Formula 1 teams fail to reach consensus on trick suspension systems

Formula 1 teams have failed to reach an agreement on the legality of trick suspension systems, with a ruling now expected from the FIA before the start of pre-season testing

Formula 1 teams fail to reach consensus on trick suspension systems

Debate about pre-loaded suspension systems has been ongoing since Ferrari designer Simone Resta wrote to F1 race director Charlie Whiting about the devices helping aerodynamic performance.

Ferrari was believed to be seeking guidance on whether concepts used by rival teams were legal rather than seeking to develop its own.

Whiting's response at the time was clear in that he felt any suspension system that improved performance through better ride-height and aerodynamics would be in breach of the rules.

It is understood further discussions took place in a meeting of technical directors with the FIA last week, but there was no consensus between the competitors about what should and should not be allowed.

Various ideas were proposed - including a return to conventional suspension, a switch to active suspension or no restriction on the current hydraulic concepts - but teams' opinions were split.

It is understood that a fresh Technical Directive from Whiting giving his opinion on the situation is expected in the next fortnight.

However, it is unclear whether this will impose restrictions on devices that have been developed by teams - forcing a major rework ahead of the 2017 campaign - or will state that complex systems are within the regulations.

It is hoped the ruling will deliver clear guidelines on what is and is not allowed, and doing so before testing begins at Barcelona on February 27 would at least give teams time to adjust before the season opener next month.

Should there be ongoing disagreements about the situation, it is possible the matter could result in a showdown at the Australian Grand Prix.

Teams understand that opinions from Whiting are only advisory in nature, and binding interpretations of the regulations can only be laid down by race stewards at events or ultimately the FIA International Court of Appeal.

The means that if a team is unhappy with what a rival is doing, then it can challenge it with an official protest at a grand prix.

shares
comments
Why the next two weeks are critical for F1 teams

Previous article

Why the next two weeks are critical for F1 teams

Next article

A Formula 1 budget cap would suit us, says Williams

A Formula 1 budget cap would suit us, says Williams
Load comments
The ‘backwards step’ that is the right move for Formula 1 Plus

The ‘backwards step’ that is the right move for Formula 1

OPINION: With its days apparently numbered, the MGU-H looks set to be dropped from Formula 1’s future engine rules in order to entice new manufacturers in. While it may appear a change of direction, the benefits for teams and fans could make the decision a worthwhile call

The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots Plus

The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots

Team Lotus ceased to exist in 1994 - and yet various parties have been trying to resurrect the hallowed name, in increasingly unrecognisable forms, ever since. DAMIEN SMITH brings GP Racing’s history of the legendary team to an end with a look at those who sought to keep the flame alive in Formula 1

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021
Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background Plus

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background

OPINION: Formula 1 reconvenes for the Russian Grand Prix two weeks after the latest blow in ‘Max Verstappen vs Lewis Hamilton’. While the Silverstone and Monza incidents were controversial, they thankfully lacked one element that so far separates the 2021 title fight from the worst examples of ugly championship battles

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021
How F1’s other champion to emerge from 1991 thrived at Lotus Plus

How F1’s other champion to emerge from 1991 thrived at Lotus

Mika Hakkinen became Michael Schumacher’s biggest rival in Formula 1 in the late-90s and early 2000s, having also made his F1 debut in 1991. But as MARK GALLAGHER recalls, while Schumacher wowed the world with a car that was eminently capable, Hakkinen was fighting to make his mark with a famous team in terminal decline

Formula 1
Sep 21, 2021
The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey  Plus

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 

Before Michael Schumacher – or anyone else – had driven the 191 (or 911 as it was initially called), Eddie Jordan turned to a fellow Irishman to test his new Formula 1 car. JOHN WATSON, a grand prix winner for Penske and McLaren, recalls his role in the birth of a legend…

Formula 1
Sep 20, 2021
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Plus

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says STUART CODLING

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021
The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from Plus

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from

OPINION: The headlines were dominated by the Italian Grand Prix crash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who had the halo to thank for avoiding potentially serious injury. But two days earlier, Formula 1 had a lucky escape with a Monza pitlane incident that could also have had grave consequences

Formula 1
Sep 17, 2021
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Plus

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Formula 1
Sep 16, 2021