Ferrari to face FIA investigation

Mercedes were forced to ditch their experimental front wing at the US Grand Prix.

Having spent the majority of the 2022 season attempting to overcome their major porpoising issue, Mercedes were finally able to bring major upgrades to the United States Grand Prix in Austin.

The team mainly focused on the underfloor and these upgrades paid dividends in Brazil, were George Russell picked up the Silver Arrows’ only win of the season.

One upgrade that the team were forced to scrap however was a new front wing, which featured a large number of slot gap separators.

The intended purpose of these slot gap separators is to maintain the distance between the different levels of the front wing, keeping the gap for the air to flow through the same.

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Eyebrows were raised when this front wing was spotted in the paddock, with many suspecting that Mercedes were attempting to use these slot gap separators to divert airflow, rather than using them for their intended purpose.

The FIA seemed to agree with these accusations and launched an investigation surrounding the front wing, which never made it onto the track as Mercedes feared a punishment.

Ferrari revealed the SF23 this week and to the surprise of many, the car appears to feature a number of these slot gap separators on part of the front wing.

Following Mercedes experiment last season, the FIA rewrote the regulations to limit the quantity, size and curvature of these components.

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This means that Ferrari have not necessarily done anything wrong by including these features on their front wing, as it would be assumed that they have carefully followed the FIA regulations in their design.

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It does appear a little suspicious how the slot gap separators are angled however, as it certainly appears that they have been put there to redirect airflow, which is obviously not their intended purpose.

The FIA will most likely launch an investigation into the SF23’s front wing, with Ferrari’s intentions being key to their verdict.

Should Ferrari be found guilty of attempting to uses these separators to gain an advantage via a different purpose, the team will most likely be asked to remove them before the Bahrain Grand Prix.