Vitaly Petrov, Renault, Monaco, 2011

New engine-mapping limits for Valencia will affect all teams, says Renault

2011 European Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Vitaly Petrov, Renault, Monaco, 2011
Vitaly Petrov, Renault, Monaco, 2011

Renault say the new restrictions on the use of exhaust-blown diffusers for this weekend’s race will affect the performance of all the cars.

From this weekend, teams will no longer be allowed to change their engine mappings between qualifying and the race.

This is intended to prevent them from using so-called ‘qualifying modes’ where exhaust gasses are used to increase downforce in the diffuser by burning fuel even when the driver is off the throttle.

Further restrictions will come into force at the British Grand Prix.

Renault’s technical director James Allison said: “We would have preferred to keep the status quo for the rest of the season.

“The FIA?s note will cause all teams (whether or not they use a blown floor) to change their operation.

“The headline changes for Silverstone are as follows: when the driver lifts his foot fully off the throttle pedal, then the ECU maps must be set up so that the engine (to all intents and purposes) closes the throttle ?ǣ previously it was possible to configure the engine maps to leave the throttle open and reduce the engine power by other means.

“Furthermore, when the driver lifts fully off the throttle, the Engine Control Unit maps must be configured to cut off the fuel supply to the engine ?ǣ this is intended to prevent so-called ‘hot blowing’ where the energy of the exhaust gas is increased by combustion.

“Finally, with immediate effect, it will no longer be possible to reprogram the ECU configuration between qualifying and the race in the expectation that this will discourage extreme ECU set-ups for qualifying – previously electronic access to the ECU under parc ferm?? conditions had been explicitly permitted.”

Allison played down claims this will disadvantage Renault more than other teams: “It is not easy to judge the effect of this change on our competitiveness.

“The loss for each blown floor car will come from two separate effects ?ǣ how much downforce will you lose and, in addition, how much will the loss of this downforce upset the balance of the car.

“All blown floor cars will lose downforce under braking as a result of these new restrictions. Some teams will lose more and some teams less; it is hard to know exactly what relative loss Renault will suffer.

“However, it is possible that we will suffer less on the balance shift side of the equation because our forward exit exhausts produce their effect quite near the middle of the car. This means that as the exhaust blow waxes and wanes, it does not really disturb the aero balance of the car too much.

“With a rearward blower, the downforce from the exhaust is all generated at the rear axle. As the new rules reduce the blowing effect on corner entry much more than corner exit, it is possible that the rearward blowers will tend to suffer more nervousness under braking and more understeer on exit as a result of the new restrictions.

“We will find out at Silverstone!”

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110 comments on “New engine-mapping limits for Valencia will affect all teams, says Renault”

  1. I hope it wont be dominated by the RedBulls.

    1. It’s believed that Red Bull have the most to lose from these changes, because they are said to have perfected the off-throttle blown diffuser. One of the inherent strengths of the car is the way it carries speed through corners – they’ve recognised that the Renault RS27 doesn’t have the best straight-line performance (and we’ve often seen the Red Bulls struggling for traction out of a corner), so they’ve built a car that is designed to be fast in the corners.

      Of course, everyone except the Cosworth teams, Toro Rosso and Sauber (none of whom are running off-thorttle blown diffusers) stand to lose something from this.

      1. On the most recent “Flying Lap” which had ScarbsF1 as a guest on, they spoke about the hot blowing situation, it’s definitely worth a watch/listen:‘the-flying-lap’-scarbsf1-reviews-drs-engine-mapping-ban-and-the-canadian-gp/

        But one of the most interesting points Scarb’s made was that he has been told by someone quite high up the food chain in terms of engine development that RBR do not actually ‘hot’ blow their diffuser to the extent everyone is thinking.

        I’m sure it will be more than the 10% rule that the FIA are introducing, but if RBR end up losing comparatively less than say Mclaren and particularly Ferrari who apparently use a lot of off throttle hot blowing, then we could see even more RBR dominance, which is worrying to say the least.

        1. Another interesting thng he added was that a large part of their dominance is likely the type of exhaust they’ve implemented rather than the engine mapping, and that other teams will likely lose more. He didn’t mention specific teams, but given their similarities in exhaust I would imagine he’s referring to McLaren and Ferrari.

          1. Even if they lose a lot, I would think Newey is best positioned to gain that back by new bits fastest of all!
            After all, he has not really had anything else troubling his aero team, so they have been on this for over a month now.

    2. I’ll laugh so hard if after all these bans Vettel will still get poles and RedBull will continue their domination.

      1. I have a distinct feeling we will see Red Bull pushed much harder in Valencia. They are clearly the team that has the most change between qualifying and race and also they are clearly switching to a similar qualifying mapping at times during the race (ie the start, safety car restarts and when other teams start catching them). Whether is buggers them completely or not is still to be seen but they will certainly be hurt by this.

      2. It reminds me of those days when they were used to do everything to cut Ferrari’s when Schumi was dominating drinving those machines deseigned by Rory Byrne’s team.

        I don’t like to see RB taking all the poles but they’re doing it on merit…

        1. Well, to a point. The front wing is clearly cheating….

          Also it seems the off throttle mappings are a grey area that the FIA seem to think is breaking the rules. I am not sure if it is a rule designed to punish Red bull as almost all the teams are using it and Renault and Ferrari appear to stand to loose just as much if not more than Red Bull.

          1. Well, to a point. The front wing is clearly cheating – that’s quite an emotional statement.
            The FIA cleared the RedBull front wing many times, how can you be so sure it’s illegal?

      3. I bet it will happen.

      4. I fully expect that to be the case!

  2. So this means my prediction that the Saubers are going to find themselves higher up the field as they’ve apparently never adopted the blown-diffuser may have been a little premature?

    Better call TAB about that Kobayashi podium bet I placed for Silverstone…

    1. I guess, that might be deemed a wise move :-)

    2. If the Saubers don’t have the off-throttle diffuser, how is the ban going to affect them? Is the engine mapping used only to help the EBD or even teams without EBD change their engine mappings?

  3. I’m honestly surprised it took the FIA this long to ban different engine maps in qualifying and the race. I’d have thought they would ban it the moment they learned of it – Istanbul or Barcelona.

    1. last year Istanbul you mean?

      1. Well … maybe. When did teams start running the OTBD? I know they were using blown diffusers last year, and I imagine the off-throttle variant is the evolution of that concept. But teams could have been using them late last year.

        I say Istanbul because the FIA introduced the original OTBD bad for the Spanish Grand Prix before recanting. They obviously had to know about it in advance, and the Turkish Grand Prix preceded Spain. Given what we’ve seen from them in the past, the FIA act pretty quickly when a new idea comes up like this – they did it with everything from ground effects to tuned mass dampers. So I figure OTBDs are new for this year, and the FIA has known about them since Shanghai or Istanbul at least.

        1. I understand they were doing this early/mid last season already when you could hear those strange engine noises. It might even be RB did it from the start of the season.

          ScarbsF1 did an article on it before the middle of last year, if i remember correctly.

          I would think the most sensible thing would have been to ban it before the start of the year.

          1. The FIA can only act on something when they learn of it. and when teams are exploiting loopholes and taking pains to keep the technical details secret from other teams lest they lose their advantage, the last thing they want is the FIA being able to shut them down.

          2. You are right BasCB.
            I remember commenting that article with friends as early as may last year.
            So Red Bull is probably using it at least from the begining of 2010 season.

      2. I believe Mclaren first remapped the engine for the EBD at Spa 2010, it was on their website, although seems to have been removed.

  4. No changes of engine mapping between qualy and race i understand. What about different mappings under race conditions? For example turning back the power to conserve the engines for engine conservation or changes in track conditions such as rain?
    If they leave the mapping the same and unadjustable, it could make for some exciting driving when conditions are not ideal.

    1. What about different mappings under race conditions?

      They’er still permitted. What the FIA is trying to do is ban the teams from using extreme engine maps that get incredible levels of downforce going, but can only be used for one lap before they start to damage the engine.

      1. The knowledgeable members of the SpeedTV team have been remarking on the strange off-throttle exhaust notes of some of the cars for a while now, I think the Mclarens were the most commented on.

        1. The BBC were saying how quiet the Maclarens off throttle noise was compared to the Red bulls and Renaults.

          Red Bull, Renault and Ferrari are the teams that seem to be exploiting this more than others. Red bull in particular appear to have a boost mapping that gets them away from the field quickly before they settle back down to normal pace and apparently their qualifying mapping uses 40% more fuel then normal.

          Just look at the evidence. In Canada Vettels car looked like it had rockets attached at the start and on each safety car restart yet near the end of the race Button was able to catch him very quickly indeed. It looked very much like they did not have enough fuel to run the special mapping and get away from Button.

          1. I hadn’t thought about that before, how Vettel streams away but then gets caught. I assumed it was down to the tyres, but you could be on to something.

          2. Cluffy_Wedge
            21st June 2011, 18:03

            This was my thoughts too, that Red Bull have some kind of hyperdrive mode that they use for Quali and at the start of each race, but then just cruise from that point. Each race you see that Vettel is about 5 seconds ahead at the end of lap 2 but after that he’s not really getting away.

          3. 40%?! Incredible. They must be running off fumes in quali.

            I knew fuel consumption was higher but not by so much.

      2. So what they are saying is that you have to start on the engine mapping you qualified on? How many laps do you then have to run on that mapping before you can change it?

        I can’t see how they will police this….

        1. It’s not as drastic as that. They can still map the engine, I believe the driver can control certain engine functions from the wheel, mainly to do with fuel load.

          1. So if they can still map the engine then they will simply start on qualifying mappings (as red bull already seem to do) and then switch to normal.

            It is unenforceable unless they ban the ability to change mappings during a race.

            Obviously though it is irrelevant from Silverstone onwards….

      3. So they’ll just run the quali engine map for the start of the race and then switch it to the race map after the start.

        Doesn’t seem to make much difference when you look at it that way.

        1. All the reports are implying that the changes to the ECU from qualifying to race setup are significant enough to require different maps to be loaded from a connected pc.

          1. So then do can they not just need to add some more memory onto the car to store the extra map?

          2. The ECU is one of the components which is standard. The teams don’t have control over the hardware specification of the ECU, and the software must be submitted (including I believe source code and means of version identification) prior to the race weekend.

            So for say Ferrari in Singapore where they were changing firmware on what was presumably the ECU, those experimental versions would have to have been approved by the FIA before-hand. They can’t for example recompile ECU firmware in the middle of a session and then re-flash the car ad-hoc.

            As to whether you can’t run an OTBD map simultaneously with regular engine maps, that’s a definite possibility. My understanding is that the current generation ECU is a combination of a standard micro with the fine timing being performed by an FPGA. An FPGA requires a a firmware image to be loaded at boot time, and reconfiguring it requires a reboot with another image in flash. While it’s possible to have a selection of images in flash, it may be that there isn’t enough flash on the micro to do so.

  5. My concern is loss of stability under breaking. It might lead to severe problems and safety issues.

    Lack of wisdom on power again. Typically for FIA. We’ve seen it before, we’ll see it again :-(

    1. My concern is loss of stability under breaking. It might lead to severe problems and safety issues.

      There will be no loss of stability – the cars will behave the same under braking the same way they did last year. The drivers might have to compensate for the lack of downforce compared to what they are used to, but the cars are still safe.

      1. May be…, but, these diffusers are designed to exploit mapping of the engine that enables hot blowing under breaking. Teams will have to redesign their diffusers to compensate loss of hot blowing. Initially it will definitely lead to problems. They’ll solve it, of course, but it’s a sweat no one needs. FIA allowed something that is deemed illegal now. It was illegal before, as well. The question arises: Are they competent to govern this sport? They did similar things in the past with solutions they approved and weren’t illegal at all. Remember 1998? McLaren’s sequential rear axle breaking. It was perfectly legal and they banned it notwithstanding.
        Frivolous behavior I’d say…

    2. Could have been an issue if we still had double diffusers?

  6. What are the rules on changing the ECU settings during the race though? Would it be possible for teams to fit systems to allow them to make changes from a quali set-up to a race set-up during the space of a pit-stop? Technically I don’t see why this couldn’t be done, however the regulations might block it.

    1. Nothing stopping you pluggin a computer in to change the map apart from time. I do wonder if a wireless link would be permitted during a pit stop.

      1. Why do they need to plug anything in? They can already change mappings during a race by pressing buttons on the steering wheel. They do it to conserve fuel and for wet conditions and also while behind a safety car. What is to stop them starting on the qualifying setup (which red bull appear to do anyway) and then switch to a normal mapping for the rest of the race?

        1. I have wondered that too, posted similar thing further down. The reason I said this was due to the autosport article –

          The new directive from the FIA means that any engine mapping setting used in qualifying has to now be used for the start of the race – with the first opportunity to change it now only possible at the first pitstop when a computer could in theory be plugged into the car.

        2. Aren’t they limited to the amount of maps they are allowed to use?

          I mean in theory they could run whatever they liked whenever they liked.

          Someone needs to dig out the technical regs…

          1. I agree. I am not sure what they are and are not allowed to do mid race. As far as I know though they can change as much as they like as in theory they could change the entire setup at a pit stop and only aerodynamic changes are banned from driver control. They seem to be able to change the Max Rpms and fuel mixture etc during a race as you hear the commands come over the radio all through the race. After all they all start with less fuel than they need to complete the race so all of them turn down the engine at some point.

  7. I hope there is enough in the clarification to stop loop holes being used. I don’t think that banning off throttle usage will stop all use of this technique.

    All a team would need to do would be to have the first 10% of throttle pedal travel use a wide open throttle and massively retarded timing. As the pedal is depressed more then advance timing and close the throttle slightly. Obviously when completely off the throttle pedal, throttle snaps shut.

    You could even install a two stage spring so the dirver knows when they are using the throttle to blow the diffuser and when using it for power. First 10% light resistance then firmer for the next 90% of travel.

    The only way to get round this would be to mandate that throttle travel is directly proortional to pedal travel, maybe mechanical linkage rather than drive by wire?

    1. It’s not just a linear mapping between throttle peddle and the injectors, if it were that would be easy… don’t take your foot off the throttle!!

      This is more complicated as it involves retarding the ignition as well, so that the ignition occurs not at the top of the cycle, but later in the cycle so that the exploding gasses are used as a blown exhaust instead of delivering power to the piston. The mapping for something like this might look more like a hysteresis.

      1. Thats pretty much what I was saying. At 0% throttle pedal, engine throttle will be at max 10% open. 1% to 10% throttle pedal, engine throttle will be 100% open with massively retarded timing. 10% – 20% throttle pedal, engine throttle closes across the range whilst advancing the timing to increase torque. 20%+ throttle pedal, engine throttle works as normal.

        As it is a drive by wire throttle you can have any mapping you want and it doesnt have to be remotely linear. A mechanical throttle would force it to be fairly linear, but that isn’t really in the spirit of F1.

  8. So if I was an F1 driver in one of the top teams with a good technical team, here’s what I would do.

    I would tell my engineer to set up a system which would, when activated, retard the ignition so that you have hot exhaust gases blowing out. Basically what is happening right now. Hook up this system to the brake pedal.

    Now hear me out.

    What you have now is this:
    You approach a corner, lift off completely. According to the new rules, you can have the throttle open by 10% of its maximum amount. And hit the brakes.

    The car slows down.

    While the brakes are still pressed and the car is still not at the apex of the corner, I would press the throttle. As per my system design, it would retard the ignition and I have the hot exhaust blowing out. Remember that I am pressing the throttle right now, so it’s not being done automatically. Just have a feather touch over the brakes right now so it’s not actually opposing the power output, but the brake switch is pressed. Anyone who has driven a normal car knows what I’m talking about.

    Past the apex, release the brakes completely. This would deactivate the system and advance the ignition to produce maximum power on the straight.

    1. Ehm, right. So you would not be off throttle and have no off throttle blowing.

      Suprise, suprise, that is exactly the driving they had to do before the off throttle blowing engine mapping was introduced last year. Balancing the throttle to get exhaust boost as best as they could.
      It might have been part of why Webber was better than Vettel in races 2nd quarter of last year, losing the advantage when the ECU did the blowing for them.

      1. Electrolite
        22nd June 2011, 0:06

        Do you think we can expect differences between team mates pace changing then? Obviously everyone will use different braking and throttle techniques through corners. It could be a nice little kink in the season.

        1. Hmmm… finding out who is really the best driver. You might be on to something there!

        2. I think we might see a bit more of driver skill involved yeah. That is one of the good sides of this.

    2. It wouldn’t work. There is no clever loophole to be exploited by shifting between the accelerator and brake. All that is going to do is slow you down for a minimal downforce gain as you hope between accelerator and brake. There are also some corners on the circuit that require heavy braking; so heavy, in fact, that drivers cannot afford to get onto the throttle in the braking zone. Even if your system somehow worked, the stewards would liekly throw the rulebook at you for running an illegal engine map.

      You also seem to be misinterpreting the rules:

      1) The rules introduced for Valencia do no limit engine mapping to 10%. Those rules come into effect from Silverstone. The rules being introduced in Valencia force teams to use the same engine maps in qualifying and the race. It’s to stop teams running extreme maps that produce massive amounts of downforce, but can only be used for one lap at a time, or else risk damaging the engine.

      2) The ban that comes into effect at Silverstone limits teams to using an engine map that runs the engine at 10% of full throttle when they are under braking. The drivers are not limited to using 10% of the physical throttle; it’s the engine map that is restricted.

      1. For point 1 risk of damage to the bodywork and diffuser too.

        For point 2 isn’t the throttle meant to have a maximum opening of 10% WOT whenever the driver is off the throttle pedal rather than just under breaking? And wouldn’t this mean that throttle pedal position at 1% would allow the ECU to open throttle 100%?

      2. Gee, I hate to pander to the conspiracy theorists but if this is possible it would be very easy for a team to ensure one of their drivers always qualified faster than the other, can’t think of any names though.

      3. PM – I think pretty everyone in F1 uses left foot braking these days. No issue in hopping between pedals.

        1. But from the way cyanide explains it, he’d be spending all his time alternating between accelerating and braking to try and find the optimal level of downforce. To me, that just seems insane because I cannot for the life of me see how it would be better than driving normally since all your attention would be on riding the pedals and constantly making adjustments to stop yourself from spinning.

          1. Actually that is exactly what the drivers used to do before they started using this retarded ignition “hot blowing”.

            Some managed it better than others. But I would not see this as a loophole, because its using the throttle and brakes to control the car, i.e. driving the car (in so far as the engine mapping does not start doing sequences on its own).

    3. I remember hearing during a race once that there is a auto engine shutdown system in place that kicks in if both break and throtle are pushed together. It’s there to shutdown the engine if the driver looses consiousness (as like happend to Massa & the spring).

      It has a tollerance set to prevent against the obvious, but it could complicate the the system you seem to be describing.

      1. I would think that this is set up so that both have to be pressed quite firmly – Almost all drivers will have some crossover time where both pedals are pressed at once (if only a little).

        Except for Barrichello – I’m quite sure he still brakes with his right foot.

        1. I agree with that TdM. Especially as alternating and using both is one of the ways to carefully guide the car through tricky corners used all the way since left foot braking came into F1.

  9. Did Cosworth ever get a system like this up and running?

    If not, then Williams might have the most to gain from these changes.

    1. No, the Cosworth teams never could get it to work. When Hispania complained to the FIA in Barcelona, one of the darker conspiracy theories was that Cosworth were behind the push for a ban because their OTBD was inefficient, and they threw Hispania to the wolves while they kept trying to refine their system.

      1. Don’t McLaren still make and supply all the ECUs.

        1. They may – but for Cosworth, it’s not an issue with the ECU. The CA2010 engine just isn’t designed for these extreme engine maps.

  10. *I’ve been trying to put my comment like 3 or 4 times!*

    Well…I hope Renault can overcome this and they stand up their game for the next GP’s. Especially with their FEE, that is believed to have a big performance drop.

  11. I wonder how long it will take before they suddenly change rules mid race when one car is leading? Because clearly, this is, much like DRS, to “improve” the show and get more viewers who doesn’t really understands the show and just wants another Jerry Springer show. It’s ridiculous. F1 is ridiculous lately. This is nothing else than selling out to get more viewers. I’m sick of it.

  12. I thought when the standard ECUs were first introduced there was space for something like eight different maps. These would allow you to have maps for traction off the line, power, efficiency, dry, damp, wet etc with the driver being able to select between them from the steering wheel. Is that correct? How does this new regulation fit in with that?

    1. It would probably explain why they load new settings in between Qualifying and the race right now.

      If the engine maps for Qualifying (possibly having outlap/hot lap/inlap maps currently) would take up 1-3 of those 8 it would leave the drivers seriously limited in the race.

  13. of course it will affect all. the question is, who is most affected.

  14. Which teams will affect the most?

      1. I dont think so :nanana:
        my be McLaren :oui:

  15. i hate the fact that this will affect renault cars (redbull and renault) the most. they have the weekest engine and found a great way to get better speed from the mclaren ecu. not even mclaren and the other mercedes cars could do it as well with an ecu that should be native to their engine! mercedes has the power advantage of the f1 engine makers, and the engine freeze has meant they could keep that advantage, until renault and redbull out engineered the bigger teams. its not fair to now ban this, i bet the new 2013 engines will be delayed as long as possible too so that redbull has a deficient engine to mclaren and ferrari for a bit longer.

    1. The engine power deficit has long shown to be a minor issue in comparison with their superior fuel efficiency, apart from tracks with several long straights, of which there are few on the calendar.

    2. Engine characteristics are separate from the ECU.
      Blowing extra hot gas out of your exhaust will be pointless if you can’t use it to influence the aerodynamics of the car, and this is the area where Redbull got it right.
      The figured out how to get the exhaust to maximize downforce. It has nothing to with with the engines or ECUs. It has everything to do with the car’s design.

      Redbull, Renault and Lotus use the same engines, how come it is only Redbull that is winning races consistently?

  16. This is nothing we didn’t really know but the insight from Allen is good.

    If the RB7 remains on top, which believe it will, I wouldn’t be surprised if the flexi-wing raises its head again ;)

    1. Luckily, many don’t understand what this wing does. No issues there, mate ;-)

    2. It simply has to raise its head again. It is clearly cheating! I am amazed the FIA has not done something about it. It is clever, very clever, but cheating non the less. We have the worlds most advanced racing cars and the FIA still use dead weights on the end of the wings to test them……

      1. It’s not cheating if you pass tests regardless how primitive they are.
        If I could, I’d shake hand to every Engineer at RB Racing for doing something so ingenious.

        Although, my favorite team is McLaren.

        Good Ideas deserve a credit, dominant car is one of them.

        1. Really? So you think when a rule says “No flexible wings” with a number of tests associated with it and a team sets out to create a flexible wing but that also passes the tests that isn’t cheating?

          Lets say in a card game, one of the rules is you are not allowed to substitute a card in your hand other than one that is dealt to you. To test this rule they check up your sleaves. If a player finds a new way to secrete a card on their person and substitue it with one in their hand, is that now not cheating?

          Having said that I am not convinced that RBR are cheating. It is possible that the extra rake they run will cause more ground effect to come into play which will act like a kind of feed back loop to make it appear like it suddenly flexes more at higher speeds. But if they have designed a wing to start flexing more past a certain load to get pass the test but break the “spirit” of the rule then I would class that as cheating.

          1. Define ‘flexible’. It’s a subjective term when all is said and done.

            If it passes the test, I say it’s legal.

            If anyone thought they had a genuine case it would have been banned by now.

    3. Hewis Lamilton
      22nd June 2011, 15:50

      You are right AndrewTanner, the haters will still be crying foul.
      Funny how many people apparently know more than the FIA do with regard to the legality of the Red Bull front end.
      In the end, it doesn’t matter though, when you have the best designer and arguably the best driver working together you will win races and championships.

  17. Jelle van der Meer
    21st June 2011, 19:39

    Ridiculoous interference from the FIA is a current F1 season.

    None of these practices are a surprise to the FIA or other teams – no one has disputed that the are legal to be used => WHY change mid season

    Only reason is that they want Red Bull less dominate to avoid championship decided 2 races before the end.

    Not specifically a Red Bull fan but I find this VERY VERY wrong and unfairly causing disadvantange to some teams.

    1. It is not without precedent as they have banned a few things mid season. I don’t like it unless it is a safety issue as the teams spend a lot of money to design their cars around a certain technology only to have it banned mid season when the car was passed before the start. However I suppose they do need to deal with in season developments on the cars. However I would rather they ban the mappings from next season.

      It is not an anti-red bull rule though as it affects Renault and Ferrari a lot too (some think more than red bull) and also will affect other teams to some extent.

  18. Well, that rings the end of the whole “Explosive Aerodynamics” (ie, using exploding stuff to increase downforce) issue.

  19. How reducing downforce at the back of the car will produce understeer? Can someone elaborate?

    1. The cars will have less grip in corners and although the downforce is at the rear, the cars are rigid so the rear downforce does influence the front (although obviously less than the rear). Less downforce means they will understear through the slow and medium speed corners.

  20. But what if you press the clutch while at the same time pressing the throttle? Then you have revs, but no added drive. And you miss the retarted ignition, but it’ll do more than just the 10%.

    Drivers will need to practice and probably the current clutches aren’t suitable, but they could make it work. Another option would be to combine the pitlimiter with clutch, probably too less work, but just an inspiration from Schumi using the pitlimiter at Spa in the rain as traction control.

    1. But then that is skillful driving rather than a assisted function.

      1. exactly! They have diffusers optimized for exhaust flowing over them, so why not use the driver instead of an engine map?

        1. Hewis Lamilton
          22nd June 2011, 15:53

          I have a feeling the teams will work around this in a similar fashion to what you are describing there verstappen.

          But, according to some peoples logic, then the driver will become a movable aerodynamic device and will be banned.

  21. Christ, that car looks awful. I thought it looked magnificent at the beginning of the season (red endplates notwithstanding), but they’ve just stuck too many bloody stickers on it. Those new Lotus ones especially are unneccessary and messy.

    1. The people who paid for those sponsor decals will probably disagree with you.

      1. Oh, I agree. Just expressing my own aesthetic opinion. The Lotus decals by the front wheels aren’t too bad (a la Ferrari), but the ones on the air intake look ridiculous. Talk about screaming “I’M A LOTUS!”.

        (P.S. I support LRGP and not Team Fernandes, which is why I wish the cars looked a bit better)

  22. If it unsettles the cars then I think things will be interesting as then we will find out who have a better car control.

    1. That certainly is the biggest upside of this “clarification”.

  23. The coming ban I suspect is meant for RedBull not so much Renault. But I won’t be surprised RBR will still be leading. Can you imagine if Vettel wraps up the WDC way before the last 6 or 7 races, ticket sales will plummet down a cliff.

    F1 is also a business. No people no honey.

    1. Can you imagine if Vettel wraps up the WDC way before the last 6 or 7 races, ticket sales will plummet down a cliff.

      Not necessarily. The last seven races of the season are in Italy, Singapore, Japan, South Korea, India, Abu Dhabi and Interlagos. Of those seven, the Italians, Japanese and Brazilians all love their race, and India is looking pretty promising for a massive following, too. The other three are a bit questionable, but I don’t think people are simply not going to go because the title fight is over. This year’s rules have produced some fantastic racing, and I see no reason why that will stop if and when the title fight does; the drivers aren’t just going to hold formation simply because the World Champion has been decided. And even if one man walks away with it, the battle for second and third in the drivers’ standings could still be wide open. There’s still going to be plenty of reasons to go to a Grand Prix.

      Besides, it was never really a problem when Schumacher was at the height of his powers, so why should now be any different?

    2. There are rumors that Ferrari are making more use of this than even Red Bull or Renault.

  24. These aren’t regulations but rather show fixes. Can’t see any reason an extreme map couldn’t be one selectable during the race but not deployed.

    1. It is and it looks as though red bull do do this. I can’t see how they will police this as surely the teams will just start on the qualifying map and then switch to normal… It looks to me that Red Bull already start on the qualifying mapping as they are far quicker than everyone else for the first 2 or 3 laps and then slow down to a normal pace.

  25. spankythewondermonkey (@spankythewondermonkey)
    22nd June 2011, 10:52

    if they’re trying to stop EBD’s, surely change the regs so that “exhaust gases must be routed without interruption and may not interact with any part of the car except the exhaust pipe(s)”
    “exhaust exits to be enclosed and remain uninterrupted to an exit point that is level with the rearmost body part of the vehicle”?

    this way, you cannot have the gases interacting with anything, be it a diffuser, a spoiler, the underside, suspension components etc.

    1. See changes to the regulations for 2012.

    2. spankythewondermonkey (@spankythewondermonkey)
      22nd June 2011, 12:22

      should’ve added that if a change to the regs is required, which is what this appears to be, then it should be for next season, not this. too many teams have designed their cars around using the exhaust for aero gains. either they’re within the regs, so allow it, or they’re outside of the regs and are therefore ineligible to race.

  26. Looking at the original specs for the 2008-2010 FIA standard ECU it looks as though there is one fuel map with multiple modifiers and two ignition maps selectable by the driver when the car is stationary for 3 or more seconds

    2.4.7 FIA Configuration and Limitations
    Two base spark maps, selectable by driver when car stationary for 3 seconds.

    Of course this is now 2011, have the ECU specs changed for this year?

  27. As for overlapping throttle and brake and using a separate mapping or a button to push to alter mapping. I think they’re getting close to having the ability of traction control. Definitely not allowed under current rules.

  28. I think it is really unfair regulation. This is because profit gaining team is has not been in the pole for this season. whahahaha…:(:(

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