F1 brings in slew of changes from next season

Last Updated: Dec 07, 2011, 19:08 PM IST

New Delhi: The world governing body of motorsports on Wednesday made a slew of changes in the Formula One season next year, including non-permission of cars to take part in pre-season testing without passing all crash tests.

Among other changes in sporting regulations for next year`s races, World Motor Sport Council (WMSC) on Wednesday decided at a meeting here that the maximum race time will be four hours to ensure that a lengthy suspension does not result in a prolonged race.

"Cars may no longer take part in pre-season testing without having passed all crash tests. There will now be a maximum race time of four hours to ensure that a lengthy suspension of a race does not result in a race that could run up to eight hours if left unregulated," an FIA release said.

"Before the safety car returns to the pits all lapped cars will be allowed to unlap themselves and then join the back of the pack, ensuring a clean re-start without slower cars impeding those racing for the leading positions," it said.

Cars which were in the pit lane when a race is suspended will now be allowed to re-join the cars on the grid in the position they were in when the race was suspended.

Drivers may no longer leave track without a justifiable reason and they may no longer move back on to the racing line having moved off it to defend a position.

One three-day test will be carried out during the season, as against none earlier.

All tyres allocated to a driver may now be used on first day of practice; formerly only three sets were permitted.

Among changes in Technical Regulations, the meeting decided that all engine standard ECU set up and control parameters, which were formerly contained only within a Technical Directive, are now contained within the relevant parts of the Technical Regulations.

The exhaust tailpipes are now strictly regulated in order to ensure that the aerodynamic effect exhaust gases on the car is kept to an absolute minimum.

Better marking of in-car emergency switches operated by marshals are now stipulated. The side impact structures will now have to be subjected to a further (upward) push-off test.

The WMSC also discussed the FIA World Rally Championship and said it is committed to ensuring the long-term commercial future of the event and will make every endeavour to provide for its future stability.

The FIA said it was working on an immediate plan to ensure the fundamental sporting and safety elements will be in place for the start of the 2012 season.

From 2013, R4T cars will be eligible in FIA Regional Rally Championships. This new category of four-wheel-drive cars were designed to be cost-effective and more affordable for competitors.

The acceptance of different category cars within the FIA World and Regional Rally Championships will be confirmed during 2012.

The FIA Formula E Championship is set to start in 2013. The Electric and New Energy Championships Commission has been working on this.

The WMSC adopted 2012 calendars for a number of FIA series, Championships, Cups and Trophies for modern and historic races and rallies around the world.

PTI