Daily Archives: December 10, 2010

1.6 litre 4-cylinder engines confirmed for 2013

The FIA has confirmed the new specification of Formula 1 engines to be used from the 2013 season onwards.

The current 2.4 litre V8s will be replaced with 1.6 litre 4-cylinder power plants. They will be assisted by high-powered injection, up to 500 bar. The engine rev limit has been reduced to 12,000 rpm.

The number of engines each driver can use will be brought down to 5. From 2014 onwards, this will be reduced to 4 per year.

The FIA claim that these new engines will deliver up to 35% reduction in fuel consumption, while providing the same amount of power (currently around 800 hp).Energy recovery systems and energy management will also be introduced, hinting that the FIA is looking at exhaust gases recovery systems to team up with the KERS unit used at the moment.

Team orders ban lifted for 2011

Ferrari's team orders in Germany are now considered legal

Ferrari's team orders in Germany are now considered legal

The ban on team orders, listed under Article 39.1 on the FIA regulations, has been scrapped from 2011 onwards. This means that team orders, such as the one Ferrari employed at the German Grand Prix this year, can now be legally made without punishment by the stewards or FIA.

The FIA’s statement for this move reads as follows:

The article forbidding team orders (39.1) is deleted.

Teams will be reminded that any actions liable to bring the 
sport into disrepute are dealt with under Article 151c of 
the International Sporting Code and any other relevant 
provisions.

While the stewards handed Ferrari a $100,000 fine after the German GP, they failed to dock or switch the points gained by Fernando Alonso, who was allowed past by Felipe Massa.

In my opinion, this isn’t actually as bad a move as it could be. While I’m completely against team orders that deliberately disadvantage one driver, team orders are used all the time these days, just in different wording.

Now that the ban has been lifted, we can see more clearly how each team operates its strategies. While I’m sure that a driver would let their team-mate past to assist the team’s race strategy for both cars, very few of them would move aside simply for the other driver to directly gain from the order.

Team orders to assist race strategies have been used plenty of times with little controversy, such as Kovalainen and Hamilton in Germany 2008, or Heidfeld and Kubica in Canada. In the situation where one car needs to be released to make the most out of their strategies, I’d say that team orders are fine.

5-race gearboxes introduced as part of new rules

A raft of changes have been announced for 2011 and 2012

A raft of changes have been announced for 2011 and 2012

The FIA has announced a new series of rules for the 2011 season, and some to be introduced in 2012, the most important of which being that gearboxes now have to last 5 races.

This improves upon last year’s restrictions of 4 races on the same gearbox. As the 2011 F1 calendar contains 20 races, this means that most teams will be looking to use only 4 gearboxes for the entire season.

2011

Steward penalties have been revised relating for the rules on “driving and driver conduct”. Race Director Charlie Whiting also has the option to close the pit lane during the race, for safety reasons, if he deems necessary.

The rules will be clarified as to when cars can overtake the safety car, following the controversy at the Valencian GP. Shallow wet tyres (behind the full wets), are now reclassified as intermediates, but that’s what most of us have been saying anyways.

A penalty can be awarded to any driver who fails to use both specifications of tyres during the race. The cars will be modified to allow “anti-intrusion panels” to protect the driver’s legs in case of an accident. On the technical side, the definitions of the “reference plane, and reinforcement of bodywork deflection tests, especially at the front of the reference plane” have all been changed.

2012

For the 2012 season, all team radio communications will be available to F1 broadcasters. The intention of this is to allow more transmissions to be displayed to the audience.

Fuel compounds will be produced from biomass, but no further detail is available at the moment. The number of suspension uprights will also be limited.

The long-awaited 2013 engine rules have been announced, as well as a statement on team orders, and these will be dealt with in separate articles.

Petrov likely to stay with Lotus-Renault

This is the second article from new writer Murai Kadam:

Vitaly Petrov is well set to secure his seat next year

Vitaly Petrov is well set to secure his seat next year

The 26-year-old Russian rookie Vitaly Petrov is likely to stay with Lotus-Renault for next year. Petrov has been financed by his personal backers, including Vyborg Shipyard, Flagman vodka, and the carmaker Lada.

The Malaysian news agancy Bernama said that Proton will also benefit by gaining access to Russia’s automotive market, and automotive technologies owned by Genii.

With Renault having previously been sponsored by Petrov’s backers, Vitaly seems all set to be secured his F1 seat for next year. Group Lotus CEO Dany Bahar admitted that Petrov is well placed to keep his seat in 2011:

.

.

 "Our preferred choice is Vitaly Petrov, but I hope that the 
team will be able to announce by the end of the year our 
final lineup."

Renault bought by Group Lotus, to become Lotus-Renault for 2011

The following article is the first post from a new contributor, Murai Kadam:

The Lotus livery on this year's Renault R30

The Lotus livery on this year's Renault R30

The Malaysian owned car maker Group Lotus has taken a 50 per cent
stake in Lotus Renault worth $100 million and has become its title
sponsor, the remaining 50 per cent will under control of the current
owners, pending rumours of a full takeover.

The news are coming about Group Lotus will be taking full control of the outfit in the next few years. Though nothing has been decided yet about future plans, the Lotus CEO Dany Bahar has hinted about a full takeover:

"Our way of doing things means that at the end of the project we would
like to control it ourselves."

Though there has been some court disputes over the Lotus name, as Tony
Fernandes’ Team Lotus raced in 2009 but their plan has been spoiled with Group
Lotus’ F1 entry, so there might be two teams on the grid branded as
Lotus. Also, both of the teams want to keep the iconic Gold and Black
colour.

‘Lotus Renault GP’ plans were unveiled on Wednesday, also the releasing photos of a re-livered R30 car said its cars will also be black and gold next year. Reverting to this Team Lotus owner Tony Fernandes accused Group Lotus CEO Dany Bahar of “hijacking” Team Lotus’ livery plans, but Renault team owner Gerard Lopez said the opposite is in fact true. Bahar said that he would look at this as extra promotion for his brand, rather than a potential confusion or competition. And he feels that four are better than two.

The reason to link with Renault rather than Lotus racing is for cost reduction, as to build a winning team in Formula One from scratch is not affordable. And that’s why Group Lotus has decided to go with one of the top five teams because there is the potential to go back to where they were when they were winning world championship titles.

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