Off-throttle feeding of EBD to be banned?

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    There’s some stuff going around twitter, linked to by Craig Scarborough, that powering the diffuser by mapping the engine to feed it with exhaust gases when drivers are off the throttle (thus increasing its efficiency) is to be banned from the Spanish GP onwards. Other rumours are saying that it’s not a ban but a limit of about 10-15% and it was imposed by Charlie Whiting.

    Which, if true, leads me to think: is it to close up the championship? Red Bull are believed to have the best EBD out there, in no small part thanks to Renault creating the best engine program to control the flow of exhaust gases when the car is off-throttle. As a bonus, Ferrari and McLaren would also lose a bit of performance, allowing Mercedes and Renault to come back into play.

    This could shake things up a bit…


    Ned Flanders

    If- and it’s a big if- it is an attempt to make the championship closer, my respect for F1 as a sport (as opposed to a form of entertainment) will have dropped yet another notch



    Okay I am 99% sure this is going to happen: http://forums.autosport.com/index.php?s=b40994ec9ca46235c2267cfd1c3cda83&showtopic=147820&st=120&p=5022521&#entry5022521

    I think the most interesting part of all this was the post that suggested that perfecting the EBD took away an advantage from Webber. The plot thickens…

    Edit: who it favours or not may not be so clear-cut – what about Renault themselves? And given that at most venues the drivers are on the throttle more often than not, its impact will probably be limited. I’ll be happy if it impacts the ability to use the DRS in qualifying though, because that was a mechanical advantage I saw coming from miles away.

    Edit 2: Maybe Renault engines shot themselves in the foot when they boasted they used up extra fuel to run their EBD program? 10 says it will be banned on cost/green grounds.

    Edit 3: voices of reason to calm us down: http://forums.autosport.com/index.php?s=&showtopic=147820&view=findpost&p=5022730 and the post afterwards. I admit at first I was thinking it was manipulation, but I’m believing it less and less now.



    Official: http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/91475

    The Horner quote makes me cringe though. Let’s hear some proof first, eh?



    I wish the FIA wouldn’t do this. There’s absolutely no reason to be messing around with rules and regulations mid-season, unless it’s in the name of safety- which this clearly is not.

    There is only one reason why this is happening- to make the smaller teams more competitive. Whether it’s a result of some team complaining about Red Bull’s dominance, or simply an idea dreamt up by the FIA, I don’t know.

    I don’t care whether they spin it as cost-cutting or “being green”. The truth is that it’s an attempt to make the racing closer, and I sincerely hope it doesn’t work. I’d have no problem with off-throttle exhausting being banned AT THE END of the season, or indeed even blown diffusers altogether. But don’t do it mid-season.

    Changing the regulations mid-way through a season is just a farce, whatever the reason they spout out. Give the teams a set of regulations to build their cars to, and then stick with it for that season. If this means teams are able to find loop-holes or other “undesirable gimmicks”, so be it. There are no prizes for being sporting.



    Absolutely agree with VettelS, this is disappointing.



    Most teams have a blown diffuser, so this isn’t about making the gap smaller. In fact it could hurt Renault as much as Red Bull, not a good thing if they want closer competition.

    The “mode” which will be banned is also atypical. Most of the time F1 cars are on the throttle, not off it. Sure, it’s the part which gains lap time, but it’s only a small part of the overall downforce.

    Also, even though I’m no fan of this halfway-house of green technology in F1, it’s pretty stupid to have an engine manufacturer admit that it’s burning fuel up just to power an aerodynamic device. Bear in mind the FIA have a long-standing agenda of limiting cornering speeds and cutting costs – big amounts have already been spent trying to catch up to Renault and even more would be needed to eliminate the gap. The DDD put a giant hole into the FIA’s plans on this front. They couldn’t ban it because it wasn’t against the rules. They couldn’t ban it for the next year (2010) because it would reduce the 2009 arms race to nothing. Finally getting rid of it for 2011, nothing happens. So from their point of view, they had to do something.

    So let’s not be jumping to any conclusions just yet, please? In an added bonus, throttle-only feeding of the exhaust requires a specific driving skill to maximise it, to be a bit more daring with the throttle. Ironically given comments so far, this may tilt the balance of F1 a tiny bit in favour of sport and skill rather than machinery, which no-one can say is under-represented in F1 today.



    In the BTCC technical regulations are frequently changed mid-season to make the series more competitive, and it hasn’t done any harm there. The most recent change was a reduction of the boost pressure limits on the turbo cars by 0.1 bar to give the normally aspirated cars a chance at Thruxton.

    I have no problem with the change to the EBD if it is going to help improve the racing.



    The teams have been given a reprieve for the Spanish GP: http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/91481

    I guess we will see this for Monaco now.



    Topic now discussed here:


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