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>>Le Mans 2014<<

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6.17.14

>>S
ome more follow up on Toyota Winggate!  Toyota are actually utilizing two seperate version of their automatic air flow modifying low drag rear wing.  If you need a little more background check out the Le Mans 2014 page.

Toyota TS040, Le Mans 2014The first version is identifed by the inboard bracket (1) that connects the main plane to the endplate.  The wing mount is silver and features a round bolt (2).  The final feature is the flap bolt hole pattern (3) is a single row of approximately 8 holes.

This version of the wing aligns with the original description:

The rear wing mainplane is attached to the central swan neck rear wing mount through a single mounting point.  The secondary flap attaches to the mainplane via conventional slot gap separator brackets.  Outboard, the mainplane has a single attachment point at the endplate and the secondary flap also has a single attachment point for angle changes, as one would expect.

The outboard ends of the assembly are actually attached to the endplate and the wing's rotation is limited to the middle section.  The laminate schedule of the wing is designed to facilitate the rotation, thus the wing actually deforms (though non-uniformly; thus it would seem to mean the wing, once rotated into its low drag nose up positions, is no longer a uniform section and in violation of Art 3.6.2 a.2).  Ironically Toyota's competitors have dubbed this one as the "more legal" version.

Toyota TS040, Le Mans 2014The second version lacks any brackets inboard of the endplate (1).  Toyota TS040, Le Mans 2014The wing mount is black (2) and has a raised oval shape in the middle. Outboard on the endplate, the flap holes (3) are two parallel rows of 3 and 4 bolts.

This version of the wing actually allows the entire wing assembly to pivot.  From a drag reduction standpoint I can imagine this is the more effective device.

Throughout the race weekend both assemblies were used on both cars.  And it appears during the race the assembly was changed on the #8 (race day photos show the #8 running both at various times).




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6.1.14

>>L
e Mans coverage will be gearing up, to the extent that I have an photo email bomb from Race Car Engineering's Sam Collins to start sorting through (my LEAST favorite task).  However, in the mean time, while looking at the Timing & Scoring data, my attention was drawn to the #8 Toyota TS040's overall times, sector times, and trap speeds.  Something interesting caught my eye; on the Toyota's fastest lap (and the fastest lap overall of the Test Day), 3:23.014 (lap #9), it went through Sector 2 (the section from 1/5 of the way down the Mulsanne to Mulsanne Corner) in a 1:17.851 (#8's fastest time through the sector) but went through the speed traps at only 297.2 km/h.  The speed trap is set up just before the first chicane as this is traditionally the fastest section of the track.  So thus the speed trap is smack dab in the middle of Sector 2.  However on another lap, this one decidedly an in-lap (3:39.907, the finish line being crossed on pit lane), the #8 whipped through the speed traps at 336 km/h, though with a Sector 2 time of 1:19.466.  So a full 38 km/h faster than their banzai lap's top speed through the speed trap and not quite totally off it from the Sector 2 time comparison.  Yes, it could have been through drafting the #8 achieved 336 km/h.  However, let's not loose focus; 297km/h is paltry for an LMP1!  But surely something's going on here, not the least which is the obvious; sandbag-o-rama.  

Last year's Pole time was a 3:22.346.  So without really trying the 2014 cars are within .67 seconds of last year.  Suffice to say, last year's Pole will be shattered in two week's.
Porsche 919, Spa 2014One of the gems from the Sam's email photo dropbox bomb is this shot from Spa of the Porsche 919's front right upright/brake drum/front suspension assembly.  Lookie thar...So Porsche has covered their bases and insured that their strake can be called anything but a strake inasmuch as clearly it's a brake duct.  Note the inlet (A).  And I guess while they were designing a brake duct, you know, might as well give it some strakage (B).

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Rebellion R-One, Le Mans paddock 20145.27.14

>>A
s opportunity presents itself...caught this afternoon in the Le Mans paddock, the Rebellion R-One reveals a couple of things of interest.  For one, it appears the R-One's livery is more definitive.  At very least it's different than the shots we've seen of the car testing.  Secondly, this seems to be the first look at the car's diveplanes.  In this shot and the one below understand that the flat floor has been removed.  I've altered the contrast a bit in an attempt to lighten up the dark areas of the front diffuser, hence the "graining."  More of that area below.
Rebellion R-One, Le Mans paddock 2014The set of three aluminum fabricated vortex generators (1) that are arraigned either side of the centerline are taped in place.  This all suggests continuing development (obviously) and a recent trip to either a wind tunnel or coast down testing on-track.  A question was asked about the oval-shaped covers (2) that can be seen; my best guess is that they are access hatches and related to how the splitter/diffuser attaches to the mounts above.

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