Marcin Budkowski thinks that the desire to save car weight was the key factor in creating flexible rear wings.
The debate over the flexi-wings has been on in the Formula 1 paddock for quite some time. One of the effects such wings seem to create is the reduction of drag on straights, which makes the cars quicker. However, the Alpine executive director Budkowski emphasizes that there are more benefits of flexi-wing, including weight saving.
“The deflections of wings are mostly linked to weight saving really. I mean we are all fighting the weight limit and especially at the rear of the car,” he said.
“There is an incentive not only to have the car as light as possible and put as much ballast at the bottom as possible for center of gravity, but also to run more ballast at the front of the car, and the front being in the front of the floor, for weight distribution purposes.”
“The worst place on a car to have weight is in the rear wing because it’s high up and it’s at the back of the car.”
“So it’s one of the areas we’re pushing the hardest for weight saving. And when you save weight you make a car that is a bit lighter and a bit less resistant to load.”
Alpine will have to adjust the A521’s rear wing to follow new regulations starting from the French GP. Budkowski believes that it will not mix everything up for the team.
“We’ll adapt to it. It will cost a bit of performance, it will cost us some weight for sure, and the centre of gravity, weight distribution. And potentially maybe a bit of aero performance if there was some drag-saving related to it. But that would be very small at the end of the day,” he commented.