World Endurance Championship could change full course yellow rule

A review of the virtual safety car procedure in the World Endurance Championship could lead to changes before the end of the 2016 season

World Endurance Championship could change full course yellow rule

Series promoter the Automobile Club de l'Ouest has revealed that it is examining the system known in the WEC as the full-course yellow together with the FIA.

The investigation follows a run of races in which the yellow periods, during which the cars must slow to 80km/h, effectively decided the outcome of the LMP1 battle.

ACO sporting director Vincent Beaumesnil told Autosport: "There are things we believe we can do, and we are looking at it.

"There could be an alternative way of doing things, and if you look at the safety car rules you might find one there."

Beaumesnil would not confirm that he was hinting that the pits could be closed during the FCY, as would happen when the safety car is deployed.

"Whatever we do, we have to think it through and do it properly," he said.

Beaumesnil explained that there was an intention to provide a solution as soon as possible, but added that it "would be difficult to introduce it during the season".

A change in the sporting rules mid-season would require the unanimous agreement of all the competing teams.

Audi driver Andre Lotterer hit out at the full-course yellows after last month's Austin WEC round when the procedure handed the advantage to Porsche as it was able to pit during a full course yellow whereas Audi lost more time stopping under green.

"This is the third race in a row we have lost a ridiculous amount of time with the FCY," Lotterer said.

"You do nothing wrong and pay a 50s penalty, so something has to be done."

AUTOSPORT SAYS

The idea behind the full-course yellow was to be less invasive than the deployment of the safety car, but it hasn't quite worked out as intended since its introduction for 2014.

A safety car might rob the leader of their advantage, but it most likely isn't going to relieve them of the lead.

The FCY, on the other hand, can result in a massive swing between two cars based on nothing more than fortune.

The #7 Audi, shared by Lotterer, Marcel Fassler and Benoit Treluyer, had been more than half a minute ahead of the closest Porsche before pitting under green-flag conditions during the third hour at Austin.

The winning Porsche of Mark Webber, Timo Bernhard and Brendon Hartley made its corresponding pitstop six laps later during a FCY and emerged with a lead of nearly 20s.

Closing the pits during the FCY would be a simple and sensible tweak that would allow the races to flow without resort to the safety car.

shares
comments
WEC LMP1 privateer Rebellion Racing switching to LMP2 in 2017

Previous article

WEC LMP1 privateer Rebellion Racing switching to LMP2 in 2017

Next article

Mark Webber to retire from racing at the end of 2016

Mark Webber to retire from racing at the end of 2016
Load comments
The understated Le Mans legend who has earned a testimonial Plus

The understated Le Mans legend who has earned a testimonial

OPINION: After 24 Le Mans 24 Hours participations, 50-year-old Emmanuel Collard will be absent from the grid this year, stuck at the mercy of his gold driver grading. But, while he's not motivated by breaking start records, the French veteran is determined to return to the field next year

WEC
Jul 24, 2021
How glitches left Toyota 'worried' about losing unbeaten WEC streak Plus

How glitches left Toyota 'worried' about losing unbeaten WEC streak

The World Endurance Championship's long-awaited return to Monza posed the sternest test yet for Toyota's new hypercar. Although the Japanese marque's GR010 HYBRID remains unbeaten, the victory for Mike Conway, Jose Maria Lopez and Kamui Kobayashi was far from plain sailing

WEC
Jul 19, 2021
How the next step in the IMSA and WEC convergence can reunite multiple fronts Plus

How the next step in the IMSA and WEC convergence can reunite multiple fronts

OPINION: Following the latest convergence connection permitting Le Mans Hypercars from the World Endurance Championship to compete against LMDh entries in the IMSA SportsCar Championship from 2023, it could open up enticing options not only to manufacturers but also for the calendar and race formats

WEC
Jul 13, 2021
How overlooked Mazda produced one of Le Mans' greatest shocks Plus

How overlooked Mazda produced one of Le Mans' greatest shocks

The screaming rotary-engined Mazda 787 is regarded as one of the most popular Le Mans 24 Hours-winning cars, but until its surprise success on this day 30 years ago it was never regarded as a likely victor. But that reckoned without a new technical partner, some canny political manoeuvring and a rival's bizarre self-inflicted weakness

WEC
Jun 23, 2021
How Alpine's stunted Portimao charge helped Toyota to keep clear Plus

How Alpine's stunted Portimao charge helped Toyota to keep clear

Despite going stride for stride for pace at Portimao, Alpine’s grandfathered LMP1 couldn’t convert pole position into a sustained victory fight against Toyota. And due to rules and car limitations that are set in stone, the French manufacturer will be searching for solutions in its own battle of endurance

WEC
Jun 14, 2021
Toyota hits the ton — charting 100 world championship sportscar starts Plus

Toyota hits the ton — charting 100 world championship sportscar starts

The Japanese manufacturer is celebrating its 100th world championship prototype start in this weekend's Portimao 8 Hours round of the World Endurance Championship. Here are the major milestones on the road to three figures since the earliest low-key days of its entry into the Group C arena nearly 40 years ago

WEC
Jun 12, 2021
The philosophical problems the WEC's new Hypercar class is already facing Plus

The philosophical problems the WEC's new Hypercar class is already facing

OPINION: Most of the column inches after the World Endurance Championship's opener were centred around the relative pace of the Hypercar class and the LMP2s, but there's another question that needs addressing in order for the new division to have a successful future

WEC
May 7, 2021
How stumbling Toyota drew first blood in the WEC's new era Plus

How stumbling Toyota drew first blood in the WEC's new era

Amid concerns that the new Hypercar class would be upstaged on debut by the spec LMP2 machines at Spa, Toyota delivered the pole and victory that the vast majority of observers expected. But neither car had a clean run, which gave the grandfathered Alpine LMP1 an unexpected shot at glory

WEC
May 4, 2021