F1 to trim downforce levels for 2021 to protect tyres

The FIA has decided to cut Formula 1 downforce levels for 2021 to protect the integrity of Pirelli's... The post F1 to trim downforce levels for 2021 to protect tyres appeared first on F1i.com.

F1 to trim downforce levels for 2021 to protect tyres

The FIA has decided to cut Formula 1 downforce levels for 2021 to protect the integrity of Pirelli's tyres after the issues encountered by several drivers in the British Grand Prix.

Both Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas, as well as McLaren's Carlos Sainz suffered tyre delamination in the closing stages of the first race at Silverstone, failures that Pirelli investigated and attributed to "challenging operating conditions" and to "the biggest forces ever seen on tyres".

Pirelli had initially planned to introduce new specification tyres for the 2020 season, but the change was scrapped after the rubber was tested and rejected by the majority of teams.

It was then decided to extend the use of the Italian supplier's 2019 compounds into this season and for 2021 before F1's switch to 18-inch wheels for 2022.

Teams had already agreed to trim downforce levels for 2021 to help protect the durability of Pirelli's tyres but in light of the Silverstone issues, the FIA is set to impose an even bigger reduction of downforce levels, mandating the change on the grounds of safety which means that the unanimous approval of the teams is not necessary.

The FIA has imposed a freeze on F1's technical regulations for 2021 to help cap costs following the sport's economic downturn due to the coronavirus.

But reducing downforce levels will now require teams to invest resources to undertake the mandatory design changes.

Teams were informed of the FIA's decision on Tuesday in a letter sent to all competitors by the governing body's secretary general Peter Bayer.

"We are grateful for the support we have received as a sport from Pirelli and note that we have asked them to continue providing the same specification of tyres for a third consecutive season.

"We consider that recent events have highlighted that previously agreed aerodynamic changes are insufficient, and hence we intend to introduce some further downforce reduction measures as permitted by Article 2.2 of the 2021 technical regulations.

"These regulatory changes will be discussed with the teams and will require World Motor Sport Council approval (safety grounds)."

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The post F1 to trim downforce levels for 2021 to protect tyres appeared first on F1i.com.

Source : F1 i More   

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Leclerc: Ban on qualifying modes 'only a positive' for Ferrari

Ferrari needs all the help it can get to help it surmount its current slump, so a ban... The post Leclerc: Ban on qualifying modes 'only a positive' for Ferrari appeared first on F1i.com.

Leclerc: Ban on qualifying modes 'only a positive' for Ferrari

Ferrari needs all the help it can get to help it surmount its current slump, so a ban on qualifying engine modes is good news for Charles Leclerc.

F1 teams were informed this week by the FIA of its intention to issue a technical directive before this month's Belgian Grand Prix that would no longer allow for the use of special engine modes to boost power output during qualifying, implying that teams will need to run their engine in identical modes in the Saturday afternoon session and on race day.

Mercedes, which has been at the forefront of the development of the special "party mode" used in qualifying, is expected to be the hardest hit by the ban, with engine customers Racing Point and Williams also likely to be impacted.

Ferrari is no longer on a par with Mercedes in terms of engine output, having seen its unit's performance reined in by a confidential settlement with the FIA following suspicions of non-conformity that emerged last year regarding the Italian outfit's engine.

Leclerc says the Scuderia does not rely on special engine settings in qualifying, implying that a ban would be "positive" for Ferrari.

"To be honest, I don't think it will affect us so much, so I think it can only be positive for us," said the Monegasque.

"How much it will be beneficial, it's still to see. But for us, I can say that we don't have anything different from qualifying to the race. So, for us, it won't change anything."

©Ferrari

Vettel confirmed that a ban on "party modes" would have no impact on Ferrari.

"Let’s wait and see what happens," said Vettel. "It always depends what you're able to pull off I guess.

"If you have something developed on your engine that you can probably run in certain amount of mileage with more power, more stress on the engine then, probably not the best news.

"But from where we are right now, as Charles said, it doesn't affect us."

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The post Leclerc: Ban on qualifying modes 'only a positive' for Ferrari appeared first on F1i.com.

Source : F1 i More   

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