Vitaly Petrov, Caterham, Buddh International Circuit, 2012

Safety call prompts DRS rules change for 2013

F1 Fanatic round-upPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Vitaly Petrov, Caterham, Buddh International Circuit, 2012In the round-up: F1 drivers will only be allowed to use DRS in the designated zones at all times as of next season due to safety fears.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Tweaks to DRS regulations for 2013 (BBC)

“Drivers have complained there have been incidents when some have lost control because they are testing the limits of when they can use the DRS.”

Kubica working on return after injury (Reuters)

“Kubica said he had driven some high performance cars recently but the condition of his arm did not allow him to test in single seaters and there was no immediate prospect of a return to the top level.”

Tyres will be key to success in Austin – Webber (ESPN)

“Temperature is very important, the layout isn’t very important. If the black things in the corners aren’t working then you can put the layout up your arse – the car’s not going to work.”

F1: COTA Is Fantastic, Says Ecclestone (Speed)

“I think the circuit itself is absolutely fantastic. Everything they?ve done is unbelievable, everything we asked for they did. I think everything is fantastic. Everybody seems happy. I had a complaint about the weather not being hot as people were expecting! They?ve done a super job. Couldn?t ask for anything better.”

F1 aims to drop ‘force majeure’ rule (Autosport)

Race director Charlie Whiting: “We discussed it last week in the [Technical Working Group] and the consensus of opinion is to remove the term ‘force majeure’ and make it clear what is allowed and is not allowed.”

Button: 2013 car will suit me (Sky)

“The car is quick, we’ve proved that on many occasions. But for consistency for me it’s been a little bit more difficult to get the results. The car next year should suit me a bit more, which I’m very excited about.”

Tracking Shots (The Austin Chronicle)

Article on new F1 documentary “1”: “Take the massive multi-car crash at the 1973 British Grand Prix at Silverstone. On the day, there were six different camera teams at the track, and the research team hunted them all down.”

Alain Prost, Williams-Renault FW15C, Imola, 1993“Thank God I survived it”: F1 is all safety and money these days says legend Alain Prost (Daily Mirror)

“We used to be little bit more sharp sometimes and saying things and today they are a little bit afraid because they have big sponsors and manufacturers. But that?s because society is different not because Formula 1 is different.”

Formula One hoping to catch American attention with new track (Sports Illustrated)

“Austin seemed an odd choice. A trendy city of about 1.5 million, Austin bills itself as the “Live Music Capital of the World” and is the capital of Texas. But it hardly fits in with the other cosmopolitan F1 hosts like Melbourne, Shanghai or Singapore. Earlier this month, Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell joked that Austin hosting F1 was ‘sort of like Mayberry having the Super Bowl.'”

Tavo Hellmund’s United States Grand Prix joy will be shrouded in pain (The Guardian)

“This is, after all, my baby. And to see Formula One cars tear down the straight-way on Sunday will be the fulfilment of a project I worked on for more than a decade.”

Bid to crack America faces first big test (The Telegraph)

“Eddie Gossage, the president of Texas Motor Speedway near Dallas, said there was ‘no crossover’ between the [F1 and NASCAR], adding that Formula One posed no threat in the long-term. ‘It?s like soccer in this country. It has never succeeded and I don?t think it will ever succeed because it is not our game.'”

A Towering Landmark for Formula One Track (The New York Times)

“Bobby Epstein, co-founder of Circuit of the Americas, said he hoped the tower would become a landmark, making the track instantly recognizable to TV viewers. He declined to give the price of the tower, except to say that the steel alone ‘cost two or three million dollars’ and that he expected it to become a revenue-producing tourist attraction.”

Mark Webber: F1’s elder statesman remains outsider (CNN)

“I like the car a lot more. I really didn’t like the blown floor and it proved a very difficult car for me. I didn’t have a great feel for it and getting the right set-up was hard for me.”

Kamui Kobayashi, Sauber, Korea International Circuit, 2012Sauber boss reasurres Kamui Kobayashi over his future (The Independent)

“Sauber team principal Monisha Kaltenborn has told Kamui Kobayashi he is under no pressure to bring in sponsors to secure his seat for next season.”

Drivers need to oil the wheels of F1 (FT, registration required)

Williams executive director Toto Wolff: “It is about balancing short-term and long-term views. We have been very keen to have a guaranteed budget at the start of the season. Do we need to change that or not? I believe in [Pastor] Maldonado, Bruno [Senna] has had good performances and scored points. But then we have Valtteri [Bottas], who is…??the new kid on the block.”

I may have to look beyond Formula One, says Narain Karthikeyan (The Times of India)

“If paddock rumours are to be believed, the HRT is getting ready to bench 32 engineers from their staff. It is also heard that talks are on with some Indian and Abu Dhabi-based investors.”

United States GP – Conference 1 (FIA)

Sebastian Vettel on the FIA’s warning to drivers after he and Kimi Raikkonen swore on the podium in Abu Dhabi: “I think if you’re sensitive you should watch – I don’t know – some kids’ programme. You have the remote control in your hand, so you can choose. Surely it wasn’t intentional at the last race. I think it’s a bit unnecessary to create such a big fuss but anyway, if I said some things that weren’t appropriate then I apologise but I think there’s not a lot I have to do differently to succeed in that regard.”

Grand Prix planner faces fraud charges (Cincinatti News)

“[Curtis] Boggs, 54, of Harrison, is accused of orchestrating a scheme to defraud investors after selling them on the idea of a Grand Prix race featuring Formula One race cars.”

Otley man keeps F1 stars in check but witnesses madness on the roads (Ilkley Gazette)

FIA Indian Grand Prix steward Steve Stringwell: “Michael [Schumacher] told us he had seen the [blue] flags but didn?t feel that [Romain] Grosjean was close enough to overtake.”


Comment of the day

Jake (@Jleigh) reckons the BBC are don’t want the drivers’ championship to be decided on Sunday:

I bet every single person at the BBC is rooting for Alonso this weekend. It would be pretty embarrassing for them if they missed the title being won at the inaugural race at the Circuit of the Americas.
Jake (@Jleigh)

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Craig and cduk_mugello!

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Kimi Raikkonen was finally confirmed as the 2007 world champion, almost a month after the last race of the season.

It came as the FIA decided McLaren’s appeal against the results of the Brazilian Grand Prix was “inadmissible”:

Image ?? Caterham/LAT, Williams/LAT, Sauber F1 Team

144 comments on “Safety call prompts DRS rules change for 2013”

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  1. Absolutely tragic for the sport to think Robert Kubica won’t be able to fulfil his great potential in F1. I hope he makes the best recovery possible and has success in whatever field he is able to take part in.

    As for the swearing… it’s simply a matter of what’s acceptable for broadcast and not whether you or I are offended or not as individuals. In the UK swearing is not acceptable before 9pm, it’s as simple as that.
    And if Vettel’s solution is for people to switch off, it suggests he has no idea where his salary comes from; that is corporate sponsorship on the back of global tv coverage.
    Less viewers, less sponsorship, less money in F1.

  2. USA! USA! USA!

    Jenson Button feels at home because his girlfriend is Japanese, so expect Lewis feeling American because his lady is American…

    1. [Where’s the edit button?]

      USA! USA! USA!

      Jenson Button feels at in home in Japan because his girlfriend is Japanese, so expect Lewis feeling American because his lady is American…

      1. did this means that Alosno feels Russian??..:)

  3. Crappy DRS rule change in my view. One of my favourite parts of the weekend is seeing the astounding performance (corning and acceleration) of DRS-enabled top-end F1 cars in qualifying. You knew the cars were a second per lap faster than they could ever otherwise be, with higher top speeds and higher cornering speeds than you’ll see for at least a year. It is the reason the Red Bull set new qualifying records in 2010 and 2011.

    Plus, I believe the teams will gear the cars up purely for running in clean air, with no respect for DRS, and it will have even less of an impact than it does now. When DRS first came into practice, I remember comments by Brundle saying that F1 engineers he talked to noted they basically forced the FIA into allowing DRS at all times in practice and qualifying, otherwise they would purely gear the cars up for no DRS. Well, here we are.

    1. Well, for many years now, FIA try to slow the cars down. I can only dream of what we could see on the grid now, if cars speed was not an issue :)

      Don’t start me on the limiter, watching Formula 1 car bounce on a limiter is worse than any artificial DRS or gravel free tracks.

  4. I think this is one of the best round-ups of the year, @keithcollantine, it is just strikingly visible how much extra energy you put in this one – even when the standard of the others is already stunningly high. So much valuable information and so much shading comments. Thank you.

    I don’t even know what to react, a lot of things has been already mentioned. I think the highlights are Webber’s ESPN comment and Bernie’s unexpectedly full satisfaction – as far as the organisers are concerned, that is, but after all, even the organisers are unable to organise higher temps. I think if there would be some forest nearby with their usual wild pattern of colours of leaves, it would resemble even more to the traditional end-of-the-season gathering in the slightly chilly fresh air and colourful settling of Watkins Glen in upstate new York. I like this fall date for the new event.

    1. Also, I really want to see ‘1’. Based on the linked article a tremendous amount of attention, soul and energy was put into that film as well – something which is this far from being half-***** simply can’t be bad.

      And finally – so it might be that this track layout is actually good because the most of it was not designed by Hermann Tilke, but by Tavo Hellmund!? Gee. I bet the last-gasp modifications we talked about in the forums are from Tilke – though, this time, I like them all with the exception of the T8-T9 tighening.

    2. It’s a good point about the weather – it was admittedly surprising to hear Bernie *not* slate Silverstone for their parking/weather issues, but their reasons were perfectly valid and for he who is typically incredibly vocal with his dissatisfaction to be the voice of reason was a sign that he does sometimes live on planet Earth.

  5. Onboard lap with Hermann Tilke at COTA

  6. They have changed DRS the wrong way.

    They should have done what every poll shows fans want & made DRS available everywhere, For everyone for a limited number of uses during the races rather than moving it where practice/quali imitates race useage.

    By doing it that way you get some strategy in its use as if everyone had 20 uses through a race to both attack & defend it will be down to the drivers to decide when/where to use it & this at least makes DRS half interesting & brings in some skill surrounding its use during races.

    Many other series do this with various push-2-pass systems & it works well & most importantly provides better racing than DRS ever has!

    I’d still rather see this ludicrously artificial gimmick banned completely though!!!!!

  7. Whats next?… banning the use of the throttle mid corner because it isn’t safe. F1 cars aren’t safe thats why its takes skilled people to drive them. The real reason is the FIA want to reduce DRS development.

    1. I think the point is DRS is inherently unsafe in corners. The effect on the car when the downforce is removed and reattached cannot really be predicted, thus when its released on the allotted straight, at least they know its a control condition.

      It’s like the F-duct – a measure of reason why it was banned was less down to the system itself and more how drivers were driving one-handed through Eau Rouge to activate it.

  8. I feel a little mean criticising the drivers over what they believe to be a safety issue, but if the drivers don’t feel safe testing the limits of the track and the car then surely there’s a whole raft of things that would need reviewing? You would need to review some of the kerb heights (or how the drivers attack them), the use of tyre blankets, the different tyre compounds, KERS etc… Call me pedantic but testing the limits is just that, testing.

    The cynic in me is saying that it’s just a way for some of the less downforce-orientated teams to take away some of the qualifying advantage from the likes of Red Bull…

  9. Personally I think the use of DRS in qualifying is one of it’s few benefits. It is a great test of driver skill to see who can open the DRS earliest and hence gain the most benefit so will qualify higher. It is after all up to the drivers when they open it, so if they spin then that’s their problem – not a safety issue.

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