FIA confirms further regulation changes

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The governing body issued a statement on Wednesday, confirming that it has approved a further set of crucial changes in reaction to the ongoing coronavirus crises.

The World Motor Sport Council held an e-vote on Wednesday to decide about key measures that allow the FIA to react more swiftly to the challenges currently posed by the COVID-19 virus.

The FIA has been confronted for several weeks with numerous problems surrounding its championships and races series. The majority of series sanctioned by the FIA has been forced to cancel or postpone races and with the outbreak having shown no signs of peaking just yet, further cancellations and postponements could become necessary.

In order to allow the FIA to take an urgent decision without any delay, „the World Motor Sport Council has granted a delegation of authority to the President of the FIA, pursuant to Articles 16.4 and 16.10 of the FIA Statutes, to make any decisions in connection with the organization of international competitions for the 2020 season, which may be required as a matter of urgency.”

The key changes

- Certain articles of the Sporting Regulations can be changed with 60% support amongst the teams

- The permission for the FIA and Formula 1 to change the calendar without a vote

- Tweaks to the testing rules

- Addition of Power Unit Manufacturers shutdown

- Changes to permissible Power Unit elements if the number of races reduces

- The banning of aerodynamic development for the 2022 Regulations during 2020

- Ban of the Dual-Axis system as of 2021

- 18-inch tyre testing abandoned in 2020

- Homologation of the Survival Cell of the 2020 race cars

The Council has also approved changes to Formula 1’s 2020 Sporting Regulations to give flexibility to the FIA and Formula 1 to react to the crises. It provided the two parties with the possibility of implementing changes to the calendar without a vote. It has also been agreed that certain articles of the Sporting Regulations can be changed with 60% support among teams.

The World Council approved the previously-announced delay of the 2021 Technical Regulations to 2022 for cost-saving measures. Further measures will be introduced for 2021 following discussions with the teams. These will include the homologation of the Survival Cell (from 2020) and certain other components.

The Dual-Axis Steering system introduced by Mercedes this year will not be permitted in the 2021 regulation as defined in Article 10.4.2. It was an important step to outlaw the system after teams agreed to keep their 2020 cars for the forthcoming season.

The Council also confirmed that no Pirelli 18-inch tyre testing will take place despite teams having been due to assist the sport’s tyre supplier with 25 days’ of running using their mule cars.

The regulation regarding post-season testing has also been amended. Teams have the opportunity to work with one of their young drivers on an optional test day that takes place on the circuit at which the last event of the championship was held and commences within 48 hours after the end of the race. As a result of the change, teams are permitted to use two cars instead of one.

In order to give the FIA and the Commercial Rights’ Holder more freedom to make tweaks to the race calendar when racing can resume, the traditional summer break period has been brought forward to March/April. The shutdown means that the departments of teams that are responsible for the performance of their race cars are not permitted to work for 14 days, however engine manufacturers can continue to operate. The set of changes also affects the power unit manufacturers, forcing them to terminate their work for three weeks.

Amid the uncertain situation, the governing body has also made changes to the teams’ power unit allocation, reducing the number of engines should the calendar drop to 14 races or less.

"Should the number of races in the Championship drop to 14 or less, each driver may use no more than 2 engines (ICE), 2 motor generator units-heat (MGU-H), 2 turbochargers (TC), 2 energy stores (ES), 2 control electronics (CE) and 2 motor generator units-kinetic (MGU-K). Should the number of races in the Championship drop to 11 or less, each driver may use no more than 2 engines (ICE), 2 motor generator units-heat (MGU-H), 2 turbochargers (TC), 1 energy store (ES), 1 control electronics (CE) and 2 motor generator units-kinetic (MGU-K),” the Sporting Regulation read.

After the crucial technical regulation revamp for 2021 has been delayed until 2022, the sport has now decided to impose a ban on aerodynamic development for the 2022 cars. The ban came in to force on 28 March and is expected to be lifted in February 2021.