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F1 at Te Papa

Well we made it into the show and what can we say - it really is a fantastic set up at Te Papa. By far the star of the show for us were the 1990's McLaren and Renaults - pure, raw performance. These cars were the pinnacle of F1 I believe because they were fast in every sense of the word without the limiting modifications of today's F1 race cars (aerodynamics, engine performance / numbers, suspension and so on).

We ogled for hours at the changes (even over 2-3 years or 1 chassis) which contributed to superior performance. You could see, mechanically, the differences and how they mattered. You could see the early attempts at anti-sway bars and compare them to a chassis 2-3 years down the road and note the differences in geometry, positioning and size. You could see that even in the early years of F1 that most, if not all parts were hand made. You could see on the later cars that the small changes over time added up to (what seems to us these days) clear and logical design features. It is engineering and performance overload!

There are not too many events that we'd recommend people give up time to go and see, but we know that if you enjoy the technological show case that is the F1 as much as we do, then it is essential that you spend a little bit of money to come and see the exhibition. Pictures do not do these cars justice!