Interlinked suspension ban a surprise - Boullier

By on

McLaren Racing Director Eric Boullier has admitted that the recent move by the FIA to ban FRIC systems in Formula One have caught the teams by surprise.

Earlier this week it was reported that the FIA, by means of F1 technical delegate Charlie Whiting had written to teams, noting that thorough investigations of the team's different interlinked suspension implementations could all be considered moveable aerodynamic devices.

As such, the FIA aim to consider the systems illegal as of the upcoming German Grand Prix, but did leave the door open for teams to find unanimous agreement to postpone the ban until the end of the season.

It appears though that this sudden move did not only surprise fans and followers, but also the teams themselves.

"It came as a surprise," Boullier said today. "It's not based on any team action, it's an FIA action. We had been warned at the weekend that something could come out of this.

"We've got a letter from Charlie Whiting, it's actually a technical directive. Most of the teams, if not all, are using this kind of suspension system, which is connecting a little bit different to use the best of the vehicle's dynamics.

"I think some teams may have been extreme, this is maybe why the FIA is questioning the legality of this system. And in the case of McLaren, we are quite relaxed to be honest. We don't see any issue with that.

"I don't think there would be too many disturbances for the rest of the season. We don't like it when there is a technical or sporting change during the season, but maybe there is a reason why the FIA wants to do it."

Interlinked suspensions are nothing new to F1 with Minardi having run some coupling between the car's corners in 1993, but the recent surge of interest from teams started in 2008 when Renault introduced it. It is believed that almost all teams are currently running some sort of hydraulic links front to rear to limit pitch with only Sauber admitting they have not had such a system before the start of this season.

"There are maybe a couple of teams who have been extreme and who could be potentially in trouble to switch back to a non-connecting system," said Boullier. "But for most of the teams, I think it won't be a game-changer."