Formula 3 European Championship tweaks sporting rules to cut costs

A raft of changes has been introduced to the Formula 3 European Championship's sporting regulations with the primary aim of cutting costs

Formula 3 European Championship tweaks sporting rules to cut costs

Foremost among these are the expected ban on wind-tunnel testing and the introduction of data sharing between teams, while there has also been an outlawing of the testing of any non-F3 cars and a limit placed on race-weekend staffing and truck-and-trailer units.

Testing of F3 machinery remains at six official and six private test days, but previously teams used other cars in order to gain set-up and driving knowledge on circuits on the race calendar, with Prema Powerteam and Motopark known to have used adapted Formula Master machinery.

This has now been banned, a series statement saying: "Since December 18 2016 no private testing is allowed in any type of car on any circuit being part of the championship calendar."

The statement added that "teams have agreed to share information on throttle, brake and speed after the first qualifying session.

"The respective data from the fastest lap of the fastest driver of each of the two fastest teams will be made available to all competitors.

"This should help smaller, less experienced teams and generate closer competition."

The wind-tunnel ban comes hand in hand with the new aerodynamic update kit introduced by chassis supplier Dallara for 2017 - this made its competition debut in the final round of last year's Euroformula Open series, which uses current-generation F3 chassis.

A tweak to the engine-penalty rules has also been formalised, with the unpopular three 10-place grid penalties reduced to one penalty for any engine change that is as a result of mechanical or electrical failure, and no penalties if the switch is caused by accident damage for which another driver was at fault.

A restriction of €65,000 including service has also been imposed on engine-leasing costs for a calendar year, a reduction of almost a third.

The popular rookie prize fund introduced last summer will be increased, and entry fees have also been reduced from €21,000 to €18,000, with a drastic cut in the late-entry fees from €42,000 to €3000 per event (which would be €30,000 if the entire season is contested).

As expected, the restriction introduced for 2016 of no more than three seasons in the championship for a driver has been amended to four seasons.

This prevented deals for Antonio Giovinazzi and Tatiana Calderon in the 2016 championship, with Giovinazzi subsequently moving to GP2 and Calderon to GP3.

Furthermore, the statement adds a desire that "at least two consecutive seasons [are] considered ideal".

The wind-tunnel ban comes along with the expected rule that "no changes on existing parts can be made and no extra parts can be added to the car to create an aerodynamic advantage".

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