F1 bosses want to 'get rid' of grid penalties with 2021 rule changes

Formula 1 chiefs are aiming to get rid of grid penalties in all but exceptional circumstances under the 2021 rules, with gearbox regulations now in their sights too

F1 bosses want to 'get rid' of grid penalties with 2021 rule changes

F1 boss Ross Brawn has long made clear his frustration with the amount of grid penalties drivers currently receive for going over their allocations of engine components and gearboxes, calling the present situation a "farce".

Though some tweaks were implemented to try to simplify the system for 2018, F1 race director Charlie Whiting says the aim is now to use 2021's regulations overhaul as an opportunity for a dramatic reduction in the number of penalties imposed.

"We would like to get rid of all grid penalties, if we could," he told Autosport. "That's what we're working towards."

The present gearbox penalty rules are likely to remain in place until then, but major changes for 2021 are being strongly considered.

F1's push to limit the number of gearboxes that a driver can use for a season - with current units having to last six consecutive events - has worked well in reducing costs.

But when teams do hit trouble there is nothing they can do to avoid taking a penalty.

A proposal is being evaluated for the rules to be changed so drivers instead have a total pool of gearboxes to use for the year that they can rotate between and potentially extend the life of, similar to the current engine component situation.

Asked if there was any intention to change the gearbox rules in the short term, Whiting replied: "There is no need. It is a good system we have.

"If we changed to anything it would be to a pool of gearboxes, like we have a pool of engines.

"So you are only allowed three gearboxes for the year and do what you like with them, but that's all you will have.

"It is one of the things we're thinking for 2021. We are introducing a fairly comprehensive package with a number of changes."

shares
comments
How the Spanish Grand Prix exposes Formula 1 driver differences
Previous article

How the Spanish Grand Prix exposes Formula 1 driver differences

Next article

'Stupid' for Charles Leclerc to let Baku F1 result change approach

'Stupid' for Charles Leclerc to let Baku F1 result change approach
How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future Plus

How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future

Multiple-title-winning designer and team boss Ross Brawn is finally leaving Formula 1 after nearly 50 years in motorsport. But he still has plenty of insights on what’s working and what comes next, as he revealed to Autosport in a far-reaching exclusive interview in Abu Dhabi

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2022
The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat Plus

The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat

OPINION: Mattia Binotto’s departure from Ferrari will naturally bring a range of changes across the Formula 1 team. But how the changes shape up and the impact they could have is set to be dictated by a key direction Ferrari’s top dogs will need to pick

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2022
The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants Plus

The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants

OPINION: Mercedes endured its worst season of the hybrid Formula 1 era, but was mercifully spared its first winless campaign in over a decade late on. It has owned up to the mistakes it made which led to its troubled W13. And while its task to return to title-challenging contention is not small, its 2022 season seems more like a blip than the beginning of a downward spiral.

Formula 1
Nov 29, 2022
The physical focus bringing out the best of an F1 midfield star Plus

The physical focus bringing out the best of an F1 midfield star

Esteban Ocon likes to point out he’s the first driver since Lewis Hamilton to emerge from a spell as Fernando Alonso’s team-mate with a superior overall points record. While some may disagree, as LUKE SMITH discovered, the 2021 Hungarian GP winner reckons it’s not just luck which has made him France’s pre-eminent Formula 1 driver of the moment…

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2022
How Red Bull's dynamic leader shaped its F1 philosophy Plus

How Red Bull's dynamic leader shaped its F1 philosophy

The death of Dietrich Mateschitz last month has not only deprived Red Bull of its visionary founder, it has shorn Formula 1 of one of its most influential benefactors. Mateschitz himself was famously media-shy, preferring to let the brand do the talking on his behalf. And, while it’s now normal to speak of Red Bull F1 titles and champions made, Mateschitz never assumed it would be easy or even possible – as ANTHONY ROWLINSON discovered during this previously unpublished interview from 2006…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2022
Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom? Plus

Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom?

OPINION: Teams that have dominated for long periods throughout Formula 1's history often take years to get back to the top of the tree once they've slipped down. But it remains to be seen whether the same will happen to Mercedes after a challenging 2022 season

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2022
What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi Plus

What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi

Arguably the favourite in the battle to finish second best in 2022's Formula 1 standings, Sergio Perez's two-stop strategy at Abu Dhabi couldn't take him ahead of Charles Leclerc when the music stopped - and several key factors ultimately precluded him from the much-coveted runner-up spot

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2022
The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success Plus

The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success

OPINION: Charles Leclerc achieved his target of sealing runner-up in the 2022 world championship with a masterful drive behind Max Verstappen in Abu Dhabi. And that race contained key elements that may help him, and Ferrari, go one better in Formula 1 2023

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2022