Technical analysis: Shanghai



The new exhaust regulations, which require teams to have at least one tailpipe for the wastegate exiting out of the car as well as the main exhaust pipe, have encouraged some outfits to redesign their rear wing central pillar. Last year, all teams went for a reversed Y-shaped layout… except Toro Rosso, which has kept its trademark installation on the STR11. The pillar is attached to the gearbox casing and goes through the main exhaust pipe instead of circumventing it.

This year, several cars – including the Ferrari SF16-H, Haas VF-16, McLaren MP4-31, and Sauber C35 – sport the same design, which allows for a tighter engine cover around the tailpipe. In return, the single pillar, which houses the DRS activation mechanism, must be very sturdy indeed as it has to resist the heat released by the exhaust. On the other hand, a reversed Y-shaped pillar, like on the Mercedes W07, Red Bull RB12, and Williams FW38 for instance – is not subjected to those kind of constraints.