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Ford's Loriaux calls for simple rules

Ford technical director Christian Loriaux has urged the FIA to keep its technical rules simple when it comes to refining regulations surrounding the switch to a 1.6-litre turbocharged World Rally Car in 2011.

The news that turbocharging would continue, instead of an expected switch to two-litre naturally aspirated engines, in the World Rally Championship was delivered at the World Motor Sport Council meeting in Paris last week, but while the engine size and format has been announced, the finer technical points are still being worked on.

One of the key areas will be the size of restrictor fitted to the air intake for the turbo - the pivotal point in measuring and containing the power output from the engine.

Loriaux feels that retaining the current restrictor system as opposed to imposing controls on the levels of turbo boost from the engine is the way forward for 2011.

"With the restrictor, it's easy: you've got the restrictor and that's that," he said. "But putting a boost limit would need sensors and data loggers. Who's going to check the data all of the time? When you get a [boost] spike for two milliseconds, are you disqualified or what happens? It would be an absolute mess, a nightmare."

Loriaux added that a 1.6 turbo World Rally Car could easily run at the same power output at the current car.

"A few years ago, we looked at running an 1800cc engine in this current car," he said. "We could have had the same power with the restrictor and boost regulations because we could have made the engine lighter.

"If they allow us full boost and they put a restrictor one millimetre bigger [than the current 34-millimetre unit on a World Rally Car] then we would have the same performance as now."

The FIA is expected to deliver the final specification of the 2011 World Rally Car later this season.

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