Will Gray

  • Tech Talk: How Schumacher will impact new Mercedes

    Mercedes GP unveiled its racing livery this week but its true colours won't be revealed until the opening race of the season - and there is still plenty of time for Michael Schumacher to make his input.

    Ross Brawn openly admitted at Monday's Mercedes GP launch that his engineering team had run out of time to complete the new W01 machine for that momentous occasion. Instead, the marketing men had to be satisfied with displaying their new colours on the old Brawn GP model while Brawn continued to focus on getting ready for racing.

    In fact, even the car that rolls out for the opening pre season

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  • Gray Matter: Will Button survive at McLaren?

    The creation of McLaren's dream team looks great on paper - but how will new world champion Jenson Button fare against Lewis Hamilton and did he really choose to take him on?

    Every racing driver has to believe they are the best, and Button's world title success will have made his self belief stronger than ever. He was certainly the best man in the best car this season, but in moving to McLaren he must succeed where Fernando Alonso failed and take on Hamilton on his 'home' ground.

    Hamilton's position in McLaren is possibly stronger than it has ever been. He was backed from the start, having

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  • Tech Talk: What’ll it be, Mr Newey?

    In the week since most of the leading teams' new cars hit the track, the extreme approach to diffusers has been a focus - so with the new Red Bull machine about to appear what might Adrian Newey have in store?

    All the new cars have incorporated designs to maximise the double diffuser concept as best they can, but while some look relatively simple - such as Sauber's relatively basic back end - others are pushing the window to its limits.

    The double diffuser has been banned from 2011, but because of the fundamental influence of its design on car layout, once it was declared legal early last

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  • Tech Talk: The new ‘double diffuser’?

    The pre-season questions posed over McLaren's unique rear
    wing concept smacks of the fuss made over Brawn's double diffuser last year -
    but what's it all about, and will it make such a difference?

    There's no smoke without fire, and the fact that several
    teams have called for a clarification over the design treatment at the rear end
    of the new McLaren means the team has simply created a clever concept or
    discovered a new loophole that others failed to spot.

    Last year, Brawn got the jump on their rivals by spotting
    a gap in the regulations that allowed the double diffuser - and while their

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  • Gray Matter: Is USF1 bad for F1 in US?

    The all-American dream is fading - and as the new USF1 team fights for its life before it has even turned a wheel, just how damaging could it be for F1's American future?

    There is no doubt the United States has its F1 fans, but claiming a significant share of the country's well-packed sports sector has always been tough for grand prix racing - so when Peter Windsor and Ken Anderson announced plans to create a homegrown team there was hope that the sport could finally secure a stronger presence 'across the pond'.

    Well before the USF1 dream was begun, crowds flocked to Indianapolis for the F1

    Read More »from Gray Matter: Is USF1 bad for F1 in US?
  • Tech Talk: A wing and a prayer

    The double diffuser concept that put Brawn so far ahead last year has been ramped up by some teams this season - but in fact one of the most important parts is actually not at the back, but right up front.

    The airflow over a Formula One car is extremely complex and the only time and place any of its aerodynamic devices have the ideal conditions in which to work is at the leading edge of the front wing, when the car is running in 'clean' air.

    Behind this point, the air has already been 'worked' by the leading aerodynamic surfaces and is turbulent, heading off at different angles and creating a

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  • Stefan GP grew from the remains of Toyota F1 with a plan to snap up a place on the grid when one of the accepted new entries inevitably collapsed - but after seeing the door slammed in their face this week despite the failure of USF1, perhaps they should have taken a different approach.

    The mysterious Serbian team, run by entrepreneur Zoran Stefanovic (pictured), was one of those rejected by the FIA during the initial bidding for the new entry places in 2010 but since that rebuff they have been trying any way they can to get into the hallowed F1 club, complaining to the EU, fighting against

    Read More »from Gray Matter: Stefan GP the best ‘takeover’ that never happened?
  • Tech Talk: How will new tyres change F1?

    Formula One welcomed a new range of tyres with thinner fronts and stronger rears this month - and they could make a big difference to the performance of the cars this season.

    When the teams changed from grooved tyres to slicks, the tyres remained the same thickness because some teams had already begun designing their cars around the wider tyres.

    This altered the relative contact patches and changed the balance of the car completely because the front tyres had more relative grip than they had in the past. It proved to be one of the big changes that made a difference last season.

    One year on,

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  • Gray Matter: Liuzzi, serious entertainer

    Vitantonio Liuzzi is exactly the kind of man Formula One needs on its grid - but can he find the focus to stay there this time around?

    The likeable Italian has been a paddock regular for some time - and he's always had a unique and popular presence.

    I remember him strutting in with his manager back when he was searching for a drive, joking around when he'd got his foot in the door and spending hours swooning Red Bull's Formula Una girls as soon as he'd grabbed his place on the grand prix grid.

    The only problem was, while he was a glowing ball of entertainment in the paddock, that aura never

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  • Abu Dhabi: A new barrier to overtaking?

    The integration of a new wave of safety barriers has turned the spectacular new Yas Marina track into a tight, twisty and unforgiving street-style circuit - but will it be good for the racing?

    The increasing desire for improved safety over the last 20 years has made circuit designers focus on creating larger and larger run-off areas and introducing chicanes to slow cars down in dangerous places, moving fans at the track away from the action and altering places like the historic Eau Rouge corner to tame their danger.

    At the same time, in some cases there has been a transition from the use of

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