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FRIC ban a 'total surprise' to McLaren F1 team

McLaren racing director Eric Boullier has revealed that his team was surprised by the FIA's attempt to outlaw interconnected Formula 1 suspension systems.

AUTOSPORT revealed yesterday that the FIA had written to all teams informing them that it believes the FRIC (front-and-rear interconnected suspension) systems were illegal.

The ban could come into effect in time for the next race in Germany, although the FIA has asked all teams to vote on whether or not they want to delay this until the start of next season.

Analysis: The implications of a FRIC ban

"It came as a total surprise," said Boullier when asked by AUTOSPORT about the FRIC ban.

"It was not based on any team's action, it was an FIA action.

"We had been warned at the weekend that something could come of this, and then we got this technical directive.

"I think most of the teams, if not all the teams on the grid, are using this kind of suspension system, which connects the vehicle dynamics better.

"Some teams may have been extreme [with their FRIC design], this is maybe why the FIA is questioning the legality of the system."

Boullier does not believe that the ban of FRIC will be a significant disadvantage for McLaren.

But while he does not expect it to be a game-changer for most teams, he suspects that any teams with a more extreme FRIC concept could be hurt competitively.

"In the case of McLaren, we are quite relaxed," said Boullier. "We don't see any issue with this for us.

"I don't think it will be too much disturbance for the rest of the season.

"We don't like it when there is a technical change in the season, but maybe there is a reason why the FIA wants to do it.

"Maybe a couple of teams have been extreme and could potentially maybe be in trouble to switch back to a non-connected system, but for most teams I think it won't be a game-changer."

Mercedes is believed to have the most advanced FRIC system on the grid.

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