Sunday, March 21, 2004
FIA Formula One Malaysian Grand Prix 2004
To control engine temperatures the R24 sported very big chimneys coupled with additional air vents placed on the top edge of the sidepods. They doubtless had a negative impact on the aerodynamic efficiency of the car, but in this case the reliability gains justified the sacrifice.
No particular changes from Melbourne, but it was possible to sneak in the garage and get a closer look at the naked sidepods that hid an asymmetrical cooling system, with the right sidepod housing an unusual V-shape radiator, placed horizontally so as to reduce the sidepod section size. This configuration looked very efficient and other teams sported similar solutions.
McLaren tried to correct a chronic lack of downforce at the front of the car by introducing a new front wing featuring a deep spoon profile and a double flap, successfully increasing front-end grip and stability. At the rear of the car (not pictures) additional air vents improved heat evacuation from the sidepods, benefiting engine reliability.