Alonso can drive a new medium Alpine: "There is room"

"You cannot make a completely new car, but you can do half," warns Pat Fry, technical director of the French brand, about Alonso's car.


Seven weeks. This is the time that remains, if the coronavirus pandemic allows it, for the 2021 Formula 1 World Championship preseason to begin (March 2-3-4) and see Fernando Alonso seek the limits of the new Alpine on the asphalt of Montmeló before packing his bags and heading to Australia for the first date of the season.

An edition that could be described as transitional, since many elements of the new cars have been frozen for several months and the teams only have two tokens (exchange currencies) to modify some aspect outside the regulations. Not to mention that in 2022 the competition will suffer one of the largest swaps in its history at a technical, financial and sporting level.

However, and despite these premises, Alpine, in the voice of Pat Fry, does not rule out in 'Autosport' presenting a 50% new car in the Barcelona test compared to the RS20: "Although several parts of the car are homologated and they cannot be changed, there are still a lot of things open and at stake. You can't make a completely new car, but you can do half. We are working on what we think is reasonable and trying to do everything we can. Apart from the nose, Chassis, engine and gearbox, we are reviewing most of the car. I think the direction in aerodynamic development that we have followed, in terms of the philosophy we want, has been solid and we must continue down that path.

McLaren will be able to change more things by mounting a Mercedes engine in 2021

Asked about the adjustments that teams must make this winter on the flat bottom of vehicles to minimize their downforce by 10%, Fry does not rule out observing changes in the order of the grid: " Soil and flow structures change quite drastically, but this is the same for everyone. We can only do as much as possible. Fundamentally, we are still working on the philosophy we have followed. There is room for improvement in what we can do and what it is allowed within the regulations. The change of the ground, although it seems quite small and insignificant, drastically modifies the aerodynamics of the rear of the car ".

Likewise, the technical director of the Enstone formation points out that McLaren, when returning this year to be powered by Mercedes power units, will be able to alter other parts of the MCL35M outside the regulations: "It will be necessary to see who and how they manage to cope with this change in the best way and really see how it alters the order of the grid. I suppose McLaren will be able to change more than most because obviously a power unit change allows you to modify the load of other parts of the car outside than allowed by the approval ".

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