A fact-finding validation mission has provided critical information that will assist V8 Supercars to maintain aerodynamic parity across existing and future makes.
The new generation Holden and Ford V8 Supercars underwent an intensive five-day validation process at Oakey Army Base just west of Toowoomba in Queensland, capturing critical data that will be analysed in the coming weeks.
Rising stars Andre Heimgartner and Jack le Brocq drove the new generation cars on each of the five days, assisting the V8 Supercars team in collecting valuable data across varying conditions.
The objective was to streamline the process of straight-line testing while eliminating any variables, ranging from environmental to mechanical, which can influence achieving aerodynamic parity.
V8 Supercars Sporting and Technical Director David Stuart, who oversaw the five-day process along with his technical team, said the fact-finding mission was an invaluable exercise in ensuring continued aerodynamic equality.
"We were able to clearly identify a range of parameters that can have an influence on an aerodynamic outcome," Stuart explained.
"We focussed heavily on eliminating all of these variables which can range from weather conditions to the most subtle changes; even the most minor things can have an effect.
"The ultimate objective is to eliminate these variables so the end result is clear and there are no anomalies we haven't accounted for."
Stuart said the validation also gave V8 Supercars the opportunity to fine-tune the process and timelines of testing aerodynamic properties, particularly given new makes may enter the category.
"It was as much about finding out how we improve the procedure from what it has been in the past," said Stuart.
"We were able to try some new things including some sensors we wanted to evaluate and learn from; and understand how we can refine the process.
"It's about us having the tools to pinpoint those things that can influence the testing procedure."
Stuart and his team are capturing and analysing the information gleaned across the validation before presenting a discussion paper to the aerodynamic committee made up of nominated team representatives, Commission members and V8 Supercars staff.
"The week went precisely as planned and we were very happy to achieve all of the core objectives," he said.
"We worked through every validation process we had planned and now we have a mountain of data to analyse. In the coming weeks we will formalise the data and present our findings to the advisory committee for further discussion.
"It needs to be robust because it is under an intense amount of scrutiny. We have got a clear indication and a clear understanding of what type of conditions can skew the result."
The findings, once tabled and discussed with the Aerodynamic Committee, will ultimately be used to make a recommendation on future testing procedures to the V8 Supercars Commission.