula 1 this year have low profile side walls when compared to the old 13 inch wheels. There was quite a lot of travel on the older design tyres which creates a suspension effect
New tyres have low profile side-walls which give very little suspension effect when compared to old 13 inch wheels. This is adding to Mercedes problem. The tyre effect would have been less in Barcelona.
Hamilton’s on-board when he arrived out the that fast tunnel section showed severe bouncing, such that it meant he couldn’t hit his braking point properly into the Mirabeau chicane.
Hamilton reported on pit radio, “There’s an incredible amount of bouncing” after just 19 minutes finding himself a huge 1.4 seconds off the pace.
The session was red flagged shortly after as Mich Schumacher’s car blocked the entry to the pit lane.
Verstappen had gone quickest thus far with a time of 1:15.3
(FP1 report part 2 coming soon)….